October 1, 2009
SERVING LOS ANGELES COUNTY WITH NEWS YOU CAN USE
Vol. XXX, No. 1147
Community Seeks to Stop Deadly Use of Force
For LeBron, Team, Coach, It’s ‘More Than A Game’ BY DARLENE DONLOE CONTRIBUTING WRITER
“More Than A Game” is much more than a movie about basketball. It’s more than a movie about LeBron James. This is an affecting documentary about the journey of four childhood friends from Akron, Ohio, who not only shared a love for basketball, but had and still have an uncompromising friendship. On the surface it may sound like any other underdog-to-champion basketball documentary, but
it’s not. What sets this movie apart is not only the nine-year journey the friends take together, but the extraordinary dedication and commitment they bring to their friendship and the game. The friends — LeBron James, Sian Cotton, Dru Joyce III, Willie McGee and later Romeo Travis — create a bond so unyielding they actually refer to themselves as brothers. The team is coached by Joyce’s father, Dru Joyce II, who See LEBRON, page 12
Photo Courtesy of LIONSGATE
MORE THAN FRIENDS — Coached by Dru Joyce II (center, front) the young men featured in “More Than A Game” consider themselves brothers as opposed to mere teammates. Pictured: (left to right) The “Fab Five” Dru Joyce III, Sian Cotton, LeBron James, Willie McGee and Romeo Travis.
BY THANDISIZWE CHIMURENGA ASSISTANT EDITOR
A two-day town hall meeting was held last week at a South Los Angeles church to discuss the most recent rash of shootings by law enforcement officers. A panel of community activists and law enforcement representatives met Sept. 24 and 25 at the Imperial Church of Christ to hear testimony from victims’ families and community residents. Questions were also posed to the panel from attendees to find solutions to stop law enforcement’s deadly use of force. Deputies from the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department have been involved in 13 fatal shootings this year, three of which occurred in one weekend. Five fatal shootings by the Sheriff’s department were reported in 2008. The town hall meeting was called by longtime community activist Sandra Moore. Marshall Moultrie, pastor of Imperial Church, said that the meeting, which lasted more than two hours, had revealed a lot of the community’s frustration and a lot of what was wrong, but he urged a focus on solutions. Adrian Dove, a member of the L.A. County Human Relations Commission and one of the panelists, said one solution needed was an independent civilian review board, similar to one that had been implemented in Atlanta.
Watts Towers Mark 50th Anniversary BY SLAV KANDYBA CONTRIBUTING WRITER
An array of drummers, dancers and musicians performed in front of thousands during a two-day music and drum festival to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Watts Towers’ purchase and preservation. More than 6,500 people came to the events, which took place Sept. 26 and 27, said Rosie Lee Hooks, director of the Watts Towers
Arts Center and the Charles Mingus Youth Arts Center. The first day was the drum festival and the next day was the Simon Rodia Jazz Festival. Both days featured an abundance of food, arts and crafts booths. “The two days were so positive and filled with families of different cultures enjoying the music,” Hooks said. “When we do these positive things in Watts, you never
hear about it. Even though they (mainstream media) don’t recognize us or give us our props, we will continue to provide these events. The artists that we chose were absolutely phenomenal. Ali Woodson (of The Temptations) absolutely brought the house down.” Diplomats from Morocco, Spain, Thailand, China and Japan came to the drum festival at the See WATTS TOWERS, page 10
Photo by SAUNDRA WILLIS
WATTS DRUMS — Members of SHINE Mawusi, an all-female drum and dance company, were among the many cultural offerings at the Watts Drum Festival held on the grounds of the Watts Towers. The festival also celebrated the 50th anniversary of the towers’ acquisition and preservation.
According to media reports of the most recent deputy-involved shootings, some of the victims were either unarmed or shot in the back. In relation to the shootings, sometimes media reports that victims had criminal and/or arrest records, which has caused concern among some South L.A. residents. Some residents say law enforcement resorts to deadly use of force too quickly when the victim posed no threat, i.e., when the victim does not have a gun or is running away from an officer. They also say they feel the victims’ criminal history is used as justification by law enforcement to use deadly force. Panelist Cecil Rhambo, a chief in the sheriff’s department, said that in most instances, it is the media that asks questions regarding a victim’s crim- Cecil Rhambo inal background, and that it is not the sheriff’s department that proactively publicizes criminal record information. Rhambo said he understands the community’s frustration and anger, but he also wants the community to understand that law enforcement has a tough job. Rhambo, who grew up near Jesse Owens Park, said that when it comes to community safety, “This person (a suspect with a gun) may not be a threat to the officer, but he may be a threat to community safety.”
As stated on the sheriff’s department Web site, deputies are expected to, “Partner with the people we serve to secure and promote safety in our communities.” Rhambo asked, “How do you tell these guys (deputies) to go out and enforce the law and stop these murders, but when you see a guy with a gun, give him the benefit of the doubt and let him slide? These people who have guns, they have them for a reason.” Still, Rhambo said that many of the instances of use of force are “training issues” that need to be addressed. When asked what he thought were solutions to the situation, Rhambo said, “A lot of it is training; who it is we try to recruit. We need to recruit more African Americans and Latinos from the community. “And we need to rotate people into community relations positions more often so that they can interact with the community more frequently.” Many in attendance, both panelists and residents, thought that federal intervention was needed and some said they would press for that. There was even a suggestion to try to talk with President Barack Obama about the shootings. Moore, convener of the meeting, agreed there needed to be intervention. “We need solutions,” Moore said. “Going to (Washington), D.C., is good, but not to see Barack; but to see the Attorney General.”
NEWS IN BRIEF THE SOUTHLAND Inglewood Residents Want to See Police Review (AP) — Inglewood residents are growing frustrated with the city’s decision to withhold a review of the police department’s use of deadly force. The City Council last week received a report from Los Angeles County’s Office of Independent Review, which spent a year looking at the Inglewood police force in the wake of a string of shootings in which officers killed four men in four months last year. Three of the men were unarmed. Citing attorney-client privilege in legal matters involving the police department, the city said it would not release the report for now, a move community activists and other Inglewood citizens criticized. Many residents are eager to see the findings because they seek reassurance the police department is making reforms where necessary.
Report: 218 Killed by Metrolink Trains in 15 Years (AP) — Accidents involving trains on Southern California’s
Metrolink system killed 218 people in the 15 years leading up to last year’s collision that left 25 dead, according to a published report. An investigation in the Sept. 27 Los Angeles Times says most of the deaths along with many more serious injuries came from trains hitting automobiles and pedestrians at crossings. The Times says the busy crossing at Buena Vista Street and San Fernando in Burbank — a complicated maze of streets and signals — is among the most dangerous in the system. A 2003 crash at the crossing killed a 63-year-old driver and a train passenger. Exactly three years later, a 76-year-old driver was killed by a train at the same crossing. Metrolink blamed both accidents on drivers trying to beat the train.
THE STATE Schwarzenegger to Sign Veterans Bill He Vetoed SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will sign a bill to honor Vietnam veterans after vetoing identical legislation two weeks ago in a political See BRIEFS, page 7
L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
OPINION EARL OFARI HUTCHINSON
Obama Should Back the Fairness Doctrine The mere mention of reworking the Fairness Doctrine sends conservative talk jocks and corporate broadcasters fleeing to the barricades. The jocks first rushed to the barricades when top White House adviser David Axelrod coyly hinted last March that new Federal Communications Commission head Julius Genachowski might take a look at the doctrine. That’s hardly the case — yet. In June 2008, then-presidential candidate Barack Obama flatly said that he did not support reimposing the Fairness Doctrine on broadcasters. And other than the stray remark from Axelrod, there’s no indication that Obama has changed his mind on the issue. However, he should. The doctrine, though vague, loose, and virtually unenforced during the decades it was on the books, did at least give some pubic space on the airwaves to an occasional dissenting voice. The thought of that is too much to stomach for the antiFairness Doctrine fear mongers. Their stock retort is that the doctrine obliterates free speech, will lead to a government takeover of the airwaves, drive corporate broadcasters into the tank and effectively muzzle conservative views. Conservative talk jocks and the media syndicates used the same arguments to prod Ronald Reagan and
Congress to dump the doctrine in 1987. None of this was true then or true now. The doctrine did not require that broadcasters give equal time to liberal or moderate Democrats to counter the hot air of conservative talk jocks. The doctrine did not tell broadcasters who should get a talk show what the hosts could say, or who they had to have on their shows. By the time Congress shelved the doctrine, the FCC had virtually ceased even enforcing it. The doctrine simply served as a broad guide to ensure that stations give at least some time to differing points of view, i.e. views other than those of conservative white guys, and an occasional token conservative woman or black. If enough listeners complained that a station was too lopsided in the parade of conservatives it had popping off on a particular issue, than it had to give “reasonable opportunity” to the other side to give an opposing view. The FCC didn’t tell the station how much time to give, who to give the time to, or when to give it. The tepid requirement that an offending station bring some semblance of balance to a discussion of an issue did not drive a single conservative jock from the studio mics, diminish the power and profit of the syndi-
cates, or chill free speech; it did just the opposite. The number of conservative talk radio hosts grew bigger, their influence greater, and the profits of corporate syndicates soared. In 1999, the five largest companies operated one out of five stations and generated nearly 50 percent of industry revenue. In 2006, they controlled more than one out of three stations and took in more than 60 percent of industry revenue. The few successful challenges to a station that hogged the air with conservative talk resulted in more, not less, free speech, since listeners got to hear a few differing views. No more. In the two decades since the burial of the doctrine, more than one-quarter of all broadcast stations don’t offer any local news or public affairs programming. An even greater number of stations simply plop in a few minutes of canned news headlines. Conservative talk radio has been a treasure chest of riches for the broadcast syndicates, and their talk jocks wield a power over millions that emperors, kings and dictators would drool over. A near-textbook example of that is the titanic debate over health care reform. There was some hint in the early days of the congressional debate over the plan that a handful of See HUTCHINSON, page 3
Prized Possessions: Media Politics and Missing Women BY SIKIVU HUTCHINSON
When the L.A. Times runs a story on a missing black woman on the front page of its local features section, it stimulates inquiring minds. How, in the super-charged climate of breathless cable news reports on Jaycee and her white sisterhood, could such a feat of journalistic subversion be possible? According to a story in a Sunday edition, 24-year-old Mitrice Richardson, an African American woman from South Los Angeles, went missing in midSeptember after being released from a Calabasas jail. Richardson had been arrested for apparently refusing to pay the tab for a meal she ate at a Malibu restaurant. Prior to the arrest, restaurant personnel and witnesses reported that she was behaving erratically and gave the appearance of being mentally ill. After authorities found marijuana in her car, they arrested her on charges of “defrauding an innkeeper” and possession. The Times chronicled the massive search made for Richardson this past weekend by friends, relatives and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The story was also picked up by local news and has outraged many African Americans in Los Angeles. Questions swirl around the county sheriff’s conduct in both the arrest and release of Richardson.
