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Jeffrey Cook/ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Two weeks after his hometown of El Paso was the site of a mass shooting, 2020 presidential hopeful Beto O'Rourke made an unannounced visit to a gun show in central Arkansas to speak with gun buyers and sellers about what can be done to stop gun violence in America.

O'Rourke, who was in between campaign events in Arkansas on Saturday, paid $10 to enter the event, and walked through aisles lined with handguns, AR-15s, stun-guns, hunting rifles, scopes, magazines and knives before striking up a conversation with Preston Linck, who was selling handguns and rifles.

Linck, who later said he doesn't identify with either political party, supports closing the so-called gun-show loophole and requiring background checks for all gun sales.

"I have tables here, but there's no background check," Linck told O'Rourke, a former Texas congressman.

O'Rourke asked him whether Linck would accept a requirement that gun-show sellers like him get a federal firearms license, and Linck responded he would. "Just the only little problem I see, there's so many guns out there, even if you tried to stop selling, they're already out there," Linck told O'Rourke.

But he was skeptical of a proposal O'Rourke made a few days ago -- a mandatory assault weapons buy-back because he doesn't think people would willingly participate.

Larry Beaver, another attendee at the show and a self-described Republican Trump supporter, said he owns many firearms, including assault rifles.

"If you want votes, you're not going to get them by talking about taking this away from people," Beaver told O'Rourke. "People are going to find a way to kill people."

O'Rourke said he is not anti-gun, that he learned to handle a firearm growing up from a sheriff's deputy and has handled an assault weapon. But he wants weapons of war out of the hands of the public and to find ways to prevent rampages like the one in El Paso on Aug. 3, when a man opened fire at the El Paso Walmart killing 22 people and wounding two dozen more.

The El Paso shooting, along with another mass shooting that same night in Dayton, Ohio, that left 10 people dead, and a third incident this week in Philadelphia, where a gunman fired a barrage of bullets at a crew of police officers, injuring six of them, has led to a renewed call to both limit the number and variety of firearms in the country, and increase safeguards that could help keep guns out of the hands of would-be criminals.

The shootings have also meant that the issue of gun violence has taken center stage in the race for president. Candidates have called on Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring senators back from their August recess to vote on a background check bill that the Democrat-controlled House passed earlier this year. At least six candidates have also added to mounting pressure on Walmart, one of the nation's biggest gun sellers, to take guns off its shelves until a series of safeguards, including a ban on assault weapons, has been put in place.

O'Rourke, who rushed back to his family in El Paso after the attack, has since vowed to reboot his floundering presidential campaign and seek out tough conversations with voters across the country about immigration, gun violence and racial divisions.

"Those places where Donald Trump has been terrorizing and terrifying and demeaning our fellow Americans, that's why you will find me in this campaign," he told a group of supporters on Thursday in El Paso. He then headed to an area outside Jackson, Mississippi, where federal agents last week rounded up about 680 people accused of violating immigration laws.

Their political differences aside, Beaver said he told O'Rourke, "I respect you for talking to me."

"I saw him walk by and said 'wow what's he doing here?" Beaver said as he recounted their conversation.

He even said he might be willing to support O'Rourke's assault weapons buy-back plan -- so long as he got a fair rate and "the rest of America takes a part in it" too.

For his part, O'Rourke told ABC News, he felt he "learned something by listening to him."

"We're not going to get this done until we include everyone in this conversation," O'Rourke said. "You're never allowed to write anybody off because they're a Republican, because they're a gun seller, because they're at a gun show."

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iStock(PORTLAND, Ore.) -- Thirteen people were arrested and four were injured, as over 1,000 right-wing demonstrators and counter-protesters descended on downtown Portland on Saturday, police said.

There were "at least 13 arrests," in six hours, Portland Police Lieutenant Tina Jones said in a statement. "We are aware of four individuals who have been evaluated by Portland Fire medics," the statement said.

Jones also said that one person had been taken to a hospital and that "Portland Fire medics report that all known injuries are considered to be minor."

However, as the day progressed, tensions seemed to be mounting. At around 4:30 p.m. local time, and the Portland Police tweeted, that "Police are having plastic water bottles thrown at them as they are making an arrest on SW Yamhill and Park." After that, police began advising people to clear the streets or face arrest.

