In the ultimate act of forgiveness, many survivors of the genocide in Rwanda are now working — and even forming friendships — with the same people who tried to kill them 20 years ago.
Beginning on April 7, 1994, ethnic Hutus killed more than one million Tutsis and moderate Hutus during a heinous, 100-day wave of ethnic violence. Since then, the government has pushed to create a single Rwandan identity, and organizations have been created to bring survivors and perpetrators together. "Forgiveness is possible. It's common here," Josephine Munyeli, a genocide survivor and director of peace and reconciliation programs for World Vision, tells The Asssociated Press. "Guilt is heavy. When one realizes how heavy it is the first thing they do to recuperate themselves is apologize."
Emmanuel Ndayisaba killed, by his own account, at least 18 people during the genocide. It was at one of these reconciliation groups that he saw Alice Mukarurinda, a Tutsi woman whose hand he chopped off after killing her baby and a niece so many years ago. He begged for her forgiveness, and after thinking it over and talking with her husband, Mukarurinda granted it. "We had attended workshops and trainings and our hearts were kind of free, and I found it easy to forgive," she told the AP. "The Bible says you should forgive and you will also be forgiven." Now, they work side by side for a program that builds houses for genocide survivors; she is the treasurer, and he is the vice president. Catherine Garcia
White House official reportedly relieved Trump didn't tweet about 'how we're going to kill millions' with health bill
The Daily Beast reported Thursday that White House officials weren't all that upset about President Trump's sexist Twitter rant Thursday morning because it meant he wasn't talking about something else: health care. "At least you're writing [about] this and not that we're going to kill millions of people," a White House official reportedly said, referring to Republicans' plan to repeal and replace ObamaCare.
Another official apparently shrugged off Trump's tweets, in which he called Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski "low I.Q. Crazy Mika" and claimed he "said no" to hanging out with her at Mar-a-Lago because she "was bleeding badly from a face-lift." "This is who the president is," the official reportedly said. The Daily Beast reported the official added that "the tweets were at least better than those about the travel ban or James Comey."
A baby deer owes its life to one quick-thinking teen in North Carolina. High schooler Chance Pressley and his friends were riding Jet Skis on a local lake when they spotted the fawn flailing in the water. Knowing the deer had only moments to live, Chance jumped in and pulled it to safety, and his friend towed them to shore. Since baby "Fred," as Chance nicknamed the fawn, was separated from his family, the teen decided to bring him home before calling an animal rehabilitator. "My mom was a little mad," says Chance. Christina Colizza
Republican Sen. Susan Collins (Maine) put her foot down Thursday after President Trump launched a sexist attack on Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski. "This has to stop," Collins tweeted, calling for "respect and civility":
This has to stop – we all have a job – 3 branches of gov’t and media. We don’t have to get along, but we must show respect and civility.
— Sen. Susan Collins (@SenatorCollins) June 29, 2017
Her reminder to the government that they "have a job" comes as Senate Republicans struggle to craft a passable plan to repeal and replace ObamaCare. Collins has come out against the first draft of the bill, which the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated would leave an additional 22 million uninsured by 2026, as opposed to under ObamaCare.
Because Republicans can only afford two defections, Collins' support is key for Senate Republican leadership if they want to pass the GOP health-care plan. Trump's sexist Thursday morning tweets about "low I.Q. Crazy Mika" don't seem to be helping the cause. Becca Stanek
Republican Rep. Lynn Jenkins (Kan.) expressed her personal offense to President Trump's sexist attack on Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski on Thursday:
This is not okay. As a female in politics I am often criticized for my looks. We should be working to empower women. https://t.co/sV6WDE0EUD
— Lynn Jenkins (@RepLynnJenkins) June 29, 2017
Other Republican lawmakers have also expressed outrage at Trump's comments, although the president was defended by Principal Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and first lady Melania Trump. Jeva Lange
Melania Trump stands by her husband after he viciously attacks a female TV host in a sexist Twitter rant
In a statement released through a spokesperson, first lady Melania Trump stood by her husband Thursday morning after he hurled sexist insults at a woman on Twitter. Responding to President Trump's tweets calling Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski "low I.Q." and "crazy" and claiming she was "bleeding badly from a face-lift" when he rejected her company at his Mar-a-Lago resort, Melania reiterated that her husband just can't help but punch back when he's "attacked."
"As the first lady has stated publicly in the past, when her husband gets attacked, he will punch back 10 times harder," the first lady's spokesperson, Stephanie Grisham, said in a statement.
Ironically, Melania has taken up cyberbullying as one of her causes as first lady. Though she's declared "it is never okay when a 12-year-old girl or boy is mocked, bullied, or attacked," it's apparently okay when a woman is attacked by her 71-year-old husband. Becca Stanek
President Trump's viciously sexist tweets about Morning Joe's Mika Brzezinski might have been provoked by the co-host's joke about his hand size. As the Morning Joe team was discussing a fake Time magazine cover with Trump on the front Thursday morning, Brzezinski suggested Trump was hiding his hands in the photo "because they're teensy!"
— Tom Namako (@TomNamako) June 29, 2017
People on both sides of the aisle were horrified Thursday by President Trump's viciously sexist tweets about Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski. Even Republican lawmakers took the opportunity to chastise the president, calling his language "beneath the dignity of your office" and "what is wrong with American politics."
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tweeted:
Mr. President, your tweet was beneath the office and represents what is wrong with American politics, not the greatness of America.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) June 29, 2017
Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) also expressed his disappointment:
Please just stop. This isn't normal and it's beneath the dignity of your office.
— Ben Sasse (@BenSasse) June 29, 2017
Democrats were also outraged. "If anyone on my staff [tweeted] this, they would be fired instantly," said Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii). Jeva Lange