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tv   CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell  CBS  July 21, 2021 6:30pm-7:00pm PDT

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cbsn bay area. you can find it on the kpix 5 news app ♪ ♪ ♪ . captioning sponsored by cbs >> o'donnell: tonight: hospitals across america brace for the country's fourth covid wave, as new cases more than triple over the last month, raising fears there will be an increase of coronavirus deaths. a summer surge fueled by the dangerous delta variant. we answer the big question tonight: why is this strain so contagious? the warning tonight from an already-packed covid ward in hard-hit louisiana. >> we are either going to get vaccinated and end the pandemic, or we are going to accept death. >> o'donnell: life expectancy plunges-- america's largest drop since world war ii. tonight, the pandemic grief more than 100,000 children are experiencing, after losing a
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parent to covid. capitol hill clash. a congressional investigation into january 6th stalled. why speaker nancy pelosi rejected two republican members from the probe. $26 billion settlement. a landmark agreement reached in the opioid epidemic. extreme and dangerous situation out west-- wildfires continue to grow larger, as smoke travels 2,000 miles east, raising the air quality index to dangerous levels in america's largest city. new f.b.i. warning-- the alert tonight related to cyberattacks and the olympic games. a cbs news investigation-- the dramatic increase of child dramatic increase of children overdosing on marijuana edibles. what parents need to know. and, believing in your dreams. the lessons tonight from an n.b.a. superstar, and the message from kobe bryant that inspired it all.
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this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting from the nation's capital. >> o'donnell: good evening to our viewers in the west and thank you for joining us. tonight, for the first time in months, the c.d.c. is predicting that the rate of covid deaths in the u.s. will rise well into august. across the country, the average daily number of new infections have more than tripled in a month. that's right. and there's this-- nearly one in three u.s. counties are experiencing a rapid spread of the virus. this summer surge is driven by that highly contagious delta variant. and tonight, we're learning more about exactly how powerful that mutant strain is. so, we've got more on that in a moment. the troubling uptick in cases led new york city's mayor to announce a mandate for new yorkers who work in a health care setting. and, there's also alarming new information tonight on the toll that the pandemic is taking on american lives.
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life expectancy in the u.s. has taken its most severe drop in more than seven decades. and the hardest hit? hispanic and black americans. cbs's david begnaud leads off our coverage tonight from louisiana, where covid wards are packed with patients. good evening, david. >> reporter: good evening, norah. experts say that delta variant has a viral load that is 1,000 times higher than the original coronavirus strain. one of the experts here in baton rouge said it appears as though the delta variant turns off your immune system for just a little bit, allowing that virus to multiply inside of you even before antibodies can start being developed. tonight, hospitals in louisiana are filling up, and dr. catherine o'neal is fed up. >> are we about to be a community on fire? i think we already are. >> reporter: louisiana has just reported more than 5,000 covid infections. that is the worst since the winter surge. hospitalizations have more than tripled. >> i can't believe we admitted a whole floor of patients last night. >> reporter: just 36% of louisiana's residents are fully vaccinated.
