In This Episode
- Hurricane Ian reached Florida Wednesday afternoon as one of the strongest storms to hit the U.S. mainland in decades. Some 2.5 million residents of Tampa and Fort Myers were ordered to evacuate, but thousands stayed behind – even in areas expected to be inundated by extreme storm surge flooding.
- And in headlines: a human rights organization said at least 76 Iranian protesters have been killed in clashes with police since the death of Mahsa Amini, Russian-occupied territories in Ukraine “voted” in favor of annexation, and Megan Thee Stallion launched a mental health resource website for her fans and followers.
- National Hurricane Center: Hurricane Ian Tracker – https://tinyurl.com/vesawdex
- Bad Bitches Have Bad Days Too – https://www.badbitcheshavebaddaystoo.com/
- YouTube: Lizzo plays James Madison’s flute at Library of Congress (Washington Post) – https://tinyurl.com/3dhf5ec6
- Vote Save America: Every Last Vote – https://votesaveamerica.com/every-last-vote/
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Priyanka Aribindi: It’s Thursday, September 29th. I’m Priyanka Aribindi.
Tre’vell Anderson: And I’m Tre’vell Anderson. And this is What A Day, summing up the day’s news so you have more time to go research who exactly the Try guys are.
Priyanka Aribindi: Apparently they are a major cultural force and like other major cultural forces, one of them is unfaithful to his wife.
Tre’vell Anderson: I don’t know the details, but I’m hoping the listeners will fill me in later.
Priyanka Aribindi: I’m hoping no one fills me in. I don’t want to know anything about this. [laughter] [music break] On today’s show. Russian occupied regions of Ukraine have voted to join Russia after staged referendums. Plus, Megan Thee Stallion is helping hot girls get help.
Tre’vell Anderson: Yes, she’s always looking out for us. We love her. [laugh] But first, an update on Hurricane Ian. The storm made landfall near Cayo Costa, Florida Wednesday afternoon as one of the strongest hurricanes to hit the U.S. mainland in decades. Before it reached Florida. Hurricane Ian killed at least two people in Cuba late Tuesday night and knocked out power to the entire country of 11 million. Cuba, like in Puerto Rico, has a frail, aging power grid that had been faltering for some time, and it just wasn’t able to withstand the storm’s fierce winds. By Wednesday morning as it approached southwest Florida, Ian had strengthened to a Category four storm and came close to reaching Category five, which is the strongest on the hurricane intensity scale. There was also a boat carrying migrants from Cuba to Florida that sank before the storm actually made landfall. At the time of our recording, Coast Guard crews are searching for 20 people who are still missing from it.
Priyanka Aribindi: Wow, that is awful. So we’re talking about some really fierce winds and potentially catastrophic flooding, especially along the coast. So what do we know about the damage that Hurricane Ian has caused so far?
Tre’vell Anderson: So when the storm hit Florida, it was clocking 150 mile per hour winds, tying for the fifth strongest on record. But as y’all mentioned on yesterday’s show, it’s storm surge or the rise in water levels that happens from a storm pushing water on land that accounts for almost half of all deaths from tropical cyclones. So that is where the most danger comes from. Hurricane Ian brought with it a wall of water that it accumulated over the Gulf of Mexico as it made its way from Cuba to Florida, prompting flash flood warnings in many cities along the coast. Governor Ron DeSantis told folks to expect a, quote, “nasty, nasty day, two days” now because the storm is very much still in progress as we go to record. We don’t know too much about the damage it’s caused or how long it’ll take to restore things, for that matter. That said, as of 9:30 p.m. Eastern time Wednesday, more than 1.5 million homes and businesses were without electricity. And Florida Power and Light, that’s the biggest utility in the state, warned that anyone in the storm’s path should brace for days without power.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah, it is not looking good. Before Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida on Wednesday, around two and a half million residents of Tampa and Fort Myers and the surrounding areas were ordered to evacuate. But thousands stayed behind, even in areas that are expected to get as much as 18 feet of storm surge. As Mary Heglar from Hot Take mentioned earlier this week on the show, there are a lot of reasons that people choose to stay. Some didn’t have the means or the ability to leave. It’s expensive to pay for gas or hotels to stay in. There wasn’t a lot of advance notice to even prepare for the storm or to evacuate. Others were scared to leave their homes and potentially come back to nothing. Or they weren’t convinced that the warnings were worth listening to based on years of experiencing other storms of the area that weren’t so intense.
Tre’vell Anderson: Yeah, that sounds like my granny. Any time there was a storm in Charleston, South Carolina, she’d be like, Oh, it won’t be as bad as the last one. It’ll be fine. And we just stuck it out.
Priyanka Aribindi: Right.
