August 20, 2013 |
Sen. Ted Cruz's decision to renounce his Canadian citizenship has inspired several commentators -- including my colleague Patt Morrison -- to meditate on the cultural implications of his decision. I'm more interested in a political question: Has the Calgary-born Texan alienated a potentially significant bloc of voters with his suggestion that being an American is an all-or-nothing proposition? “Nothing against Canada, but I'm an American by birth and a U.S. senator,” Cruz said.
August 12, 2013 |
Afew weeks from now, a military judge will probably sentence Bradley Manning to serve several decades in prison for violating the Espionage Act of 1917. I feel a kinship with him. My parents, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, were convicted of violating the same act in 1951. They were executed two years later, when I was 6. That's only the beginning of my sense of connection with Manning. The prosecutors, and now the judge, have labeled his actions espionage, theft or other unsavory terms.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 1, 2013 |
When a Cold War-era acquaintance of Garry Davis' complained that U.S. passport restrictions kept him from visiting Iron Curtain countries, Davis did just what you would expect of World Citizen No. 1. He took a rubber stamp to the young man's passport and slapped it with an official-sounding pronouncement: "The above restriction is hereby removed. " Six months later, the traveler triumphantly returned from Bulgaria. Davis, who registered himself and more than 950,000 others as "world citizens," was an activist who took his cause a lot further than rubber stamps.
July 28, 2013 |
Here in the land of cars, parking spaces are scarce and sought-after. Nowhere is that more true than in the popular communities along the coast, where tension is common between the visitors drawn to the beach and the residents who live there. Malibu, in particular, is notorious as a place where some locals obscure public accessways to the beach and put up fake "No Parking" signs and orange traffic cones curbside to discourage visitors from parking. And Malibu's latest move is unlikely to dispel the "no trespassers" vibe that sometimes emanates from its shores: Volunteers are being empowered to hand out parking tickets with fines of $50 to $75 attached.
July 24, 2013 |
JERUSALEM - There was no white smoke and little pomp, but a collection of religious and political leaders emerged Wednesday from a much-anticipated private meeting in a Jerusalem hotel to announce the election of Israel's next two chief rabbis, who will take their place among the nation's most influential religious figures. It was a bruising, sometimes ugly campaign in which many of the candidates were tainted by allegations of corruption, nepotism or racism, underscoring why the government-funded rabbinate has fallen so low in public opinion in recent years.
July 22, 2013 |
Over the course of two hours inside a small dressing room at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, Val Kilmer ages 20 years. His hair turns a crazy, curly white, a strong mustache sprouts on his upper lip, and deep bags appear under his eyes. Eventually the actor is nearly unrecognizable - instead, he's Mark Twain and ready for the one-man show "Citizen Twain. " "There's a part of the makeup that starts to become the way I understand Mark Twain," says Kilmer, sitting in the makeup chair.
July 17, 2013 |
The flowing robes and abayas shrouding the people of the oil-rich United Arab Emirates can't hide the truth of a federation-wide weight problem. So the city of Dubai, famous for its opulent shopping centers and towering skyscrapers in the desert, on Friday will launch a public drive to get UAE residents on a diet, the Emirates24/7 website reports. The “Worth Your Weight in Gold” program will pay those who shed at least 2 kilograms in the next month - 4.4 pounds - the equivalent of $45 per kilo and give the top weight-losers a shot at a $5,000-plus jackpot.
July 12, 2013 |
PJ Raval's (“Trinidad”) latest feature documentary “Before You Know It,” screening Sunday at 5 p.m at the Harmony Gold at the 2013 Outfest LGBT Film Festival, explores the lives of three very different gay senior citizens. Dennis is a cross-dressing widower who didn't come out until he was 70 and is looking for love. Ravel chronicles his move from his ramshackle home in a rundown trailer park in Florida to a senior citizen LGBT residence in Portland, Ore., where he feels finally at home.
July 11, 2013 |
Where would science be without its brilliant amateurs? Not even close to where it is now. The likes of Gregor Mendel, Michael Faraday, Joseph Priestley -- even Benjamin Franklin -- and more put discipline to enthusiasm and taught us about natural selection, electromagnetism, chemistry and electricity. For centuries, the professional scientist -- the trained “natural philosopher” -- barely existed. Leonardo da Vinci had to paint pictures to keep the pot boiling so he could dream and imagine science and engineering far into the future.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 8, 2013 |
Legal residents who are not citizens would be able to serve as volunteer poll workers during California elections under legislation approved Monday by the state Senate. Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) introduced the measure to address a shortage of bilingual poll workers and increase civic engagement by residents who are ineligible to vote because they are not yet citizens. “As our country moves closer towards comprehensive immigration reform, it is important for states to create opportunities for lawful permanent residents to participate in our democratic process and encourage them to continue on the pathway towards citizenship," Bonta said.