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McKayla Maroney reveals FBI agent’s horrifying question after she reported Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse

Star athletes from the USA Gymnastics team, Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and Maggie Nichols, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday on the circumstances that allowed disgraced Olympic doctor Larry Nassar to sexually abuse hundreds of young women and girls.

During Maroney's testimony, she said that Nassar was "more of a pedophile than he was a doctor."

Maroney went on to say that after telling her story of his abuse to the FBI in the summer of 2015, "not only did the FBI not report my abuse, but when they eventually documented my report, 17 months later they made entirely false claims about what I said."

"After reading the [Inspector General's report], I was shocked and deeply disappointed at this narrative that they chose to fabricate. They chose to lie about what I said and protect a serial child molester rather than protect not only me, but countless others," she said.

She then specifically called out FBI Special Agent Jay Abbot and his subordinates, saying that they did not want her telling her story. Maroney says she spent three hours telling the FBI what happened to her -- details she says she hadn't yet told her own mother.

"I told them that the first thing Larry Nassar said to me was to change into shorts with no underwear because that would make it easier for him to work on me," she said. "And within minutes, he had his fingers in my vagina."

"The FBI immediately asked, 'Did he insert his fingers into your rectum?' I said no, he never did. They asked if he used gloves. I said no, he never did. They asked if this treatment ever helped me. I said no, it never did. This treatment was one hundred percent abuse, and never gave me any relief. I then told the FBI about Tokyo, the day he gave me a sleeping pill for the plane ride to then work on me later that night. That evening I was naked, completely alone, with him on top of me molesting me for hours. I told [the FBI] I thought I was going to die that night, because there was no way that he would let me go. But he did. I told them I walked the halls of the Tokyo hotel at 2am at only 15-years-old. I began crying at the memory over the phone, and there was just dead silence."

Maroney said she was shocked at the agent's silence and "disregard" for her trauma. The agent then broke the silence and asked, "Is that all?"

"Those words in itself was one of the worst moments in this entire process for me," she said, her voice cracking with emotion. "To have my abuse be minimized and disregarded by the people who were supposed to protect me, just to feel like my abuse was not enough. But the truth is my abuse was enough, and they wanted to cover it up. USA Gymnastics, in concert with the FBI and the Olympic Committee, were working together to conceal that Larry Nassar was a predator."

Watch the video below:

'Stop this insanity': Marjorie Taylor Greene has a meltdown because her colleagues won't impeach Biden

In a Twitter thread this Friday, Georgia GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene lamented the fact that her fellow Republicans aren't glomming on to her calls to "impeach" President Joe Biden.

Greene wrote that ever since "Dictator Joe Biden" began what she calls the Democrats' "Communist takeover of America" -- namely his announcement of nationwide COVID-19 mandates -- she hasn't had a single "call on my calendar or an email in my inbox from leadership to stop this insanity."

"After all, I ran for Congress because when Republicans controlled the House and Senate during the first two years of Trump's presidency, they failed to deliver key issues that were of utmost importance to Republican voters, Greene wrote.

Greene went on to list an array of promises she says were broken by Republicans, saying that the broken promises are what inspired her to run for Congress.

"I give speeches to hundreds to thousands of Republican voters every single week at home and all across the country," she wrote. "Our voters are fed up with Republicans in Congress doing nothing to stop Dictator Joe Biden and the outright destruction to our country."

According to Greene, if Republicans don't win the midterms in 2022 and the general election in 2024, Americans "won't have a Constitution or country left ..."

"Here is what must be done. Impeach Joe Biden," she declared. "The GOP Conference must come together with Articles of Impeachment. Spend as much money as it takes to apply pressure on moderate Dems that know they will lose their seats if they vote NO on impeachment."

Read her full Twitter thread here.

This concept is key to understanding evangelical culture’s hypocrisy — according to an anthropologist

A new book by anthropologist Sophie Bjork-James takes a look at what biblical decrees white evangelicals take metaphorically and which ones they take literally.

As Religion Dispatches points out, Bjork-James' book "The Divine Institution: White Evangelicalism's Politics of the Family" finds that a concept called "divine institution" helps evangelicals mediate biblical interpretation.

"...what seems like unconscionable hypocrisy from the outside seems to cause few ripples on the inside. 'Sacred familialism'—the phrase Bjork-James uses to indicate evangelicals' worship of a rigid family norm—is so central to evangelical understandings of the Bible that few of her subjects question its veracity," writes Religion Dispatches' Seth Dowland.

"If high-profile evangelicals cheat on their spouses or engage in same-sex behavior, they either repent or lose standing in the movement. Evangelicals who express serious misgivings about the patriarchal family model typically move away from evangelicalism."

"I had expected that pastors would be talking very explicitly about being anti-abortion and anti-LGBT rights, etc. and talking about voting and that was very rarely the case in the churches I studied," she explained. "But what I came to see after attending hundreds of Sunday sermons at large churches was that almost every single time a pastor would translate Biblical stories into stories about his own experience with his family.