"Police are advising this is now a civil disturbance. Crowd needs to leave the area and go Northbound on Park or any direction eastbound. This means everyone," Portland Police tweeted.

The city has been bracing for several militant right-wing groups to arrive in the city, along with scores of counter-protesters.

Enrique Tarrio, national head of the Proud Boys, who describe themselves as an all-male "western chauvinist" group, and former InfoWars personality Joe Biggs, organized the “End Domestic Terrorism” rally on Saturday that started at 11 a.m. local time. Initially, the crowds moved in slowly, and were met by a heavy police presence, in which local police were bolstered by more than a dozen other law enforcement agencies.

Members of other far-right extremist groups, including the American Guard, the Three Percenters, and the Daily Stormers, were also expected to attend in the hopes of declaring militant leftists, or anti-fascists known as "anitfa," a domestic terrorist group.

One right-wing militia group, Oath Keepers, disavowed the rally for fears of being associated with white supremacists.

“We do not believe the organizers are taking the steps necessary to ensure that white nationalist and suspected white nationalist groups and individuals will be excluded," said Stewart Rhodes, the group's founder, in a statement on its website.

 

https://t.co/BAUm1eFJWt

— Oath Keepers (@Oathkeepers) August 15, 2019

 

Early Saturday, Trump criticized antifa in a tweet, and said Portland is "being watched very closely."

 

Major consideration is being given to naming ANTIFA an “ORGANIZATION OF TERROR.” Portland is being watched very closely. Hopefully the Mayor will be able to properly do his job!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 17, 2019

 

"Major consideration is being given to naming ANTIFA an 'ORGANIZATION OF TERROR,'" the tweet read. "Hopefully the Mayor will be able to properly do his job!"

The president did not, however, criticize the right-wing organizers.

Previous rallies featuring right-wing groups and antifa have turned violent in Portland, prompting a warning from Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler.

Ahead of Saturday's rallies, Wheeler issued a video message stating, "if you're planning on coming here on August 17th with the intent to commit violence, we don't want you here."

It was unclear whether Joey Gibson, the leader of right-wing Patriot Prayer, will attend the rally. He and five other men have been arrested this month, on charges stemming from a violent outburst on May 1 at Cider Riot, a bar that is a haven for the city's leftists. Videos of the May Day incident show men associated with the group spraying pepper spray, fighting and striking people with batons.

He turned himself in to authorities and bailed out on Friday.

Local authorities have beefed up security and have been joined by an array of other law enforcement agencies "on a scale that this city hasn't seen in years," Wheeler said.

 

A message to anyone who plans on using Portland on August 17th to commit violence and spread hate:

We.
Don't.
Want.
You.
Here.

Stop using our beautiful city and our home to spread fear and disrupt our lives. https://t.co/CtkoxMz6rQ

— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) August 7, 2019

 

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iStock(NEW YORK) -- The self-driving tractor-trailer of the future is one step closer, with UPS in tow.

UPS announced an investment in TuSimple, an autonomous truck startup, on Thursday in an effort to cut costs and time in the ever-increasing race for more-efficient ground deliveries. UPS has already contracted TuSimple to deliver packages between Phoenix and Tucson since May, UPS revealed in the announcement.

"Throughout the ongoing tests, UPS has been providing truckloads of goods for TuSimple to carry on a North American Freight Forwarding route between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona. The company initiated self-driving service in May, 2019, with a driver and engineer in the vehicle. TuSimple and UPS monitor distance and time the trucks travel autonomously, safety data and transport time," according to the statement from UPS.

Neither company commented on the size of the investment.

In May, the United States Postal Service (USPS) contracted with TuSimple to drive five round trips between distribution centers in Phoenix and Dallas.

Like all self-driving vehicles currently operating, TuSimple trucks require a driver at all times. There's also an engineer on board the trips. Eventually, TuSimple is betting its fleet can reduce shipping costs by 30%, according to the statement.

Driver pay is the largest cost for trucking companies, accounting for as much as 43% of operational costs, according to the American Transportation Research Institute.

