Newsletter: Today: Manhunt in Belgium. Guns in Texas Classrooms.
I’m Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.
In the Brussels Terror Plot, Two Brothers Were Key
Authorities identified brothers Brahim and Khalid El Bakraoui as two of the suicide bombers who blew themselves up in the Brussels terror attacks, while a third was named as Najim Laachraoui, a bomb maker also linked to last year’s Paris attacks. A massive manhunt remained underway for two more suspects who fled the scene. A taxi driver says he gave three men with heavy bags a lift to the airport, and later directed police to an address in the Schaerbeek neighborhood where he had picked up the men. There, police found explosives and an Islamic State flag. Police continued to carry out raids across Brussels, hoping to break up what they fear is a large jihadist network planning further attacks.
Democratic Candidates Bring Fight to California
Hillary Clinton has an obvious edge, but Bernie Sanders stays hopeful as both candidates bring their campaigns to the Golden State. Sanders has the most visible support and is counting on the rush of enthusiasm for him, particularly among young and very liberal voters. Clinton is counting on her support being the most durable, if not the flashiest. Voters can count on a spirited campaign.
Guns Are Coming to Texas Classrooms, and Professors Are Leaving
Thanks to a “campus carry law” that takes effect in August, public colleges and universities in Texas will be allowing licensed students to carry concealed handguns to class. At the University of Texas’ flagship campus in Austin, at least two professors have already resigned over the law. One economics professor said he feared some disgruntled student would shoot him, explaining: “With 500 students in my class, this did not seem impossible.” Added Max Snodderly, a professor of neuroscience and a member of an anti-campus-carry group: “There have been cases of not just faculty but graduate students particularly in the liberal arts deciding not to apply to Texas.”
Emotions Run High as UC Regents Reject Blanket Censure of Anti-Zionism
University of California regents said that anti-Semitism doesn’t belong on campus, but refused to back a statement pushed by Israel advocacy groups that broadly condemns anti-Zionism as a form of discrimination. Advocates of the statement argued it was necessary to protect Jewish students from attacks, pointing to troubling incidents like the scrawling of a swastika on a Jewish fraternity house at UC Davis last year. Opponents called the statement a form of censorship that would illegally curb the right to criticize the Jewish state. “Is there no place for us?” one UCLA graduate student asked the regents at a packed meeting, saying the creation of Israel in 1948 had forced his relatives from their homes.
Taking Aim at a Georgia Bill, Disney Threatens to Keep its Superheroes Home
Georgia’s economy reaps billions of dollars a year as the host of hundreds of film and TV productions. Among the studios that love the tax incentives is Walt Disney Co., whose recent big-budget shoots in the Peach State include “Ant-Man,” “Captain America: Civil War” and “Guardians of the Galaxy 2.” But now, Disney is threatening to stop filming in Georgia if the so-called Free Exercise Protection Act — which opponents call an anti-gay bill that will legalize discrimination — takes effect. The bill now sits on the desk of Gov. Nathan Deal, awaiting a signature or veto.
Long-Suffering Dodgers Fans Wonder: Do We Dare to Hope?
Time Warner Cable has said it will slash the price of the Dodgers-owned sports channel, hoping to end a stalemate with pay-TV providers that has infuriated Dodgers fans who can’t get the games. Fans have taken to their smartphones to speculate: Is the price drop a good deal? Will providers agree to it? Should we hold our breath? For many fans, the stakes feel especially high as the season looms: It is the 67th and final season for 88-year-old Hall of Fame announcer Vin Scully. Said L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti: “I am hopeful that we are close to breaking the deadlock and finally doing the right thing for Dodger fans. If nothing else, let’s do it for Vin Scully.”
— L.A. will pay nearly $6.9 million for a police shooting.
— Ten years after her disappearance, a murdered woman’s body is found.
— A Compton judge draws a public reprimand for “serious misuse of the judicial office.”
— In the Obamacare contraceptives case, the Supreme Court looks split.
— Which senators could lose their jobs this November?
— In a nationwide sweep, 8,000 fugitives are nabbed.
— In the Apple case, hackers are wary of helping the FBI.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
— Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest is dead at 45.
— Media reports: A plane crash claims a former “Bachelor” contestant.
— A Japanese firm invests $250 million in talent agency WME | IMG.
— Tesla focuses on smaller batteries.
— A-Rod will retire after the 2017 season.
— A federal judge deals Donald Sterling a setback.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
— It’s no mystery why ISIS picked Brussels as a base. (Slate)
— After Brussels, is America next? (Politico)
— The Stakes in Hulk Hogan’s Gawker Lawsuit. (The New Yorker)
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
The U.S. tugboat Conestoga and its crew of 56 were last seen leaving San Francisco Bay in March 1921, en route to Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. When it failed to arrive, a massive air and sea search was launched, and authorities came to believe it sank somewhere off the Baja California Peninsula, or close to Hawaii. Now we know that the steel-hulled, steam-powered tug sank much closer to its departure point, only a day out of port. On Wednesday, officials at the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration announced that the Conestoga’s wreckage was discovered at the bottom of a marine sanctuary off the California coast near San Francisco. The likely culprit? Choppy seas, in an area notorious for shipwrecks.
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