Vocabulary booster: This Week in Words: June 11 – 15, 2018

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acrimony

a rough and bitter manner

In a remarkable pair of acrimony-laced tweets from aboard Air Force One as he flew away from the Group of 7 summit toward a meeting with North Korea’s leader, Mr. Trump lashed out at Justin Trudeau.
– The New York Times ( June 9, 2018)

President Trump left the G7 summit earlier than planned this week, after disrupting the meeting of nations by lobbying for Russia’s inclusion and calling Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau “very dishonest and weak.” The Group of 7 is traditionally a meeting where allies come together, but this year the U.S. and Canada bitterly argued about tariffs, and President Trump’s name-calling broke from norms of diplomacy.

fret

be agitated or irritated

Baffert had
fretted after Justify drew the No. 1 post, a spot he detests for his horses.
– cbsnews.com ( June 9, 2018)

A horse named
Justify won the Belmont Stakes, completing the trio of horse racing victories known as the Triple Crown (The Kentucky Derby, The Preakness and the Belmont Stakes). The last Triple Crown winner was in 2015, and there have only been 12 other Triple Crown Winners dating back to 1875. Justify’s trainer, Bob Baffert, became only the second man in history to train two Triple Crown winners, having also trained American Pharoah in 2015.

facilitator

someone who makes progress easier

A
facilitator at a tech summit confided that if her friend had had the Verena app, that person might still be alive.
– USA Today ( June 9, 2018)

Amanda Southworth makes apps that provide support to those struggling to cope with mental health issues. She herself has battled mental illness and says that learning to code and using it for this purpose has helped her a great deal. Southworth has started her own company, Astra Labs, in order to continue producing apps for people in need of assistance.

shepherd

watch over, as a teacher of her pupils

The FCC changes were passed last December,
shepherded by Trump-appointed FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who says the new lighter-touch rules are more market-friendly than the “utility-style regulation” in the Obama-era.
– USA Today ( June 11, 2018)

Changes passed last year concerning “net neutrality” are about to go into effect. “Net neutrality” refers to the way customers access the whole internet for one basic fee. With the imminent changes, there is the possibility that the internet will function more like cable TV, with premium rates being charged for access to certain sites and services.

disenfranchise

deprive of voting rights

In a separate dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said Congress enacted the voter registration law “against the backdrop of substantial efforts by states to
disenfranchise low-income and minority voters.” The court’s decision essentially endorses “the very purging that Congress expressly sought to protect against,” Sotomayor wrote.
– The Chicago Tribune ( June 11, 2018)

The Supreme Court ruled this week that states could take people who have not voted in awhile off their registered voters lists. This decision means that the state of Ohio can now remove someone from the registered voters list if they haven’t voted in six years and neglected to return a re-registration card. States like Ohio claim they just want to keep the voter rolls up-to-date, while opponents say that this is really an attempt to prevent people from being able to cast their vote.

pathos

a quality that arouses emotions, especially pity or sorrow

Along with the politics and
pathos, threads of whimsy, humor and hope wove through the proceedings on the heels of the hashtag #TonyDreaming.
– L.A. Times ( June 10, 2018)

The 72nd Tony Awards for excellence on the Broadway stage were handed out this week. The musical
The Band’s Visit and the play
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child were the big winners on Sunday night. Highlights of the ceremony included a performance by students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who had survived a shooting at their school earlier in the year. The students sang a moving rendition of “Seasons of Love” from the musical
Rent.

cryptic

having a secret or hidden meaning

But the chain of breakfast diners took social media by storm last week with the
cryptic announcement that it was flipping the lowercase “p” in its logo and making it a “b.”
– money.cnn.com ( June 11, 2018)

New about the International House of Pancakes captivated the nation this week. IHOP announced that it will change its name to IHOB, and speculation ran wild as to what the “B” might stand for, with most people betting that it was “Breakfast.” It turns out that this was a publicity stunt launched to promote some new burgers being added to the menu.

redress

make reparations or amends for

“Yet the asylum statute does not provide
redress for all misfortune,” Mr. Sessions wrote.
– The New York Times
( June 11, 2018)

The Justice Department has changed some rules regarding immigrants seeking asylum in the United States. Previously, someone on the run from gang or domestic violence could petition to be let into this country for safety reasons. Now Attorney General Jeff Sessions says the U.S. will now exclude many of these kinds of cases from eligibility.

expeditiously

with efficiency; in an efficient manner

President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-un commit to implement the stipulations in this joint statement fully and
expeditiously.
– Signed Agreement Between The United States and North Korea ( June 12, 2018)

The major news of the week was the summit between Kim Jong-Un and President Trump in Singapore. The preparations for the meeting may have been rushed and there will need to be more meetings to hammer out specifics, but it was still a historic event. The two men signed a document stating the goal of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. Critics claim the document is too vague, while the President’s supporters are hailing this as a major foreign policy achievement.

divest

take away possessions from someone

There will be no divestment of any assets in the completion of the merger, Daniel Petrocelli, lead trial attorney for AT&T, told reporters after the decision.
– cnbc.com ( June 12, 2018)

A federal judge has cleared the way for the $85 billion dollar merger between AT&T and Time Warner to take place. There was some worry that with both companies being in the cable service industry, the merger would unfairly limit competition in that sphere. The judge did not find that this limiting of competition rises to the level of a monopoly. It is widely believed that this legal decision clears the way for other big media moves.

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