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An Indiana pastor was "relieved of pastoral duties" for appearing in drag on a reality TV series.

Craig Duke, former pastor at United Methodist Church in Evansville, appeared in feminine attire and full makeup on HBO's "We're Here" reality TV series last month.

After word of his suspension spread around town, Evansville residents Chris and Erin Sexton launched a GoFundMe page that raised over $40,000 for the defrocked pastor.

The GoFundMe page described Duke, who is heterosexual, as a "man of faith, a father, a husband, a social justice advocate, and ally for the LGBTQIA+ community" who "has fought for a fully inclusive church that is welcoming to people of all races, all genders, and all sexual orientations."

"Unfortunately, Duke's participation in this show caused much turmoil in the church that he was serving at the time and ultimately lead to him being 'relieved of pastoral duties' at that church.

"Craig will continue with a significantly reduced salary until no later than February 28. Obviously, this poses a major challenge to Craig and his family as they determine their next steps."

Duke said he had never heard of the series until he was contacted by Evansville's Pride board, and asked if he'd be interested in participating in the show.

"I was surrounded and immersed in a culture that I've never been immersed in, and one of the things in ministry, if you want to involve people different than yourself in your ministry, you have to go to where people different than you are. The invitation to be part of the show allowed me that."

Duke also said he wanted to participate in the show to support his daughter, who came out as pansexual two years ago.

"I'm hoping it's a bridge — for my daughter, for the church I serve, for the denomination I love and for me — and I'm hoping my voice will become stronger," he said on the show.
 

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Dozens of NYC sanitation workers have been suspended without pay for three weeks for submitting falsified vaccination cards.

The sanitation workers submitted the vaccine cards in compliance with the Biden administration's Covid-19 vaccine mandates.

The cards verified that the workers received the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccines, ABC News reports.

New York City's Sanitation Department followed up on the validity of the vaccine cards which were all issued by the same southern Brooklyn CVS store.

The department discovered that CVS stopped administering single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccines in May.

"These are very concerning allegations and we take them very seriously," Sanitation Department spokesman Joshua Goodman told ABC News. "Getting vaccinated is important to public health, and we do not tolerate anyone faking something that is a requirement of city employment."

"Anyone found to have faked their vaccination will be suspended without pay," Goodman added.

According to ABC NYC affiliate WABC, over 87% of the department's roughly 10,000 employees are either fully or partially vaccinated.

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The Brooklyn Nets has suspended all-star guard Kyrie Irving from playing or practicing with the team.

General manager Sean Marks announced on Tuesday that Irving "will not play or practice" with the team unless or until he is vaccinated.

"Given the evolving nature of the situation and after thorough deliberation, we have decided Kyrie Irving will not play or practice with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant," Marks said in a statement Tuesday morning.

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"Kyrie has made a personal choice, and we respect his individual right to choose. Currently the choice restricts his ability to be a full-time member of the team, and we will not permit any member of our team to participate with part-time availability."

New York City mayor Bill de Blasio announced strict Covid-19 vaccine mandates for all state buildings, restaurants and gyms.

However, authorities declared the Nets practice facility to be a "private office building" and thus exempt from the mandate.

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Irving was willing to forfeit $16 million -- nearly half of his annual $34 million salary because he is ineligible to play in 43 home games.

On Sunday, Nets coach Steve Nash said Irving's status was unclear.

"I think we recognize that he's not playing home games. We're going to have to play without him this year. So it just depends on when, where and how much."

The NBA previously stated all players who refused the Covid-19 mRNA vaccine would forfeit their paychecks for every game they missed.

Irving stood to lose $381,000 for every game he missed.
 

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TikTok

A Waffle House worker who held an infant baby in her arms while apparently serving customers has been suspended from her job.

The video footage was uploaded to TikTok by user @Kizzle360 who captioned the video "Ain't know why she got her baby in here [sic]."

Someone can be heard in the background saying, "Ain't no f***ing way."

Viewers were conflicted. Many said they would never bring a baby to work even under the most dire circumstances.

