,Good morning. I hope everyone had a comfortable Thanksgiving even in our extraordinarily trying circumstances.

It’s good to be back with you on our normal schedule.

First: The Philadelphia Police Department may bring back more comprehensive de-escalation training that would teach officers to mitigate situations with circumstances similar to the one in which Walter Wallace Jr. was shot and killed by police.

Then: Biden’s 2020 election win landed at everyone’s doorstep early this month, but now that we know the final tally of Pennsylvania votes, we can analyze the full picture. Philadelphia’s suburbs handed Biden the votes he needed, and one factor was key to making that happen. Our story breaks it down by the numbers.

And: Yesterday, several dozen gathered to run all 11 “legal” miles of the Philly Fraud Street Run charity race, inspired by the infamous Four Seasons Total Landscaping news conference that set the Internet aflame with hot takes. Some even participated out of town in the event, which did not disappoint.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_ashleyhoffman, morningnewsletter@inquirer.com)

Can Philadelphia transform its police force from ‘warriors’ to ‘guardians’? This de-escalation training could help.

The protests and unrest that followed the police shooting and killing of Walter Wallace Jr. may result in the Philadelphia Police Department reintroducing more extensive de-escalation training — comparable to what was already in place more than decade ago, but was discontinued quietly. The city is considering training programs that would put the focus on crisis intervention and de-escalation in order to reduce the use of force.

De-escalation programming has won over skeptics who feared a less aggressive approach would place officers in harm’s way. For example, ICAT (Integrating Communications, Assessment, and Tactics) teaches officers to make some space by taking cover in their squad cars or wherever they can to keep their distance and buy some time. And open-ended questions with subjects replace yelled commands.

Here’s what people are saying about the evolution.

The Philadelphia suburbs were the key to Joe Biden’s Pennsylvania victory. Here are the numbers

The suburbs have been getting bluer for decades, and President-elect Biden didn’t win just one kind of suburb.

Each and every last vote counted in this race, and turnout was up, but that’s not why Biden defeated President Donald Trump. There was one key factor in securing Biden’s victory for Democrats. Let’s look at a map showing how, in many ways, the areas of the city that trended most dramatically against Trump looked a lot like the suburbs that turned out so forcefully against him, too.

Helpful COVID-19 resources

What you need to know today

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

We’ve got your (walking) balloon parade right here. Thanks for sharing @chuckseye.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout-out!

That’s interesting


“We are masked and ready to care for all of your medical issues. Our ability to continue to do that depends on our communities. This virus will be difficult to fight this winter, but I know we can do it together.” — Patricia Henwood, Thomas Jefferson University associate professor of emergency medicine, writes that her fear with this next significant surge is that our most dire shortage will be health-care workers themselves.

  • There’s a surprising bond that overwhelmingly white and Republican rural counties share with diverse, Democratic big cities: devastatingly high poverty rates and exceedingly low average incomes. Here’s where we could go from here, writes Joel Berg, CEO of Hunger Free America.

  • Mary Beth O’Connor, a retired federal judge, writes that Safehouse’s harm reduction mission values life and the drug user’s ability to make positive decisions. And it contributes to bettering community life overall.

What we’re reading

Your Daily Dose of | Jolly

There’s at least one loss 2020 did not have the final word on. The “jolly trolley.”

Some SEPTA cars are getting repaired, and the jolly trolley is one of them that won’t ride this year. But artists and neighbors weren’t having that, so they came together to deck out a replica of their own, complete with brightly colorful Christmas lights and glittery golden bands.

The idea is to cap off a potentially dreary end of the year by lightening things up and it’s got some new riders you haven’t seen before. What do you think of the new passengers that are painted on?