Wednesday's HOT MIC

Introducing HOT MIC, PJ Media's new daily liveblog. Join our editors and contributors for news updates and conversation throughout the day, and add your thoughts to the mix in our comments section. Scroll down or click here to read today's Morning Update.

More than 100 gay men reportedly sent to "prison camps" in Russia's republic of Chechnya.

Gay men are being held in “camps” in the Chechen Republic where they are subjected to torture and beatings, human rights campaigners have claimed.

The claims follow reports last week that 100 gay men had been rounded up and imprisoned in Chechnya, with at least three people allegedly murdered. The allegations were made by a Russian newspaper and human rights campaigners. “In Chechnya, the command was given for a ‘prophylactic sweep’ and it went as far as real murders,” independent newspaper Novaya Gazetaclaimed.

Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov's spokesman denied these claims, sayign that no one in Chechnya is homosexual. "You cannot arrest or repress people who just don't exist in the republic," Alvi Karimov said. "If such people existed in Chechnya, law enforcement would not have to worry about them since their own relatives would have sent them to where they could never return."

Wait, the government's defense is that if gay people existed, their families would kill them? Oh yeah, the republic is 95 percent Muslim. And liberals still say Muslims in the Middle East aren't anti-gay...

 

The latest confrontation between Lindsey Graham and Ruth Bader Ginsburg isn't easy to watch.

Your end of the day cat video.

After just a few hours, Google installed a workaround to prevent that Burger King ad from activating your Google Home device.

A more permanent workaround is to not have any Google Home or Amazon Alexa devices in your house.

Steve says:

Anyone with a Google Home device within earshot might then hear their Google Assistant activate at the sound of the wake words, “OK Google.” It would then read off the first sentence on the Whopper sandwich’s Wikipedia page.

Not cool, BK. Not cool.

It is, however, hilarious.

The Washington Times is reporting that two top Republicans have asked the DOJ to reopen the investigation into the IRS targeting scandal to see if charges should still be brought against former official Lois Lerner.

Ms. Lerner was cleared after an investigation by the Obama administration but Reps. Kevin Brady and Peter Roskam, respectively the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee and the panel’s tax policy subcommittee, say there are plenty of questions with how that probe was run, and said a new look by the Trump administration’s Justice Department is warranted.

“Taxpayers deserve to know that the DOJ’s previous evaluation was not tainted by politics,” the congressmen said in a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

But William W. Taylor, Ms. Lerner’s lawyer, said she was properly cleared of charges by the previous probe.

IRS leaders had previously denied targeting conservatives, with an assist from then-President Obama, who famously opined in an interview with Fox News' Bill O'Reilly in February of 2014 that there wasn't a "smidgen of corruption" regarding the IRS targeting scandal.

The sham Obama DOJ investigation of the IRS' targeting activities was led by Barbara Bosserman, an attorney who had donated at least $6,750 to President Obama’s election campaigns and the Democratic National Committee in past years.

AG Sessions said in an interview earlier this month that he is open to appointing a special prosecutor to review Obama-era DOJ scandals. He told conservative talker Hugh Hewitt that the IRS, in particular, was "a matter of real concern" to him.

The wheels of justice turn slowly, they say. But maybe, just maybe, justice will finally be meted out in this colossal abuse of governmental power.

In other news, Jude Law is playing Dumbledore in the next Fantastic Beasts, a spin-off of Harry Potter. He's already played the Pope and he's also playing King Arthur, so why not?

More on the United troubles:

Here's some of what he said:

“We are not going to put a law enforcement official to take them off the aircraft,” he added. “To remove a booked, paid, (seated) passenger — we can’t do that.”

The executive expressed “shame” over Kentucky doctor David Dao’s unsettling ejection from a Sunday flight, video footage from which spawned nationwide outrage.

“The first thing I think is important to say is to apologize to Dr. Dao, his family, the passengers on that flight, our customers, our employees,” Munoz said. “That is not who our family at United is, and you saw us at a bad moment.”

Muñoz says that he's tried to reach out to David Dao but his calls haven't been returned. (This might be because Dao hasn't been released from the hospital yet.) I suggest that UAL, at this point, probably needs to have their legal staff reach out to Dao's lawyer, and they should bring a checkbook.

In the meantime, Muñoz says he won't resign. What's your over/under for when Muñoz decides he hasn't been spending enough time with his family?

You'll have it their way:

This Burger King Ad Is Trying To Control Your Google Home Device.

Wait... what?

The video starts out with a Burger King employee holding up the sandwich.

“You’re watching a 15-second Burger King ad, which is unfortunately not enough time to explain all the fresh ingredients in the Whopper sandwich. But I’ve got an idea,” the man says before leaning forward. “OK Google, what is the Whopper burger?”

Anyone with a Google Home device within earshot might then hear their Google Assistant activate at the sound of the wake words, “OK Google.” It would then read off the first sentence on the Whopper sandwich’s Wikipedia page.

Not cool, BK. Not cool.

The fingerprint sensor on your phone may not be as secure as you think. The money quote: “If all I want to do is take your phone and use your Apple Pay to buy stuff, if I can get into 1 in 10 phones, that’s not bad odds.” Ok, as long as they're only after my money and not trying to get at the data from my Alexa home spy app. No need to panic yet.