Story of the
GLOBAL AFRICAN DIASPORA
THE BOOK OF RABBINICALS
COP BEATING KILLS MAN
HORRIFIC COP BEATING IGNITES NATIONAL OUTRAGE
Memphis authorities released video footage showing Tyre Nichols being beaten by police officers who held the Black motorist down and repeatedly striking him with their fists, boots, and batons as he screamed for his mother. The horrific beating set off protests across the nation. Locally, protesters surrounded parked police cars near the Los Angeles Police Department headquarters in downtown LA, banging on them. and smacking windows. https://wreg.com/news/local/tyre-nichols/tyre-nichols-video-released-by-memphis-police/ (Read more)
Murder, carnage, tragedy rule the roost in LA County
LOS ANGELES COUNTY (CNS)—Authorities Feb. 2, were still seeking the public's help to find the person who fatally shot a man in an alley in Long Beach. Officers were sent to the 700 block of Broadway Court about 5:55 p.m. Wednesday on a report that multiple gunshots were heard in the area, according to the Long Beach Police Department.
"Upon arrival, officers located a male adult victim suffering from gunshot wounds to his upper body," police said in a statement. The wounded man died at a hospital, police said. His name was withheld, pending notification of his relatives.
"Detectives determined that an unknown male suspect approached the victim as he was in the alley,"
'police said. "The suspect fired multiple gunshots toward the victim, striking him (and) resulting in the victim's death. Detectives do not believe the incident was random. However, the investigation to deter-
mine the motive for the shooting remains under investigation."
Anyone with information on the case was urged to call detectives at (562) 570-7244, or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS. Tipsters may also use the website lacrimestoppers.org.
Meanwhile, elsewhere, authorities have identified a man whose body was found on a freeway onramp in Mission Hills. The California Highway Patrol received a call about 7:45 a.m. Jan. 31 from the Los Angeles Police Department regarding a road closure for a death investigation at the Sepulveda Boulevard on-ramp to the eastbound Ronald Reagan (118) Freeway, according to the CHP.
"Due to the initial investigation by LAPD, the incident was determined to be a homicide that occurred on state property," according to a CHP statement. "The deceased is an adult male in his 50s."
On Feb. 2, the man was identified by the LA County coroner's office as 59-year-old James Anthony Swist, whose city of residence was not known. An autopsy was pending to determine his cause of death.
Anyone with information on the case was urged to contact the CHP's Southern Division Major Crimes Unit at (323) 644-9550 or the Los Angeles Communication Center at (323) 259-3200.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the county, a drive-by shooting in South LA left five victims wounded, Wednes- day, Feb. 1, authorities said. Los Angeles Police Department officers responded to a shots fired call at 9:31 p.m. Wednesday to 711 E. 108 St. west of Avalon Boulevard where witnesses told them the victims were standing outside a location when a vehicle drove by and fired several shots at the victims, accord- ing to an LAPD spokeswoman.
A 31-year-old man and two 15-year old boys were taken to a hospital in stable condition and two 18-year old men were treated at the scene. There was no suspect description and it is unknown if the shooting was gang-related, police said.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the county, two pedestrians died of their injuries after being hit by motorists. The first victim, identified as Noe Mira, 58, was killed walking near the interchange from the westbound Glenn Anderson (105) Freeway and the Harbor (110) Freeway.
The collision was reported at 11:41 p.m. Monday and California Highway Patrol officers responded to the freeway interchange near the Central Avenue exit where they learned the pedestrian had been hit by a red Honda Civic and was in the slow lane, said CHP Officer Patrick Kimball.
Mira was identified Feb. 2 by the LA County Coroner's office. She was certified dead at the scene, and died of multiple blunt force trauma. It was not immediately known if the driver of the Honda remained at the scene.
In the second traffic death, a 68-year-old woman who died after she was struck by a white van while she stood outside her car in the Antelope Valley was identified Feb. 2 by the Los Angeles County Coroner's office as Elsa Guzman of Riverside.
Guzman was standing outside of her disabled 2004 Toyota on Tuesday at Avenue J and 200th Street East when a 2011 Ford van traveling west on Avenue J struck her, said CHP officer Monique Mischeaux.