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and now, vaccine hesitancy is meeting covid reality. did you get to a point when you were scared? >> i'm still scared. >> reporter: p.j. perry says he and most of his family had refused to get the covid vaccine. where have you gotten most of your news from, regarding the vaccine? >> saw it on facebook, and you know, people saying stuff. >> reporter: now, this 48-year- old father says as soon as he leaves this hospital, he is getting vaccinated. >> i don't care if anybody is mad at me, they say "i don't want to take it." i don't care anymore. i don't want to feel like this. >> reporter: across this country, 100 million people remain unvaccinated, including some health care workers. today, the mayor of new york city said anyone working in a public hospital or clinic must get vaccinated, or get weekly testing. >> this is about keeping people safe and stopping the delta variant. >> reporter: in louisiana... >> we need to be patient- centered, and that requires us as health care professionals to take the first leap. and that first leap is to get vaccinated. >> reporter: scott row, a >> reporter: scott row, a
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patient we met in the hospital, was discharged today, and he left thinking this: >> am i going to get a vaccine? no. >> reporter: why not? >> because there's too many issues with these vaccines. >> we are either going to get vaccinated and end the pandemic, or we are going to accept death. >> reporter: that patient, scott row, said "i don't want to take the vaccine because it's not fully approved. it's only under emergency-use authorization." so i asked the doctor, who said, "well, yeah-- so is the medicine that we use to treat it." so, if you are willing to take that, you ought to consider taking the vaccine, too. norah? >> o'donnell: an excellent point. david begnaud, thank you. well, there was quite a bit of drama on capitol hill today. it started with speaker nancy pelosi blocking two republicans from a special committee to investigate the deadly attack on the u.s. capitol, and what unfolded may have put the january 6th congressional probe in jeopardy. cbs's nikole killion reports. >>eporr: more th six
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capitol, there is a new battle over the fate of a select committee established to investigate the attack. >> read my statement. >> reporter: in a bold move, house speaker nancy pelosi rejected two of the five republicans on the panel: ohio's jim jordan and indiana's jim banks. the speaker suggested the two staunch allies of the former president, who voted against certifying the election, would "jeopardize the integrity of the investigation." house minority leader kevin mccarthy shot back immediately, threatening to pull all five members. >> it's an egregious abuse of power. pelosi has broken this institution. >> reporter: but congressmen jordan and banks had both criticized the panel yesterday, calling it another attempt to impeach mr. trump. >> this is "impeachment round three" for t dra >> reporter: wyoming republican liz cheney, appointed by democrats, remains on the committee. >> the rhetoric around this, from the minority leader and from those two members, has been disgraceful. this must be an investigation that is focused on facts.
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>> reporter: democratic committee members say they plan to proceed with their first hearing next tuesday, with testimony from law enforcement officers who were on the front lines, as part of their probe to get to the root causes of the riot. >> this is serious business here; this isn't a game. >> o'donnell: and nikole joins us from capitol hill with more information. i understand there's an update on the president's trillion- dollar infrastructure plan. what's happening? >> reporter: that's right. senate republicans blocked a roughly $1 trillion package that would fund roads, bridges, and other projects because it is still being negotiated. it is a key part of president biden's agenda, and a small bipartisan group of lawmakers say they are very close to finalizing the details in the coming days. norah. >> o'donnell: a critical week. nikole killion, thank you. wildfire the wt ereatmillio icth pential health probmsteacross the country, sending air quality levels plummeting. and, pacific gas and electric
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says it will bury 10,000 miles of power lines, in what is being described as the largest infrastructure project in california history. here's cbs's jonathan vigliotti. >> reporter: crews are fighting the flames of the tamarack fire from the ground and sky. located south of lake tahoe, the blaze is zero-percent contained, and has grown, crossing state lines into nevada. >> we got ten minutes to get in and get what we could get, and then it's time to leave. >> reporter: extreme heat and drought have also created tinderbox conditions in southwest oregon, where the bootleg fire has burned more than 394,000 acres. crews from arkansas, nevada, and alaska are joining more than 2,000 personnel battling the fire there. today, california utility pg & e pledged to bury 10,000 miles of its power lines, after itseqpmtd the dixie fire, tn of paradise. 78 active wildfires are burning in the west.
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those flames, coupled with the canadian wildfires, are blanketing much of the united states with noxious smoke, affecting air quality and triggering health alerts thousands of miles away. >> if fires are a more frequent thing, if they're more intense, we could very well see more of these kind of events. >> reporter: doctors say breathing fine particlate matter released by wildfires can increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes. and one study found wildfire smoke like this actually becomes up to four times more toxic the farther it travels, because of a chemical reaction that takes place in the atmosphere. doctors say one simple way to protect yourself is by wearing an n95 mask. norah. >> o'donnell: jonathan vigliotti, thank you. tonight the first lady, dr. jill biden, is making her way to the summer olympics in tokyo. the games are just getting underway, amid a covid emergency that is threatening to grind the olympics to a halt. and cbs's jamie yuccas is there.