Why, for example, was she not placed on a 72-hour psychiatric hold (a common practice when dealing with mentally ill “suspects”) when detained? And why, after being released from jail, was she sent off into the dead of night in a remote area without a cell phone or vehicle? Families of missing and abducted people of color organize tirelessly to generate any shred of coverage they can get from the media in “post-racial” America. Tired of the media’s ritual indifference to the lives of black women in their community, the mothers of missing women in Edgecombe County in North Carolina launched a billboard campaign to advertise a slew of suspected abductions in their area. So what distinguishes Richardson’s case from that of the scores of other missing and abducted people of color which seldom score even a few lines buried in a big city newspaper? Location is apparently the only factor that would warrant such an aberration. The Malibu sightings of Richardson were evidently so jarring for residents that they elicited instant recollection from those reported to have seen her. Unlike missing person cases tainted by the urban “grit” of communities of color — where some perceive crime to be the norm — the crime-free veneer of an almostexclusively white community where
“it’s strange to see a black woman walking in the (Malibu) canyon,” as the Times reported, is the subtext. Location, race and gender Sikivu Hutchinson play a pivotal role in the media’s fixation on missing person stories. In the national “victim-ocracy,” small town, suburban and/or university-affiliated white women get the most play as valued human interest subjects and cultural possessions. The endless media loop of search parties, dragged lakes, crack-of-dawn patrols and tearful living room pleas from grieving family members only lodge in the public imagination as national pathos when “our” little hometown girls are at stake. As exceptions to the rule, Richardson’s case — coupled with the more prominent example of slain Vietnamese-American Yale University student Annie Le — illustrates the extent to which location can obscure the regime of white privilege and entitlement that frames the stories and lives deemed most valuable by mainstream media. Centered in a bastion of Ivy League, power and privilege nestled uneasily in the racially segregated city of New Haven, the Le See SIKIVU, page 5
Marry Me a Little Less BY MAYA RUPERT CONTRIBUTING WRITER
On Sept. 24, at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 39th Annual Legislative Conference, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) hosted a session exploring what happened to marriage in the black community. She encouraged a packed auditorium to discuss why black men and women aren’t getting married and staying married. It may seem odd that the CBC even had a conference on marriage considering it is not a legislative issue. However, Norton explained that the health of romantic relationships in the black community is directly tied to the health of the community as a whole, since those relationships affect the way children are raised and how they are financially supported. The response was exactly what you’d expect. For the decrease in married black couples, feminism took its usual share of the blame, as did the unavailability of good black men, due to incarceration and unemployment. And, of course, the crowd had a good laugh at the expense of black women when panelist Audrey Chapman, a family therapist and radio show host, credited the stereotypical attitude problem of black women for their inability to find husbands. In short, the conversation added nothing new to the discourse surrounding the increasingly low numbers of black couples getting married. What consistently surprises me about the marriage discussion in the black community is our refusal to take a step back and re-examine the conversation’s premise: Whether encouraging marriage really is the best way to contribute to the health of the black community. Let’s be clear: Marriage has a lot of benefits when it comes to raising children. But the assumption that it is the only way — or even the
best way — to create a healthy, nurturing environment for children is outdated and, in many instances, wrong. Children thrive in a stable and Maya Rupert loving environment, and a pretty good indication that a relationship does not provide such an environment is that the people involved chose to end it. And we need to let go of the idea that everyone is automatically better off just because couples stay together. This is particularly a concern because the rhetoric lamenting the demise of the black nuclear family is overtly sexist. Feminism is one of the most frequently cited culprits for destroying marriage in the black community. The story goes like this: Everything was perfect, and then one dark and stormy night, feminism came along and encouraged women to reject traditional gender roles, shift our focus away from the home and family, and convinced us that men weren’t necessary. The result was greater instances of divorce, children growing up in day care, and the emasculation of black men. (Oh, and lesbianism. In some renderings of the story, feminism created lesbianism). While feminism didn’t destroy marriage in the black community, it did embolden many women to decide whether they wanted to get married, whether they wanted to stay married, and what they wanted their marriages to look like. The only marriages that would have been negatively affected were ones where the women were unhappy to begin with. And faulting a movement that encouraged women to leave unhappy marriages is sexist. And by the way, children benefit from seeing their mothers See RUPERT, page 3
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October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
BUSINESS Smart Spending: 6 Ways to Haggle with Class
L.A. Transit Officials Tentatively OK Rail Car Deal (AP) — The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority board has tentatively agreed to award a contract to an Italian firm to make 100 light-rail cars. The members voted 8-3 on Sept. 24 to enter into a $300 million deal with AnsaldoBreda if the company meets several conditions in 30 days. MTA spokesman Marc Littman said they include agreeing to a $75 million letter of credit and a $2.9 million price tag for each car. Otherwise, MTA chief executive Art Leahy can open the contract to bidding. Labor unions supported the deal after AnsaldoBreda promised to build a rail manufacturing plant in the city. But Leahy recommended against the contract, saying the firm is late on delivering the 50 cars it’s making for the MTA under a base contract, and the cars are 6,000 pounds (2,700 kilograms) too heavy.
$1 Million Going Further in Many Housing Markets (AP) — During the housing boom, prices rose so high and so fast that even cookie-cutter homes in the paved suburbs of South Florida and California could cost a cool million. That was a long way from the days when a million-dollar home evoked images of marble columns and swimming pools with vanishing edges. Subprime loans allowed more people than ever to buy houses that were once above their means. Higher demand fueled ever-higher prices until the spigot of cheap money was turned off and the housing bubble burst. The recession forced many well-heeled buyers into unemployment lines. And sales of homes that were more than $1 million cratered by more than 50 percent from the peak four years ago. For people who do have the money, however, it’s the best time in years to buy luxury real estate. In the 20 largest U.S. metro areas, about 2,800 homes sold for more than $1 million in July — down by more than half from July 2005, according to MDA DataQuick. Nationwide, overall home sales
RUPERT Continued from page 2 empowered. They benefit from seeing them leave unhealthy environments. They benefit from understanding that their gender does not dictate their role in a family. Feminism was not only good for black women; it was good for black children. Instead of focusing on how to improve relationships between black men and women as a way of improving the way children are raised in the black community, there needs to be increased focus on how to improve the way children are raised in the black community, even if the relationships between black men and women stay the same. We need to think critically about what it takes to raise children even when parents aren’t married.
were down about 27 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors. The good news for luxury homebuyers is that they’re getting about 20 percent “more house” than they did two years ago, and the prestige of owning a $1 million home is returning, said John Brian Losh, CEO of luxuryrealestate.com.
Film Series on Women in Business to Take Place The Diva Cinema, a film and discussion series on Women in Business, will take place Oct. 7, 6 p.m., at the Lucy Florence Coffee House, 3351 W. 43rd St., Los Angeles. Audiences are invited to watch a film on how to navigate the world of business in a unique way. Discussion will follow the parallels you see in your own business. Cost is $10. Seating is limited. Information: Syrah, (323) 5454020, email@example.com.
Order of Conservation Served on Golden State Mutual Life Insurance Co. SACRAMENTO (Steve Poizner’s Office) — Golden State Mutual Life Insurance Co. was placed under conservation by the California Department of Insurance Sept. 30. The company will cease the selling of new policies immediately. According to a press release from the CDI, Golden State Mutual had been operating at a loss for the past five years, and the company’s reserves were under the amount required by state law in order to continue operating. More than $5 million in capital and surplus are required for companies such as Golden State Mutual to operate in California, and at the end of June 2009 the company’s capital and surplus were at $1.65 million. Current policyholders must continue to pay their premiums to keep their insurance policies in force. Policy holders should refer to the company’s Web site at www.gsmlife.com or contact their agent. The company, which celebrated it 84th birthday in July of this year, was at one time the largest black-owned insurance company in the west.
We need to pass crucial legislation that would mandate paid sick leave for parents, making it possible for single parents who cannot rely on a spouse to share child care duties to take time off when a child is sick. We need to pass health care reform so families without the benefit of two incomes can afford health care. We must be willing to rethink what makes a family healthy, and understand that the answer to that question will not always be marriage. Maya Rupert is an attorney in downtown Los Angeles. She has previously contributed to the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as other publications. Her column explores issues of race, gender and politics and appears in the L.A. Watts Times regularly. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BY SARAH SKIDMORE AP BUSINESS REPORTER
PORTLAND, Ore. — It may feel pushy or even rude, but haggling is becoming much more widespread — and acceptable. About 72 percent of American consumers have asked for a lower price on their purchases in the past few months, according to consumer survey organization American Research Group. And they were successful about 80 percent of the time. That’s significantly more negotiating — with better results — than in prior years. Businesses are more willing to bargain now that sales are down, experts say. So here are few tips on how to save on everything from shirts to televisions: Prepare Yourself Your first and most effective step is to research your potential purchase. Information about the product, its features, and pricing around town and online can be leveraged in negotiations. And you’ll know what your options are if you want to walk away. Max Edison, a former pawnbroker and the author of “How to Haggle,” recommends checking reviews and prices at Amazon, eBay and other Web sites. “EBay is the New York Stock Exchange of new and used products,” Edison said. Practice Your Pitch If you are nervous or embarrassed about haggling, rehearse your approach, either in your head or for real. Try a garage sale, where the stakes are lower, said Tom Hayman, owner and CEO of Negotiation Expertise, a negotiation training company. “The biggest obstacle to overcome is the reluctance to even ask,” Hayman said.
