Immigration, Turkey, World Cup: Your Weekend Briefing
Here are the week’s top stories, and a look ahead.
1. What border crisis?
That’s the question from officials in the border city of Brownsville, Tex., who see a stark disconnect between President’s Trump’s rhetoric and the reality of their everyday lives. Federal data bears out their assertions that crime is low and unauthorized crossings are down. Above, asylum seekers waited on the Mexican side of a bridge between Brownsville and Matamoros.
On Wednesday, in response to an uproar, President Trump issued an executive order to stop family separations at the border — by keeping parents and children in detention together. At the White House, tense arguments broke out over how to implement the order, while the Pentagon announced that it was preparing to house as many as 20,000 migrant children on military bases.
And on the Arizona-Mexico border, we talked to Central Americans who said they were fleeing gang violence and poverty. A worker at a shelter in Tucson described their plight: “When you’ve got a gun to your head, people threatening to rape your daughter, extort your business, force your son to work for the cartels. What would you do?”
2. President Trump’s approval rating among Republicans is now about 90 percent.
And while polling has yet to capture the effect of the last week’s immigration controversy, the only modern Republican president more popular with his party than Mr. Trump at this point in his first term was George W. Bush, after the Sept. 11 attacks.
That suggests a level of unity among Republicans that could help mitigate Mr. Trump’s low overall approval ratings — and aid his party’s chances of keeping control of the House of Representatives in November.
3. How big a deal is a trade war with China? It depends very much on which products you are talking about.
Our Upshot columnist says that for now, companies have options to avoid the most severe risks from the dispute. But the longer it lasts, the more products will get pulled into it.
Only a small cadre of primary care doctors regularly prescribe buprenorphine, a medication that helps suppress cravings and withdrawal symptoms. But public health experts say the country will need a lot more of them to curb the opioid epidemic.
One patient told us the drug saved her life.
5. “Smart home” devices that have been marketed as the newest conveniences are being used for darker purposes.
Interviews with domestic abuse victims, their lawyers, shelter workers and emergency responders show that abusers are using these internet-connected locks, cameras and other gadgets to harass, spy, get revenge or maintain control. Above, Erica Olsen, director of the Safety Net Project at the National Network to End Domestic Violence.
The experiences were often aggravated by a lack of knowledge about how smart technology works, how much power the other person had over the devices, how to legally deal with the behavior and how to make it stop.
But an alliance of opposition parties immediately cried foul, warning its supporters that the numbers were being manipulated.
The outcome is being closely watched not just in Turkey but in Western and regional capitals.
7. One of our best-read articles this week was an investigation into how the Koch brothers are killing public transit projects around the country.
Americans for Prosperity, a group financed by the oil billionaires Charles and David Koch, played a pivotal role in quashing a light rail and bus plan in Nashville, above.
It’s part of the Kochs’ longstanding crusade for lower taxes and smaller government, and also dovetails with their business interests in gasoline, asphalt and automotive parts.
8. As members of the L.G.B.T.Q. community celebrate Pride Month, we asked readers what pride means to them and what should come next.
We heard from hundreds of people around the country, many with their own stories of pride going back as far as the Stonewall riots of nearly 50 years ago. Read them here.
Above, an image from a photo essay called “Queer Love in Color,” by Jamal Jordan, a digital editor at The Times. Growing up, he never saw images of queer people of color. Completing the project was like a gift to his younger self.
10. Finally, an investigation into discrimination against pregnant women in the workplace, a sit-down with the actor Josh Brolin, and the secret to perfect popcorn. We have those stories and more in this roundup of our best weekend reads.
For more suggestions on what to read, watch and listen to, may we suggest a glance at the Times Best Sellers list, new TV and streaming recommendations from Watching, or our music critics’ latest playlist.
Have a great week.
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