A spokesperson for the Teamsters Union, which represents truck drivers, told ABC News that these driverless trucks do not affect their members who drive for UPS, because these trailers are used in air freight logistics, and are not package delivery drivers, who are union members.

"We have been and continue to monitor technological developments as it pertains to automation in trucking," the Teamsters Union spokesperson said.

"While fully autonomous, driverless vehicles still have development and regulatory work ahead, we are excited by the advances in braking and other technologies that companies like TuSimple are mastering," UPS' Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer Scott Price said in a statement. "All of these technologies offer significant safety and other benefits that will be realized long before the full vision of autonomous vehicles is brought to fruition -- and UPS will be there, as a leader implementing these new technologies in our fleet."

The 4-year-old San Diego company also claims that its trucks will "increase road safety,” founder Xiaodi Hou said.

When the company announced its pilot program with the U.S. Postal Service, its safety pitch addressed the difficulty of recruiting drivers to overnight shifts, which Hou said usually requires two drivers.

"Driving teams are challenging to recruit due to overnight driving requirements, the need to share close quarters with another person and a significant truck driver shortage," he said.

As the e-commerce market booms, so does the competition to deliver packages while embracing more efficient tracking systems and moving toward autonomous vehicles and robots.

In January, Amazon debuted a delivery robot named Scout, with a human walker, for that last "retail mile" of deliveries. Earlier this month the company announced it was extending the Scout trial program to Irvine, California.

The online retailer announced in June it plans to start drone delivery "within months."

In February, FedEx unveiled the "FedEx SameDay Bot," for same-day orders within a 3-mile distance from a store. The program was slated to roll out this summer in Memphis, Tennessee, with Autozone, Pizza Hut, Target and Walmart signed up as partners.

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WoodysPhotos/iStockBY DR. NITHIN PAUL

(NEW YORK) -- Surgeons in Michigan are prescribing fewer opioid medications after operations, but here's the kicker: Their patients are not complaining.

A new study further explores whether too many opioids were being given to patients and how new guidelines can help surgeons curb usage without affecting pain relief.

In the study, opioid dosages often were decreased to 18 pills from 26 pills, with "no clinically important changes in pain scores."

"The results here are promising," said Dr. Joshua Sharfstein, co-author of "The Opioid Epidemic: What Everyone Needs To Know" and professor of practice at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Most [physicians] prescribe by routine, and changing those routines is hard. This shows that some changes are possible."

Cop In the seven months after the guidelines were released, the number of prescriptions for fewer pills almost tripled, to 59% from 20%, according to the study. Many physicians prescribed about eight fewer pills, and patients consumed about three fewer.

The Michigan Surgical Quality Collaborative and the Michigan Opioid Prescribing Engagement Network reviewed data on how 50,000 patients took opioids for pain management. New guidelines were developed for surgeons on how to prescribe opioids for nine common surgeries including hernia repair and gallbladder removal.

About 12,000 patients were tracked across 43 hospitals. When more than half of those patients were interviewed about their pain levels, most didn't report feeling an increase in them and were satisfied with their care.

This study comes at an important time.

Opioid medications, which are highly addictive, are causing an epidemic in this country. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has determined that about 130 Americans die every day from overdosing on opioids.

Dr. Joceline Vu, one of the study's authors and a surgical resident at University of Michigan, thinks that these new guidelines can be a part of the solution.

"For healthy people, surgery may be the first time they are exposed to opioids," she told ABC News. So if people unfamiliar with taking opioids are given more than required, that person could become dependent on them, she added. Or the pills could find their way into the community.

Sharfstein agreed with Vu, adding that this is one part of a large and complex problem.

Before these guidelines, Vu said there wasn't a systematic way for surgeons to determine how many pills to give to patients when they're released from the hospital. Many physicians, Vu added, worried that prescribing too few pills could mean their patients feel more pain and consequently report lower satisfaction scores, which are used to judge a hospital's success.

Vu went on to say that not only have the guidelines been useful in preventing prescriptions of too many pills but that patients never felt their pain or concerns were ignored.

"It is important that this study be read, and people realize that changes are possible," said Sharfstein, adding that in fighting the opioid epidemic on several fronts, evidence-based recommendations could prove crucial.

