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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 26, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - In a ruling that a dissenting judge called "unprecedented," a federal appeals court ordered Google Inc. on Wednesday to take down an anti-Muslim video that an actress said forced her to leave her home because of death threats. Google said it would appeal the ruling, but removed the video, "Innocence of Muslims," from YouTube and other platforms. The video has incited violent Muslim protests and has been banned by several Muslim countries. The 2 to 1 decision by the 9 t h U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the actress who appeared in the film never consented to being in it and her performance may be protected by copyright law. "While answering a casting call for a low-budget amateur film doesn't often lead to stardom, it also rarely turns an aspiring actress into the subject of a fatwa ," Chief Judge Alex Kozinski wrote for the majority.
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WORLD
February 25, 2014 | By Sergei L. Loiko and Carol J. Williams
KIEV, Ukraine - Hoping to reach a consensus that would heal some of Ukraine's wounds, the country's acting president on Tuesday delayed the seating of an interim government for at least two days, even as opposition colleagues appealed to the Hague criminal tribunal to try fugitive ex-President Viktor Yanukovich on charges of crimes against humanity. Reports of mounting discord among ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine and gunshot wounds suffered by a top aide to Yanukovich further heightened a sense that Ukraine's stability is threatened as politicians jockey for position before the May 25 presidential election.
NATIONAL
February 24, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court has turned down a pair of 2nd Amendment appeals lodged by the National Rifle Assn., keeping in place laws that restrict those under 21 years old from buying or carrying a handgun. Without comment, the justices dismissed claims by NRA attorneys who argued limits on those who are 18 to 20 infringe the “fundamental right” to have firearms for self-defense. In one case, the court refused to hear a challenge to a 1968 federal law that bars federally licensed gun dealers from selling handguns to those who are under 21. Sales of shotguns or rifles are permitted to those who are 18 or older, however.
SPORTS
February 23, 2014 | By Lisa Dillman
SOCHI, Russia -- The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) dismissed appeals from Canada and Slovenia regarding the legality of the suits worn by the three French athletes who swept the medals in men's ski cross. CAS heard the appeals in the early morning hours and issued a one-paragraph ruling on Sunday afternoon. It said that additional details would follow. The respective sports organizations alleged that just before the four-man final that "French support staff changed the shaping of the lower-leg suits of the riders, creating an aerodynamic effect.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 2014 | By Robert Abele
What would "The Pretty One" be without Zoe Kazan's pixieish melancholy and offbeat comic timing? Not much. In writer-director Jenée LaMarque's twee indie, Kazan does double duty, playing mousy rural Laurel, who lives with her parents, as well as sister Audrey, the popular one with the big city job and boyfriend (Ron Livingston). After a car accident kills Audrey and briefly gives Laurel amnesia, the wallflower takes advantage of the identity confusion and claims to be Audrey, adopting her sister's life as a kind of instant - albeit psychologically fraught - personality injection.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 20, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
Orange County has loosened requirements for carrying concealed weapons in public following a pro-gun ruling last week by a federal appeals court, officials said Thursday. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2 to 1 that California counties may no longer require residents who want to carry concealed firearms to demonstrate special, individualized needs for protection. The court majority said law-abiding residents have a 2nd Amendment right to bear a gun in public.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 19, 2014 | By Larry Gordon
UC San Diego graduate student Alex Piel is studying the family dynamics and habitats of chimpanzees in Tanzania's savanna. The research requires tracking animals, retrieving fecal samples and then testing to confirm genetic links. It does not come cheap. So after tapping traditional funding help from UC and other sources, Piel and Fiona Stewart, his wife and collaborator, recently decided to try their luck on the Internet. They posted a description of their project and an appeal to the public for money on Experiment , an online crowdfunding site devoted to science.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 15, 2014 | By Ralph Vartabedian
A California appeals court on Friday put on hold a potentially crippling legal order by a Superior Court judge against the California high-speed rail project and said it would hold a review of the matter. The lower court's decision had essentially prevented rail officials from issuing any bonds to pay for the project, forcing them to rely on federal grants just as they are preparing to start construction of a line that would eventually run from Los Angeles to San Francisco. The action by the 3rd District Court of Appeal does not reverse the lower court decision, but it could give rail officials some hope that they can escape a legal situation that could jeopardize the project.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 14, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
We cannot escape Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. On Thursday, Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, with help from the Símon Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, begin an 11-day TchaikovskyFest at Walt Disney Concert Hall that will include the Russian composer's six symphonies along with other orchestral and chamber works. But unlike other festivals - and especially the Mahler Project, Dudamel's concentrated traversal through nine symphonies with the L.A. Phil and his Bolívars two years ago - the TchaikovskyFest has no musical frame.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 14, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - A public elementary school decided in 2011 to require students to wear a uniform with the school's motto, "Tomorrow's Leaders," emblazoned in small letters on the shirts around a gopher, the campus mascot. One parent objected to the uniforms and eventually sued, contending they violated the 1st Amendment's guarantee of free speech. In a unanimous ruling Friday, a three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit largely agreed with her. The panel said the words "Tomorrow's Leaders" potentially violated students' right to free speech and the uniform policy must go unless the school district can justify it under a legal standard that is difficult to meet.
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