Good morning, everyone!
Like a high-speed vehicular wreck that you don’t really want to witness, but from which you somehow cannot bring yourself to look away, the Republican National Convention crashes along in Cleveland. Indiana governor Mike Pence accepted the nomination for vice president last night, but the big story of course was that Ted Cruz rambled on in a speech for twenty-three minutes and never actually endorsed Donald Trump for president. At least one of those things was unexpected.
“Vote your conscience,” said Ted. Here is some video of him getting booed.
Meanwhile, Barry Yeoman, covering the convention for the INDY, caught up with North Carolina state Senator Ronald Rabin who agrees with Trump that “many Mexicans” are indeed rapists.
“Are they?,” Barry asks. You see, the meaning of “many” is “nebulous,” said Rabin. We can’t make this up.
Onto the news.
1. House Speaker Paul Ryan doesn’t understand ACC basketball and “Coach K” Mike Krzyzewski thinks HB 2 is “embarrassing.”
Unlike Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan has fallen in line with his party’s at-this-point-still-presumptive nominee for president, and was trying to persuade skeptics in the North Carolina delegation to support Trump also. He compared them to Carolina fans rooting for Duke (Trump) in a basketball game against Russia (Hillary Clinton).
“We root for our team, we want them to go all the way … but at the end of the day when one of the teams goes to a bowl game, we root for them, right?”
Doubtful murmurs in the crowd.
“Come on, work with me!” implored Ryan, a big Wisconsin Badgers fan.
“The point I’m trying to make is, we started this year with ruptures, let’s be honest. … We have got to unify to get it right so we can get this job done.
“As much as it pains me to say it, if Wisconsin doesn’t make it to the Rose Bowl, doesn’t make it to the BCS, I’ll root for another Big Ten team. I’ll even root for Michigan.”
This is where Republicans were on the day they officially nominated Donald Trump as their presidential nominee. They are Carolina fans rooting for Duke (Trump) because it’s better than Russia (Hillary Clinton). Some can’t bring themselves to do it. Conversations with delegates here leave the strong impression that Trump was almost nobody’s first choice.
I don’t know what it’s like in Wisconsin but this analogy doesn’t work here—why would Duke be playing Russia?— for many reasons best explained by Duke fan and Charlotte Observer editorial contributor Taylor Batten. Duke fans don’t root for Carolina, Carolina fans don’t root for Duke. Fans of both occasionally root for N.C. State, mostly because they feel sorry for State’s sports programs, but N.C. State fans don’t root for Carolina. Clear?
Still, we have some common ground in that everyone is rooting against HB 2. Coach K calls it “embarrassing” and UNC’s Roy Williams said it was “disappointing.” N.C. State men’s basketball coach Mark Gottfried said he was “appalled” by the bill. HB 2 is zero for three.
2. Here is a profile of a Raleigh firefighter who has to work six jobs and use Medicaid to get by.
A Raleigh firefighter’s starting salary is $33,654. So underpaid firefighters (and police officers) train in Raleigh, stick around for a couple of years and then go somewhere that pays better like virtually any other municipality in Wake County, where they probably already live anyway, given that they can’t afford to live in Raleigh because they’re so badly paid.
Jason Brown said six years as a Raleigh firefighter has meant tough times for his family.
“Since I’ve been with the fire department, I’ve had them on Medicaid,” Brown said. “I spend most of my time working, finding odd end jobs, working my part-time job.”
Wilder said Brown’s story is not unique.
“Most everyone I know works a second job,” he said.
Brown said he loves the city and will stay, but acknowledges that decision comes at a price.
“At the station, I leave there, go home, catch a nap, say hey to the kids and run to my next job,” he said.
City leaders would not comment except to say the compensation study is set to be completed by the next fiscal year.
3. Gross. Kids in Wake County are catching a diarrheal disease caused by parasites called cryptosporidium from swimming pools.
There have been twenty cases in Wake County so far and county officials are urging public pools not to go easy on the chlorine. They’re also urging parents to take their kids to the bathroom every hour to avoid spreading the disease. I don’t have kids but that certainly sounds like best practice to me.
Cryptosporidium are one of the leading causes of waterborne disease in the United States and are found in streams, rivers, lakes and pools, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People can become infected if they swallow water carrying the parasite or get it in their mouths.
Cryptosporidium rest in the intestines of infected humans and animals, spreading through their stool. People can also become infected by touching surfaces like bathroom fixtures or handling infected soil or animals and then touching their mouths with their hands.
But the majority of the 20 cases in Wake have come from water in pools and lakes this summer. Cryptosporidium are resistant to normal levels of chlorine in pools, health officials say, and infected pools must be treated with high levels of chlorine to clear out the parasite.
That’s why the county is advising people to hyper-chlorinate their pools, said Andre Pierce, the county’s environmental health and safety director. County pool technicians are going out to all of Wake’s 1,160 public pools (including neighborhood and community pools) and treating them if necessary.
Pierce noted that many pools, including most city pools, regularly hyper-chlorinate, a process that usually requires the pool to close for a time. He also stressed the need to take other preventative measures, such as keeping infected people out of pools, but that can be difficult. Some people may carry the disease but experience no symptoms, while others can still contaminate water weeks after their symptoms have stopped.
4. In other Wake news, those historic, state-owned homes on the edge of Oakwood still haven’t closed. And North Raleigh finally gets that Publix, or Publix finally gets North Raleigh.
5. It’s going to be dangerously hot this weekend.
Temperatures and humidity will remain relatively low on Thursday, but both numbers will spike over the weekend to deliver the hottest, stickiest weather of the summer.
The heat index, the combination of temperature and humidity, will rise to 95 on Thursday. The number is forecast to climb into triple digits by Saturday, though, and push there through Monday.
“We get into the weekend, and it feels much worse,” said WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner. “We start to get into the danger zone, especially Sunday and Monday.
“In order for the Weather Service to issue a heat advisory, the heat index, or the ‘feels like’ temperature, has to be at around 105 for several hours, and we’re going to get close to that on Sunday.”
Take care if you’re going to the Dix Park party on Saturday, take your kid to the bathroom regularly if you’re going to the pool and remember to
That’s all I got; Thursday is little Friday!