Nithin Paul, M.D., M.P.H., is a family medicine and preventive medicine resident physician at Medstar and Johns Hopkins University writing for ABC News' Medical Unit.

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Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Writer, director and actor Peter Fonda, son of legendary actor Henry Fonda and brother of Oscar-winning actress Jane Fonda, has died, ABC News has confirmed.  He was 79.

 

In a statement, Peter's family said that he died Friday morning at his home in Los Angeles of respiratory failure due to lung cancer.   "In one of the saddest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts.  As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy," the family noted.

 

The statement concluded, "And, while we mourn the loss of this sweet and gracious man, we also wish for all to celebrate his indomitable spirit and love of life. In honor of Peter, please raise a glass to freedom."

 

Variety reports that his sister Jane said in a statement, "I am very sad. He was my sweet-hearted baby brother. The talker of the family. I have had beautiful alone time with him these last days. He went out laughing."

 

Fonda was just 22 when he co-wrote the Oscar-nominated screenplay for Easy Rider, the 1969 film that would define his career. Fonda starred in the movie along with Dennis Hopper -- who also co-wrote and directed the film -- and Jack Nicholson, who received an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor.  

 

Easy Rider and its rock 'n' roll soundtrack came to embody the counterculture, and marked a changing of the guard in Hollywood.  In 1998, the movie was added to the National Film Registry, having been deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant."

 

While Fonda continued to work steadily through the next five decades in both TV and film, Variety notes, "The astonishing career that some predicted for [him] in the wake of Easy Rider never came to pass."

 

Finally, in 1997, he received an Oscar nomination, for his role as a beekeeper in the movie Ulee's Gold -- ironically, he lost to his Easy Rider co-star Nicholson.

 

Fonda's filmography included a wide variety of films, from The Cannonball Run and Escape from L.A., to Thomas and the Magic Railroad and Wild Hogs, to 3:10 to Yuma and Ghost Rider.  On TV, he appeared in episodes of CSI: NY, The Blacklist, ER, Californication and the reboot of Hawaii Five-O.

 

It appears that Fonda's final role will be in an upcoming war drama called The Last Full Measure, which is due to hit theaters in October.

 

Fonda is survived by his daughter, actress Bridget Fonda; his son, Justin; and his third wife, whom he married in 2011.

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MicroStockHub/iStock(NEW YORK) -- North Korea fired two short-range projectiles into the Sea of Japan early Friday morning according to South Korea’s military, marking North Korea's sixth round of short-range missile testing in less than a month.

The launch began just hours after North Korea rejected further dialogue with Seoul, citing its frustration with joint U.S.-South Korean military exercises in the region. South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the projectiles were launched into the Sea of Japan at around 8:01 and 8:16 a.m. local time, and both flew about 143 miles at an altitude of 18 miles.

The officials did not confirm whether the projectiles were rockets or ballistic missiles, and President Donald Trump did not immediately acknowledge this latest launch.

Despite the ongoing missile testing, Trump last week boasted about his most recent letter from Kim Jong Un, calling it “beautiful’ and “positive” and claiming that Kim offered a “small apology” for the continued launches. Trump told reporters that Kim was fed up with the joint US-South Korean military exercises he calls “war games."

"He wasn't happy with the war games ... I've never liked [the exercises], either,” Trump said. “You know why? I don't like paying for it."

Trump has continuously downplayed North Korea’s launches and touted the success of his relationship with Kim.

Last week, the president told reporters that “there have been no nuclear tests. The missile tests have all been short-range, no ballistic missile tests, no long-range missiles." However, U.S. officials have confirmed North Korea is testing short range ballistic missile tests that violate U.N. Security Council sanctions and continue to pose a threat to U.S. allies, as well as the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed in South Korea.

In an interview Thursday with Voice of America, National Security Advisor John Bolton called the launches “troubling.”

“We think the range could probably hit all of South Korea and parts of Japan. That of course would endanger our deployed forces as well. These resolutions violate U.N. Security Council sanctions, and they don't violate the pledge that Kim Jong Un made to President Trump, that's true, but they are troubling for everybody watching the peninsula,” said Bolton.

