• 58 people died and 500+ were injured in Las Vegas Sunday night when a domestic terrorist opened fire on outdoor concertgoers.  The attack was the 273rd mass shooting in 274 days in the United States in 2017. [CNN, CBS]
  • Violence erupted in Spain Sunday as Catalonia attempted to hold an independence referendum against the will of the government in Madrid.  Spanish police forcibly prevented access to the polls, emboldening the pro-independence movement and inspiring protests throughout the week. [BBC]

    Lake Erie – Source: Landsat 8
  • An enormous algae bloom covered much of Lake Erie last week, turning the body of water bright green.  Such blooms have been a growing problem for the Great Lake in recent years due to extensive fertilizer use on the surrounding farmland.  The algae blooms contain cyanobacteria which can produce toxins that contaminate drinking water and harm the local ecosystem.  [New York Times]
  • A woman dressed as the mascot of the board game (and family feud instigator) Monopoly, Rich Uncle Pennybags, has been attending Senate Banking Committee hearings on the Equifax data breach this week.  The woman, Amanda Wernter, is a member of Americans for Financial Reform and Public Citizen protesting to draw attention to forced arbitration clauses used in the financial industry to limit consumers’ ability to take institutions to court. [CNBC]
  • The Supreme Court this week heard oral argument in Gill v. Whitford, a case regarding the constitutionality of partisan gerrymandering.  The outcome of the case will have an incredible impact on elections in the United States, whether the Court finds that such redistricting is permissible or forbidden by the Constitution. [SCOTUSblog]
  • Good news: Santa is real!  Bad news: he’s dead, and archaeologists claim to have found his tomb beneath a Turkish church. [The Guardian]

FACT OF THE WEEK:  Disney World is only slightly smaller than the city of San Francisco (43 square miles to 47). [TripSavvy; SFGate]