Plea in Floyd Killing, North Korea, and the United States of Pizza Everything you need to know for today in five minutes.

Good morning. It's Thursday, May 19, and we're covering a plea deal in Minneapolis, a growing crisis in North Korea, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at [email protected].



Guilty Plea in Floyd Killing

Former Minneapolis police officer Thomas Lane pleaded guilty yesterday to manslaughter-related charges for his role in the killing of George Floyd almost two years ago. Under the deal, Lane will avoid charges of aiding and abetting second-degree murder.


Lane was set to go on trial June 13, along with former officers J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao. The trio was present at the time former officer Derek Chauvin killed Floyd while attempting to arrest him. Video shows Lane and Kueng assisted in restraining Floyd (video breakdown; warning sensitive content) while Thao kept bystanders away.


Chauvin was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison, along with up to 25 years on federal civil rights charges. Lane, Kueng, and Thao were found guilty in February of violating Floyd's civil rights.


Prosecutors recommended a three-year sentence for Lane, concurrent with his federal sentence. The criminal trial for Kueng and Thao is set to proceed as scheduled. 

Landmark Equal Pay Deal

Soccer players representing the US men’s and women’s national teams will receive the same pay and prize money for the first time under historic agreements with the US Soccer Federation. The collective bargaining agreements, announced yesterday, end a yearslong fight over compensation. The deal comes three months after the women’s national team reached a $24M settlement for an equal pay lawsuit against the federation. 


The agreements also require unequal payments from the World Cup to be pooled and shared equally among members of both teams, beginning with the 2022 Men's World Cup in Qatar. For comparison, the men's national team received $9M from FIFA for finishing 11th in the 2014 World Cup, while the women's national team received $2M for winning the 2015 World Cup. No other nation is believed to have a revenue-sharing provision. The agreements run through 2028. See the full terms here.


The women’s team has won four World Cups, six Olympic medals, and eight CONCACAF Gold Cups. The men's team has won seven CONCACAF Gold Cups. 

North Korea Grapples With COVID-19

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un heavily criticized his own government yesterday, slamming officials as a COVID-19 outbreak accelerated across the country. At least 62 people have reportedly died and 700,000 more are in quarantine since the virus began spreading through the country of 26 million in late April.


The outbreak forced North Korea to admit the presence of the coronavirus inside its borders for the first time since the pandemic began more than two years ago. Western officials believe the country has a near-zero vaccination rate, with Pyongyang having turned down offers of COVID-19 vaccines made by the global COVAX consortium. Kim, who has faced ongoing questions about his overall health, has taken to wearing a mask in public. 


The outbreak comes as President Joe Biden is set to visit South Korea tomorrow as part of his first trip to Asia during his presidency. 

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Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with CanvasPeople

> Academy Awards to require theatrical release, limit song submissions among rule changes for 2023 ceremony (More) | Tom Cruise receives honorary Palme d'Or at premiere of "Top Gun" sequel at Cannes Film Festival (More)


> Chris Wallace tapped to anchor CNN Sunday evening show after his CNN+ show ended when the streaming service shut down 30 days after its premiere (More)


> The 2022 PGA Championship begins this morning from Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma; Masters champ and world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler is betting favorite (More)

From our partners: Free large canvas?! Bring beautiful photos from the camera roll to the living room, with CanvasPeople. They print your favorite images onto high-quality canvases, and today they're giving 1440 readers one free 16x20 canvas print (over $120 in value). Just pay S&H; create yours today!

Science & Technology

> NASA says power levels on its Martian InSight probe are dropping as dust covers the lander's solar panels; mission likely to conclude by end of year (More)


> Ancient tooth suggests the Denisovan population extended to Southeast Asia at least 164,000 years ago; little is known about the hominin species, though millions across Asia carry traces of Denisovan DNA (More)


> Lightweight wood-based foam shown to passively cool building interiors by up to 15 degrees; the engineered biomaterial reflected more than 90% of light while reducing heat transfer (More)

Business & Markets

> US stock markets fall (S&P 500 -4.0%, Dow -3.6%, Nasdaq -4.7%) on growing inflation fears as major retailers warn of rising costs (More) | Target shares fall 25%, wiping out $25B in market cap, as higher costs drive earnings expectations miss (More)


> Russian business division of Google to file for bankruptcy after its bank account was seized (More)


> “Pharma bro” Martin Shkreli—former Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO who raised drug prices by 5,000%—is released from prison, will serve remaining sentence from halfway house (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> Russian soldier pleads guilty to killing an unarmed civilian in the first war crimes trial since Moscow invaded Ukraine (More) | The EU sets out $315B plan to end Russian energy imports (More) | US Embassy reopens in Kyiv (More) | See updates on the war (More)


> US health officials say at least 32% of Americans live in areas with a medium or high transmission of COVID-19 (More) | US Health Secretary Xavier Becerra tests positive for the coronavirus (More) | See US COVID-19 stats (More)


Biden administration invokes Defense Production Act in attempt to increase supplies of baby formula (More) | Homeland Security disinformation board indefinitely paused, director steps down (More)



The Man Who Controls Computers With His Mind

NYT Mag | Ferris Jabr. A freak accident 16 years ago left Dennis DeGray fully conscious, but nearly completely paralyzed and unable to speak. Now, one of the world's most advanced brain-computer interfaces has given him new hope. (Read)

The Last Best Sport Sedan

Car Show! | Eddie Alterman. Listen to the first episode of Pushkin's newest podcast, featuring the longtime "Car and Driver" editor, exploring how cars shaped society over the decades. (Listen)



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Exploring the United States of pizza.


Johns Hopkins students design edible tape to keep your burrito wrapped.


Pearl Jam concert goes on thanks to an 18-year-old drummer.


Could underwater greenhouses be the future of agriculture?


Study finds that feline friends know each other's names.


... and what your dog may have looked like centuries ago. 


US weddings are at their lowest in six decades.


A look inside a nail salon for men.


Clickbait: Mom gives birth to son twice.


Historybook: Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII, is beheaded (1536); TE Lawrence, aka Lawrence of Arabia, dies (1935); André the Giant born (1946); RIP former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (1994); Prince Harry marries Meghan Markle (2018).


"One man can make a difference and every man should try."

- Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

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