Bolton also highlighted the stalemate in negotiations between the two nations since Trump and Kim’s historic meeting at the DMZ in late June. Citing North Korea’s failure to fully commit to denuclearization, Bolton told VOA: “We haven't had really any substantive negotiations, at the working level with North Korea since the president met with Kim Jong Un at the demilitarized zone … The door is open for them … but they need to walk through it and they haven't done that yet.”

Although Kim appears to be seeking attention from the U.S with these short-range tests, Trump has largely ignored the launches and they are unlikely to affect future relations between the U.S. and North Korea, according to Leif-Eric Easley, a professor at Ewha University in Seoul. Easley said that although the launch “makes it exceedingly difficult to build trust” with North Korea, negotiations are still possible.

“Working-level negotiations with North Korea are still worth pursuing, but those diplomatic efforts should be backed up by the preparation of additional sanctions and renewed U.S.-Japan-South Korea military cooperation if Pyongyang continues to violate UN resolutions and threaten its neighbors,” Easley said.

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guvendemir/iStock(ELIZABETHON, Tenn.) -- NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s plane bounced at least twice before "coming down hard" on the right main landing gear resulting in Thursday's fiery crash, officials said Friday.

Earnhardt, his wife and their 1-year-old daughter were on board with two pilots during the accident and they all escaped without serious injuries, officials said.

The Cessna Citation took off from Statesville, North Carolina, for a 20-minute afternoon flight before it crashed while landing at Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Elizabethton, Tennessee, Ralph Hicks of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said at a news conference on Friday.

The crash was captured on surveillance video, Hicks said, which showed the plane bounce "at least twice before coming down hard on the right main landing gear."

"You can actually see the right main landing gear collapsing on the video," he said.

The plane then continued down the runway, went through a fence, and came to a stop on a highway, Hicks said.

The Earnhardts were able to evacuate before the plane erupted in flames, Hicks said, adding that the fire appeared to start after the crash.

Elizabethton Fire Chief Barry Carrier attributed the blaze to fuel from the aircraft.

The former race car driver was taken to Johnson City Medical Center with cuts and abrasions. He was the only person on board who was hospitalized, according to the sheriff.

A spokesman for NBC Sports, where Earnhardt works as a NASCAR analyst, later said that Earnhardt was discharged from the hospital.

Elizabethton Mayor Curt Alexander said it's extremely lucky that no cars were involved in the accident.

"We're just happy everyone walked away and no one on the ground was injured as well," Alexander said at Friday's news conference.

Both pilots on board were professionally-trained, Hicks said, and when interviewed by the NTSB they provided information consistent with the surveillance video.

The Earnhardts were interviewed and their comments were also consistent with the video, said Hicks.

The surveillance footage of the accident will eventually be released to the public, he added.

The plane had a cockpit voice recorder which will be sent to NTSB headquarters in Washington, DC., Hicks said.

Earnhardt's family and employees expressed their relief after the crash.

"We are so grateful for the outpouring of concern and support. Everyone is doing well enough. Lots of hugs. Lots of prayers to the Good Lord," tweeted Mike Davis, a spokesman for the former NASCAR star.

I know I speak for everyone here in saying we are so grateful for the outpouring of concern and support. Everyone is doing well enough. Lots of hugs. Lots of prayers to the Good Lord. 🙏🏼

— Mike Davis (@MikeDavis88) August 16, 2019

Earnhardt's sister, Kelley Earnhardt, added on Twitter: "Thank you to God, the angels among us, our pilots, first responders, medical staff, our NASCAR family and everyone that has reached out in whatever way to support us all."

Finally laying down for the night and want to say thank you to God, the angels among us, our pilots, first responders, medical staff, our NASCAR family and everyone that has reached out in whatever way to support us all. ❤️

— Kelley Earnhardt (@EarnhardtKelley) August 16, 2019

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The Cowboy Country 105.5 Road Show is celebrating the City of Perkins all month long in August! Join us for breakfast on Friday August 23rd at Cafe 33 & Steakhouse starting at 7am. We will be broadcasting live talking with community leaders and more. Sponsored by Cafe 33 & Steakhouse, Metro First Realty, Williams Food, Perkins Drug, Central Electric Cooperative and Cowboy Country 105.5

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