Handing out Abercrombie clothes to shame a self-absorbed brand
Recent USC graduate Greg Karper, along with a friend, has taken to the street of Los Angeles to voice his disgust with comments from Abercrombie Chief Executive Michael S. Jeffries that have recently resurfaced.
“Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”
To counter that “exclusionary” bend, Karper has purchased bundles of used Abercrombie clothes to hand out to the homeless of L.A., and is hoping that more people will do the same.
Global May Day demonstrations
Today’s May 1, a date traditionally assigned for workers-rights groups and proponents to gather and march for their cause. Whether it be improved working conditions and wages in Asia or protesting austerity measures in Europe, demonstrators are making their grievances heard today across the world.
And that, of course, includes Los Angeles.
Photos: Mario Tama, Aris Messinis, Jalin Jalin, Josep Lago, Martin Bernett / AFP/Getty Images, Sebastiao Moreira / EPA, Luis Hidalgo / Associated Press
It’s been four years since the efforts to overrule California’s Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage, began. Then, it seemed like an impossible challenge, but now, with public opinion vastly shifting in favor of gay marriage, the possibility of the court ruling against Prop. 8 seems likely.
From David G. Savage and Maura Dolan’s preview of the arguments scheduled to begin tomorrow:
The conventional wisdom among legal experts is that the court will stop short of declaring that gays and lesbians have a right to marry nationwide. A narrow ruling voiding Proposition 8 would bring gay marriage to California, but it would not force a change in states where strong opposition to the idea remains.
Photos: Emmanuel Dunand / AFP/Getty Images,
The colorful house opposing the Westboro Baptists
The Westboro Baptist Church has become synonymous with hate-filled and derogatory language, with publicity-grabbing stunts protesting everything from gay marriages, Catholicism to military funerals - making them an open target for activist Aaron Jackson.
Jackson, looking at the area surrounding the church, was shocked to discover that there were houses for sale right across the street, prompting him to create an “Equality House,” which will serve in direct contrast to the church’s message, and house a new anti-bullying initiative.
From veteran Mike McKessor, who painted the house:
“Every neighbor that I encountered was so happy, and everybody was smiling when they go by,” McKessor said, with a chuckle. “It was on a busy street, and everybody slowed down and took pictures. I’m not exaggerating. Dang near every car stopped and said, ‘Good job! Good job!’ … I’ve never had people so happy for painting a house.”
Photo: Planting Peace
Obama’s first presidential visit to Israel
Amid the accolades for the “eternal” relationship between the U.S. and Israel, the tours of the Iron Dome defense system and the planting of a tree at the house of Israeli President Shimon Peres, both Palestinians and Israelis continue their protests against Obama’s trip.
Photos: Abed Al Hashlmoun / EPA, Bernat Armangue, Mohammed Ballas Associated Press Mahmud Hams / AFP/Getty Images
A true-to-life, old fashioned filibuster
Endless arguments? A litany of contentions? Republican backup? Sen. Rand Paul’s filibuster has it all. The libertarian-leaning senator has taken to the floor to block the nomination of John Brennan to lead the CIA, using his time in the spotlight to bring attention to the policy of targeted killings of American citizens suspected of terrorism.
From Paul’s remarks:
“Are we so complacent with our rights that we would allow a president to say he might kill Americans?” Paul asked. “No one person, no one politician should be allowed … to judge the guilt of an individual and to execute an individual. It goes against everything we fundamentally believe in our country.”
Ignore the lame so-called “snowquester.” This is the real story in Washington today.
Photo: Associated Press
Aaron Swartz’s memory lives on
This week, the New Yorker joined up with a number of outlets who have tried to understand the now-famous Internet activist and pioneer, a group that includes, Slate, New York magazine, Rolling Stone, the Atlantic and your very own L.A. Times.
From journalist Matt Pearce, who has been covering Swartz since his death:
Swartz was, put simply, a lot of things to very many people, and his death amid the federal criminal prosecution accusing him of improperly downloading millions of academic articles has inspired a flourishing of stories, blog posts, memorials and profiles erected in tribute — or condemnation — for the hacktivist’s most controversial exploit.
What do you think Swartz’s lasting legacy will be?
Photo: Mary Altaffer / Associated Press
So long, Prop. 8?
With the Supreme Court set to rule on California’s controversial ban on same-sex marriage, President Obama asked the court yesterday to reject the voter-passed law.
From the the White House statement:
“Tradition, no matter how long established, cannot by itself justify a discriminatory law. Prejudice may not be the basis for differential treatment under the law.”
The brief filed by the administration argues that same-sex marriage bans should be treated similarly to laws discriminating on the basis of gender. If the court agrees with the White House, same-sex marriage bans across the country would be immediately put in limbo.
Photo: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times
Bradley Manning pleads guilty to 10 charges
Admitting that he illegally acquired and transferred U.S. government secrets, Manning agreed to serve 20 years in prison for leaking numerous classified materials to Wikileaks pertaining to U.S. military and diplomatic activities.
Nonetheless, should manning be found guilty of 12 additional, more serious charges at trial, he could still face life imprisonment.
Manning, arrested in 2010, has already spent 1,007 days in jail, under conditions that many have criticized as inhumane.
Photo: Brendan Smialowski / AFP/Getty Images
“There’s always something we can do.”
Civil rights legend Rosa Parks was honored earlier today with her own statue in the U.S. Capitol. Revealed in a ceremony led by President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner, the statue is the first of an African-American woman to be housed in the Capitol.
From Obama’s remarks:
Like the bus driver, but also like the passengers on the bus, we see the way things are — children hungry in a land of plenty, entire neighborhoods ravaged by violence, families hobbled by job loss or illness — and we make excuses for inaction, and we say to ourselves, that’s not my responsibility, there’s nothing I can do.
Rosa Parks tell us there’s always something we can do.
Photos: Charles Dharapak / Associated Press, Brendan Smialowski / AFP/Getty Images, Oliver Douliery / EPA.
Sexist Social Media? Our senior opinions producer and blogger Alexandra LeTellier, always a proponent of the conversations that spring up through social media, has written about her own realization about the gender inequities that still remain on Twitter and Facebook.
Further inspired by Laura Bates’ recent story in the Guardian, LeTellier’s eyes were opened when she realized just how many conversations and posts made light of issues like rape and domestic violence.
Anonymous vs. LAPD: The LAPD and secretive hacker group Anonymous are in disagreement over whether the police agency has been successfully hacked in response to the department’s handling of the Chris Dorner manhunt.
Dormer needs to be placed in custody without being killed. He also may have information he wants leaked; we will leak it if he desires.
The LAPD has officially denied Anonymous’ claims.
Aaron Swartz, Reddit co-founder and Internet activist, may revolutionize the web once again, even after his tragic suicide. Swartz, who was possibly facing decades of federal jail time for allegedly violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, killed himself earlier this year. But ahead of congressional investigations into the events leading up to his death, a memorial was held in his honor Monday in Washington, D.C.
By turns, speakers at the Cannon House Office Building compared Swartz to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Apple founder Steve Jobs, and 20th century British programmer Alan Turing — with Swartz as yet another cybergenius whose ambitions carried him to the law’s edge.
Photo: Michael Francis McElroy / New York Times