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The long silence after “I can’t breathe”

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The Department of Justice will not file charges against the police officer accused of fatally choking Eric Garner; China is feeling the blow of its prolonged trade war with the US. 

 

Tonight’s Sentences was written by Catherine Kim. 

TOP NEWS
Officer in Eric Garner’s death won’t be charged
David McNew/Getty Images
  • The officer responsible for the death of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, will not be charged with any federal crimes. [AP / Michael Balsamo, Michael R. Sisak, Colleen Long, and Tom Hays
  • In 2014, NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo attempted to arrest Garner for selling untaxed cigarettes. When matters escalated, Pantaleo wrapped his arm around Garner’s neck –– a move closely resembling a chokehold that is banned in the state –– which medical experts say spurred a fatal asthma attack. [NBC News / Pete Williams, Minyvonne Burke, and Adam Reiss]
  • Garner’s last words: “I can’t breathe.” [USA Today / Kevin Johnson and William Cummings]
  • The Justice Department, however, said that there wasn’t enough evidence to prove beyond doubt that Pantaleo “willfully” used more force than necessary. [The Wall Street Journal / Sadie Gurman and Corinne Ramey]
  • The decision comes a day before the fifth anniversary of Garner’s death, which was the deadline for the government to decide whether they would file charges. [CNN / David Shortell]
  • Garner’s mother, Gwen Carr, criticized the government for failing to hold the police accountable for her son’s death. None of the NYPD officers involved in Garner’s death have been charged with a crime or disciplined by the department. [NPR / Bobby Allen]
  • Carr is still calling on city officials to fire Pantaleo, who is currently on desk duty –– which means he is still eligible for pay and pension benefits –– and the decision is ultimately up to Commissioner James O’Neill. It’s not likely, however, that the commissioner will make a decision soon because he’s waiting for the ruling of Pantaleo’s ongoing NYPD disciplinary trial. [NYT / Katie Benner and William K. Rashbaum]
  • The ruling is also a disappointing blow to the Black Lives Matter movement, which was spurred by a string of fatal police brutality cases, including Garner’s death. “I can’t breathe” had become a rallying cry among protesters. [BuzzFeed News / Amber Jamieson and Tasneem Nashrulla]
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China’s economy doesn’t love trade wars
  • China may be feeling the effects of its trade war with the US: The country’s economy grew at its slowest pace since 1992. [Wall Street Journal / Chao Deng]
  • China’s official GDP this quarter stopped at 6.2 percent, down from 6.4 percent the past quarter. While this still falls within the government’s target range within 6 percent to 6.5 percent, the bad news is that the country expects the downward trend to continue. [South Morning China Post / Sidney Leng]
  • The year-long trade war between China and the US seems to be a factor behind its slowing economy, along with weak demand in many parts of the world. Exports and imports have dropped in the past six months, and uncertainty during the trade dispute has made investors more skeptical. And the official GDP figures may understate the problem. [NYT / Keith Bradsher]
  • There is some reason for optimism: Last month, Trump announced that he’d hold new tariffs and resume trade talks with China following a successful meeting with President Xi Jinping during the G20 conference. [CNN / Laura He]
  • It seems like Trump wants to use China’s slowing economy as leverage during these trade talks, as he touted on Twitter that the US’s tariffs were doing significant damage to China. China, however, has vehemently denied these claims, emphasizing that a trade deal is a win-win agreement that both sides want and need. [Reuters / Ben Blanchard]
  • And it looks like China is in no hurry to reach a trade deal, despite its slowing economy. China’s commerce minister has been quoted saying he’ll uphold the country’s “warrior spirit” to defend China’s interest –– which could be bad news for Trump, who needs immediate results as a booster for his reelection campaign. [The Washington Post / Anna Fifield
MISCELLANEOUS
In 2017, “13 Reasons Why” was under fire for its graphic depiction of suicide. Two years later, Netflix has decided to delete the scene.

[BBC]

  • PSA: Don’t flush your drugs because it can lead to “meth-gators,” according to the Loretto Police Department in Tennessee. [NBC News / Kalhan Rosenblatt]

  • Dear internet, stop worrying about 5G technology damaging your brain tissue. Here’s how one scientist fueled the suspect theories surrounding the wireless technology.  [NYT / William J. Broad]

  • The last season of Game of Thrones may not have been well-received by fans, but the show still made history with its 32 Emmy nominations. [Newsweek / Hannah Preston

  • 50 years ago today, Apollo 11 was launched into outer space. Watch the astronauts’ first interview following after landing on the moon. [CBS News / Elizabeth Campbell

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VERBATIM
“The DOJ has failed us. Five years ago, my son said ‘I can’t breathe’ 11 times. Today we can’t breathe because they have let us down.”

[Garner’s mother, Gwen Carr, on the Justice Department’s decision to not file charges against the officer accused of using a chokehold on her son before his death]

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