Tre’vell Anderson: So you’re right, there are a lot of reasons, right, that people make these choices and they’re really not our choices to judge. But I know some of the people who have stayed behind have been documenting what’s been happening on the ground via social media. What have we heard from them?
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. Earlier on Wednesday, a few of them were saying it wasn’t that bad where they were, but that started to change really quickly. We have a few clips from people in the affected areas talking to national news outlets about what they’re experiencing. Here is one from Joe Orlandi. He’s a longtime resident of Fort Myers who spoke to ABC News around 4 p.m. local time:
[clip of Joe Orlandi] It has gotten horrible in the last half hour. We just looked and noticed that we’re on the edge of the eyewall. The wind picked up horrendously. These got to be 150 mile an hour wind solid. There’s boats floating by. Our car floated away. I mean, there’s nothing left.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah, you can hear in the background of that clip the sounds of the storm just raging outside.
Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely. It sounds very, very bad.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. Cars floating by, that’s truly next level. There are also people who don’t really have the ability to evacuate in the same way as perhaps you or I would.
Tre’vell Anderson: Mm hmm.
Priyanka Aribindi: There are people in hospitals and nursing homes who don’t necessarily have the say to kind of get up and leave if they want to when they want to. NBC reporter Sam Brock in Sarasota, described the situation there in one of the hospitals:
[clip of Sam Brock, NBC News reporter] There are a lot of people out there that need help. I was speaking with the largest hospital provider in Sarasota. They had to move people on the fly today, earlier, right before the storm arrived to make sure that these vulnerable populations would be okay. An entire ICU was moved around the hospital to safer ground as you have staff members right now that are prepping and preparing to camp out at the hospital in order to care for these patients.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. And the storm has gotten so bad that even some first responders aren’t able to help people who were in need. Take a listen to this clip from Rob Hernandez. He is Cape Coral’s city manager speaking to NBC:
[clip of Rob Hernandez] We have been experiencing individuals that are trapped in their homes, trapped in vehicles, and of course, because of the winds at this moment, continue to be very, very heavy and a danger to our first responders. We’re not able to respond and to provide assistance to those that are trapped.
Tre’vell Anderson: I can’t imagine what it’s like to be stuck in your home and it’s flooding. And like we’ve seen the different photos and videos that come out of these cities when–
Priyanka Aribindi: Right.
Tre’vell Anderson: –A huge flooding happens.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah.
Tre’vell Anderson: It’s never good.
Priyanka Aribindi: No, it’s terrifying. I mean, as we go to record this show, Ian was downgraded to a Category three storm, but that does not make it any less dangerous. And a reminder that anything could still happen over the next day or so as it continues to track north. But it’s already believed that cleanup and recovery from this storm will be long and expensive. I know Ron DeSantis said, brace yourself for a nasty one or two days. It’s going to be a long, long time to recover from this. One ballpark estimate is that it could cost around $260 billion dollars. This will undoubtedly become even more complicated because Florida is also experiencing an insurance crisis. So six insurers have left the state in the past year alone. Several left before that. That has caused home insurance rates to spike, resulted in several canceled policies for tens of thousands of people across the state. This is largely because of roofing scams in Florida, where contractors and attorneys would file false damage claims on behalf of homeowners and force the insurance companies to settle. But it was also helped along by loopholes in the state’s laws. Florida lawmakers have tried to fix the issue. They passed a property insurance reform bill into law earlier this year in an attempt to give people some relief. But with powerful storms like Ian becoming more frequent due to climate change, things could get very dicey. Obviously, we will continue to follow this story. We will have more on all of this very soon. But that is the latest for now. [music break] Let’s get to some headlines.
Tre’vell Anderson: Today marks the 12th day of protests in Iran over the death of Mahsa Amini. She died while in custody of Iran’s so-called morality police. According to the organization Iran Human Rights. At least 76 protesters have been killed in clashes with police since the demonstrations began. The violence has become so widespread that it’s spilling across the country’s border with Iraq over the past week. Iranian security forces have reportedly attacked residents in the neighboring Kurdish region of northern Iraq, accusing them of adding more fuel to the unrest. Amini was an ethnic Kurd. Those clashes there have left nine people dead and at least 32 others injured, including children.
Priyanka Aribindi: A man pleaded guilty on Tuesday to committing a hate crime after he was caught on tape assaulting a 67 year old Asian woman in Yonkers, New York, earlier this year. Security camera footage of the attack shows Tammel Esco punching the woman in the head 125 times and stomping on her until she lost consciousness.
Tre’vell Anderson: Wow.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah, it’s terrible. The woman was hospitalized for several days and the brutal attack sent shockwaves through New York’s Asian-American community. Esco will be sentenced in November for first degree assault as a hate crime. But according to his plea agreement, he’ll serve more than 17 years in prison, along with five years of post-release supervision.