"The pastors are always male. There's a lot of rules against females preaching to at least to men. Women can often preach to other women but not on the main stage in church," Bjork-James said. "So, there's this gender structure and they would often invoke their family as a way of translating Biblical stories into everyday relevant life. On the one hand, it seems like he's talking about his own experience but the broader effect is that it reinforces this idea of a Christian life lived in the family. It has to be a heterosexual and patriarchal world. Not only just to be a Christian but to grow up to be a healthy adult, you need heterosexual parents. And that becomes the norm that any deviation from is not ideal."

Surgical tech compares herself to a Holocaust victim because of hospital’s vaccine requirement — quickly gets fired

A surgical tech at a Georgia hospital no longer has a job after she posted a video where she compared the hospital's vaccine mandate to the Holocaust, WSB-TV reports.

Jessica Renzi was a surgical technologist with the Wellstar Healthcare System. Since her firing, all her social media accounts have been deleted. In the video that was posted to TikTok, Renzi had a hand-drawn tattoo on herself that was her vaccine lot number, which apparently was meant to mimic the tattoos given to concentration camp prisoners.

In a statement, hospital officials announced that Renzi no longer works for them.

"Jessica Renzi is no longer an employee of Wellstar Health System," the statement read. "At Wellstar, we stand strongly against anti-Semitism as well as comments or behavior of any kind that do not serve our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. We are dedicated to fostering an environment where all team members treat others with compassion and respect. Wellstar remains steadfast in our mission to enhance the health and wellbeing of every person we serve."

All Wellstar employees must be fully vaccinated by Oct. 1. Protests against the mandated have taken place at the hospital throughout the week.

"Call it unconstitutional, call it whatever you want," protester Darrell Hester told WSB-TV. "You've got medicine out here that's taking years, decades to be approved and then you see you on TV now they say, 'Hey, if you or your loved one has taken such a such a product, call this lawyer.' Well, this has only taken months and it pushed through, yeah, that's a little scary."

The Anti-Defamation League also put out a statement regarding the incident, condemning Renzi's use of Holocaust imagery.

"The use of Nazi and Holocaust analogies is deeply offensive, even traumatizing, especially to the families of those who perished and lost loved ones in World War II," the statement read. "For Jewish families, Holocaust analogies trigger fear around one of the darkest, most antisemitic times in recent history, and these present day analogies come at a time of heightened antisemitism in the US felt very clearly by American Jews. Especially as the world deals with fear around the fragility of the pandemic, invoking Holocaust analogies only functions to further distrust and anxiety, not bring us together forward."

There's a real election security breach case — focused on a Trump-loving county clerk's office: report

Writing for The Bulwark this Monday, Tim Miller says that there's finally a credible investigation into voting machine tampering, and it's not being initiated by Donald Trump's allies.

Miller cited a recent report from The Daily Sentinel, detailing how the Mesa County Clerk and Recorder's Office in Colorado is under investigation by the Secretary of State's Office over a "breach in security" in its election system.

"Secretary of State Jena Griswold released an order at 10:15 a.m. today calling on Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters to supply surveillance videos and documents showing how the breach occurred, and how security information ended up on a social media post," the Sentinel reports. "If Peters can't show proper chain of custody for that security information, which involves certain passwords that are eyes-only for state and county election workers who have passed background checks, all of the county's election systems could be immediately decertified, meaning the county would be on the hook for an expensive refit of all of its machines."

As Miller points out, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters is fervent Trump supporter "who appears to have executed a self-own of historic proportion."

Last week, QAnon conspiracists shared a video claiming a "whistleblower" provided alleged evidence that Dominion voting machines are connected to the internet -- a claim that is a necessary element for voter fraud conspiracy theories.

In the video, the alleged whistleblower included an image of their election system's BIOS password, and in doing so "they stepped on a pretty large rake – because the password in the video was unique, which allowed the Colorado Secretary of State's office to identify which county the leak came from and during which meeting it was recorded," Miller writes.

"It turns out the election hacker was not Antifa or a Hugo Chavez apparition but a real live human in the office of Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters," writes Miller.

Read the full article over at The Bulwark.

'Never expected I'd say this': Election expert delivers a terrifying warning

Speaking on CNN this Thursday, election law expert Richard Hasen said he worried about the future of elections in the United States of America.

"I never expected to say I'd be scared sh*tless on CNN, but that's how I feel," said Hasen on CNN's New Day. "I think that we dodged a bullet in 2020, but the way things are lining up, I'm very concerned about our elections going forward, especially 2024 and the possibility that we're not going to have an election where the official results reflect what voters actually want."

Hasen is a professor of law and political science at the University of California, Irvine. He is also the co-director of the Fair Elections and Free Speech Center.

He told CNN that he's not only worried about Donald Trump's election lies, but his calls for "state legislatures to override the will of the people. He added that Republicans are pushing out "those who had the courage to stand up to Trump" and replacing them with people "that are going to make it easier to subvert the will of the people if that's what the political pressure puts on them to make them do."