HUTCHINSON Continued from page 2 House and Senate Republicans might be willing to back the plan. The conservative talking heads went to work and quickly changed that. They have railed against it as a fatally flawed power grab scheme by Obama and the Democrats to torpedo private health care. This stiffened the spines of the GOP rank and file against the plan. Now that they have flexed their broadcast muscles and whipped the GOP back in line, next up will be to continue to browbeat, cajole, and bully any GOP dissenters on health care, and immigration and environmental reform, and any other bigticket issue that conservative talk jocks deem an Obama and Democratic party power grab. This will happen, of course, with not a peep of a dissenting view to be heard on the talk airwaves that the right totally monopolizes. Obama should bring back the Fairness Doctrine and help make sure that lone voice is heard. Earl Ofari Hutchinson is an author and political analyst. His weekly radio show, “The Hutchinson Report,” can be heard in Los Angeles, Fridays on KTYM Radio 1460 AM and streamed live nationally on ktym.com.
Be Polite Keep the interaction friendly. Most people prefer doing business with people they like, and negotiations tend to break down when people get combative. Remember this is a business deal that can benefit both parties: They want to sell something and you want to buy it, just at a lower price. Haggling can be as subtle as asking if the item will go on sale soon, offering to buy a display model or asking, “Can you do any better than that?” Choose Carefully Don’t haggle for gasoline, groceries or cigarettes as a rule, Edison said. Pick items with a higher markup because fatter margins give the retailer more wiggle room. Items on close-out may also be up for discussion because retailers usually want to clear them out. Also pick the right person to bargain with; the salesperson on the
floor may not have the power to cut you a deal when a manager might. Show What You Know You have the facts to back up your negotiating stance. So let your sparring partner know if you can get a better deal next door: He or she might match it. If there is a ding on the door or a stain on the collar, point that out and wait for a counteroffer. It’s hard to argue against something concrete. Use Your Pull Recognize the leverage you have. You can offer to pay cash to save retailers the fee they pay to your credit card company. Or ask if buying more than one item will help lower the price; they may be willing to work out a better deal if you offer to buy a dryer along with that washer. Be prepared to walk away, but be aware that you’re weakening your position significantly if you need to come back.
MetroBriefs Medical, Dental, Metro Pass Rideshare Week begins October 5. Now is the time to get your company involved – ask your boss to buy Metro passes for all employees as an employee bene>t. Employees save money riding Metro and the company enjoys tax savings, reduced parking demands and improved employee morale. Find out more at 213.922.2811.
Metro Vanpool Wins Outstanding Service Award The Association for Commuter Transportation presented the successful Metro Vanpool Program with its Outstanding Service Award for 2009. There are more than 800 vanpools that are now part of the growing Metro Vanpool family, all getting up to $400 a month toward the lease of a van. Find out how to join at metro.net.
Majority of Riders Are Satis>ed With Metro A recent survey of more than 15,000 Metro riders shows that 85% are satis>ed with their bus and rail service. The June 2009 survey shows customer satisfaction with Metro continues to score well with riders and is improving, up from 83% who expressed approval in the Spring of 2008.
Check Measure R Progress Online It’s your tax dollars at work and metro.net will keep you updated. Track the progress of Measure R funded projects in your area or those of special interest to you online. Just go to metro.net and search for “Progress Tracker.”
Metro Speaks, You Learn About Transportation Metro Speakers Bureau provides free presentations to civic groups and organizations on a variety of transportation topics through its Metro Speaks program. Learn about ridersharing options, how to go “green” with Metro or the latest advances in transit technology. Find out more or schedule a presentation at metro.net.
If you’d like to know more, please call us at 1.800.464.2111, or visit metro.net.
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L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
WHAT’S GOING ON? Deadline for receipt of What’s Going On listings is Friday, 12 p.m., at least two weeks prior to activity. Fax to: (213) 251-5720, e-mail us at email@example.com or mail to: L.A. Watts Times, 3540 Wilshire Blvd., PH3, Los Angeles, CA 90010. CONVENTION — The Atheist Alliance International Convention will take place Oct. 2 to 4 at the Burbank Marriot Convention Center, 2500 Hollywood Way, Burbank. Los Angeles-based writer Sikivu Hutchinson will discuss the tensions that exist in African American culture around living a moral life beyond the boundaries of organized religion at 4 p.m. on Oct. 2. Information: www. atheistconvention.org/schedule/speak ers/. LAW AND DISORDER — The Studio for Southern California History will hold a reception Oct. 3, 6 to 9 p.m., for its current exhibit that highlights the various forces at work in Southern California’s history of laws, activism and disorder. The exhibit investigates moments of legislative reform and episodes of vigilantism. Located in Chinatown, the studio is at 525 Alpine St., suite 103, Los Angeles. Information: www. socalstudio.org. BASKETBALL CLINIC — The St. Andrews Recreation Center will offer a free basketball clinic for boys and girls, ages 5 to 15, begin-
ning Oct. 3, 10 a.m. The center is at 8701 S. St. Andrews Place, Los Angeles. These clinics will continue Monday through Friday, 5 to 7 p.m., until further notice. Information: (213) 485-1754. FACTS — The Los Angeles chapter of Families to Amend California’s Three Strikes (FACTS) meets at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Monday of each month at Chuco’s Justice Center, 1137 E. Redondo Blvd., Inglewood. Free parking is available in a parking lot across the street. Information: (213) 746-4844, www.facts1.net. NETWORKING — The National Black Business Council Inc. is sponsoring an “Access to Procurement and Capital Seminar” Oct. 8, 5:30 to 8 p.m., at The New Townhouse, 6835 La Tijera Blvd., Los Angeles. Participants will be able to network with supplier diversity representatives from Fortune 1000 companies. Information: (310) 5685000, www.nbbc.org. CEREMONY — The public is invited to attend the swearing-in ceremony of newly elected California State Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-51st) Oct. 9, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Gardena City Hall Complex, 1700 W. 162nd St., Gardena. RSVPs are requested by Oct. 2. RSVP information: www.electstevebradford.com, (310) 294-9537.
PAN-AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL — The deadline to submit films made by or about people of African descent to the Pan African Film Festival, without accruing late fees, is Oct. 31. Films should preferably depict positive and realistic images and can be of any genre. PAFF accepts features and shorts, and narratives and documentaries. It will accept submissions of works in progress, but the films and videos must be completed no later than Dec. 15, 2009. Information: (323) 2951706, firstname.lastname@example.org. FARMERS MARKETS — The Leimert Park Village Farmers Market operates Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Degnan Boulevard and 43rd Street, Los Angeles. The Exposition Park Farmers Market operates Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., on the South Lawn of the Natural History Museum. Information: www. expositionpark.org. The Harambee Farmers Market operates Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 5730 S. Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles. Information: (323) 292-5550. The FAME (First African Methodist Episcopal Church) So Fresh Produce Market operates Saturdays and Sundays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., in the FAME Renaissance parking lot, Western Avenue and Adams Boulevard. Information: www.famerenaissance.org, (323) 730-7727.
The New Arbor Vitae 405 Interchange document is out for the Public Review. Contact Ed Aguilar (213) 897-8492 If you have an Environmental Related Degree Go to the CalTrans Website Take the Online test and if you pass you will have a good opportunity for a career at CalTrans. For Details call or visit www.caltrans.com
Improving Mobility Across California OFFERING EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES TO ALL REGARDLESS OF RACE, COLOR, CREED, NATIONAL ORIGIN, ANCESTRY, GENDER, MARITAL STATUS, DISABILITY, RELIGIOUS OR POLITICAL AFFILIATION, AGE OR SEXUAL ORIENTATION
URBAN GARDENING — Eugene Cooke will lead an afternoon discussion on “Gardening for Your Karma,” as part of the Urban Gardens Workshop, Oct. 3, noon to 2 p.m., at Lotus on the Nile Wellness Center, 4307 S. Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles. Cooke will discuss the different types of karma and learn how gardening
can be an integral part of people’s spiritual practice; how the garden encourages a cleaner diet; sharing and giving; and how it helps people reconnect with their center. Tickets to this event are $12 in advance and $16 at the door. Preregistration is highly recommended. Information: (323) 295-6887, lotusonthenile@ gmail.com.
Photo by REED HUTCHINSON
DAY OF SERVICE — Students from the Hedrick Hall dormitory on the campus of UCLA get ready for their day of volunteering at South L.A.’s Samuel Gompers Middle School. The school’s cafeteria and other buildings received their first coat of new paint in several years.
Thousands Come Out on UCLA Volunteer Day ERIKA A. MCCARDEN CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Roughly 4,300 students dispersed throughout Los Angeles recently to paint, plant trees, restore trails and perform other tasks in what some considered the biggest national university-organized Volunteer Day. Freshman and transfer students were sent to eight locations, including five L.A. Unified District schools. Among the students was freshman Pierre Dupree, who was randomly scheduled to volunteer at Gompers Middle School, where he once attended. “Every dorm building had a different location for Volunteer Day. When I saw ours was Gompers, I did a double take,” Dupree said. “Then I asked the coordinator if that was the Gompers on the east side, and she said it was. I was ecstatic.” Dupree and his team spent the afternoon painting the boy’s gymnasium, where he once played basketball as a seventh-grader. Antoinette Mongelli, director of UCLA’s new Volunteer Center, which managed the event on Sept. 22, said 100 buses were commissioned to transport the student volunteers, who were joined by 300 staff, faculty, alumni and undergraduates who served as task captains. “To get 500 students together at any location to volunteer can do an amazing job. Administrators were teary eyed about the work and interaction with their students,” Mongelli said. “They did magic to transform the schools that day. Because of cutbacks, schools like Gompers haven’t seen a new coat of paint in a long time. These kids really felt like they made an impact. They saw the school as a place they owned for that day.” “It was nice to work with the
students and for all of us to come together as a group. My group painted the foyer of the cafeteria,” said Professor Sandy Kriegler, who volunteered at the Gompers site. “When we finished and came out, we saw the entire school after all of the work, and it looked really nice. The kids and the organizers did … great, and to think this was only one of the sites.” Mongelli added, “People stepped up in a way that I’ve never experienced before. They chose this experience because it was important to them personally. To have a public institution decide before students take their first day in class to spend a day of volunteering in the community is remarkable. It made me so proud to have the students, staff and alumnus working together.”