Tre’vell Anderson: Russian occupied territories in Ukraine “voted”, quote unquote, in favor of joining the Russian Federation, even though the referendums have been widely condemned as a sham. The results were tallied yesterday after a five day period and Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to formally annex these areas in a speech in the coming days. As we’ve mentioned on the show before, this is all illegal under Ukrainian and International law and the West is obviously not happy. The White House has already said it would not recognize the results. And earlier this week, Canada imposed new sanctions against Moscow. Meanwhile, the U.S. and the European Union are also working on their own new set of sanctions.
Priyanka Aribindi: President Biden yesterday outlined his administration’s ambitious goal to end hunger in the U.S. by 2030. It was part of the White House’s first hunger conference held since 1969, very different than The Hunger Games, when President Nixon was in office. That original forum led to the creation of food stamps and other child nutrition programs that are still around today. The Biden administration plans to tackle food insecurity by pushing Congress to permanently extend the child tax credit, raise the federal minimum wage, and expand existing nutrition assistance programs. Unfortunately, though, one of the biggest takeaways from yesterday’s event was a major gaffe by President Biden. During his opening remarks, he thanked lawmakers for their bipartisan effort in the fight against hunger. And then he asked where the late Republican Congresswoman Jackie Walorski was, as if she were still alive. She tragically died in a car crash last month.
Tre’vell Anderson: That’s not good, Joe. That’s not good.
Priyanka Aribindi: No, no. It was a little bit of a yikes moment. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was on cleanup duty after the president’s remarks.
[clip of Karine Jean-Pierre] The president was naming uh the congressional champions on this issue and was acknowledging her incredible work.
Priyanka Aribindi: There we go.
Tre’vell Anderson: Okay. [laughter]
Priyanka Aribindi: I just wanted to see where she was. Uh. Jean-Pierre added that Walorski’s family is heading to the White House tomorrow for a bill that will be signed in her honor.
Tre’vell Anderson: You know, this is not in Joe Biden’s favor with the whole age commentary that always happens with him because this seems like something your granddad would do on accident, right? Good intentions. But like, come on.
Priyanka Aribindi: Counterpoint, though, there are 500 plus people that this man has to like know. And that’s just like in the House and the Senate.
Tre’vell Anderson: True.
Priyanka Aribindi: Like, that’s a lot of people to keep track of. Who’s alive and who’s not? I don’t know. [laughter] Kind of tough.
Tre’vell Anderson: It’s not hot girl shit to go out of network. So, Megan Thee Stallion has launched a mental health resource website for all of the hot girls out there. The site is called Bad Bitches Have Bad Days, Too, and it offers a directory of free therapy organizations and support hotlines, many of which provide specialized care for Black women and LGBTQ+ folks. And this isn’t a random celebrity endeavor. In case you were thinking it was. Queen Meg has been very open about her struggles with mental health throughout her career. In fact, the website’s title is a reference to a track from her new album, Traumazine. Hate the title, but the album’s cute FYI, where she raps about her experience with anxiety. If I could, you know, recite some bars for you, Priyanka.
Priyanka Aribindi: Go for it.
Tre’vell Anderson: She says, quote, “They keep saying I should get help, but I don’t even know what I need. They keep saying, speak your truth. And at the same time, they say, don’t believe.”
Priyanka Aribindi: Whoa.
Tre’vell Anderson: I should be a rapper myself. Love that for me.
Priyanka Aribindi: You should. [laughing]
Tre’vell Anderson: Badbitcheshavebaddaystoo.com is now live. Go there. Then proceed to the reclining chair in the WAP house for your talk therapy.
Priyanka Aribindi: I love this. This is awesome. Megan Thee Stallion is amazing in so many ways. And just add this to the list.
Tre’vell Anderson: Yes.
Priyanka Aribindi: Republican Doug Mastriano faces dire odds in the Pennsylvania governor’s race, but he’s got a new strategy to win. Becoming very, very hungry. Starting today, the far right election denier is undertaking 40 days of fasting and prayer ending on Election Day, as his opponent, Josh Shapiro, outraises him 8 to 1 and polls show him trailing Shapiro by 13 points. Pennsylvania is one of the most important gubernatorial races for Republicans, but they absolutely blew it when they picked Mastriano. A Trump endorsee who refuses to speak with mainstream media outlets previously said women who get abortions should be prosecuted as murderers and has recently made it being taller than his opponent, one of his main talking points on the campaign trail. Listen, sir, we are about short kings now, so the moment’s over. [laughter] Mastriano’s focus on convincing only the most MAGA brained conservatives to vote for him means he has only been able to spend about $6,000 on ads since the primary compared to Shapiro’s $21.6 million dollars. So big obstacles, but maybe ones that can be overcome by only drinking water. Only time will tell.