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>> reporter: as the games begin, covid infections continue. u.s. volleyballer taylor crabb reportedly tested positive after landing in tokyo, bringing to five the total number of americans knocked out of the olympics by the virus. in all, more than 70 people connected to the 2020 games have tested positive. the first matches of the tokyo games started with players on five women's soccer teams, including the americans, taking a knee before kickoffs, to protest racial inequality worldwide-- all permitted under new olympic rules. >> this is no violation of the rule 50. this is expressly what has been mentioned in these guidelines. >> reporter: the u.s. suffered a crushing loss to sweden, the same team that kept team u.s.a. from gold at the last olympics. . >> reporter: meanwhile, the f.b.i. today put out a general warning against potential cyberattacks at the games-- that could include threats to block
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or disrupt live broadcasts-- but said there has been no specific threat. with tokyo covid cases the highest since january, the head of the world health organization today called the games a celebration of hope. >> may the message of hope resound from tokyo around the world. >> reporter: with games beginning ahead of opening ceremonies on friday, the focus is turning to competition, which officials hope will not get overshadowed by covid. norah. >> o'donnell: jamie yuccas, thank you. tonight, a landmark settlement agreement in the opioid epidemic. a group of state attorneys general reached a $26 billion settlement with johnson &johnson and three other american companies that distributed opioid painkillers, even as addiction and overdose deaths skyrocketed. states now have 30 days to states now have 30 days to decide whether to agree to the deal, and local governments will have 150 days to sign on. we want to turn now to a cbs news investigation into the spike in edible marijuana overdoses among children.
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that's right-- gummies and other sweets containing a potent ingredient meant for adults are sending kids to emergency rooms in record numbers. here's cbs's jeff pegues. >> reporter: last month, elizabeth perry felt helpless as it became clear something was very wrong with her 21-month-old son, oliver. >> when i laid him down in his crib, he kind of went rigid and started shaking and crying. >> reporter: within an hour, he was in the hospital, and he was in the hospital, and doctors determined that he had t.h.c. in his system-- the chemical in marijuana that gives users a high. oliver had managed to open this tin containing edible cannabis gummies that elizabeth used to help her sleep. to him, it looked like candy. as a parent, what is going through your mind when you found out that he had eaten 15 gummies? >> my first thought was, i did this to him. you know, this is my fault. >> reporter: the number of children 12 and under who've ingested t.h.c. edibles at home
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jumped from 132 in 2016 to almost 2,500 last year. those requiring medical care jumped astronomically, too. dr. brian schultz was part of the team at children's national hospital in washington that treated oliver. >> if you are going to use these substances, just realize that they look very attractive to kids; they are oftentimes packaged in tins or other packages that look very attractive to kids. >> one, two, three, whoo! >> reporter: oliver made a full recovery. he's back to his old self. mom elizabeth is not. >> what is terrifying is, i know that if he found the gummies again, he would eat them again. which, you know, is why it's so important, i think, to lock these up and to have them, really, out of reach. >> reporter: yeah, doctors say don't just hide edibles-- lock them up, too. this is becoming an issue with more states around the country legalizing marijuana, and as thse edibles become more common in households with kids. norah. >> o'donnell: jeff pegues,
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thanks so much. we turn now to the steepest drop in life expectancy here in the u.s. since world war ii. largely driven by the pandemic, life expectancy has dropped by a year and a half. for hispanic and black populations, it's down by as much as three years.an staggering number of children without a parent. we get more on this from cbs's mireya villarreal. >> i feel like i just should have done more. >> reporter: alyssa quarles is overwhelmed by guilt that she couldn't save her 48-year-old father theodis after he got covid. >> as days passed, he started to say, like, help me, please don't let me die. i don't know what to say to him, i don't think he going to die but he kept saying it. so, it was hard. >> reporter: he died just before christmas. the tree still stands-- a sign the family can't let go. >> this is what it is like when you have all girls. >> reporter: the quarles girls are among at least 113,000
