November 5, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - From his gray-brick walled compound in northeast Beijing, Ai Weiwei barely felt the tremors from the Sichuan earthquake on May 12, 2008. But within days, as the death toll mounted into the tens of thousands, many of them children buried under the rubble of shabbily built schools, he found himself standing in the ruins of a town destroyed by the 7.9-magnitude quake. For Ai, it was both heartbreaking and an existential moment that would find expression in his iconoclastic works, leading to clashes with Chinese authorities and catapulting him to status as one of the world's most celebrated artists.
October 30, 2012 |
Wherever the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra goes, protests seem to follow. Concert-goers planning to attend Tuesday's performance by the orchestra at Walt Disney Concert Hall can expect to see a colorful outdoor demonstration of activists who say they oppose Israel's policies toward Palestinians. A group of protesters is planning to congregate on the sidewalk outside Disney Hall starting around 7 p.m. Organizers said they are expecting 35 to 50 people who will engage in various forms of demonstration and street-theater protest. Tuesday's concert, which begins at 8 p.m., will feature the Israel Philharmonic, led by Zubin Mehta, in performances of pieces by Schubert, Chopin and Brahms.
October 24, 2012 |
SAN FRANCISCO -- Why even play three more games? It's the San Francisco Giants' world, and the rest of us just eat overpriced Cioppino and get fat on Ghirardelli chocolate. It was impressive for Barry Zito to use his 85-mph fastballs to shut down the Cardinals in St. Louis in a must-win game. But it was preposterous for him to stick out his bat and get a run-scoring single against Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers. Who does he think he is, Marco Scutaro? Everything - and I mean everything - that the Giants do these days turns into gold.
October 21, 2012 |
DAMASCUS, Syria - When Hytham was released from a Syrian prison in the spring after his third incarceration for being an opposition member, he expected to return to the streets with thousands of other activists to call for the fall of the government. Instead, he found an opposition landscape that had been transformed from one of demonstrations and peaceful dissent to that of an armed uprising. Now Hytham, who graduated from medical school last year, volunteers in the field hospitals that dot Damascus and its suburbs, treating civilians injured in government shelling and airstrikes and rebels wounded in fighting.
October 11, 2012
Love animals? Attend the Safari Social in support of the Wildlife Learning Center. Take pictures with rescued wild animals, watch trainers ply their trade, enjoy a silent auction, cavort with reptiles and behold flying hawk demonstrations. Wildlife Learning Center, 16027 Yarnell St., Sylmar. 4 to 7 p.m. Sat. Adults, $45, children, $25. (818) 362-8711; http://www.wildlifelearningcenter.com.
October 6, 2012 |
AMMAN, Jordan - Thousands of demonstrators seeking democratic reforms and more economic opportunities marched through the Jordanian capital Friday in the largest rally here since the "Arab Spring" protests began sweeping the region. The protesters led by the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood called on King Abdullah II, a key U.S. ally, to accelerate reforms. But they pointedly did not demand the end of the monarchy, which retains considerable support here. Instead, the protesters said they were seeking a parliament that represented them better than the largely rubber-stamp, pro-government legislature that has long convened in Jordan.
October 3, 2012 |
On education, President Obama correctly noted that his ideas for reform have been drawn from ideas championed by Democrats and Republicans, an overlap that also has drawn criticism in some quarters from allies of the president such as teacher unions. Obama also said that his education reforms were “starting to show gains.” Such gains would be difficult to demonstrate. There are rising test scores in many states, but it's difficult to link these to federal programs. The president has indeed favored aggressive reforms in education, but most of them are still in process as far as results.
October 3, 2012 |
Moments before Metta World Peace charged toward me, he issued a stern warning. "Don't flop," the eccentric Lakers forward said. "Stand and be a man. " World Peace had just spoken for eight minutes on a number of issues surrounding the NBA's announcement that it will fine players for repeated flopping. He bemoaned the league's policy but also admitted frustration with repeat floppers. He argued referees should simply stop granting charges so liberally. "If I ran into you right now with full force, you'd probably move back a little bit first," World Peace said to me. "You're not even an NBA basketball player.
October 3, 2012 |
TEHRAN - Iranian police and demonstrators clashed Wednesday during street protests linked to rising prices and the plunging value of the national currency. Police in black riot gear fired tear gas and moved to disperse the protesters after they had rallied outside the capital's central bazaar and then marched toward the parliament building. Many businesses and shops were shuttered, which in effect led to the shutdown of the huge marketplace. "Our checks bounced, our businesses are ruined," said a merchant who gave his name as Ali. "How shall we earn a living?"
September 28, 2012 |
Since their historic victories in the 2010 midterm elections, Republicans across the country have passed an array of voting laws - to require photo identification, to make it more difficult to register, to reduce periods of early voting or to purge voter rolls - and they are considering others. The Justice Department, the National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups have challenged many of these laws in court.