Guzman was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the van, a Barstow resident, remained at the scene and is cooperating with the investigation, Mischeaux said.
Anyone with information regarding this collision was asked to call the Antelope Valley Area CHP office at (661) 948-8541.
In Venice, another life was tragically lost, not from street gang mayhem or reckless driving, but from the unsafe use of propane gas. A man in his 70s who appeared to be homeless was found dead inside a vehicle in Venice with several small camping-style propane bottles.
Firefighters were called 8:42 p.m. to 601 Venice Blvd., near Abbott Kinney Boulevard, regarding a person suffering from a medical condition and upon their arrival, found the man, said Los Angeles Fire Depart- ment spokesman Nicholas Prange.
The victim had been trying to stay warm in an enclosed space using a propane-powered heat lamp, Prange said.
The man was pronounced dead at the scene from accidental asphyxiation, as the propane bottles had been leaking, Prange said.
Hazmat personnel were called to the scene to investigate after the propane bottles were discovered.
Council vetoes denial of South LA hotel permit
LOS ANGELES (CNS)—The City Council today vetoed the denial of a permit for a 168-room Marriott Hotel in South Los Angeles, sending the matter back to the South Los Angeles Area Planning Commission for reconsideration and to the council's planning commit- tee for further review.
Dawson, Hutt side with developer against more affordable housing
The proposed seven-story building would be located on a 34,000 square foot, city-owned site that has been vacant since 2010. It was formerly the site of the Bethune Library, and is located near USC.
The council voted 12-1 for the veto, with Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez dissenting.
In 2019, the City Council entered into an agreement with a developer to build the Marriott on the site. But the local planning commission last month sided with the city's zoning administrator in denying a condi- tional use permit and site plan review amid concerns that the lot should be used to provide affordable housing.
Several public speakers voiced opposition to the hotel to the council.
"In the midst of a citywide housing crisis, we should be thinking about the tenants and residents of our city and specifically South LA," said Jessica Melendez, director of policy with TRUST South LA. "We should not be using this valuable public land for corporate development projects like luxury hotels, which would continue to gentrify and displace communities."
Glafira Lopez, community organizer with Strategic Actions for a Just Economy, told the council that "most importantly, community members have voted no" on a hotel being built on public land.
"Repeatedly, we have heard from community members that this hotel will not benefit them," Lopez said. "It will bring more gentrification to the communities that are already overwhelmed with development that is causing gentrification."
Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who represents the area and is chair of the council's Planning and Land Use Committee, filed a motion seeking for the council to "assert jurisdiction" over the local planning commission's action. The motion, cited by fellow council and committee member Heather Hutt,
claimed the project would "propel further economic development," and that the developer was selected following a "highly competitive" process.
The council members said the project is anticipated to generate jobs, tax revenue and a ``community benefits package.'' They sought council action to ensure "community input is obtained, and concerns are thoroughly addressed."
Henry Fan with Orion Capital, the developer of the project, told the council that the company does not deny the need for or oppose affordable housing in Los Angeles.
"But what we believe in is that developing an economic asset like a hotel will stimulate commerce up and down the Vermont corridor and provide people with jobs," Fan said.
Fan added that economic development is necessary for keeping people housed and off the street, and that the proposed project has received support from local businesses around the area.
Harris-Dawson, later addressing the public opposition, said that this was the "rare occasion'' that he would stand up "in defense of a private commercial development over affordable housing."
"Many people have raised the question or asserted that because this is publicly owned land, that the only thing that should go there is affordable housing,'' Harris-Dawson said.
The councilman contended that the Eighth District already has as much or more affordable housing as every other district, and that the Marriott presented an opportunity for the district to ``remove itself from an extremely short list of council districts in the city of Los Angeles that do not have a single union hotel."
"A hotel is one of the things that not only creates permanent jobs, but it creates permanent community benefits for a neighborhood that sorely lacks them," Harris-Dawson said. "Even though they bear all of the brunt of having these tourist destinations right in the heart of their neighborhood."
State rings in 2023 with raft of new laws
SACRAMENTO (CN)—Emerging into the new year, Californians will see historic new laws take effect that range from tackling climate change to protecting workers’ pay and women’s right to reproductive health care.