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american children struggling with pandemic grief after losing a parent or caregiver to the virus. a quarter of them are younger than ten, and 20% are black. minorities are disproportionately affected. >> in my head, i feel like it was my fault. >> reporter: what was your fault? >> that he passed. >> reporter: every day is a challenge for mom vickie and her five daughters.... >> the hardest time is like, when i see my girls cry. >> reporter: ...each grieving in her own way. ania is 14. >> i really just shut down sometimes, and i stay in my room, i don't want to talk to anybody. >> i'm sad because i don't get to see him any more, physically. >> reporter: today, the younger >> reporter: today, the younger girls are in therapy. aja turned 11 without her dad. >> when you look at my kids, you can tell that something is missing. missing. >> reporter: researchers see an increase in depression and p.t.s.d. in children who lose a parent. it can leave them traumatized, confused, angry. >> grief is just all of the thoughts and feelings that we
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have. >> reporter: aja is getting therapy from lauren strini. >> what i think is important for grieving people to learn, grieving children especially, is that, that anger is okay. >> we have upset, heartbroken, stressed, mad. >> reporter: strini teaches children to express their emotions in healthy ways. what helps you when you're having some of those hard emotions? >> playing the guitar, listening to music, stuff like that. they're all things that i used to do when he was here. >> i think that we could find a new norm for us, without him being here, but we could still keep his memory alive at the same time. >> reporter: mireya villarreal, cbs news, memphis, tennessee. >> o'donnell: and there is still much more news ahead here on tonight's "cbs evening news." the debris from that condo collapse has been mostly cleared, and news tonight about the financial payout the families could receive. and, historic floods and horrific scenes of devastation in china. na.
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in the closeout game. ( cheers and applause ) otional talking about his family. >> this is fr my mom, she wo extremhard ery day for me to bin this position. s haimmigrated from nigeria to provide a better life for their sons. giannis used his talent to repay the favor. >> so i started playing basketball just to, you know, help my family. >> reporter: he credits his success to those who believed in him, including the late kobe bryant. this twitter challenge from the laker legend to become m.v.p., then win a title-- now, a reality. >> this should be, should make every person, every kid, anybody around the world, to believe in their dreams. >> reporter: dana jacobson, cbs news, new york. >> o'donnell: such a great message: if you can dream it,
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only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ a pool floatie is like whooping cough, it's not just for kids. whooping cough is highly contagious for pef any age. and it can cause violent uncontrollable coughing fits. ask your doctor or pharmacist about whooping cough vaccination because it's not just for kids. don't settle for products that give you a sort of white smile. ask try new crest whiteningst abou emulsions cough vaccination for 100% whiter teeth. its highly active peroxide droplets swipe on in seconds. better. faster. 100% whiter teeth. crestwhitesmile.com .>> o'donnell: the c.d.c. reports more than 5,000 americans have been hospitalized from covid after being fully vaccinated. so, we wanted to understand how that could happen. we instigatese kthroues. nis."an ican't watch usive, don't forget to
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news."s "c ening right now at 7:00 -- >> a close call in contra costa county, people forced to scramble as a grass fire jumps to an apartment building. pg&e's ambitious undertaking to prevent wildfires. the commitment spanning 10,000 miles. the governor announces a new crackdown on california's retail crime epidemic, and some are questioning his timing. just how bad is california's covid surge? bad enough that it would have been shutting down businesses about a month ago. good evening. allen martin in for ken bastida. >> and i'm elizabeth cook. we begin with at breaking news in antioch, where a grass fire spread to e fire broke out just
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4:00 p.m. in the area of james donlon boulevard and tamora drive. the flames spread to cars and send residents running from their units before reaching the apartment building. chopper five flew over the scene where fire crews climbed to the top of the units and punched holes in the roofs while smoke poured out. this is new video of the firefighting efforts on the ground. it came into our newsroom in just the past hour. that fire covered a lot of ground before it spread to the building. we are told two children were treated on scene after having trouble breathing. otherwise, there were no injuries. and in alameda county, this fire threatened a home in the hayward hills this afternoon. the flames raced through parched grass just east of mission boulevard near the hayward/union city border. the fire burned right up to the fence line of the property. california's covid surge, driven by the highly contagious

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