I’m Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.
Why LAPD Dropped the Baton
Twenty-five years ago today, L.A. police delivered 56 baton blows to Rodney G. King after a high-speed chase. The video of the incident and ensuing court action would change the course of L.A. history. It would also change the LAPD. One dramatic example: the deployment of aluminum batons. Here’s how different training, the rise of Tasers and bean-bag rounds and that video led to a big decline in baton use by officers.
Clinton’s Book on Trump
Hillary Clinton’s people had prepared a playbook for Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Scott Walker. Now they’re putting together one on Donald Trump, but it isn’t all that easy. After all, some have taken to calling him Teflon Don for his ability to thrive amid controversy. So what are Trump’s apparent weaknesses? A poll showed unease about Trump having control of nuclear weapons, his attitude toward women and his perceived egomania. Take a look inside the Clinton campaign.
A Supreme Abortion Fight
Whole Woman’s Health vs. Hellerstedt is the most significant abortion case since 1992. And it’s a window into how the Supreme Court is operating in the wake of Justice Antonin Scalia’s death. The court’s three female justices led an attack on the Texas law in question, which would shut down about three-fourths of the state’s abortion clinics. Here are the possible outcomes, which may hinge on how Anthony M. Kennedy decides.
Boyle Heights and the Big G
Gentrification. The big G. For years, people have said it’s coming to Boyle Heights. For years, the neighborhood has resisted it. “I think part of it is people getting pushed out of their other neighborhoods and coming here, and they don’t want that to happen here,” said one resident. “It’s like the last bastion.” But is it inevitable?
The Sequel to #SpotTheShuttle
In 2012, the space shuttle Endeavour crawled through the streets of L.A. to the California Science Center, inspiring thousands to take pictures and giving rise to the Twitter hashtag #SpotTheShuttle. Next month, a giant orange shuttle fuel tank will begin its journey from New Orleans to the same spot in Exposition Park. Read on to see how ET-94 will get here. #SpotTheTank, anyone?
-- Golfing, tequila and spa treatments: These are the gifts given to California lawmakers in 2015.
-- The UCLA community protests the punishment for a professor accused of sexual harassment: a $3,000 fine and a quarter off.
-- An appeals court agrees that Porter Ranch residents need more time to move home.
-- L.A. hikers’ beloved Runyon Canyon is closing for four months starting in April because of an aging pipe.
-- Ben Carson says he sees no “path forward” and will skip the GOP debate.
-- A blunder turns deadly when two Israeli soldiers using Waze drive into a Palestinian camp.
-- Did cities collude with a fundamentalist Mormon sect to persecute nonbelievers? A jury will decide.
-- Plane debris found in Mozambique resembles a missing Malaysia Airlines jet, a U.S. official said.
-- A new World Trade Center transit hub is over budget, past schedule — and odd-looking, many say.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
-- Loretta Lynn is 83 and has a message: Use it or lose it.
-- Too soon? 10 movies we might be talking about at next year’s Oscars.
-- TV review: ABC’s “The Family” needs more room to grow into its grim story line.
-- The Outfest Fusion festival gives screen time to LGBT filmmakers from diverse backgrounds.
-- A once-secret Bob Dylan archive will be housed in Tulsa, Okla.
-- The head of SAG-AFTRA talks about how to fix Hollywood’s pipeline problem.
-- Thwarted by the iPhone, hackers turn to other products.
-- Developers reveal plans for a $100-million makeover of Ports O’ Call in San Pedro.
-- Energy titan Aubrey McClendon dies in a single-car crash a day after being indicted.
-- Nostalgia time: The man who brought back the Hydrox cookie is trying to revive I. Magnin, Robinson’s, May Co. and Bullock’s.
-- Steve Sarkisian’s lawsuit against USC is headed for arbitration.
-- Holly Holm, fresh off beating Ronda Rousey, is ready to defend her UFC title against Miesha Tate.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- One of the Asian kids who became the butt of an Oscars joke — and her mother — speaks out. (PRI)
-- When the federal government proposed redrawing the borders of Maryland, Virginia, Delaware and D.C. (Greater Greater Washington)
-- The forgotten survivors of AIDS. (San Francisco Chronicle)
A NEW ROLE FOR … ME
My first job at the Los Angeles Times was in 1989 as a summer intern. My first story was about a homeless man trying to put his life back together for the sake of his baby daughter. Why am I telling you this? Well, it is Throwback Thursday. And, as you may have heard, I’m taking on additional responsibilities as publisher of The Times. I’m deeply honored, and I will continue to serve as editor. The goal is for The Times to be the primary destination for everyone interested in Los Angeles, California and the West. This is a mission I feel in my bones. Read on for more about what’s happening and about the new LA.com site, a place to savor and celebrate all things L.A.
Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.