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History-making all-woman LA County Board of Supervisors unveils group photo
12/9/2020 4:55:45 PM

LOS ANGELES—The Executive Office of the Board of Supervisors unveiled the official photo featuring an all-women Board of Supervisors for the first time since the Board’s inception in 1852. The official Board photo features newly elected Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell who will represent the Second District, a position previously held by Mark Ridley-Thomas for 12 years. It also features Supervisor Hilda L. Solis front and center as she will lead the Board in the coming year as Chair. “This is history—or, better yet, herstory,” said Chair of the Board Hilda...

NATIVITY: Birth of a King dance drama to stream for holidays
12/9/2020 4:51:05 PM

“NATIVITY: Birth of a King” is a spectacular and moving dance drama that unveils the events surrounding the birth of Jesus Christ through the artistic expression of dance and stirring gospel music. This joyous drama has long been an annual must-see event for those in the greater New York City area and is being offered as a streaming event for the first time giving a wider audience the opportunity to enjoy this wonderfully presented stage production with over 100 cast members. Beautifully captured in high-resolution video with all of its costume pageantry and wonder, NATIVITY is a...

Coronavirus takes toll on Black, Latino child care providers
12/9/2020 4:41:52 PM

By Christine Fernando   INDIANAPOLIS (AP)—When Mary De La Rosa closed her toddler and preschool program in March because of the coronavirus pandemic, she fully expected to serve the 14 children again some day. In the end, though, Creative Explorers closed for good. It left the families to search for other care options—and the three teachers to file for unemployment benefits. “We kept trying to find a way,” said De La Rosa, who is of Mexican and Egyptian descent. “But eventually we realized there wasn't one.” The story of De La...

A unique recipe for healing: Bill Murray and a biblical text
12/9/2020 4:37:40 PM

By Elana Schor and Andrew Welsh-Huggins   ZOOM, USA—Against the backdrop of a pandemic's blight and wounds from an acrimonious election, a group of acclaimed actors on Sunday will stage an online reading of a religious text with remarkable relevance to the current moment: the Book of Job. Audience members may be drawn to the production by the casting of Bill Murray as Job, the righteous man tested by the loss of his health, home and children, but the real star is the format. Staged on Zoom, it's aimed at Republican-leaning Knox County, Ohio, with participation from...

California monolith pops up after finds in Utah, Romania
12/9/2020 4:34:39 PM

LOS ANGELES (AP)—Days after the discovery and swift disappearance of two shining metal monoliths half a world apart, another towering structure has popped up and then quickly vanished, this time from the pinnacle of a trail in California. After photos were posted on social media, the tall, silver metallic structure drew hikers to the top of the Pine Mountain trail in an Atascadero park, halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, KEYT-TV reported Wednesday. The 3-sided, 10-foot-tall, 200-pound monolith was similar to two others discovered recently in the Utah desert and in...

In seismic shift, Warner Bros. to stream all 2021 films
12/9/2020 4:33:02 PM

By Jake Coyle   NEW YORK (AP)—In the most seismic shift by a Hollywood studio yet during the pandemic, Warner Bros. Pictures on Thursday announced that all of its 2021 film slate—including a new “Matrix” movie, “Godzilla vs. Kong” and the Lin-Manuel Miranda adaptation “In the Heights”—will stream on HBO Max at the same time the films play in theaters. Among the myriad release plan changes wrought by the pandemic, no studio has so fully embraced streaming as a lifeline. But after disappointing domestic ticket sales for...

Health officials warn Americans not to let their guard down
12/9/2020 4:29:40 PM

By Stephen Groves   WASHINGTON, DC—With a COVID-19 vaccine perhaps just days away in the U.S., most of California headed into another lockdown Sunday because of the surging outbreak and top health officials warned Americans that this is no time to let their guard down. “The vaccine's critical,” Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said on NBC's “Meet the Press.” “But it's not going to save us from this current surge. Only we can save us from this current surge.” A Food and Drug Administration...

Coronavirus, depleted GOP shape new California Legislature
12/9/2020 4:21:48 PM

By Don Thompson   SACRAMENTO (AP)—Democrats will begin their second half-century of dominating California's Legislature on Monday, when lawmakers reconvene for the first time since last month's election. The party has held continuous control of the Senate since 1970, while giving up their majority in the Assembly for just two years since then, in 1995 and 1996. Republicans in November lost two of their 11 senators in the 40-member Senate, leaving Democrats 75% of the seats in both legislative chambers and a comfortable cushion over the two-thirds supermajorities...

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...