Last week California became the first state in the nation to pass a law requiring that the contributions of gays and lesbians be included in school textbooks. The law, authored by state Senator Mark Leno is called The Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful Education, or FAIR Act and it adds gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgendered people to the already long list of groups that have to be included in curriculums. The law has been controversial since its inception and now a conservative action group has filed to suit to put a repeal measure on the ballot next June. The group is called STOP SB 48 and they say they’re a group parents, teachers and pro-family organizations who feel the government shouldn’t dictate what’s taught in schools. One of the sponsors of the FAIR act, Equality California, takes issue with STOP SB 48. They say their facts are way off base. Either way STOP SB 48 has a long road ahead of them. They have to gather over half a million signatures within a couple of months to get on the ballot. Is that possible in bright blue California? Those behind the repeal effort say the government shouldn’t be involved in writing curriculum, is that the case when some minority groups are being left out? And should a person’s contributions be seen through the lens of their sexuality?
Hollywood was caught off-guard last night when the usually formal Graumann's Chinese Theater became the setting of a wee riot. An invite-only movie premiere about a popular rave scene was set to screen. Instead hundreds of uninvited fans arrived for what they thought was a block party. So who was throwing this spontaneous bash? All signs point to a DJ with tens of thousands of followers on Twitter. Throughout yesterday afternoon he posted messages about the "power of social media" and a very clear: "ME+BIG SPEAKERS+MUSIC=BLOCK PARTY!!!" He even posted a photo of a truck bed stacked with speakers (Kaskade was booked to play the official movie after-party). More fans turned out than expected and wouldn't disperse after police arrived. Up to a hundred police officers in riot gear used "bean-bag guns" on the crowd. Some of the rioters jumped on police cars. More than a dozen people were detained then released. Ultimately three people are under arrest today. Should anyone else be rounded up for what happened? Who is responsible for the damage and the policing costs? Should the tweeter be punished? Is this the city's jurisdiction?
The 9/11 attack in New York City left behind a terrible disaster area – forever known as Ground Zero. Among the wreckage, two intersecting steel beams remained standing after the towers collapsed. The accidental artifact easily resembles the Christian cross one would find in a church. It has become an iconic symbol for many affected by the tragedy. Last weekend, it was enshrined at the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. Days later, an atheist group filed a lawsuit to stop the display. The American Atheist's suit names the city of New York, the state of New Jersey, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie among others. It says the "government enshrinement of the cross was an impermissible mingling of church and state." Joe Daniels, 9/11 Memorial president, has said that displaying the cross is "an important part of our commitment to bring back physical reminders that tell the history of 9/11 in a way nothing else could." What do you think of this lawsuit? Does it have any merit? Is there a place for religious symbols in civil life? Is the accidental cross simply an interpretation that people should be free to make – an artifact of an historic tragedy?
In 'Supergods,' comic book writer Grant Morrison talks philosophy, his own personal story and traces the history of comics. He likens the life of comics to life in general. Morrison argues that, in the modern era, comics have finally grown up. He spoke with KPCC's "AirTalk."
As our elected officials debate the finer points of raising the debt ceiling, it is still anyone’s guess what the outcome will be. Rep. Boehner's bill seems likely to pass, but we’ve been close to a deal before and left empty-handed. If there is no agreement before the August 2nd deadline, the country's precarious credit rating could slip, post offices could run the risk of closing, and entitlement programs such as Social Security could be suspended. If the United States can't raise the debt ceiling, what will the immediate consequences be? Will interest rates skyrocket? Will the stock market plummet? How will this affect our own personal investments? In keeping with the theme of dueling perspectives, Larry brings together two economists with opposing views on the possible scenarios.