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Dispatches Human Race

Man knows not his time

Lou Brock (Bettmann/Getty Images)

Died

Lou Brock, the St. Louis Cardinals’ signature leadoff hitter and base-stealer who helped the team win two World Series titles in the 1960s, died on Sept. 6 at age 81. Along with starting pitcher Bob Gibson and center fielder Curt Flood, Brock helped build the Cardinals into a powerhouse of speed, defense, and pitching during the 1960s. He had 938 steals in his career—so many he had a base-stealing award named after him while still an active player.

After he retired from baseball, Brock worked as a florist and a commentator for ABC’s Monday Night Baseball and was a spring training instructor for the Cardinals. A nominal churchgoer since childhood, he said his faith deepened after enduring personal struggles in the 1980s. He and his third wife, Jacky, became ordained ministers serving at Abundant Life Fellowship Church, a charismatic congregation near St. Louis. He lost a leg to complications of diabetes in recent years and was diagnosed with cancer in 2017.

Hired

U.S. employers added 1.4 million new jobs in August, restoring half the number of positions lost since the beginning of coronavirus-related lockdowns in March. The unemployment rate has finally dipped below the recession rates of 2008-2009, reaching 8.4 percent, according to the monthly U.S. Department of Labor report released on Sept. 4. Manufacturers have almost reached pre-pandemic levels of factory ordering, and home sales are on the rise. But some industries, such as restaurants and airlines, have not yet recovered from their precipitous collapse.

Confessed

Omer Kuzu, an American citizen, pleaded guilty to supporting ISIS, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kuzu, radicalized in America, left Texas in 2014 with his brother and was smuggled into Syria by an ISIS network. In his trial, Kuzu admitted to swearing loyalty to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and his terrorist group. For five years, Kuzu worked as a communications liaison for front-line ISIS fighters. He was captured by the U.S.-supported Syrian Democratic Forces in 2019 and repatriated to the United States. Kuzu’s sentencing will take place in January, and he could face up to 20 years in prison.

Halted

Federal agencies will identify spending tied to programs on white privilege, critical race theory, or any other content that presents any race as “inherently racist or evil,” according to a memo released on Sept. 4. Russell Vought, director of the Office of Management and Budget, issued the notice after President Donald Trump ordered his office to end the “divisive, anti-American propaganda.” Vought said the administration will issue further guidance on the training sessions. Vought cited press reports where federal employees had to say they benefit from racism and instructors said virtually all white people contribute to racism. He said such training runs counter to American principles and engenders resentment within the workforce.