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Dispatches Quotables


Antonis Mavropoulos (Facebook)

‘Say thank you to God.’

Antonis Mavropoulos, recounting what security staff told him after learning the flight he was supposed to be on, Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, crashed. The accident killed all 157 people on board. Mavropoulos had arrived just after boarding closed and was the only passenger who didn’t make the flight. He said he had been angry about it: “I screamed to put me in but they didn’t allow it.”




‘We found strong evidence of impaired performance.’

Neil McLatchieof Lancaster University on a study he co-authored that found background music, even without lyrics, “significantly impaired” a person’s verbal creativity. The study found that “steady state” noise, such as background noise at a library, did not impair creativity.



Grant Blankenship/The Macon Telegraph via AP

Grant Blankenship/The Macon Telegraph via AP

‘People underestimate human ability to be able to come together.’

Salem, Ala., resident Shane Smith on local volunteer efforts after the deadliest tornado in six years killed 23 people in southeast Alabama. “People always focus on the things that divide us,” Smith said. “But when it comes down to it, you see people at their finest in the midst of turmoil.”



Steven Senne/AP

Andrew Lelling (Steven Senne/AP)

‘There will not be a separate admissions system for the wealthy. And there will not be a separate criminal justice system either.’

U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling on indictments of more than 40 high-profile parents and coaches for cheating and bribery to get children into elite universities. Among those indicted were actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin.


Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images 

Sam Brownback (Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images )

‘It seems that the Chinese government is at war with faith. It’s a war they will not win.’

Sam Brownback, U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, during a visit to Hong Kong, on China’s detention of an estimated 1 million Uighur Muslims and campaign against unregistered Christian churches.