5 things to know (Week 12)

Don’t have time to watch or read the news? No problem! The Butler Collegian’s editor-in-chief has compiled a list of the top five things he thinks readers should know this week.

Let’s keep this short, sweet and to the point. Hope you enjoy this last issue!


Fact 1: The “upsides” to U.S. relations with Cuba: As restrictions against Cuba wither away, profit can be made. Cuba’s spending power is expected to increase 4.6 percent, according to Time magazine. “For global companies seeking a foothold anywhere they can, more money in the pockets of Cubans means more fuel for expansion,” the article said. “Take Coca-Cola. With an open Cuba, Coke could be legally be sold in every country in the world save one: North Korea.” In addition, foreign investment is expected to increase during this period and legal commercial tourism may attract more Americans than ever before.


Fact 2: Destruction by landmines: “Mines and unexploded munitions claimed 11,073 victims, including 2,216 who died, from 1990 through March 2015” in Colombia, according to the New York Times. More than a third of all victims were civilians, including children, while the rest were members of the security forces. Eleven people were killed and 43 wounded by mines this year, according to the article. Most of the mines were laid by guerrilla factions that turned a majority of Colombians against them. The United Nations lists demining countries as a global issue as landmines kill 15,000 to 20,000 people—most of whom are children, women and the elderly—and severely maim countless more each year.


Fact 3: The economics of the NBA finals: Winning the NBA finals isn’t just about pride and competitiveness. A lot of money is at stake for the teams involved, the cities who support the clubs and the television networks who invest millions into showing the games. For example, an average of $930 million is paid annually to the NBA by ESPN and TNT to air basketball programming, according to BallnRoll and $536.9 million total is spent on NBA postseason advertising, according to a 2013 Kantar Media report. Expect the lucky cities who get to host the NBA finals to profit as well. Last year, the Miami Heat’s presence in the city created a total economic impact of $1.5 billion on Miami-Dade county, according to a team-commissioned study. So if LeBron James happens to take his winning ways back to Cleveland, a potential boom could be in store for a city who has not seen a championship team in more than 50 years.


Fact 4: Another oil spill in the Gulf raises questions: Another oil rig caught fire in the Gulf of Mexico earlier this month. The April 1 explosion on a rig belonging to Mexico’s state-run Pemex oil company did not lead to a massive oil spill like the British Petroleum spill five years before, but this newest occurrence may highlight more issues with oil rigs, according to the Los Angeles Times. After the BP incident that killed 11 workers and spilled four million barrels of crude oil, President Obama, in June 10, said his administration would take steps to “ensure that a disaster like this does not happen again.” But Congress, as of now, has not enacted the offshore-drilling safety measures recommended by the president’s Oil Spill Commission, and it has not raised the cap of $75 million for corporate liability on major spills.


Fact 5: Opinions on gun laws shift again: “For the first time, more Americans say that protecting gun rights is more important than controlling gun ownership, 52 percent to 46 percent,” according to a report released Friday by the Pew Research Center. Researchers say the reason for this relates to inverse perceptions of crime in America, which is statistically at a 20-year low. The majority of Americans (63 percent) incorrectly said crime was rising, according to a Gallup survey. The report adds, “Why public views on crime have grown more dire is unclear, though many blame it on the nature of news coverage, reality TV and political rhetoric. Whatever the cause, this trend is not without consequence. Today, those who say that crime is rising are the most opposed to gun control: Just 45 percent want to see gun laws made more strict, compared with 53 percent of those who see crime rates as unchanged or dropping.”


There you have it. Don’t be afraid to use these set of facts to impress (and annoy) your friends. Who doesn’t love a smart aleck, right?


P.S. Good luck on finals and get ready to enjoy another summer!

Written and compiled by Julian Wyllie