The Chilling Video Was Released Tuesday Night
Almost a year after the October 2014 shooting death of black teenager Laquan McDonald by a white Chicago police officer, video of the incident was released Tuesday night. The dashboard camera video, which was only released after a Freedom of Information act filing and a prolonged legal bout by a local journalist, shows officer Jason Van Dyke shooting the 17-year-old 16 times; the teen was reportedly holding a knife, and Van Dyke says he feared for his safety.
The release of the video to the public, which came on the same night that the prosecutor's office -- over a year after the incident -- announced it was charging Van Dyke with first degree murder, inspired hordes of local residents to take to the streets to protest. The gatherings reportedly remained peaceful.
A Chance To Head To The Polls
Before he leaves office next month, Democratic Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear issued an executive order to restore voting rights to roughly 140,000 nonviolent felons who have completed their sentences. "This disenfranchisement makes no sense," Beshear said. "It makes no sense because it dilutes the energy of democracy, which functions only if all classes and categories of people have a voice, not just a privileged, powerful few. It makes no sense because it defeats a primary goal of our corrections system, which is to rehabilitate those who have committed crimes."
It's Getting Hot In Here -- And Staying That Way
The cold may be beginning to take hold in some parts of the country as winter approaches, but that won't change one telling thing about this year: 2015 is going to the hottest year on record, according to the World Meteorological Organization. But it doesn't end there. Next year is actually on pace to be even hotter, as the El Niño weather pattern, which has a chance to impact weather across the globe, could last until mid-2016.