'Star witness' emerges as hearings over Trump's attempt to delegitimize election grow closer: report

As hearings over former President Donald Trump's attempts to reverse the 2020 election results could potentially start as early as this week, Richard P. Donoghue, the former acting deputy attorney general under Trump, has emerged a potential star witness, The Washington Post's Aaron Blake writes.

As Blake points out, Donoghue's name repeatedly appears in notes and emails pushing back against Trump's efforts to delegitimize the election he lost.

Donoghue's potential testimony could include details of notes he wrote during a December meeting with Trump where the former president Trump urged the Justice Department to "just say the election was corrupt" and to "leave the rest to me and the R[epublican] Congressmen."

"The other big revelation this week involves a highly unorthodox draft letter from [then-head of the Justice Department's civil division, Jeffrey Clark]. In it, Clark sought to urge the Georgia state legislature to call a special session to look at potentially overturning the election results in their state," Blake writes. "As The Washington Post's Philip Bump wrote, the proposed letter appears to be the latest in a series of thinly veiled attempts among Trump allies to lay a predicate for getting Congress not to accept the election results Jan. 6."

But as Blake points out, Donoghue again flatly objected.

"He wrote in response that the alleged 'irregularities' Clark based his draft letter upon 'are of such a small scale that they simply would not impact the outcome of the Presidential Election,'" Blake writes. "He also said, even setting that aside, that it was hardly the Justice Department's business to urge a state legislature to take such actions based upon investigations the department generally would never comment upon."

Read the full report over at The Washington Post.

'An embarrassment and a disgrace': McConnell faces backlash over his excuse for ignoring the 1/6 hearing

Speaking to a gaggle of reporters this Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was asked if he watched the House select committee's first hearing in its investigation of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

"Did you watch any of the hearing today?" a reporter asked.

"No, I didn't," McConnell replied.

"Why not?" the reporter asked.

"I was busy doing work," McConnell said. "I serve in the Senate."

But McConnell's critics on Twitter weren't buying that excuse.

'It's devastating': Unvaccinated woman thought she could 'escape' Covid – now she'll 'never be the same'

After a rough battle with COVID-19, a North Carolina woman who was unvaccinated is now urging people to get the shot, 13News reports.

"I thought I was healthy enough and that I could escape it," said Linda Edwards, who contracted the virus about three weeks ago. "Really, it was the most frightening thing I've ever been through in my life."

"It was devastating. I had no dreams of ever staying that long. It's the longest I've ever been in the hospital," she said of her two-week hospital stay. "I was there hoping and praying my son was okay here because he had tested positive, too."

Her son, Shane, had been airlifted to the same hospital she was staying in and was in the room right next to her, but doctors didn't tell her because they didn't want to worry her. Shane was a dire situation of his own, facing renal failure and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).

"They thought it would really bother me, and it would have because he was really serious," she said. "They said it's a miracle he walked out of there."

"It's changed my whole life. I'll never be the same," Edwards said. "I just thought if I live through this, I want to go on a mission to try to help people to see that it is not worth not taking the vaccine because of what it can do to your family. We could've easily have had two funerals."

Only 34% of the people in the county where Edwards lives are partially vaccinated, and 31% are fully vaccinated. According to Graham County Health Director Beth Booth, the vaccine hesitancy in the county "is almost taken to another level."

"We feed them the science and the information, but they still believe a certain way. A lot of the belief system out here is that it is still very political," Booth said.

As for Edwards, she says she'll be getting vaccinated as soon as she can.

NC woman urging vaccinations after COVID battle

Bill Barr 'lied to us over and over’ as he weaponized the DOJ to protect Trump: legal expert

Speaking on MSNBC this Thursday, legal analyst and former prosecutor Elie Honig said former Attorney General Bill Barr "broke the prosecutor's code" during his time in the Trump administration.

"Bill Barr came in and lied to us. He lied to us for two years -- everything from the Mueller report to fanning flames of the big lie of election fraud, and I call Bill Barr a liar in the book," Honig said, adding that Barr "lied to us over and over again."

Honig went on to say that Barr's lack of experience as a prosecutor made him "ill equipped" to be attorney general, but his "lack of character" was a bigger issue.

"Bill Barr weaponized DOJ in a political way," Honig said. "I served about equal time at DOJ under the Bush administration and the Obama administration -- it made no difference to me on the line. Bill Barr came in and he used DOJ to protect Donald Trump in a dishonest way, to protect Michael Flynn, to protect Roger Stone, and to pump the president's, whatever the political narratives at the moment were, whether he was trying to pump up the threat of protests in various cities, or pump up the threat of election fraud, Bill Barr was right there reflecting whatever Donald Trump's political talking point of the moment was."

The legal expert suggested that Barr should lose his law license because of his behavior. Rudy Giuliani's license to practice law in New York was suspended last month because of his "false and misleading statements" about the 2020 election.

"I think the American Bar Association and the states where Bill Barr is licensed have got to deal with this. Bill Barr lied to the American public, not a crime, but absolutely a basis to lose your license," Honig said.

Watch the video below:

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