CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 19, 2012 |
Los Angeles Times Frank Godden, who played a significant role in the development of Val Verde, a secluded and long-closed local resort community known as "the black Palm Springs," has died. He was 101. Godden, who had cancer, died Aug. 3 at his Los Angeles home, his family announced. Val Verde was founded in 1924 in the Santa Clarita Valley at a time when the region's black citizens were barred from beaches, parks and other attractions because of the color of their skin. There they could escape racism, if only for a weekend.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 18, 2012 |
For more than three decades, Ben Isaacs worked as a Pullman porter, one of the uniformed railway men who served first-class passengers traveling in luxurious sleeping cars - a much-coveted job for African Americans between the 1870s and late 1960s. Isaacs, a charismatic centenarian who was believed to be the oldest surviving Pullman porter, died of kidney failure Wednesday at his home in Victorville, according to his brother, Andrew Isaacs. He was 107. Andrew Isaacs said his brother, who in his later years went blind, was hospitalized on Aug. 10 and released a couple of days later.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 9, 2012 |
"First," he says, "we're going to float. " Float? Doesn't he know I'm terrified? I've never been able to float; I sink in water like a bag full of barbells. The tall, tattooed black man standing before me in his swimming pool has no patience for excuses. Our bodies, he says, are remarkably light. Our lungs are like life jackets. He lies back. Sure enough, he floats. "Your turn," he says. I hesitate. The hair stands on the back of my neck. Trying to keep calm, I lie back - but the next few seconds feel like forever.
June 26, 2012 |
SAN FRANCISCO — Matt Kemp talks about crying, failure hitting him hard. He talks about wanting to be normal, but what a thrill to see someone wearing his jersey. "That's tight," he says, and I can't say I always understand what he's saying. He talks about winning championships, and what that has to do with the Dodgers I do not know until he says they must do so if he's ever going to achieve greatness like Kobe , Michael and now LeBron . " Kevin Durant is going to win championships," he says.
June 13, 2012 |
Like his mother and like his daughter, Will Allen meant to escape the life of a farmer, only to learn he never really could - nor did he really want to. The son of a sharecropper, the 60-year-old Allen has become an icon of the urban agriculture movement. He runs a farm and education center in Milwaukee called Growing Power that produces food and soil for thousands, tries innovations in composting and growing, employs more than 100 people, trains many others and aims to help transform the food system.
June 10, 2012 |
Elsewhere, California A Novel Dana Johnson Counterpoint: 270 pp., $15.95 paper When hasn't California been a cure? Either a plan B or C - or the "fix. " Fit within that reinvention story, Los Angeles in particular often figures as the white-hot destination: the place where the greatest transformation might take place. Though that gamble may bestow great dividends, too many discover that the odds more likely suggest the delivery of punishing, irrecoverable loss.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 6, 2012 |
Veteran prosecutor Jackie Lacey led in early voting returns Tuesday in her bid to become Los Angeles County's first African American and first female district attorney, with Deputy Dist. Atty. Alan Jackson and Los Angeles City Atty. Carmen Trutanich competing for a place in a November runoff. Lacey's strong showing was somewhat of a surprise in an election in which Trutanich was widely viewed as the favorite to become the county's top prosecutor. The early count included mail-in ballots turned in before election day and more than a third of precincts reporting from votes cast at the polls.
June 5, 2012 |
In a dispiriting finding for African American girls and women, a new study finds that while engaging in high levels of physical activity is a good bet for preventing obesity in white adolescent girls, it does not give their black peers the same benefit. The study, published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, found that among black adolescent girls who moved the most at age 12, obesity at age 14 was nearly as likely as it was for those whose activity rates were far lower.
June 3, 2012 |
Tami Roman's first experience with reality television turned out to be an early landmark in the genre. During the second season of MTV's groundbreaking "The Real World," a male cast mate aggressively yanked a blanket off a half-naked Roman while she was lying in bed. The scene escalated into rape allegations and resulted in the first expulsion from the show. Nearly two decades later, Roman returned to reality television as a star of VH1's "Basketball Wives," which recently wrapped its fourth season.
June 1, 2012 |
The Rev. Fred Luter Jr. well remembers the first time he ventured from his native New Orleans to preach in Crowley, a rice-growing town in the heart of Louisiana's Cajun country. The pastor there had invited Luter to speak, but worried how the congregation would react. "I told him, 'Just don't put my picture up,' " Luter recalled. "Just tell them I'm a leading Southern Baptist. " Now Luter is poised to become the first black president of the Southern Baptist Convention, the country's largest Protestant denomination.