Tuesday Briefing – The New York Times

I joined throngs of people in Manhattan’s Central Park to watch the partial eclipse. It felt like dusk by 3:20 in the afternoon, and people cheered when just a cuticle of sun remained.

Many Central Park spectators departed long before the sun fully emerged from behind the moon. People seemed more contemplative in other parts of the country, like Houlton, Maine, where the eclipse concluded the U.S. portion of its journey.

“I would pay a million dollars to see that again,” said Sebastian Pelletier, 11.

He, like the rest of us, will probably have to wait. A total solar eclipse will not be visible again in the contiguous 48 U.S. states or Canada until 2044. But eclipse chasers can catch one as soon as 2026 in Greenland, Iceland or Spain.

The Vatican said in a document that the Roman Catholic Church believes gender fluidity and transition surgery amount to affronts to human dignity. The document also unequivocally states the church’s opposition to surrogacy and in vitro fertilization.

The sex assigned at birth is an “irrevocable gift” from God, the document argues, and “any sex-change intervention, as a rule, risks threatening the unique dignity the person has received from the moment of conception.”

The document, which was approved by Pope Francis, immediately generated deep consternation among advocates for L.G.B.T.Q. rights in the church, who fear that even though it warns against “unjust discrimination” toward transgender people, it will be used to target them.

Context: Francis, who has met with gay and transgender Catholics, has made a less judgmental church a hallmark of his papacy. But he has refused to budge on the church rules and doctrine that many gay and transgender Catholics feel have alienated them.

Jack Smith, the special counsel prosecuting Donald Trump on charges of plotting to overturn the 2020 election, urged the Supreme Court to reject Trump’s argument that he is immune from prosecution for actions he took as president. Lower courts have so far rejected Trump’s claim.

The case, which Smith asked the court to address quickly, will be argued on April 25. If it takes a long time to resolve, Trump’s trial could be delayed until after the election, and if he wins the White House, he could order the Justice Department to drop the charges.

Related: An appeals court rejected Trump’s latest attempt to delay his Manhattan criminal trial, which is scheduled to begin on April 15.

Running gets much more difficult when the runner faces robbery, illness and men with machetes.

Russ Cook, a 27-year-old Englishman nicknamed the Hardest Geezer, faced those hardships and others after he set out last year to run the length of Africa. Despite all the challenges, Cook completed his more than 10,000-mile run on Sunday.

After 24 years, Larry David’s HBO comedy “Curb Your Enthusiasm” ended on Sunday. But where some see David’s character as the personification of selfish, antisocial behavior, the Times critic Wesley Morris sees a 21st-century Emily Post.

“‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ is about more than Larry’s probable narcissism,” Morris writes in an essay. “It’s a supreme comedy of manners.”

Read the rest of Morris’s piece here. You can also read our television critic on series finales that “stick the landing,” and test your “Curb” knowledge with this quiz.

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