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Virginia’s football team will travel to its third funeral in five days to honor the life of Lavel Davis Jr., who was fatally shot on a bus along with two teammates after they returned to campus from a field trip. The 20-year-old Davis and teammates D’Sean Perry and Devin Chandler were killed Nov. 13 after returning from the trip to see a play in Washington, D.C. Authorities have said former member of the football team Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. began shooting at students on the bus as it pulled to a stop on campus. Davis’ service will be held Wednesday at Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in North Charleston, South Carolina.

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More than 150 literary agents, whose clients include Danielle Jackson, V.E. Schwab and L.A. Chandlar, have signed an open letter to HarperCollins vowing to “omit” the publisher from upcoming book submissions until it reaches an agreement with striking employees. Around 250 entry- and mid-level staff members, from publicists to editorial assistants, have been on strike since Nov. 10, with the two sides differing over wages, workforce diversity and union security among other issues. No new talks are scheduled. A spokesperson for HarperCollins, the only major New York publisher that has a union, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Merriam-Webster has chosen “gaslighting” as its word of the year for 2022. Lookups for “gaslighting” on the dictionary company's website increased this year by 1,740% over 2021. Merriam-Webster's Peter Sokolowski tells The Associated Press exclusively ahead of Monday's unveiling that lookups were pervasive all year long. Typically there's a single event that drives searches. The word refers to a form of psychological coercion. Merriam-Webster, chooses its word of the year based solely on data. Sokolowski and his team weed out evergreen words most commonly looked up to gauge which word received a significant bump over the year before.

AP
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Germany’s socially liberal government is moving ahead with plans to ease the rules for obtaining citizenship in the European Union’s most populous country, a drive that is being assailed by the conservative opposition. Chancellor OIaf Scholz said in a video message Saturday that Germany has long since become “the country of hope” for many, and it’s a good thing when people who have put down roots in the country decide to take citizenship. He said that “Germany needs better rules for the naturalization of all these great women and men.” The overhaul of citizenship rules is one of a series of modernizing reforms that Scholz's three-party coalition agreed to tackle when it took office last December,

AP
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An international wildlife conference has moved to enact some of the most significant protection for shark species targeted in the fin trade and scores of turtles, lizards and frogs whose numbers are being decimated by the pet trade. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, known by its initials as CITES, ended Friday in Panama. Along with protections for over 500 species, delegates at the United Nations wildlife conference rejected a proposal to reopen ivory trade. An ivory ban was enacted in 1989.

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The co-owner of Colorado Springs’ Club Q said that anti-LGBTQ hate has evolved from prejudice to incitement. In one of his first interviews since Saturday night’s mass shooting, Nic Grzecka told the Associated Press that politicians calling transgender people “groomers” breeds violence. Grzecka built Club Q into an enclave that sustained the LGBTQ community in the conservative-leaning Colorado Springs. On Saturday, a shooter killed five and injured 17 in Club Q. Grzecka and community leaders are working to reconstitute an LGBTQ support system to facilitate healing.

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A witness says that the Walmart supervisor who shot and killed six coworkers in Virginia seemed to target people and shot some victims after they were already hit and appeared to be dead. Jessica Wilczewski said that workers were gathered in a Walmart break room to begin their overnight shift late Tuesday when team leader Andre Bing entered and began shooting with a handgun. While another witness has described Bing as shooting wildly, Wilczewski said that she observed him target certain people. She said he looked at people's faces and picked out who he was going to shoot.

AP
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Iran has arrested a prominent former member of its national soccer team over his criticism of the government. The arrest was reported by state-linked media on Thursday. It comes as authorities grapple with nationwide protests that have cast a shadow over the team's participation in the World Cup, where it will face Wales on Friday. The player was reportedly arrested for “insulting the national soccer team and propagandizing against the government.” He had expressed sympathy for the family of a woman whose death in the custody of Iran’s morality police ignited the latest protests. He also called for an end to a violent crackdown on protests in Iran’s western Kurdish region, where he is from.

AP
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France’s sports minister has encouraged her country’s World Cup team to make a symbolic gesture in support of human rights, after FIFA’s clampdown on the “One Love” armband. Amélie Oudéa-Castéra told French television channel Public Sénat Wednesday night that there is room for the team to “express its commitment to human rights.” Her comments came after Germany’s players covered their mouths for the team photo before their opening World Cup match on Wednesday. The gesture was a response to FIFA’s effective nixing of seven European teams’ plans to wear armbands that were seen as a rebuke to host nation Qatar and its human rights record.

AP
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The Netherlands is not expected to emulate Germany by making a gesture to protest host nation Qatar’s human rights record before Friday’s World Cup game against Ecuador. Germany’s players covered their mouths for the team photo ahead of their match against Japan on Wednesday to protest against FIFA for its clampdown on the “One Love” armbands. Seven European teams had planned to wear the item in a move seen as a rebuke to Qatar. Netherlands defender Denzel Dumfries says the players won’t do anything on the field Friday because they feel they have done enough. He says "from now on we need to concentrate on football.”