According to TMZ, the Waffle House worker, Tiffany Clark, has a "tragic backstory."

Tiffany, who goes by @tiffanyclark842 on TikTok, claims she had no choice but to take her 4-month-old niece Octavia to work with her.

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TikTok

Tiffany was working the overnight shift at a South Carolina when she got an urgent call from her mother about an emergency family situation.

Tiffany said Octavia is the daughter of her brother who recently died.

The baby's grandmother told Tiffany to get the baby because the child's mother had a mental breakdown and was going to be hospitalized.

Tiffany said the only other option was for the baby to end up in the custody of child services. She told TMZ the video is not nearly as bad as it looks.

Despite appearances, Tiffany claims she was never cooking food with baby Octavia in her arms.

She insists she was simply marking plates for servers, and she says she was only behind the counter with the child for the brief moment that was caught on video.

After the video went viral, Tiffany explained the situation to her boss. She was suspended from her job for a week, but she won't be fired.

Tiffany says she intends become her niece's legal guardian while the baby's mother seeks help for her mental disorder.
 

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Facebook

A California news anchor with an adopted Black daughter was suspended after telling his bosses he wanted to discuss "missing white woman syndrome" at the end of his news segment.

Frank Somerville, 63, was suspended from Oakland-based KTVU after he told station executives he wanted to discuss the disparities between missing Black and missing white women who receive more news coverage.

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Facebook

Somerville is the adoptive father of a Black teenage daughter whom he often posts on social media.

He was reportedly suspended a day after he got into a shouting match with News Director Amber Eikel about Gabby Petito news coverage, according to the Mercury News.

The three-time Emmy winner had planned to piggyback off of the remarks made by MSNBC most Joy Reid who said the news media eagerly covers stories about missing white women like Petito, the 22-year-old Youtuber whose body was found in a Wyoming park on Sept. 19.

Reid said news outlets often ignore missing Black women because they do not look like the daughters and granddaughters of newsroom executives.

Petito was laid to rest in a televised funeral on Sunday. A massive manhunt is underway for her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, who is considered the prime suspect in her murder.

The term "missing white woman syndrome" was coined by late journalist Gwen Ifill, who became the first Black woman to host a nationally televised U.S. public affairs program.

AFP via Getty Images

The photographer who took photos of Border Patrol agents on horseback chasing down Haitian migrants is speaking out.

The viral photos showed frightened Haitian people desperately clinging to bags of food and fleeing while agents on horseback chased them.

The optics of white federal agents herding Black men like cattle sparked outrage around the world.

Democrats Maxine Waters and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused the border agents of "whipping" the Haitian men.

AFP via Getty Images

Speaking with KTSM, photographer Paul Ratje said he and his colleagues never saw agents whipping anyone.

"Some of the Haitian men started running, trying to go around the horses," said Ratje, who is based in Las Cruces. He said he took the pictures from the Mexico side of the border.

Ratje said a photo frozen in time can give the impression that the agent used his long reins to whip people.

"I've never seen them whip anyone. He was swinging [the reins], but it can be misconstrued when you're looking at the picture."

White House press secretary Jen Psaki called the images "horrific", and she said the agents in the photos have been suspended.

On Thursday, the White House issued a statement saying Border Patrol agents are no longer allowed to use horses to patrol the border.

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A Houston reporter who went viral for threatening to expose corruption at FOX News Corp. has been suspended.

Fox 26 News reporter Ivory Hecker went off script during a live remote on Monday. She said FOX News corporation have been "muzzling" her and other reporters at the station to prevent them from telling viewers the truth.

"Before we get to that story, I want to let you, the viewers, know that Fox Corp. has been muzzling me to keep certain information from you, the viewers. And from what I'm gathering, I am not the only reporter being subjected to this. I am going to be releasing some recordings about what goes on behind the scenes at Fox, because it applies to you, the viewers. I found a non-profit journalism group called Project Veritas that is going to help put that out tomorrow, so tune in then."