Volunteers at Gompers Middle School.
October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
COMMUNITY COMMUNITY MEETINGS, FORUMS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS NFPA Announces Online Game to Help Children Learn Fire Facts Quincy, Mass. — The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently launched a new Sparky the Fire Dog game to help children learn about the importance of fire safety. The game, “Crack the Code,” is now available free online at www.sparky.org. It stresses the importance of fire safety by asking
children to identify fire facts that could help save lives.
Metro to Hold Meetings on Transit Line Community hearings are now underway for Metro’s $1.2 billion Crenshaw Corridor transit line. Residents are urged to give their input during any of the upcoming scheduled meetings: • Oct. 1, 6 to 8 p.m., West Angeles Church-Crystal Room, 3045 Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles
SIKIVU Continued from page 2 case garnered national attention in spite of Le’s ethnic background. As a member of the academic elite, Le represented a student body potentially imperiled by the urban dangers of crime-ridden housing “projects” and other undesirable areas. And as with any good colonialist private university regime hell-bent on takeover of the “ghetto,” these untamed areas naturally sully a city’s cosmopolitan aspirations. Once it was discovered that Le was murdered by a white insider, and not an encroaching racial other, the tabloid cable news mafia modulated its budding hysteria and moved on. Clearly the racist “model minority” myth and the promotion
of the docile assimilable Asian stereotype make Asian Americans more palatable to mainstream white society than African Americans. Le’s and Richardson’s backgrounds are dissimilar save for their being young women of color. Yet take away Le’s Yale pedigree and they would be “united” as victims of the mainstream media’s hierarchy of the disposable. For it is utterly certain that the mainstream media would not have deviated from its nationally sanctioned script of victimized white women if either Le or Richardson had gone missing in South L.A. or the “gritty” streets of New Haven. Sikivu Hutchinson is the editor of blackfemlens.org and a commentator for Some of Us Are Brave, KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles.
• Oct. 3, 10 a.m. to noon, Inglewood High School Cafeteria, 231 S. Grevillea St., Inglewood • Oct. 6, 6 to 8 p.m., Transfiguration Church Hall, 2515 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Los Angeles. Information: www.metro.net/ crenshaw.
Work of Six Women to be Honored by Sisters at the Well Sisters at the Well’s fourth annual “We See You” awards dinner will take place Oct. 18, 4 to 6:30 p.m., at Phoenix Hall, 10950 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles. The “We See You” awards dinner recognizes and celebrates the work of six women, whose collective work spans over 100 years of service to women and families across the country and abroad. The honorees for 2009 are: Elva G. Lima, vice president of strategic programs; Yvonne Wheeler, senior field representative, AFL-CIO; Artis Lane, artist and sculptress; Marva Smith BattleBey, president and CEO, Vermont Slauson Economic Development Corp. and Greta Wallace, international stylist and conceptualist. Admission for advance tickets is $55. Make checks payable to: Friends of Sisters at the Well, P.O. Box 923533, Sylmar, CA 91392-3533. Information: (818) 833-0363.
FIRST IN — (Top) Actor Tyrese Gibson addresses students at Compton’s Centennial High School Sept. 23 along with members of the Compton Fire Department. The event was Day of Outreach for the new TV series “First In,” a show about the lives of Compton’s firefighters and paramedics. The day also provided information on the fire department’s Explorer Program, which is for young adults from 15 to 21 years old who are interested in learning about a career in fire service. Bottom photo: (left to right) Compton Fire Department Deputy Chief Marcel Melanson; firefighters Marcus Wilson and Daniel Salazar; firefighter recruit Jerome Goodall; and actor and singer Tyrese Gibson, fielding questions from the audience about “First In” and the fire department.
L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
City Works: Help Protect the Environment and Ensure Green Jobs in L.A. BY COMMISSIONER VALERIE LYNN SHAW CITY OF L.A. BOARD OF PUBLIC WORKS
Much attention is focused these days on a green Los Angeles and the city’s green future. But what does it mean to go green in L.A.? And why is protecting our environment so critical to Angelenos and South L.A. residents in particular? Well, first of all, to create a truly green L.A. means that residents must work closely with local government to ensure delivery of “environmentally friendly” services. It requires environmentally safe and efficient design and management and of our infrastructure, which includes solid waste disposal systems, streets and roadways, public buildings and more. Furthermore, it means creating jobs in green industries like energy efficiency, solar power, weatherization and water conservation, to attack high unemployment and stimulate new economic growth in the emerging green economy throughout the city.
Commissioner Valerie Lynn Shaw
Citizens and leaders working together to this end are making the best use of resources to help our local communities thrive, and they are bringing about a truly green L.A. It is, therefore, vital that you actively take steps to protect the environment, starting right in your own neighborhood. One step in the right direction is to learn more about green job opportunities and get employment training in this emerging field. Three significant upcoming train-
ing programs hold much promise for the city. First is Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Clean Energy Workforce Training Program. Called the largest state-sponsored green jobs training program in the nation, it is a $75 million environmental project that could prepare 20,000 workers for jobs including installing solar panels and insulating homes. To learn more about the program, visit www.energy.ca.gov/greenjobs/. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will direct $700,000 into another program to enable students to learn the latest environmental technologies and prepare them for a variety of green jobs. This program will allow for 160 young people to be trained through the Los Angeles Conservation Corps. Email email@example.com for more information.
Participants will be trained extensively in hazardous waste, health and safety, lead and asbestos abatement, refinery safety, forklift training and general industry standards. The program will offer four certifications. It is important to note that previous similar programs had a hiring rate of 86 percent, with salaries that averaged $18 per hour for those who completed training. Programs like these should generate new economic growth in our city. Consider that in 2007, 10,000 new businesses formed, creating 125,000 clean technology jobs in the state, which contributed about $3.7 billion to the economy. Infrastructure Academy is the other youth program that is helping create green jobs in the city. The academy recently launched Generation Power, a nonprofit social enterprise that engages students in water conservation, energy efficiency, and other sustainability projects.
What About Our Children, Again? BY PAUL SCOTT
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This summer, about 40 Generation Power students, on contract to the L.A. Department of Water and Power, conducted 120 LAUSD high school and middle school water audits, to help the utility identify where water-wasting facilities were located in the school district. These students found, among other things, that more than 50 percent of high-water-use fixtures, including urinals, toilets and sinks, consume more than two gallons per use than needed, on average. LAUSD is one of DWP’s largest single-water and power user, spending more than $12 million each year on water alone. With information from the Generation Power audit, the utility can develop green programs and jobs to reduce water usage in the school district and L.A. Visit www.infrastructureacademy.org to learn more See CITY WORKERS, page 13
Back when I was in school, the blue-eyed soul group Hall and Oates had a song that had the chorus, “You’re out of touch, I’m out of time.” The song was about some dude who couldn’t get along with his main squeeze, but it also sums up how I felt while watching a recent MSNBC special, “About Our Children.” The program was promoted as a Bill Cosby town hall meeting, so, like many folks, I tuned in to expect to see Cosby ranting and raving about how hip-hop is destroying the minds of young black children, especially since he had tons of material following the recent MTV Video Music Awards. I assumed that as the credits were rolling, he would still be pointing his finger at the camera and yelling, “Now about that Kanye West fellow ... and who told that little girl to jump on the stage with Jay Z!” But no, as Cosby pointed out
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during the intro, it wasn’t his show; he was just the draw. That was pretty much the case. As with most meetings that deal with the plight of “troubled youth,” the MSNBC program suffered from the same problem: wrong place and wrong people. The meeting took place in a nice auditorium at Howard University in Washington, D.C. I think that it would have been more realistic if it would have been held at one of the many community centers in the ’hoods of D.C., but I guess that wasn’t the ambiance that the producers were trying to create. On the panel you had a bunch of mostly private school-educated folks who would probably wet their pants if one of their students threw up a gang sign during English class. You had the professors professing about the problem. You had the obligatory lady who looked like she just stepped out of one of those movies where the great White Hope goes into an innercity school, and, within the first six weeks, all of the students become Phi Beta Kappa candidates. I’m still not sure how comedian Paul Rodriguez wound up on the panel; I guess Chris Rock was busy. They even showed scenes from a few schools where the children all wanted to grow up to be doctors and teachers. Not one mentioned wanting to be Lil’ Wayne’s hype man or a forward for the Chicago Bulls. Where were the real people? Where were the community activists that could have talked about the challenges they face in trying to change their local school systems?
Where were the “inner-city” teachers who would have been told where to go and what to kiss if they tried to implement some of the feelgood strategies that the panelists suggested? It would, also, have been nice if they would have, at least, allowed the parents of “at-risk youth” to Twitter in some comments, even if they couldn’t make the pilgrimage to the nation’s capital. But instead you had a twohour visit to a fantasy world where the children always beat the tardy bell and the hallways smell like lemon Pledge instead of stale urine. I can’t really say that watching the program made me a better parent or taught me much that I didn’t already know. I can think of a few scholars (Jawanza Kunjufu, Na’im Akbar) that would have kept me from watching the clock, hoping that I wouldn’t miss the kick off of the Dallas Cowboys/New York Giants game for most of the program. Maybe it’s not all that deep. Perhaps, the problems facing our children can be solved with nice, polite town hall meetings where people sit unemotionally and quiet, as a panel of really smart folks gives them advice to save their children who step over crack pipes and broken wine bottles on their way to class every morning. Or maybe the solutions are so controversial and advanced that the folks over at MSNBC wouldn’t dare allow “real folks” on national television to discuss the issue. Or maybe there could have been a good mixture of the two possibilities? At the end of the program, I think that most of us were left with what Hall and Oates sang: “manic moves and drowsy dreams or living in the middle between the two extremes.” Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots Fired.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (919) 451-8283.
