Reagan shooter John Hinckley Jr., to be released after 41 years – National & International News – WED 1Jun2022

The scene outside the Hilton hotel in Washington DC after the shooting of then-President Ronald Reagan in 1981.



Reagan shooter John Hinckley Jr., to be released after 41 years. Pilot shortage caused Memorial Day travel chaos. Shanghai lockdown eases after 2 months.



Reagan shooter John Hinckley Jr., to be released after 41 years

In 1981, John Hinckley Jr., shot and seriously wounded then-President Ronald Reagan outside a Washington DC hotel. Three others were also wounded in the attack.

At the time, Hinckley was suffering from acute psychosis. He was obsessed with the actress Jodie Foster, and believed that killing Reagan would impress her. For this reason, Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity. He remained in a psychiatric institution until 2016, when he was allowed to live with his mother with numerous restrictions on his freedom.

Now, a judge has ruled that Hinckley, now 67, will receive an unconditional release as of June 15.

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Memorial Day travel chaos caused by pilot shortage

In 2020, Congress gave over $50 billion to the commercial airline industry after aggressive lobbying from major airlines. Airlines said they needed the money to keep their personnel on their payrolls and maintain equipment as air travel came to a near standstill.

Despite receiving the needed funds, airlines failed to do both these things. Instead, they furloughed and laid off flight attendants and offered buyouts to pilots who took early retirement. Meanwhile, recruitment and flight instruction were on hold.

As a result, there is now a nationwide shortage of pilots across the commercial aviation industry. As more pilots continue to retire going forward, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects there will be more than 14,000 new openings for pilots each year over the next decade. 

Now airline execs are playing catch-up on training and recruitment for pilots. Two airlines have opened their own flight schools to lower the barrier of entry for new pilots. Flight training can cost upwards of $100,000. However, until pilot recruitment catches up with demand, airlines will continue having to cancel flights. Some airlines have predicted they’ll have to cancel 150 flights a day over the summer.

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Shanghai lockdown eases after 2 months

Back in March, authorities in China told residents of Shanghai that they would be going into a 5-day lockdown after a rise in COVID cases. Now after almost two months of residents almost total confinement, much of the city now has its freedom back. 

Shanghai has a population of 25 million and is China’s most populous city. Reports emerged early on that many residents did not have enough food and had little or no access to medical care and medications. Videos telling the story of residents’ hardships circulated widely on the internet, including within Chinese social media platforms.

Smaller cities across China had previously endured draconian lockdowns, but Shanghai was the first major city to do so. Until Shanghai, Chinese citizens were largely accepting of the country’s “Zero COVID” policy and the heavy restrictions that came with it.

Since Shanghai is a global commercial hub and a major port city, the lockdown also had a serious impact both on China’s economy and worldwide supply chain issues.

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Related: Zero COVID causes wave of emigration from China.


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