Tre’vell Anderson: Only time will tell. I would like to zero in on this 40 days moment. Okay. As a God fearing Christian woman, I know that he is pulling and referencing the 40 days and 40 nights from the Bible, but I feel like he should let that go.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah.
Tre’vell Anderson: That does not seem like a wise decision.
Priyanka Aribindi: Not sure it’s going to help him out.
Tre’vell Anderson: It seems like you’re going to lose this race.
Priyanka Aribindi: Feels like you might lose a few pounds, but that’s really [laughing] the only good thing I could see happening from this. And those are the headlines. We’ll be back after some ads with some beautiful music from a very fragile flute.
Priyanka Aribindi: It is Thursday WAD squad and today we are doing a twist on our segment called Bad Sound. Today, at long last, we have Good Sound. Check it out.
[clip of Lizzo] [indistinct] It’s cystal, it’s like playing out of a, a wine glass basically [?]. [sound of Lizzo playing a 200 year old crystal flute]
Tre’vell Anderson: Playing out of a wine glass. I’m sold. I love Lizzo. I know it’s her. [laughing]
Priyanka Aribindi: Love it. Yeah. That was, of course, the singer Lizzo playing a 200 year old flute owned by none other than former president James Madison on Tuesday. Not only that, it is a crystal flute borrowed from the Library of Congress. Which Lizzo may be the first person ever to play. Before the concert, she played the flute in the library halls, which we’ll play now. [sound of Lizzo playing the crystal flute in the library halls] So Tre’vell, what are your thoughts on Lizzo’s historic and very cautious performance?
Tre’vell Anderson: I mean, like, of course you wanted to know what old school OG flutes sound like, right? We all wanted to know this information. And you know what? I just love the fact that Lizzo, who plays the flute every night during her concerts.
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah.
Tre’vell Anderson: Shout out to Sasha the flute, that she’s like, you know, embracing history in this way. I love this. I love this.
Priyanka Aribindi: A very cool way to make history come alive. Like this feels like if you were, like, an 11th grade teacher, you would be, like, eating this shit up. You’d be like, hell, yeah, she’s making history cool.
Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely.
Priyanka Aribindi: We love it. And, like, maybe this can happen a little more often. Those artifacts, take them out of the Library of Congress for the right people, that is. But I mean.
Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely.
Priyanka Aribindi: Bring them out. That’s awesome. Like get the public interacting with them in this way, thinking they’re cool. I don’t know. Maybe people will learn a thing or two and our world won’t be so crazy.
Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely. But you got to make sure that they are like Lizzo trained–
Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah.
Tre’vell Anderson: –people to handle, you know, these precious artifacts.
Priyanka Aribindi: Oh, no, no. I just meant, like, audiences. People like us would be like, oh, that’s awesome and really cool.
Tre’vell Anderson: Absolutely. Absolutely.
Priyanka Aribindi: That was Good Sound. [music break]
Tre’vell Anderson: One more thing before we go. Crooked is bringing you the election coverage you love to hate with Crooked radio. Every weekend in October on Sirius XM Progress and on the Sirius XM app. Join our lineup of podcast hosts, candidates, experts and more, including all of us here on What A Day, we’ll break down all the issues that matter this November, dive into the conversation shaping our current political climate and give the only 100% correct opinions in politics. You don’t want to miss this. Subscribe now and get up to four months free of Sirius XM. You can check out our offer details at SiriusXM.com/crooked. [music break]
Priyanka Aribindi: That is all for today. If you like the show, make sure you subscribe, leave a review. Find a provider in your hot girl network and tell your friends to listen.
Tre’vell Anderson: And if you’re into reading and not just sheet music for flutes made of glass like me, What A Day is also a nightly newsletter. Check it out and subscribe at Crooked.com/subscribe. I’m Tre’vell Anderson.
Priyanka Aribindi: I’m Priyanka Aribindi.
[spoken together] And stay hungry Doug Mastriano.
Tre’vell Anderson: I mean, I was never good at the whole fasting thing when I was going to church. Okay, I just wanted to say that.
Priyanka Aribindi: Good luck to this man on his fast. May his fast be successful, may his election be not. [laughter]
Tre’vell Anderson: What A Day is a production of Crooked Media. It’s recorded and mixed by Bill Lancz. Jazzi Marine and Raven Yamamoto are our associate producers. Our head writer is Jon Millstein and our executive producer is Lita Martinez. Our theme music is by Colin Gilliard and Kashaka.