October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
COMMUNITY BRIEFS Continued from page 1 standoff with lawmakers. Schwarzenegger was scheduled to hold a signing ceremony Sept. 25 at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center at Twentynine Palms, about 140 miles east of Los Angeles. The legislation will establish each March 30 as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.” Schwarzenegger vetoed the original bill because he said he was not getting the major policy issues he wanted out of the state Legislature. Lawmakers threatened to override the veto but instead passed a new bill with identical language.
THE NATION Human Rights Activist Finds Noose on Porch COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho (AP) — The education director of Coeur d’Alene’s Human Rights Education Institute says someone left a noose on the porch of her Spokane home, in an apparent threat against the black family. Rachel Dolezal said she found the noose the morning of Sept. 20 just outside her front door, the Coeur d’Alene Press reported. Spokane Police Department spokeswoman Jennifer DeRuwe says a detective has been assigned to the case, and it’s being investigated as a hate crime. It was the latest in a series of unsettling events for Dolezal. Recently, her home was broken into and $13,000 worth of personal belongings — including two guns — were taken. Earlier this year, Dolezal says white supremacists confronted her while she was working at the Human Rights Education Institute. Dolezal says it all shows the importance of the institute’s work. Information from: Coeur d’Alene Press, www.cdapress.com.
Ga. Man Indicted in Female Soldier’s Beating JONESBORO, Ga. (AP) — A white man accused of beating a black female Army reservist while yelling racial slurs at her outside a suburban Atlanta restaurant was indicted Sept. 23 on felony charges. Troy Dale West Jr., 47, of Poulan, Ga., faces one count each of aggravated assault, false imprisonment and first-degree cruelty to children under the indictment filed in Clayton County Superior Court. He also faces two counts each of battery and disorderly conduct, which are misdemeanors. West’s lawyer, Larry King, declined comment. Police allege that West screamed racial slurs as he kicked and punched Tashawnea Hill, in the pres-
Troy Dale West Jr.
ence of Hill’s 7-year-old daughter, on Sept. 9 outside a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Morrow, about 15 miles south of Atlanta. Police have said West became enraged when Hill told him to be careful after he nearly hit her daughter while opening a door. The cruelty to children charge was included because the daughter witnessed the beating. West told police he became upset because Hill spit on him after accusing him of trying to hit her daughter, according to the police report. Several witnesses said they never saw Hill spit on West. Cracker Barrel recently issued a statement condemning the incident and banning West from ever visiting any of its establishments again.
Black Faces Spray Painted on Freedom Riders Mural NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Vandals have defaced a mural honoring the Freedom Riders who fought racial segregation during the Civil Rights Movement. The black faces on the mural have been covered up with silver spray paint. The Tennessean reported the mural on downtown Nashville’s Jefferson Street was completed about four months ago. Student volunteers from Nashville high schools spent six weeks working with artist Michael Cooper on the design. This is the second time the mural has been defaced. Zane Espinoza said the vandalism is frustrating, but that students are ready to fix the damage again. Jefferson Street United Merchants Partnership director Sharon Hurt said there are plans to place the mural behind a protective covering after it is repaired. Meanwhile, area police say they will step up patrols. Information from: The Tennessean, www.tennessean.com.
Tupac’s Mother Donates His Writing For Research ATLANTA (AP) — Tupac Shakur’s mother has donated a collection of the rapper’s writing to the Robert W. Woodruff Library at Atlanta University Center. Afeni Shakur has handed over more than 150 of her son’s items, ranging from rough drafts of lyrics and poems to a photocopy of his contract with Suge Knight and Death Row Records. The rapper’s collection will be part of the archives at the library on the campus of the Atlanta University Center, which comprises the historically black universities of Morehouse College, Spelman College, Clark Atlanta University and the Morehouse School of Medicine. The library also houses The Martin Luther King Jr. Collection. Shakur’s records are expected to be available for research in the fall of 2010. Other items include the rapper’s handwritten playlists of “All Eyez on Me” and “The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory”; letters he wrote to his family when he was in prison in 1994; and some of his personal items returned to the family after his death. Shakur was one of rap’s bestselling artists, becoming an even bigger star after his release from prison in 1995 with his multi-plat-
inum selling album “All Eyez on Me.” He was shot to death while riding in a car with Knight in Las Vegas a year later. “Tupac’s collection provides this generation to see primary documents,” said Loretta Parham, CEO and library director. “It’s the opportunity for them to relate something from the past to now.” On the Net: Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation, http://www.tasf.org/; Robert W. Woodruff Library, www.auctr.edu.
mer after 40 years with the orchestra. But she returned to the stage at Symphony Hall Sept. 23 as a soloist in the world premier of composer John Williams’ “On Willows and Birches.” The orchestra says Williams wrote the piece as a tribute to Hobson Pilot, who’s considered among the top harp players of her time. Hobson Pilot also will perform concerts this month at Symphony Hall and New York City’s Carnegie Hall. The Philadelphia native told The Boston Globe that she never tried to make a political statement, instead showing “that playing music well had nothing to do with color.”
Boston Orchestra to Honor Retiring Harpist BOSTON (AP) — Opening night for the Boston Symphony Orchestra featured a tribute to retiring harpist Ann Hobson Pilot, the orchestra’s first and only African American woman. Hobson Pilot retired this sum-
Ann Hobson Pilot
Martin Luther King Jr.
King Heirs Hold First Business Meeting Since 2004 ATLANTA (AP) — The surviving children of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. have met to formally discuss estate business for the first time in five years. Martin Luther King III, the Rev. Bernice King and Dexter King are the remaining heirs of their father’s estate, which is a privately held corporation. The siblings are in the midst of a legal feud, with Martin King and Bernice King claiming Dexter King has acted improperly as head of the estate. Fulton County Superior Court spokesman Don Plummer says all three appeared in a courtroom Sept. 28 for a closed-door shareholders meeting that had been ordered by a judge. The Kings last held an annual meeting to discuss the estate in 2004. Dexter King has also sued his sister over her handling of their mother’s estate, which Bernice King runs. See BRIEFS, page 12
L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
ARTS & CULTURE SHORT TAKES Movement and avant garde film making to make a dynamic scene,” a press release states. Numerous photographs from the era, with celebrities such as Louis Armstrong, John Coltrane and Billie Holiday, make up the exhibit, which also includes films by Harry Smith, who was an ethnomusicologist, archivist and beatnik during that time. CAAM is in Exposition Park at 600
BOOKS • “Barack Like Me: The Chocolate-Covered Truth,” by David Alan Grier, is scheduled to be released Oct. 6. The 256-page, hardcover book costs $24.99 and recalls significant experiences
Photos Courtesy of DINOSAURS OF THE FUTURE
from throughout Grier’s life, as the actor and comedian also expounds on what politics, culture and race mean today. Best known for his work on “In Living Color” and “Chocolate News,” Grier was trained in Shakespeare at Yale University and began his professional career on Broadway as Jackie Robinson in “The First,” for which he earned a Tony nomination in 1981. Grier will sign copies of the book Oct. 12, 7 p.m., at BordersWestwood, 1360 Westwood Blvd., Los Angeles; Oct. 13, 7 p.m., at Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood; and Oct. 14, 7 p.m., at Vroman’s Bookstore, 695 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. Information: www. simonandschuster.com. • “Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud,” a memoir by Cornel West, is scheduled to be released by Tavis Smiley’s SmileyBooks imprint Oct. 15. The book takes the reader along the journey of West’s youth in Sacramento as a “schoolyard Robin Hood” and through his near-fatal bout with prostate cancer, all the while reminding us why he is said to be one of America’s most provocative and admired public intellectuals. The 256-page hardcover book costs $25.95 and West is scheduled to sign copies of the book Oct. 7, 7
to 9:30 p.m., at Barnes and Noble at The Grove, 189 The Grove Drive, Los Angeles; and Oct. 9, noon to 2 p.m., at the Central Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 W. Fifth St., Los Angeles. These events are free and open to the public. Information: Barnes and Noble, (323) 525-0270; Central Library, (213) 228-7000.
CD • Jennifer Hudson, Donnie McClurkin and Mary Mary are just a few of the artists featured on “Gotta Have Gospel! 7,” recently released from Verity Records. The double CD features 26 tracks.
Many of the other stars in this collection include Tye Tribbett, Dave Hollister and Hezekiah Walker. And as an added bonus, Mary Mary’s “God In Me” music video is included. Information: www. verityrecords.com.
STANDOUTS — Paul J. Adams III (Center, back), founder of Providence St. Mel, and his students.
State Drive, Los Angeles. Admission to the museum is free but parking costs $8. Information: www.caamusuem.org, (213) 744-7432.
FILM SCREENING • Reel Talk with Stephen Farber is more than a preview series; it allows the film-going public the opportunity to sample what some believe are the best movies of the year and the chance to dialogue with the film makers and the stars of those films. The series began on Sept. 14 and on Oct. 19, “Skin,” starring Oscar nominee Sophie Okonedo, Sam Neill, and Alice Krige will screen at 7 p.m., at the Wadsworth Theatre, on the grounds of West L.A.’s Veterans Administration, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., building 226, Los Angeles. The film tells the story of the turmoil that ensues when a
Inner City School Gets ‘The Providence Effect’ BY DARLENE DONLOE CONTRIBUTING WRITER
At a time when America’s inner-city schools are reportedly the victim of budget cuts, high dropout rates, violence and consistent low test scores, there is a bright light in Illinois that is truly inspirational. Chicago’s Providence St. Mel used to be a failing inner-city school. That was 30 years ago. Today, Providence St. Mel is not only a thriving, model school, but for the last three decades, 100 percent of its African American graduates have gone to college. Yes, 30 years. 100 percent, African American students going to college. To the outside observer, those are fantastic, even miraculous achievements. It’s no big deal if you ask Paul Adams III. To him, it’s just the way
STUDIOUS — A Providence St. Mel student at work. Part of the mission statement that the students recite every day is “ … We believe in the creation of inspired lives produced by the miracle of hard work.”
it’s supposed to be. Adams is the founder of Providence St. Mel, an all-black parochial school on Chicago’s drugfueled, gang-ruled West Side. The story of his incredible success in producing a flourishing school is chronicled in the documentary “The Providence Effect: The See SCHOOL, page 11
EXHIBIT • “Harlem of the West: Jazz, Bebop and Beatnik,” currently on display at the California African American Museum until January 2010, celebrates San Francisco’s Fillmore District in the 1940s, ’50s and early ’60s, “where Bebop Jazz cross-pollinated with the Beat
black girl is born to white parents. Anthony Fabian, the director of the film, will be the guest speaker. This fall’s Reel Talk series is scheduled to run until Dec. 14. A series pass for Reel Talk with Stephen See SHORT TAKES, page 11
ALL SUCCESSFUL — A graduation ceremony at Providence St. Mel. For the past 30 years, the African American parochial school on the West side of Chicago has maintained a 100 percent college placement record.
