CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 3, 2010 |
In the troubled aftermath of last week's mega electronic music festival at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum, artists and local promoters are confronting a dauntingly familiar question: what to do about the "R" word and the "E" word. "R" stands for "rave," as techno dance parties have been commonly known since they were birthed in the suburbs of post-industrial Detroit and the underground clubs of Thatcherite Britain in the late 1980s and early '90s. The "E" word, as dance music aficionados know, is Ecstasy, the controversial, euphoria-inducing drug that's used by many ravers to enhance their connection to the frenetically beat-driven music.
June 13, 2010 |
I've always known that race and geography are intimately connected in L.A., a city practically built with segregation in mind. Though I deplore the effects of segregation, I always felt a nativist pride in the place I was born and raised, South Central. I felt the same about Inglewood, just across the border from South Central, where I moved as a teenager and where my husband and I bought a house six years ago. I imagine lots of people, whatever their color, have the same affection for their own stomping grounds.
February 20, 2010 |
It may not have come with months of buzz or a live television audience, but another award program rolled out the red carpet this week and a more than respectable group of A-listers rolled in -- Robert De Niro, Jeff Bridges, Sean Penn and Morgan Freeman among them. The big names showed up for "AARP the Magazine's 9th Annual Movies for Grownups" gala Tuesday night at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel. These are stars big enough to acknowledge they are of a certain age and unperturbed to be feted by a magazine whose most recent issue covered long-term nursing care and fun alternatives to being called Grandma or Grandpa.
December 5, 2009 |
Hog farmer David Moody has stopped letting strangers into his barn because he's afraid they'll infect his pigs with swine flu. Not that he would ever call the pandemic H1N1 influenza virus by its colloquial name. Like many pork producers across the heartland, he has spent months railing against the term "swine flu," which he says has caused so much fear that the bottom has fallen out of the pork market. It doesn't seem to matter that the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has stated that the disease is spread by humans, and is impossible to get from eating pork or standing next to a pig. "Every time I turn on the TV, they're talking about it: swine flu," said Moody, 46, from his farm about 10 miles east of Ames, Iowa.
August 24, 2009 |
Two bills making their way through the Legislature have the support of many Californians as a legitimate way to help ease the state's budget crisis while also discouraging smoking. One would raise the tobacco tax by $1.50 a pack, and the other would increase it by $2.10. The justification for the tax increase is the negative effect smoking has on public health. I do not object to a tobacco tax. Yet little, if any, of the revenue generated under these bills would actually go toward lung cancer research for early detection and a cure.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 12, 2009 |
He was so eager to make the trip, he called several times to make sure it hadn't been canceled. "Mr. Lopez, is the pickup still at 9 a.m?" "Yes, Mr. Ayers. I'll see you in the morning." When I pulled up, he was standing on the sidewalk playing a skid row reveille on his trumpet. He had a small overnight bag and five more instruments -- cello, violin, French horn, clarinet and flute, meaning he had made the difficult decision to leave several other instruments home.
April 14, 2009 |
Sheila Holt moved to this small town from New Jersey two years ago to take care of her ailing mother. But as a former heroin addict with HIV, she found that rebuilding her life in the South was harder than she had imagined. She was shocked that the wealth of services, such as housing, transportation and medications -- available to her as an HIV patient in Newark -- were lacking in Henderson. In the North, she said, people talked openly about the disease without fear of reprisal.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 5, 2009 |
With Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony prominently among them, many of the nation's senior Roman Catholic bishops are nearing mandatory retirement, offering the Vatican a significant opportunity to reshape the American church. In Los Angeles, home to the country's largest Catholic archdiocese, the shift could open the way for a bishop to become the first Latino cardinal in the United States. Three Latinos, two from California, already are rumored to be possible successors to Mahony, 73.
March 22, 2009 |
Long before Josef Fritzl and the horrendous crimes in his dungeon, Austria was maligned for its Nazi past, its right-wing politics and another high-profile abduction case. Now that Fritzl has been sentenced to life in a psychiatric ward, the nation, wounded by another dark episode, is eager to move on. "We are glad it ended so quickly," Chancellor Werner Faymann said Friday of Fritzl's four-day trial. But to those who portrayed Fritzl as the monstrous product of a country blemished by its complicity with the Nazis, Faymann had a stern message.
March 7, 2009 |
Shin Jin-tae says he lives in the unluckiest town on Earth. During World War II, when the Japanese occupied Korea, thousands of residents of this small farming community were shipped to Japan to work in munitions factories. Their destination: Hiroshima. Shin and his family were there on the morning of Aug. 6, 1945, when the U.S. military dropped the atomic bomb, leveling the city center and vaporizing many of those within a mile of the blast.