Fat Joe Explains Why He Missed Big Pun’s Street Naming Ceremony & More in Today’s News

Lead Photo: Fat Joe performs with Anuel AA on stage at Barclays Center on December 12, 2019 in New York City. Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images
Fat Joe performs with Anuel AA on stage at Barclays Center on December 12, 2019 in New York City. Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images
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Las Notis is a daily news column that gets you up to speed on the political, media + other going ons in Latin America and the diaspora—all in one quick digest.

    Here’s your glimpse at what’s going on today:
  • Clinical trials continue to show Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine remains 91% effective even after six months. The vaccine also appeared to be highly effective against the B.1 351 South African variant, which researchers feared could become drug-resistant. [CNN]
  • The Pentagon announced a reversal on Trump-era policies that restricted and effectively banned transgernder people from serving in the military. The new policy will take effect at the end of April and will include greater access to medical care to help people transition while serving. [NPR]
  • A recent CDC report found that the coronavirus fueled a surge in the nation’s mortality rate by more than 15%. The jump was reported after the agency analyzed death certificates from last year and found cases where COVID-19 was the underlying/contributing cause of death, behind cancer and heart disease. More than 3.3 million people died in the U.S. throughout 2020. [WaPo]
  • Recent footage of two children being dropped over the 14-foot US-Mexico border wall by alleged smugglers was released by U.S. authorities. The children were taken to the hospital by border patrol agents and are being cared for. Authorities are working with Mexican law enforcement to identify the smugglers. [BBC]
  • Efforts to clean up two Puerto Rican islands previously used as Navy bombing ranges will be delayed. The process, led by U.S. authorities, will take more than a decade, likely continuing through 2032 at an additional cost of $420 million, equaling a total of $800 million. Tourists and locals have been injured throughout the years by live munition. [NBC]
  • State Legislators in New Mexico voted on Wednesday to allow recreational use of marijuana. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham tweeted, “This is a significant victory and my signing pen is ready.” New Mexico is set to join the 15 states that have fully decriminalized the marijuana. [WaPo]
  • Fat Joe went on Instagram Live to explain why he was not present during Big Pun’s street renaming ceremony, despite their close friendship. Without naming specific people, Joe claimed others in attendance would not have wanted him there. The rapper reportedly has had a strained relationship with Pun’s widow, Liza Rios, who claimed Joe withheld royalties while her family struggled financially, leading to a lawsuit in 2014. The case settled before going to trial. [Complex]