Paul Adams III Talks to L.A. Watts Times on ‘Providence’ BY DARLENE DONLOE CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Paul Adams III is the founder of Chicago’s Providence St. Mel, an inner-city school on Chicago’s infamous westside. The nearly all-black school boasts a 30-year, 100 percent college placement record. The L.A. Watts Times asked Adams, 69, how he did it and how other schools could do the same. LAWT: What is your overall assessment of the nation’s schools? PA: In crisis. It is past a crisis. It’s almost a silent crisis. It’s almost like the wind, you know it’s there, but you don’t see it. Sooner
or later we’re going to have to talk about it. The debate needs to be one like the health reform. I wish there was more debate about the education of our children. You can feel the silence when you talk about education. I don’t think people care about education in the inner city. Why aren’t our children learning? Everyone passes the buck. LAWT: What will it take for everyone to start talking about it? PA: In Chicago, when they bury 100 students in the suburbs, we’ll start talking about it. LAWT: Since your program See ‘PROVIDENCE’, page 10
October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
ARTS & CULTURE Artists for a New South Africa (ANSA) celebrated its 20th anniversary with “Jabulani!”a night of music and performances at the Wiltern Theater on Sept. 22. The event was a fundraiser aimed to benefit ANSA’s work to continue the fight against HIV/AIDS, to advance human rights, safeguard voting rights, and assist and empower AIDS orphans and other at-risk youth in the United States and South Africa.
Holly Robinson-Peete and Hill Harper
Samuel L. Jackson and Robert Guillaume
Actress Victoria Rowell
Actor James Pickens Jr.
CCH Pounder, Morgan Freeman and ANSA Honoree Alfre Woodard
L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
ARTS & CULTURE
(top left photo; top right photo) Cuauhtemoc Mexica Dance, a dance troupe that specializes in pre-Columbian traditions
WATTS TOWERS gospel Continued from page 1
The Watts Towers. Simon Rodia, an Italian immigrant, began work on the towers in 1921.
invitation of the mayor’s office, she said. Festival organizers also honored the committee that bought the Watts Towers in 1959 for the purpose or renovating the landmark and preserving it as an art museum, Hooks said. The drum festival, hosted by masters of ceremonies Ndugu Chancler and James Jannisse, and co-produced by Munyungo Jackson, featured the Cuauhtemoc Mexica Dance, a combination of preColumbian, contemporary music, and dance in the ancient Mexica tradition; SHINE Mawusi, an allfemale drum and dance ensemble; Kishin Daiko, featuring Taiko drums; and authentic African drum and dance ensemble in the Guinea Djembe style by Balandugu Kan, among other features. The jazz festival featured
music performed by the Chambers Family singers and friends; music and poetry from Daa’ood and Trible as the Daa’ood Trible Project; contemporary jazz trombone group Bonesoir; Latin jazz performance by the Banda Brothers; and Woodson and the True School Band. “The performances were amazing and really inspiring,” said Nate Johnson of Los Angeles, who brought his two grandchildren to the drum festival. Tanya Jones of Gardena, who came to the drum festival with a group of friends, said she enjoyed the drumline challenge between Centennial and Washington High Schools. “It’s so great to see the youth taking part in something like this, something so peaceful,” Jones said. “Normally you don’t hear good things about Watts, so this goes a long way in showing this community’s positive side.”
A dancer and a West African stilt walker observe the scene at the drum festival. Japanese drum company Kishin Daiko, featuring Taiko drums. Photos by SAUNDRA WILLIS
‘PROVIDENCE’ Continued from page 8 works, why do you think other schools aren’t following your model? PA: Too much work. This is not some Miracle on 34th Street. We’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing. I’m paid to educate children. That’s what I do everyday. LAWT: How does an innercity school start to turn things around? PA: Hire smart people. Get the dummies out the classroom. You need smart people that understand your goal. We’re the only industry that doesn’t standardize anything. There has to be quality control within the school system. The quality should be the same in Watts as it is in Beverly Hills. Why should it be any different? LAWT: Do you think kids like rules and regulations? PA: All individuals like structure. People say that it’s too much pressure here. Would you like to
have four years of pressure or a lifetime? LAWT: What are some of your rules? PA: Rules are to follow the instruction of your teachers and the administration. Sit down, shut up and listen and do what we tell you to do. I used to give money to people who got on the honor roll. I gave $100 for an A and $50 for a B. I also used to give stock. I still give stock. A straight A gets three shares. B honor roll gets one share. LAWT: What kind of stock? PA: The stock is in McDonald’s. It becomes their stock after graduation. You’re teaching lessons. I’m meeting an objective. If you work hard there are rewards. LAWT: There are 525 students at Providence St. Mel. Can white students attend? PA: Absolutely. We have two there now. The mother of one of the white students teaches here. The other lives in the neighborhood. LAWT: You believe education
breaks the cycle of poverty? PA: If you look at education across all professions — it reduces poverty and the need for health care. Smart people help to solve problems. LAWT: What’s the mission statement the students say everyday? PA: ‘At Providence St. Mel, we believe. We believe in the creation of inspired lives produced by the miracle of hard work. We are not frightened by the challenges of reality, but believe that we can change our conception of this world and our place within it. So we work, plan, build, and dream — in that order. We believe that one must earn the right to dream. Our talent, discipline, and integrity will be our contribution to a new world. Because we believe that we can take this place, this time, and this people, and make a better place, a better time, and a better people. With God’s help, we will either find a way or make one.’
October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
EDUCATION NOTEBOOK UC Cuts Protested at Campus Rallies BERKELEY (AP) — University of California students, professors and other employees rallied Sept. 24 to protest deep budget cuts that have led to layoffs, furloughs, enrollment cuts, course reductions and higher fees. Rallies, teach-ins and class walkouts were held at all 10 system campuses, and a union representing technical and research workers held a one-day strike to protest stalled contract negotiations. Protesters say they are angry about state budget cuts to higher education and the UC administration’s handling of the financial crisis. The largest rally took place at UC Berkeley, where several thousand students, professors and employees crowded into Sproul Plaza. Many waved signs with slogans such as “Save our University” and “Reform UC Now.” At UCLA, some 300 students, faculty members and workers rallied in a plaza under the broiling sun. Protesters had signs reading, “We are students not ATMs, freeze the fees.” To address rising costs and a steep reduction in state funding, UC campuses have laid off hundreds of workers and forced most of their 180,000 employees to take furloughs and pay cuts of up to 10 percent. This month, the Board of Regents is expected to vote on reducing undergraduate enrollment and raising tuition by 32 percent for most students. That hike would follow a 9.3 percent fee hike approved in May.
Design for Sharing’s 40th Anniversary Opening Performance to Take Place Design for Sharing (DFS) will present Los Cenzontles, a Mexican roots band, at its 40th anniversary Oct. 2, 10:30 a.m., at 340 Royce Drive, Westwood. The nonprofit, which will observe its 40th anniversary, gives teachers, K-12 students and community members tickets to performing arts events. Information: (310) 825-7681, email@example.com.
Drinking Water Contains Toxins CUTLER, Calif. (AP) — Over the last decade, the drinking water at thousands of schools across the country has been found to contain unsafe levels of lead, pesticides, and dozens of other toxins. An Associated Press investigation found that contaminants have surfaced at public and private schools in all 50 states — in small towns and inner cities alike.
SHORT TAKES Continued from page 8 Farber (about 12 screenings) is $189. A series parking pass is available for $108. Individual tickets are available for $20 per screening. Information: (800) 982-2787.
FESTIVAL • The “4th Annual Shaping
The contamination is most apparent at schools with wells, which represent 8 to 11 percent of the nation’s schools. Roughly one of every five schools with its own water supply violated the Safe Drinking Water Act in the past decade, according to data from the Environmental Protection Agency analyzed by The AP. California, which has the most schools of any state, also recorded the most violations with 612, followed by Ohio (451), Maine (417), Connecticut (318) and Indiana (289). The most frequently cited contaminant was coliform bacteria, followed by lead and copper, arsenic and nitrates. “We want to make sure that we fix this problem in a way that it will never happen again, and we can ensure parents that their children will be safe,” said California Sen. Barbara Boxer, Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. In California, the Department of Public Health has given out more than $4 million in recent years to help districts overhaul their water systems.
Stimulus Watch: Teens Lack Jobs Despite Job Effort FRESNO (AP) — More than $1.2 billion in federal stimulus money was supposed to help teenagers find jobs this summer, but the effort barely made a dent in one of the bleakest job markets young workers have faced in more than 60 years. Vice President Joe Biden described the Workforce Investment Act summer program as a way to keep teens out of trouble and off the streets while reinvigorating the country’s summer youth employment program, which had gone dormant for a decade. Since the stimulus program began in May, almost one-quarter of the 279,169 youth enrolled in stimulus-funded work programs have not gotten jobs, according to the latest government figures. Now, as congressional investigators scrutinize the program for potential waste, experts are wondering why it couldn’t prevent youth unemployment rates from soaring to 18.5 percent in July, the highest rate measured among 16to 24-year-olds in that month since just after World War II. In California, which received about 16 percent of all funds nationwide, less than half the participants reported getting jobs by the end of July. To qualify for the one-time program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, job-seekers had to be 14 to 24 years old and from families living at or below the poverty line, or meet other income criteria.
