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ATLANTA (AP) — The U.S. economy “has never worked fairly for Black Americans — or, really, for any American of color,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a speech delivered Monday, one of many by national leaders acknowledging unmet needs for racial equality on Martin Luther King Day.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — With a video series on issues he sees as pertinent to the Black community, the U.S. Senate’s only Black Republican, Tim Scott of South Carolina, is putting forth what he characterizes as a positive response to partisan rhetoric on race that he’s best-positioned to rebut.

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Officially, NBA players began participating in games that were scheduled to celebrate and honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1986 when the federal holiday commemorating the civil-rights leader was observed for the first time.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — From the inaugural platform, President Joe Biden saw American sickness on two fronts — a disease of the national spirit and the one from the rampaging coronavirus — and he saw hope, because leaders always must see that.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The omicron variant is sickening so many sanitation workers around the U.S. that some cities have had to delay or suspend garbage or recycling pickup, angering residents shocked that governments can’t perform this most basic of functions.

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NEW YORK (AP) — Americans overlooked shortages, spiking prices and uncertainty over the omicron variant to break spending records during the critical holiday shopping season. But figures released Friday show that after spending robustly early in the holiday season, consumers sharply slowed their purchases from November to December.

RED OAK, Iowa (AP) — A 12-year-old Iowa girl who was struck and killed by a police vehicle that was headed to an apartment fire had been on her way to a grocery store to buy snacks with a gift card she got for Christmas, her older sister said.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A Christmas tree fire caused the blaze that killed 12 people in a Philadelphia rowhome duplex, investigators confirmed Tuesday after a preliminary investigation, stopping short of officially saying a 5-year-old boy playing with a lighter was behind it.

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ATLANTA (AP) — Martin Luther King Jr.’s daughter used an address Monday to push for federal voting rights legislation and slam the twisting of critical race theory to create what she called “false narratives.”

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The top men's tennis player in the world, Novak Djokovic, spent Orthodox Christmas in an immigration detention hotel in Australia on Friday as he sought to fend off deportation over the country's COVID-19 rules and compete in the Australian Open.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Investigators are looking into whether a 5-year-old who was playing with a lighter set a Christmas tree on fire, sparking a conflagration that killed 12 family members in a Philadelphia rowhome, officials revealed Thursday.

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Vaccinated, masked and ready-to-revel New Orleans residents began ushering in Carnival season Thursday with a rolling party on the city's historic streetcar line, an annual march honoring Joan of Arc in the French Quarter and a collective, wary eye on coronavirus statistics.

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