"California leads, and we do so by following our moral compass and staying true to our values," Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a statement Dec. 9.
The governor positioned California as a leader in advocating for women’s health and freedom to choose, adding the statewide constitutional amendment Proposition 1 to the ballot which the majority of voters approved. Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan’s bill Assembly Bill 1242 prohibits law enforcement and California corporations from cooperating with or providing information to out-of-state entities regarding a lawful abortion performed in California. It also prohibits law enforcement from knowingly arresting a person for aiding a lawful abortion in California.
Quita Tinsley Peterson, interim executive director of ACCESS Reproductive Justice in California, said AB 1242 and Proposition 1 ensure the work for reproductive rights can benefit not only state residents, but visitors seeking health care "in the face of such harsh criminalization of abortion and targeting of abortion access."
"People have been really been paying attention to abortion access in the country this year because of the overturning of Roe v. Wade and as states across the country are starting to implement their abortion bans —and in some cases even worsen their bans," Tinsley Peterson said.
The California Future of Abortion Council has released recommendations for the next legislative session and noted that as of Nov. 13, states had total abortion bans in effect—eight with pre-viability gestational limits and five with bans temporarily blocked by court challenges. The council and state Attorney General Rob Bonta say that about a third of people who can become pregnant live in a state where abortion is not legal or is severely restricted.
"It’s a very scary time in the U.S. around abortion access, but for Californians, I want folks to remember that advocates, organizations, reproductive leaders on the ground and providers have been working really hard to ensure that abortion access in California is solidified and expanded for folks living here and folks traveling here," Peterson said. "Don’t get lost in the despair; here in California we’re doing everything we can to make sure folks have the care they want and need."
Artists will have stronger protections over their work in California under Assembly Bill 2799, which restricts the use of creative content like song lyrics and music videos against artists by requiring judges in criminal proceedings to balance the probative value of creative content as evidence against the "substantial danger of undue prejudice."
The bill also requires a court to consider that undue prejudice includes the possibility that creative expres- sion could be treated as evidence of a defendant's propensity for violence, as well as the possibility that the evidence will inject racial bias into the proceedings.
Women purchasing necessities from razors to sanitary products will no longer pay more for goods mar- keted to them that are similar to others—known as "the pink tax." Assembly Bill 1287 prohibits anyone from charging a different price for goods marketed to women.
The state’s sidewalk street vendors now have an easier route to obtain health permits with Senate Bill 972. Newsom said the bill not only increases community health and safety, it also helps vendors formally enter the economy to build their business and provide for their families.
With the passage of Senate Bill 1322, California now requires oil companies to post how much money they’re making off of residents on their websites.
And Senate Bill 1162 is designed to close the pay gap for many workers by expanding existing transpar- ency laws, which mandate pay data reporting by employee gender, race and ethnicity.
"California has the strongest equal pay laws in the nation, but we’re not letting up on our work to ensure all women in our state are paid their due and treated equally in all spheres of life," said Newsom. "These measures bring new transparency to tackle pay gaps, end discriminatory pricing of products based on gender and expand supports for survivors of abuse and assault."
Assemblymember Cristina Garcia, a Democrat from Bell Gardens and chair of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus, said the Covid-19 pandemic spurred lawmakers to action.
"The reality is that these issues existed long before the pandemic, but the pandemic further exacerbated and highlighted the work we need to do to lift up all women, especially low-income women of color, and has given us a greater sense of urgency," she said.
Assembly Bill 1705 requires community colleges to enroll students in transfer-level math and English courses if the program they want to transfer into requires it. The new law aims to remove barriers to degree completion and help students meet academic and career goals.
Senate Bill 1183 looks to ensure that children in California from ages 0-5 will be able to sign up for free books in both English and Spanish from Dolly Parton’s “Imagination Library” program.
And California will begin celebrating new state holidays in honor of its diverse communities. In 2023, Lunar New Year, Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day and Juneteenth will be state holidays.
Carl Luna, director at University of San Diego’s Institute for Civil Civic Engagement, said in an interview that while California made incremental changes in 2022 on homelessness, climate protection and income inequality, "there was nothing fundamentally earthshaking this year."
