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Jeezy evolves from 'Trap or Die' mantra to empowerment
12/3/2020 4:30:10 PM

By Gary Gerard Hamilton   ATLANTA, GA—Self-improvement can be a difficult journey. It's often an arduous process that takes time to work through and move toward. But Jeezy, who burst onto the national music scene in meteoric fashion 15 years ago with his accounts of street life and drug dealing, is relaying a new message on his latest album: Evolving is not only possible, but necessary. “Everything that I ever wrote or spoke on was about evolution. It was about evolving. And that's a clear message,” the Atlanta emcee said. “I never wanted to stay...

Key question in Cosby appeal: Does defendant's past matter?
12/3/2020 4:15:50 PM

By MaryClaire Dale   PHILADELPHIA (AP)—In 2016, as Bill Cosby's legal team prepared for trial in his stunning sexual assault case in Pennsylvania, the state Supreme Court quietly heard a death row inmate's appeal. Lawyers for Charles Hicks questioned whether three women who said he had beaten and choked them in Texas should have testified at his trial in a fourth woman's death in the Pocono Mountains. Prosecutors hoped to show a pattern of “strikingly similar” conduct, even if only one woman died. The seven Supreme Court justices issued five...

Dave Prowse, actor who played Darth Vader, dies at 85
12/3/2020 4:13:32 PM

By Jill Lawless   LONDON (AP)—Dave Prowse, the British weightlifter-turned-actor who was the body, though not the voice, of arch-villain Darth Vader in the original “Star Wars” trilogy, has died. He was 85. Prowse died Saturday after a short illness, his agent Thomas Bowington said Sunday. Born in Bristol, southwest England, in 1935, Prowse was a three-time British weightlifting champion and represented England in weightlifting at the 1962 Commonwealth Games before breaking into movies with roles that emphasized his commanding size, including...

Americans face new COVID-19 restrictions after Thanksgiving
12/3/2020 3:59:08 PM

By Tammy Webber and Daisy Nguyen   THE PLAGUELAND—Americans returning home from Thanksgiving break faced strict new coronavirus measures around the country Monday as health officials brace for a disastrous worsening of the nationwide surge because of holiday gatherings over the long weekend. Los Angeles County imposed a stay-at-home order for its 10 million residents, and Santa Clara County, in the heart of Silicon Valley, banned high school, college and professional sports and decreed a quarantine for those who have traveled more than 150 miles outside the county. In...

Beware of COVID-19 scams as vaccine approaches FDA approval
12/3/2020 3:57:09 PM

By Colleen Long   WASHINGTON (AP)—The coronavirus vaccine inching toward approval in the U.S. is desperately anticipated by weary Americans longing for a path back to normal life. But criminals are waiting, too, ready to use that desperation to their advantage, federal investigators say. Homeland Security investigators are working with Pfizer, Moderna and dozens of other drug companies racing to complete and distribute the vaccine and treatments for the virus. The goal: to prepare for the scams that are coming, especially after the mess of criminal activity this year with...

Pandemic school closures altering students’ entire lives, researchers say
11/25/2020 4:58:39 PM

LOS ANGELES—Children whose educations have been disrupted by the pandemic, even for as little as two to four months, may suffer life-long consequences, including shorter life spans, according to a study released Tuesday by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. A total of 24.2 million children between the ages of 5 and 11 attended American public schools that were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, losing roughly 54 days of instruction, according to the study that looked at how lost time in the classroom can negatively impact the life expectancy for boys and girls, in...

California officials issue dire warnings about virus spread
11/25/2020 4:57:30 PM

By Brain Melley and Christopher Webber   LOS ANGELES (AP)—Los Angeles County supervisors voted Tuesday against allowing restaurants to remain open for dining during a surge in coronavirus cases that has the nation’s most populous county on the brink of a stay-home order just days ahead of Thanksgiving. In a 3-2 vote, the board rejected a motion to let restaurants continue to serve meals outdoors at reduced capacity, despite a plea from owners that a closure was unwarranted and would crush their businesses. The county crossed a threshold for issuing a new stay-home...

Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital receives $500,000 BofA grant to train and hire more healthcare professionals in South L.A.
11/25/2020 4:55:55 PM

LOS ANGELES—To help meet the increased demand for highly-trained nurses and essential healthcare workers in medically-underserved areas like South Los Angeles, Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH) announced it has received a half million dollar grant from Bank of America to expand its healthcare worker career programs. The two-year grant—the largest philanthropic gift Bank of America has provided to a healthcare organization in South Los Angeles—will enable MLKCH to train and hire more than 200 new health care professionals including nurse residents, nurse...

Carol Burnett puts variety, and music, back in her show
11/25/2020 4:52:12 PM

By Andrew Dalton   LOS ANGELES (AP)—Carol Burnett is so glad we had this time together, as she sang in her signature song. Now, she's added a lot more time, and a lot more songs, to be glad about. Since its original run from 1967 to 1978, most viewers have only seen heavily chopped versions of “The Carol Burnett Show,” and many fans had no idea that singing and dancing were an essential part of a series that was actually more classic variety show than modern comedy sketch show. “What we were doing in essence was kind of like a Broadway musical revue...

BTS says new album 'BE' is a 'letter of hope'
11/25/2020 4:30:56 PM

By Juwon Park   SEOUL (AP)—K-pop band BTS on Friday released their highly anticipated new album, which they described as a “letter of hope.” The band held a socially distanced news conference in Seoul to unveil “BE,” their second album this year. It includes their English-language hit “Dynamite,” which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the first time ever for a South Korean group. Dozens of Seoul-based journalists went through two temperature checks, a health registry and a disinfectant spray before entering the venue amid a surge...