Hecker said she leaked secret recordings to Project Veritas's James O'Keefe, who was banned from Twitter for leaking a video exposing CNN.

Hecker's supervisor, Lee Meier, called to tell her she was suspended, "effective immediately". Hecker recorded that call too.

"I wanted to call you and let you know that you are suspended, effective immediately, pending further review," Meier said.

"Ok. Sounds good," Hecker responded.

Project Veritas has confirmed they will conduct a sit-down interview with Hecker on Wednesday night. The conservative group will air recordings and video provided by Hecker during the interview.

So far, there has been no word on the information contained in the recordings.

Hecker is being hailed as a hero for risking her job to expose Fox News.

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Getty Images

White House staffers who smoked marijuana in the past are not welcome in the Biden administration.

The Biden administration shocked White House staffers by asking them to resign their positions if they have ever smoked weed.

According to multiple reports, "dozens" of White House staffers were either suspended, asked to resign, or placed in a remote work program because they confessed to past marijuana use.

The White House staffers were asked during the background-check process if they had ever used marijuana in the past.

The ones who answered "yes" were told the Biden administration was willing to overlook some marijuana use, but they were later asked to resign.

The staffers who didn't lose their jobs despite marking "yes" to marijuana use were retained to "ensure that talented and otherwise well-qualified applicants with limited marijuana use will not be barred from serving the American people."

The response on social media was swift. The Atlantic's Derek Thompson wrote it's "incredibly stupid for many reasons," considering "that cannabis is legal is Washington, DC."

While Bloomberg's Steven Dennis wondered aloud if a "young Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush or JFK would have been excluded from this White House" for smoking weed.

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What Corona? A horny nurse risked everything to have noisy sex with a Covid-19 patient in a hospital bathroom, according to the NY Post.

With a 99.9% survival rate for Covid-19, the nurse apparently wasn't concerned about the health risks.

News of the incident at a Jakarta hospital went viral Friday, Dec. 25, after the patient bragged on Twitter about his sexual tryst with a male nurse.

"It is true that there has been a suspected incident of a same-sex relationship between a health worker and a COVID-19 patient at the Wisma Atlet Emergency Hospital," said Asep Gunawan of the National Nurses Association.

The NY Post reports that the patient tweeted a photo of the nurse's PPE on the hospital room floor as the two went at it.

The hospital administration was understandably humiliated. The nurse was suspended and there may be criminal charges.

"This case has been transferred to the Central Jakarta Police. We have secured the health worker to become a witness and asked for further information," said Lt. Col. Arh Herwin of the Regional Military Command.

Nurse and patient were tested for Covid-19. The patient is still positive and the nurse is negative.

If convicted, both men face up to 10 years in prison.

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Richland County Council, BACKGRID

A South Carolina councilwoman was indicted and suspended from office after she allegedly used public money to fund a trip to Newark, NJ to meet Magic Johnson.

According to the Post and Courier news outlet, Richland County Council Vice Chairwoman Dahli Myers was indicted on Friday and suspended from office for using her government credit card to pay for trips out of the country, gourmet chocolates, books and a cellphone.

Myers, a Democrat, claimed the trip to Greece was for research to "grow her knowledge about local governments."

She is also charged with using public funds to pay for a trip to Newark, NJ to meet with NBA legend Magic Johnson and retired NFL player Richard Seymour. According to a state grand jury indictment, Myers wanted to speak to the former athletes about something but it's unclear what she met with them to discuss.

"When questioned about the county expenses, Myers, a Hopkins resident who was first elected in 2016, made up false explanations for why the card purchases were legitimate county expenses, the grand jury found. The charges against Myers include misconduct in office, using her government position for personal gain, embezzlement, writing a fraudulent check and misusing her campaign money for personal expenses."

Myers initially agreed to pay the county back for her illegal use of public funds. But she later changed her mind and blamed the county for not monitoring her credit card spending.

"It's not my fault; it's your fault because y'all weren't monitoring my card," Myers reportedly said.

Myers faces a total of 24 charges. She was already set to leave office after her primary defeat.