Black Culture in the Diaspora: An Ark for the 21st Century” and the “2nd International African Diaspora Day” will be held Oct. 9 to 11 in various venues throughout Los Angeles, including Leimert Park and the Nate Holden Performing Arts Center. Co-sponsored by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, these
Smart Spending: 4 Ways to Save on School Uniforms BY MAE ANDERSON AP RETAIL WRITER
NEW YORK (AP) — Schoolapproved uniforms can be pricey, but there are ways around paying an arm and a leg for polo shirts and khaki slacks while still following the rules. Here are four tips for saving big as kids head back to the more than 15 percent of American public and private schools where student must wear uniforms: 1. Secondhand Some schools require parents shop at specific uniform stores, but others are flexible. And Laureen Miles Brunelli, a Baltimore mom who outfits her two daughters and son in uniforms each year, said thrift stores near the school often have what parents need. “The best way to find a deal for uniforms is to think outside the one path the school shows you,” said Brunelli, who writes a guide at About.com for mothers who work at home. Also try eBay, local exchange Web sites like Craigslist and other discount sites.
2. Talk it Up Brunelli says talking to other parents is key because they can clue you in on deals they find — and they may be willing to hand down their kids’ uniforms. “After your child grows out of them, they have no use to you, so most people are happy to pass them along,” she said. This strategy may work better for girls than boys, however. Brunelli’s daughters, ages 12 and 8, often wear their jumpers and skirts for more than one school year, while her 10-yearold son wears through his uniforms: “His get tossed at the end of the year.” 3. Shop Around If the uniforms you need are not very specialized, try shopping online or in person at regular stores, even discounters. Both Target Corp. stores and Gap Inc.’s Old Navy stores offer basic pieces at low prices. Mark Breitbard, executive vice president of merchandising and design at Old Navy, said demand for its uniform pieces
has been rising, and it is responding with greater selection. “We are taking the uniform more seriously every year,” he said. “We’ve seen more schools requiring uniforms.” Old Navy offers two or more polo shirts for $7.50 apiece and jumpers for $15. Some retailers offer greater variety in sizes and styles of uniforms online than they do in stores. 4. Exchange If your school or after-school group doesn’t have a uniform exchange program — which can simultaneously serve as a fundraiser and save parents money — consider starting one. Parents typically donate uniforms their kids can't use anymore and shop in a closet or a community member's basement for the next ones they need. On the Net: http://workathomemoms.about.com/; www.target.com/School-Uniformsids/b?node=12914011&ref=sr(und erscore)shorturl(underscore)schoo luniforms; http://oldnavy.gap.com/ browse/category.do?cid=5924.
Monica and AMC Magic Johnson Theatres Crenshaw 15. Running time: 92 minutes, rated PG for some mild thematic elements.
On the Donloe Scale, D (don’t bother), O (oh, no), N (needs work), L (likable), O (OK) and E (excellent), “The Providence Effect” gets an E (Excellent).
SCHOOL Continued from page 8 Amazing Story of An Inner City School,” set for a Los Angeles release Oct. 2. The award-winning documentary is the story of Providence St. Mel’s development and rise from a school that was barely functioning financially to one with a teaching technique that motivates students, parents, teachers and administrators. Adams strategy is simple: “do the work.” A strict disciplinarian with both his students and his staff, Adams, who graduated from predominantly black Alabama State in 1962 and earned a master’s degree in education at Northern Illinois University, is a no-nonsense kind of guy with stringent rules. This is an infectious, riveting documentary about the human spirit and what can be accomplished with old-school strategy. The bottom line is that Adams and his staff have created a plan that works. Students, whether current of former, have walked away with an exemplary education, bright prospects, great jobs and a sense of community. “The Providence Effect” is a documentary by Rollin Binzer. It’s a Slowhand Releasing in Association with Dinosaurs of the Future. It opens in Los Angeles Oct. 2, at Laemmle’s Monica 4-Plex in Santa events are designed to “foster awareness, appreciation, and network support of the creative and artistic talents of African Diaspora descendents,” a press release states. The three-day event will be comprised of workshops and panel discussions, film showings, theater and a party hosted by Immigrant Magazine. Information: (310) 880-6517.
• Strong Arts, P.E. and Technology Programs • Emphasis on Self-Reliance and Mutual Respect • Pre-K through 6th Grade • Challenging and Individualized Curriculum 3430 McManus Ave., Culver City, CA 90232 (310) 838-2442 • echohorizon.org
L.A. WATTS TIMES
October 1, 2009
HEALTH THE PULSE Meatpacker Used ‘Downer’ Cows for 4 Years
Charity Golf Tournament to Take Place
(AP) — A Southern California meatpacking plant that supplied beef to the nation’s school lunch program slaughtered potentially contaminated cows for four years before undercover video of animal abuse prompted a massive beef recall, federal court filings say. The amended complaint filed in August in U.S. District Court in Riverside is part of an ongoing civil lawsuit filed by The Humane Society of the United States against the Chino-based Westland/Hallmark Meat Co. The Humane Society released video in late 2007 showing “downer” cows — animals too weak or sick to walk — being dragged by chains, rammed by forklifts and sprayed with highpressure water by plant employees who wanted them to stand for processing. The video sparked the largest beef recall in U.S. history. Downer cows pose increased risk for mad cow disease, E. coli and other infections, because they typically wallow in feces.
Save Africa’s Children will hold its fourth annual Charity Golf Tournament Oct. 2, 9 a.m., at the Industry Hills Golf Club at Pacific Palms, One Industry Hills Parkway, Industry Hills. Proceeds will benefit education, clean water, nutrition and shelter programs for orphaned and vulnerable children affected by HIV/AIDS, poverty and war throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Information: (323) 733-1048, www.saveafricaschildren.org.
‘Well Body, Well Mind’ Health Fair Slated The Third Annual Well Body, Well Mind Health Fair will take place Oct. 3, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Rancho Cienega Park’s baseball field, 5001 Rodeo Road, Los Angeles. Co-sponsored by Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) and L.A. City Councilmember Herb Wesson, some of the free health services and onsite testing at the fair will include dental exams, diabetes checks and flu shots. Information: Shannon Murphy, (916) 319-2408.
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Testosterone Dose Response in Surgically Menopausal Women Principal Investigator: Matthew H. Ho, Ph.D., M.D. “Thank you for your interest in our research program. The purpose of this particular study is to find out the effects of testosterone, in women. Women who are post-menopause often have low testosterone levels in their blood. Some doctors recommend giving testosterone to women after menopause, but it is not clear whether this helps women health. This study may find out whether it is beneficial to replace testosterone in women who are post-menopause and therefore have low testosterone in their blood. This research study may also find out the most appropriate dose of testosterone that shows beneficial effects on women’s sex life, muscle and fat mass, physical function, and ability to solve some types of problems with the least amount of side effects. “We will measure the effects of testosterone on fat and muscle size, muscle strength, sexual desire and activity, and higher functions of the brain. Approximately 140 women will take part in this study that is approved and funded by the National Institutes of Health. The protocol of this study has also been reviewed and approved by our Institutional Review Board. “For this study, we are looking for women between the ages of 21 to 60, who are post-menopausal (either menopause occurred naturally with their ovaries intact or occurred surgically with their ovaries removed) and have had their uterus removed by surgery, and who do not have breast or uterine cancer. Do you meet these criteria?”
For information call (323) 357-3697 “If you are interested in obtaining more information about this study or taking part in this study, I can set up an appointment for you to come to our Clinical Study Center at Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science. During this visit, I will explain all the procedures in great detail, describe the risks and benefits involved, and answer any questions that you might have about this research study.”
Senate Finance Panel Rejects Govt Insurance Public Option BY DAVID ESPO AP WRITER
WASHINGTON (AP) — Liberal Democrats failed Sept. 29 to inject a government-run insurance option into sweeping health care legislation taking shape in the Senate Finance Committee, despite widespread accusations that private insurers routinely deny coverage in pursuit of higher profits. The 15-8 rejection marked a victory for Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., the committee chairman, who is hoping to push his middle-of-the-road measure through the panel by week’s end. It also kept alive the possibility that at least one Republican may yet swing behind the overhaul, a key goal of both Baucus and the White House. “My job is to put together a bill that gets to 60 votes” in the full Senate, the Montana Democrat said shortly before he joined a majority on the committee in opposing the provision. “No one shows me how to get to 60 votes with a public option,” the term used to describe a new government role in health care. It takes 60 votes in the 100member Senate to overcome delaying actions that Republicans may attempt. Undeterred, supporters of a new role for government in U.S. health
coverage immediately launched a new attempt to prevail. The maneuvering occurred as the committee plunged into a second week of public debate on legislation that generally adheres to conditions that President Barack Obama has called for. The bill includes numerous new consumer protections, including a ban on companies denying insurance on the basis of pre-existing conditions. At the same time it provides government subsidies to help lowerincome Americans afford insurance that is currently beyond their means. It also includes steps that supporters say will begin to slow the growth in health care costs nationwide. After weeks of delay, both the House and Senate appear on track to vote on different versions of health care legislation in October. Passage in both houses would set the stage for a compromise to be voted on deeper into the fall. Inside the Senate Finance Committee, the first effort to remake a key portion of the bill came from Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W. Va., who said his proposal was far from the government takeover of health care that critics portray. “It’s not. It’s optional,” he said,
Continued from page 7
Aid Flows to Samoas; Death Toll at 119
Moussa “Dadis” Camara may run in presidential elections scheduled for Jan. 31. Camara came to power in a coup last December, hours after Lansana Conte died. Camara initially said he would not run in the election, but has recently said he has the right to run if he chooses. The international community already has cut off aid and frozen Guinea’s membership in the African Union since the coup.
APIA, Samoa (AP) — The shaking was so violent that whole houses rocked back and forth. Then, minutes later, the massive waves of water that smashed villages and carried away people who screamed amid the roaring torrents. Disaster officials from across the South Pacific flew food, medicine and temporary morgues to the Samoas, where parties looked for survivors Sept. 30 after an 8.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami killed at least 119 people. Survivors fled to higher ground on the islands of Samoa and American Samoa after the quake struck Sept. 29. The residents then were engulfed by four tsunami waves 15 to 20 feet (4 to 6 meters) high that reached up to a mile (1.5 kilometers) inland.