"Newsom is staking himself out as a bit of a neo-Jerry Brown, blocking/tempering the more progressive/left inclinations of a state legislature dominated by Democrats, positioning himself as moderate pragmatist," Luna said. "That precludes transformative/bold new actions."
Luna pointed to wealthy countries in Europe and Asia making bolder moves to try to eliminate home lessness with a constitutional right to housing. He said California could start addressing income inequality by passing fundamental corporate reform, reining in Big Oil and corporations, requiring workers and communities to be represented on corporate boards, enforcing windfall profit laws and working with the feds to weaken monopolies “that call California home.”
“That, however, would require political risk-taking, in a California where senior elected officials are the advancement conveyor belt,” Luna said. “So look to 2023 to move the needle incrementally on critical issues as well, but look to after 2024 for anything truly status quo-shaking to emerge.”
Weather Forecast by the numbers
Cold weather in parts
of Los Angeles County
January 24, 2023
LOS ANGELES (MNS)—The Los Angeles County Health Officer is issuing a Cold Weather Alert due to the National Weather Service’s forecast for low temperatures. Wind chill temperatures are expected to be below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Affected areas include:
-- Lancaster (Antelope Valley) – Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 to Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023
-- Mount Wilson (LA County Mountains) – Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 to Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023
-- Santa Clarita Valley – Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 to Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023; and again on Friday, January 27, 2023
-- Pomona (East San Gabriel Valley) – Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 to Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023
"Children, the elderly, and people with disabilities or special medical needs are especially vulnerable during cold weather. Extra precaution should be taken to ensure they don’t get too cold when they are outside," said Muntu Davis, M.D.,, Los Angeles County Health Officer. "There are places where people can go to stay warm, such as shelters or other public facilities. We also want to remind people not to use stoves, barbeques or ovens to heat their homes due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning."
Take precautions to protect yourself from the cold:
Dress in layers of warm clothing if you plan to be outdoors.
Protect head, hands and feet from the cold by wearing a hat, scarf, gloves, and socks.
Check on and help family members, friends and neighbors with limited mobility and limited access to heat, such as seniors or those who are ill. Check on them frequently.
If you have pets, bring them indoors and do not leave them outside overnight.
Take shelter during peak cold times:
The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority has a Winter Shelter Program available for those who need shelter. Locations and transportation information are online at www.lahsa.org or by calling the LA County Information line at 2-1-1 from any landline or cell phone.
People exposed to cold weather for prolonged periods can lose body heat and develop hypothermia. Symp- toms vary depending on how long you are exposed to cold temperatures. Early symptoms of hypothermia include: shivering, fatigue, loss of coordination, and confusion and disorientation. Late symptoms of hypo- thermia include: no shivering, blue skin, dilated pupils, slowed pulse and breathing, and loss of consciousness.
People exposed to extremely cold weather conditions, such as places where it snows and where freezing occurs, may be at risk of frostbite. Frostbite is a bodily injury caused by freezing that results in loss of feeling and color in affected areas. The most common affected areas are the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes. Gently warm the person and seek immediate medical care if you believe someone is showing signs of hypothermia or frostbite.
Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning when heating your home:
Only use approved heaters, such as electric or natural gas heaters and fireplaces. Never use stoves, barbecues and ovens to heat your room or home, as these appliances can produce a deadly gas known as carbon monoxide that can collect inside your home.
Install a carbon monoxide detector in your home to reduce the risk of poisoning.
If you use an outdoor generator at home, place it at least 10 feet away from all doors and windows to avoid exhaust gases entering the home.
Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause shortness of breath, headaches, muscle and joint pain, and nausea. Exposure to high levels of carbon monoxide could lead to death within minutes. Those suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning should be taken outside, into fresh air, immediately, and should be taken to an emergency room for immediate medical treatment.
Los Angeles County residents and business owners, including people with disabilities and others with access and functional needs may also call 2-1-1 or visit www.211la.org for emergency preparedness information and other referral services 24 hours a day and seven days a week. For the deaf and hard of hearing, call the TDD line at 1-800-660-4026.