News you might have missed: New York renames park to honor LGBTQ activist


Also: The cast of 'The West Wing' reunites to promote voting, and Pennsylvania may legalize recreational marijuana.

This week, New York became the first state in the country to name a park after an LGBTQ person, a ski resort dropped an offensive term from its name, and the Milwaukee Bucks led athletes in a nationwide strike to protest racial injustice.

Read on to see what else you might have missed this week in the news.

New York renames park to honor LGBTQ activist Marsha P. Johnson

On Monday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that East River State Park in Brooklyn would be renamed to honor the late Marsha P. Johnson, an LGBTQ civil rights activist. The park is the first in the state to honor an LGBTQ person and transgender woman of color, according to the announcement.

"Too often, the marginalized voices that have pushed progress forward in New York and across the country go unrecognized," Cuomo said in a statement. "Marsha P. Johnson was one of the early leaders of the LGBTQ movement, and is only now getting the acknowledgment she deserves."

Cuomo said, "Dedicating this state park for her, and installing public art telling her story, will ensure her memory and her work fighting for equality lives on."

Johnson was a self-identified drag queen, performer, and survivor who participated in the Stonewall uprising in 1969, according to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute. She regularly stated that her middle initial stood for "Pay It No Mind," which was how she responded to questions about her gender.

The park dedication was announced on Johnson's 75th birthday.

Pennsylvania may legalize marijuana as part of economic recovery

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf called on the state Legislature to legalize recreational marijuana as a way to generate revenue to help businesses recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Wolf's legislative agenda, released on Tuesday, said funding grants to small businesses over time could "be supplemented by legalizing recreational marijuana and dedicating a portion of the funding to historically disadvantaged businesses."

"House and Senate Democrats have been fighting for progress to protect families and businesses in these spaces since the beginning of the pandemic, but they have been stopped at every turn by the Republican majority focused on ignoring the public health crisis," Wolf said in a statement.

"Pennsylvanians need relief, they need reform, and they need it now," he added.

Nevada launches major climate initiative

Gov. Steve Sisolak announced in a press release on Monday a new State of Nevada Climate Initiative.

The initiative will encourage public engagement and input from state residents regarding climate change policy through a new website, 

"Effectively tackling climate change will require coordinated Nevada-wide efforts to minimize the harmful impacts of climate while working to foster a sustainable, resilient, climate-friendly future for Nevada," Sisolak said.

The site currently provides a survey where Nevadans can provide feedback on topics including transportation, energy-efficient homes and buildings, renewable energy, and climate justice.

California ski resort will drop offensive term from its name

California's Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows will drop the term "Squaw" from its name sometime next year, the company announced earlier this week. The decision came after consultation with Native American groups and the Washoe Tribe of California and Nevada, as well as an examination of the word's history.

"While we love our local history and the memories we all associate with this place as it has been named for so long, we are confronted with the overwhelming evidence that the term 'squaw' is offensive," said Ron Cohen, the company's president and COO, noting that the term "is widely accepted to be a racist and sexist slur."

The company will unveil a new name in early 2021.

'West Wing' cast reunites to promote voting

The cast of NBC's hit series "The West Wing" will reunite for a special episode to promote voting, Variety reported on Tuesday.

Stars Rob Lowe, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford, and Martin Sheen will return for the episode, which will be written by Aaron Sorkin, the show's creator. The show won 27 Emmy Awards and two Golden Globes during its seven seasons.

The show will benefit When We All Vote, a pro-voting organization co-chaired by Michelle Obama, who is set to make an appearance in the episode.

The special will air on HBO Max, HBO's streaming service, later this fall.

DC's giant panda gives birth to cub

Mei Xiang, a giant panda at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., gave birth to a cub on Aug. 21, the Washington Post reported. At 22 years old, Mei Xiang is the oldest giant panda to give birth in the United States.

"In the middle of a pandemic, this is a joyful moment," said Don Neiffer, the zoo's chief veterinarian.

The Smithsonian, which runs the National Zoo, provides "Panda Cams" currently featuring Mei Xiang and her cub.

Watch: NBA's Bucks lead strike of athletes to protest systemic racism

Led by players on the Milwaukee Bucks, professional athletes across the nation refused to participate in scheduled games on Thursday, demanding more be done to end systemic racism in the country.

"Over the last few days, in our home state of Wisconsin, we have seen the horrendous video of Jacob Blake being shot in the back seven times by a police officer in Kenosha, and the additional shooting of protesters," Bucks players said in a statement. "Despite the overwhelming plea for change, there has been no action."

After the Bucks refused to take the court for a playoff game against the Orlando Magic, all NBA games scheduled for the day were canceled. Soon after, players in other sports, including baseball, soccer, and women's basketball, joined the strike, refusing to play and demanding racial justice.