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Sybil’s Birthday Shoutouts

Happy Birthday to:

Singer Chaka Khan Chaka Khan, born Yvette Marie Stevens

Chef, Businesswoman Ayesha Curry

NBA Hall of Famer and Coach Jason Kidd

Rapper, Artist Juvenile

NBA Vet Kyrie Irving

Actress Vanessa Morgan

NFL Vet Brandon Marshall

Comedian, Late Night Sidekick

Reggie Watts

Actress Tiffany Ayoung

NFL Vet, Analyst Maurice Jones-Drew

Long Distance Olympic Champion

Mo Farah

We remember:

The First Black Mayor of Atlanta, the Honorable Maynard Jackson, born 1938

ABA and NBA All-Star Moses Eugene Malone, born 1955

Boxer, Actor Tony Burton, born 1937



Sybil Wilkes ‘What You Need To Know’ School Shooting for 3rd Consecutive Day — The Bromance: — 10 Indicted For Death of Irvo Otieno  was originally published on

1. High School Shooting for 3rd Consecutive Day

High School Shooting for 3rd Consecutive Day Source:Getty

What You Need to Know:


For the third consecutive day, a shooting was reported at an American high school. A manhunt began Wednesday morning after two administrators were shot at a Denver, Colorado high school. The adults were injured after a handgun was discovered on a student who was the subject of daily searches.


News reports indicate the “shooting happened just before 10 a.m. in an area away from classrooms as the student was undergoing a daily search as part of a “safety plan,” due to previous behavior, officials said. One of the administrators was critically injured and was undergoing surgery at an area hospital. The second victim was treated and released. Both victims are male. 


As of Wednesday evening, authorities identified the student, by name, originally identified as a 5’5” Black male, with an Afro hairstyle, wearing a hoodie. 


The Associated Press reported a student opened fire at a Dallas-area school Monday morning, killing one student and injuring another before being arrested on a capital murder charge, police said.


The shooting began on a high school campus in the suburb of Arlington, Texas, around 6:55 a.m., before many students arrived for the first day back to classes after the spring break, according to police and school district officials.


Arlington Police reported that a male student who was shot died at a hospital and a female victim was treated after being “grazed” by shrapnel. Social media posts identified the deceased student as 16-year-old Jashawn Poirier. A 15-year student was arrested after being located by police. The video showed the suspect firing a long gun into a crowd of students just before 7 a.m.


Wednesday classes were canceled after a shooting Tuesday afternoon in a parking lot on the campus of Thomas Jefferson High School in Dallas. One student was hospitalized with injuries described as non-threatening, after being shot in the arm. 


A spokesperson for the Dallas Independent School District confirmed the shooter was a student at the northwest Dallas high school. 


Why You Need to Know:


In addition to reporting on mass shootings and murders, which have become all too common, we’re talking about school shootings. Not calling this a trend, but a  school shooting a day is more than a coincidence.


The irony about Wednesday’s shooting at the Denver high school, the AP points out, “this month students from the school skipped class and marched to Colorado’s state Capitol to demand stricter gun laws, following the death of a fellow student who was shot while sitting in a car near the school.” 


Whether it’s a student shot sitting outside of the school, or administrators shot inside the school, a school shooting is a school shooting. Students are showing their concern, but the adult politicians don’t appear to give a damn. It’s past time for action.


Take charge, young people. That starts with voting out the politicians who are not working on your behalf when it comes to issues like gun control. Vote them out and take their jobs. 

2. The Bromance: Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin

The Bromance: Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin Source:Getty



What You Need to Know:


On Tuesday, China’s President Xi Jinping reaffirmed his bromance with Russian President Vladimir Putin calling for “peace talks” and “responsible dialogue” over Ukraine but also criticized sanctions, blamed NATO expansion for the conflict, and made no effort to withdraw from invading forces. 


Unsurprisingly, Beijing made no mention in the statement of providing military support to Moscow, despite recent evidence showing Chinese companies’ moves to send arms to Russia.


The Chinese Foreign Ministry said, “China-Russia cooperation is covering more areas, building greater consensus, and delivering early harvests. More cooperation is being comprehensively advanced.”


The Jinping-Putin bromance is ten years in the making. They have a lot in common: They’re six months apart in age, had fathers who fought in WWII, have daughters, and have experienced similar levels of hardship in their youth. In 2013, Xi met Putin toward the end of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bali – on Putin’s birthday. They shared some vodka and cake, and the rest is history.


Xi presented President Putin with China’s first friendship medal, declaring him “my best and most intimate friend.” In the same breath, China unveiled a “no limits” partnership with Russia and has never criticized anything Putin has done. 


China issued a 12-step plan to end the “conflict” in Ukraine, failing to acknowledge it as a war! President Xi hopes to be the mediator, cozy up with Europe, and undercut the United States. 


In response, Ukraine has issued a diplomatic challenge to President Xi. If he’s for peace talks, he should hear Ukraine’s side of the story. But Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy refrains from decrying China’s relationship with Putin. Before the war, China used to be Ukraine’s number one trade partner. Kyiv even abstained during a U.N. vote last year to condemn China’s persecution of its Uyghur Muslim minority.


Why You Need to Know:


What better way to aggravate the world powers and assert your dominance as the number two superpower than to publicly embrace the guy everyone despises? President Xi Jinping is a diplomatic mastermind with nothing to lose and everything to gain. 