James was quickly becoming a standout. By 1999, the “Fab Four” were in Florida playing in the AAU (11 and under) National Championship Tournament. It’s at those games that James first captures the attention of a national audience. When it came time to attend high school, naturally everyone in their neighborhood assumed the four black friends would attend the all-black school named Buchtel. However, Dru, who stood a little under 5 feet, chose to go to the all-white St. Vincent-St. Mary’s after head coach Keith Dambrot took interest in his game and was willing to give him some playing time. James, Cotton and McGee followed, as did Coach Dru, who became Dambrot’s assistant.
The “Fab-Four” boasted a 27-0 record and a state championship win helped by the pint-size Dru, who hit seven straight three pointers. Director Kristopher Belman began this documentary more than seven years ago as a school project and a tribute to his hometown of Akron. A film student at Loyola Marymount University at the time, Belman decided to chronicle the “Fab Four” after they became hometown celebrities. The documentary features home videos, family photographs, one-onone interviews and rare news footage of the team’s basketball games. To Belman’s credit, this is not a documentary with emphasis on the larger-than-life LeBron James. It’s an See LEBRON page 13
Guinea Soldiers Shoot Dead at Least 10 Protesters CONAKRY, Guinea (AP) — Soldiers fired into a crowded stadium where demonstrators had gathered to protest against the West African nation’s coup leader Sept. 28, killing at least 10 people, an Associated Press reporter said. Opposition parties had organized the protest in the capital’s main football stadium, which drew some 50,000 people. Demonstrators chanted “We want true democracy.” Red-bereted soldiers from the presidential guard later entered the stadium and fired into the crowd. An AP reporter counted at least 10 bodies. Tensions have risen amid rumors that military leader Capt.
LEBRON Continued from page 1 takes his role seriously. It all started in a little gym with a linoleum floor on Maple Street in Akron. It’s 1997, and although he’s inexperienced as a basketball instructor, Coach Dru, who sees himself as a father, mentor and friend to the boys, decides to take on the responsibility of leading his son’s traveling youth basketball team, The Shooting Stars. Soon the “Fab Four,” as they came to be known, were crisscrossing the Midwest beating teams with regional reputations and even national rankings. And, along the way, a skinny, smiley kid named LeBron
adding it was designed to offer competition and a lower-priced, reliable choice for consumers shopping for coverage. All 10 Republicans on the committee voted against the proposal to allow the government to compete directly with insurance companies, Sen. Olympia Snowe among them. Democrats are hoping the Maine lawmaker will eventually break ranks with her party and support the legislation. Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., backed an alternative approach that he said would introduce more competition into the insurance market nationwide. His version differed from Rockefeller’s chiefly in that it would have allowed for the government to negotiate payments with doctors, hospitals and other health care providers for an initial two-year period rather than pay them at the same rates as under Medicare. Republicans countered that the proposals would lead to the demise of the private insurance industry and result in a system that is completely run by the government. “Washington is not the answer,” declared Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah. Associated Press writer Erica Werner in Washington contributed to this story.
Cap. Moussa “Dadis” Camara
October 1, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
SPORTS BRAD PYE JR.
SPORTS BEAT Notes, quotes and things picked up on the run from coast-to-coast and all the stops in between and beyond. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim snagged its fifth American League West title in six years after trouncing the Texas Rangers 11-0 Sept. 28 in Angel Stadium. During the victory celebration, the Angels paid tribute to late pitcher Nick Adenhart, who was killed by a drunk driver in April. The Dodgers, on the other hand, failed to clinch the National League West title after losing 11-1 to the last place Pittsburgh Pirates Sept. 28. And the beat continuesâ€Ś Tough break for University of Southern California tailback and Dorsey High grad Stafon Johnson. He underwent throat surgery Sept. 28 after a bar fell on his neck during a bench-pressing session. At presstime, Johnson could not talk but was making hand signals, according to media reports. USC beat up on Washington State (27-6) Sept. 26 like Oregon did to Cal, 42-3. Cal will have to face some ferocious and victory-
LEBRON Continued from page 12 all-inclusive look inside the lives of all involved, including Jamesâ€™ struggling single mother, who moved him around more than 10 times; and McGee, who left his troubled home in Chicago to live with his brother in Akron; and Cotton, who wanted to cast a superstar shadow of his own out from under the one cast by his local-legend father. This is an intimate, voyeuristic view of the lives of six individuals who had a collective dream. â€œDonâ€™t ever let somebody tell you that your dream canâ€™t be reached and you canâ€™t make that dream become a reality,â€? said LeBron James at the filmâ€™s recent premiere.
CITY WORKERS Continued from page 6 about the academy. One effective way to learn about green job training and employment is to visit a green job fair. The Green Jobs Symposium and Job Fair recently took place in downtown, providing people access to employers that represented energy efficiency, solar power and other green industries, and presented information on the emerging green economy and job training opportunities. At least 1,100 job seekers had a chance to talk to more than 40 employers, work force development organizations and job training programs on site. Workshops allowed attendees an opportunity to interact with figures in the field and hear discussions on topics such as energy efficiency and weatherization training programs and careers in the green sector. Another green job event near L.A. is coming soon.
hungry Trojans. To move up in the polls, USC feels it will have to show up the Bears by a larger score than Oregon did. And the beat continuesâ€Ś If Mike Singletaryâ€™s San Francisco 49ers keep on winning (2-1), he should be the NFLâ€™s Coach
Can the 49ers Frank Gore keep on running for 79- and 80-yard TDs like he did Sept. 27 to lead his team to a 23-10 victory over the Seattle Seahawks? He was the first since Barry Sanders to run for two TDs of at least 75 yards in one game. New York Giants star Plaxico Burress, 32, has begun his two-year prison sentence in connection with a weapons-related charge. Will he be Tiger Woods
of the Year. Singletary is in his first full season as the 49ers head coach. Brett Favre threw the winning TD pass with two seconds to go Sept. 27 to help the Minnesota Vikings edge out the 49ers, 27-24.
as lucky as Michael Vick and resume his football career upon his release? I donâ€™t think so. DeSean Jackson, the Philadelphia Eaglesâ€™ star wide receiver from Cal, has now scored a TD of at least 60 yards in each of the Eagles first three games. This is a first in NFL history. And the beat continuesâ€Ś Will the four-team United Football League last? Weeknight games kick off on Oct. 8 on Versus. Ex-Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kordell Stewart will be one of the broadcasters. And the beat continuesâ€Ś Who says finishing second is bad? Tiger Woods finished three strokes behind Phil Mickelson, end-
â€œStrive for it and go get it.â€? â€œThis story needed to be told,â€? said Belman, who grew up five minutes from St. Vincent-St. Mary. â€œItâ€™s a story about friendship and a surrogate father. I think now more than ever, with the perception (of) male athletes and the perception of youth sports, I thought this could be a message film without beating people over the head with it. â€œItâ€™s entertainment, but at the same time you have a character like Coach Dru, who I think breaks a lot of stereotypes. Not just with coaches, but with how African Americans are portrayed and the male figure by the media and by movies. I thought he was an amazing figure. This could inspire people.â€?
James said the road to success wasnâ€™t easy. In fact, he said along the way there were some road bumps. â€œWhen I look at whatâ€™s happened, itâ€™s huge,â€? James said. â€œIt made me who I am today. There were definite struggles that came along with it, especially when youâ€™re not financially stable, your motherâ€™s not financially stable. So, itâ€™s a struggle, but it helps you become the man that you are later on in life.â€? Willie McGee, who has seen the film five times, said he thought itâ€™s â€œa blessingâ€? to have the movie made. â€œA lot of friends can refer back to their memories, but to put it in a movie and see and relive it again â€” there is nothing like it,â€? he said. James said while the story was
The Green Job Fair will take place Oct. 6, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Pasadena Convention Center, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena. Admission is free. Organizers are asking people who plan to attend to bring resumes and dress professionally. In addition, at the same location on Oct. 5, the summit will have a symposium called â€œBuilding Gateways to the Green Economyâ€? at 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.environmentalcareer.info/jobseekers/eventdetails. It is vital that you actively, in your neighborhood and city, protect the environment and ensure L.A.â€™s green future. So, to improve quality of life here in the City of Angels, learn about L.A.â€™s green future, train for green jobs, and work closely with your local leaders to help keep our neighborhoods thriving, environmentally and economically. Keep in mind, â€œWhen the people lead, the leaders follow.â€?
ing up in second place at the Tour Championship. On the basis of winning six tournaments this year, Woods collected the $10 million bonus for clinching the FedEx Cup championship. Mickelson earned $1.35 million for winning the tour title and a $3 million bonus. The Sporting News named Kobe Bryant the NBAâ€™s Player of
the Decade. The publication also named Bryant to the All-Decade First team. Steve Nash, Tim Duncan, LeBron James and Shaquille Oâ€™Neal were named to the team as well. Major League Baseball legends Frank Robinson, Don Newcombe, Al Downing and Reggie Smith, along with Ambassador Andrew Young, came to Compton Sept. 30 to demonstrate baseballâ€™s commitment to civil rights. During the event, revitalization plans were announced for Jackie Robinson Stadium. Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and Angels owner Arte Moreno also participated. And the beat ends. Brad Pye Jr. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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being documented, he didnâ€™t realize its importance or the impact it would have later on in his life. â€œI was just living my life, baby,â€? he said. â€œIt donâ€™t matter how important it was to anybody else. But now to be able to go back and look at your life in a different form, itâ€™s great.â€? â€œMore Than A Gameâ€? is a moving documentary every aspiring athlete should see. The movie, which comes out Oct. 2 in Los Angeles, is rated PG for brief mild language and incidental smoking. Running time: 102 minutes. On the Donloe Scale, D (donâ€™t bother), O (oh, no), N (needs work), L (likable), O (Outstanding) and E (excellent), â€œMore Than A Gameâ€? gets an E (Excellent).
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