3. More Deaths, Injuries Linked to Recalled Eyedrops

More Deaths, Injuries Linked to Recalled Eyedrops Source:Getty

What You Need to Know: 


U.S. officials are reporting two more deaths and additional cases of vision loss linked to eyedrops tainted with a drug-resistant bacteria.


The eyedrops from EzriCare and Delsam Pharma were recalled in February and health authorities are continuing to track infections as they investigate the outbreak.


In the latest government tally, 68 people were diagnosed with infections from the bacteria, which has now caused a total of three deaths and eight cases of people losing their vision, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Tuesday. That’s up from one death and five cases of permanent vision loss reported last month.


The CDC said four people have undergone surgery to remove an eyeball due to the infections.


The outbreak is considered particularly worrisome because the bacteria driving it is resistant to standard antibiotics.


The CDC has now identified cases in 16 states, including California, New York, Illinois, Texas, and Pennsylvania. Most of the cases have been linked to four regional clusters and Ezricare’s drops are the only product used by patients in each of those groups.


The recalled drops were manufactured by Global Pharma Healthcare in India, where the bacteria — Pseudomonas aeruginosa — is commonly linked to outbreaks in hospitals. It can spread through contaminated hands or medical equipment.

4. 10 Indicted For Death of Irvo Otieno During Mental Health Crisis; Surveillance Video Released

10 Indicted For Death of Irvo Otieno During Mental Health Crisis; Surveillance Video Released Source:CNN



What You Need to Know:


As reported in the What You Need To Know newsletter on March 20, 28-year-old Irvo Otieno died from asphyxiation during the admissions process while being held down by officers and hospital workers at a state mental hospital in Petersburg, Virginia after being arrested on suspicion of burglary. According to his family, Otieno was experiencing a mental health emergency.


Surveillance video showing the final moments of Otieno’s life was released to the public on March 21 and shows Otieno handcuffed with leg irons on, appearing helpless, while officers held him down for more than 10 minutes.


According to preliminary reports, Otieno’s death was caused by asphyxiation and has been ruled as a homicide. Ten people were indicted with second-degree murder in Otieno’s death, including seven Henrico County deputies and three hospital employees. 


Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, described Otieno’s death as “heart-wrenching” and said the public mental health system is overdue for changes. “What we have is a system that is built today and overwhelmed today with the in-crisis moment, and where we are so lacking is pre-crisis services,” said Youngkin.


A 2020 study by the Center for American Progress found that 21% to 38% of 911 calls made from eight cities involved behavioral health crises, substance use, homelessness, quality-of-life concerns, and community conflicts, and estimated that between 33% and 68% of police, calls don’t need an armed officer.


Experts say the intersection between mental health and policing can be deadly, especially for Black Americans, who are 2.9 times more likely than White people to be killed by police.


Is police training enough? 


Experts say the last thing a person with a mental illness wants to see during a crisis is a badge and a gun. In over 2,700 communities across the country, officers receive Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training, which aims to improve the encounters between officers and people suffering mental health crises. In New Jersey, state officials have created ARRIVE Together – which stands for Alternative Responses to Reduce Instances of Violence and Escalation — to respond to emergency calls that need more than just a police presence.

5. Jason Sudeikis and ‘Ted Lasso’ Cast Meet With Biden For Mental Health Discussion

Jason Sudeikis and ‘Ted Lasso’ Cast Meet With Biden For Mental Health Discussion Source:Getty



What You Need to Know:


The cast of the streaming TV show, “Ted Lasso,” visited the White House on Monday to meet with President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden to discuss how mental health contributes to overall well-being.


Comedian Jason Sudeikis, who plays the title character an affable coach who seeks therapy after grappling with panic attacks, took to the podium of the press briefing room and urged people to ask friends, family, and colleagues “how they’re doing.”


Mental health and looking after one another is a theme of “Ted Lasso,” Sudeikis told reporters.


“While it’s easier said than done, we also have to know that we shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help ourselves,” Sudeikis said. “That does take a lot, especially when it’s something that has such a negative stigma to it, such as mental health.” 


Mental health is part of Biden’s bipartisan “unity agenda.” He has called on lawmakers to direct more resources toward fighting what some say is a crisis, and the administration has surged funding to bolster a new 988 suicide and crisis line and put more mental health professionals in schools.


Sudeikis said there should be no stigma attached to reaching out for help because everyone knows someone who has needed a shoulder to lean on, or has been that person themselves.


“No matter who you are, no matter where you live, no matter who you voted for, we all probably, I assume, we all know someone who has, or have been that someone ourselves actually, that’s struggled, that’s felt isolated, that’s felt anxious, that has felt alone,” he said.


“It’s actually one of the many things, believe it or not, that we all have in common as human beings,” Sudeikis continued. 


According to the White House, the Bidens have seen some of “Ted Lasso” and are familiar with its messages of hope and kindness. 


The Emmy Award-winning, feel-good show is now streaming its third season on AppleTV+. 

Why You Need to Know:


The more TV shows portray mental health issues on screen, the more viewers will hopefully be aware and empathetic of disorders offscreen. Also, seeing accurate depictions of mental illness helps people with lived experience feel seen and less alone.