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Today’s Headlines: Gov. Gavin Newsom urges Americans to ‘wake up’ after Roe vs. Wade draft opinion

California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a news conference
California Gov. Gavin Newsom and top legislative leaders want to add abortion protections to the state’s Constitution.
(Associated Press)
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By Elvia Limón, Laura Blasey and Amy Hubbard

Hello, it’s Thursday, May 5, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:

TOP STORIES

Newsom urges Americans to ‘wake up’ following Supreme Court draft opinion

Gov. Gavin Newsom blasted a potential U.S. Supreme Court ruling that would overturn federal abortion protections under Roe vs. Wade and urged Americans to “wake up.” At a news conference at Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, Newsom stressed that access to reproductive health is legal in the state and that California should stand as a “beacon of hope” to residents of other states.

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Earlier this week, Newsom and legislative leaders announced that they will ask voters in November to place permanent protections for abortion in the California Constitution.

Sue Dunlap, president and chief executive of Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, said the organization is working with a variety of partners across the state, in anticipation of “substantially more people coming to California and to Los Angeles.”

More politics

  • At least 26 states are expected to ban abortion if Roe vs. Wade falls. But state lawmakers have not been waiting on the nation’s highest court to pass stricter abortion laws.
  • As other institutions conform to an era of increasingly invasive surveillance and increasingly incentivized self-publication, the Supreme Court is practically stuck in time. Monday’s leak offers a small taste of a world where that is no longer the case.
  • After Democrats forcefully recommitted to protecting abortion rights, a U.S. House leader was set to rally in Texas alongside Rep. Henry Cuellar, one of the last antiabortion Democrats in Congress.
  • Billie Jean King, the tennis legend who shared her painful journey to getting an abortion in her memoir “All In,” joined other female athletes calling for the protection of women’s reproductive rights.

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Coronavirus gains in California spark new concerns

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Coronavirus cases are continuing to increase in California, prompting one health official to warn that the state is heading into the next wave of the pandemic.

California has seen its coronavirus case rate rise by 10% in the past week, from 5,700 new cases a day to 6,300 cases a day. Health experts note, however, that the official case numbers may be a significant undercount, given the now-widespread availability of at-home tests — the results of which are not reliably reported to health agencies.

And while still at relatively low levels, statewide coronavirus-positive hospitalizations have risen for eight consecutive days: from 950 to just above 1,100. The number of COVID-19 patients needing intensive care has also risen from a record low set last month — but still remains at one of the lowest levels of the entire pandemic. It remains unclear, however, how serious this new uptick will be.

More top coronavirus headlines

Stay up to date on variant developments, case counts and vaccine news with Coronavirus Today.

California drought restrictions begin to take shape in SoCal

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More than a week after the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California announced its harshest-ever water restrictions for millions of residents across the region, several of the affected water agencies are offering a preview of how life will change throughout the Southland when the rules kick in June 1.

The MWD’s largest member agency, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, has so far offered few details about how the restrictions will be applied to their customers but said more information will be provided in the coming days.

But the DWP is only one of six MWD-member agencies affected by the new rules. Some, including the San Bernardino-based Inland Empire Utilities Agency, are themselves wholesalers who are working with their member agencies to determine the best path forward.

Police and war crimes investigators comb a Ukrainian forest

The Russian troops left weeks ago. But the little forest between Vysehrad, Ukraine, and a neighboring hamlet keeps yielding bodies, one by one. For a tiny farming community such as this one, each such discovery is a fresh wound — but at the same time a potential source of relief.

International forensic specialists have joined local police in investigating more than 9,000 potential war crimes, Ukraine’s prosecutor-general, Iryna Venediktova, said this week. Since early April, when the Russians abandoned their threatened attack on Kyiv, at least 1,200 civilian deaths from the occupation have been confirmed in the capital region.

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The killings were concentrated in the more densely populated areas but also occurred in outlying hamlets such as Vysehrad, a little more than a cluster of simple wood or brick structures and farm fields.

More on Ukraine

Can the Magic Castle be made safe for women?

Change has come to the Magic Castle after a scandalous stretch — and guests will notice it moments after they enter the storied venue. For years, there was something of an open secret that the central staircase’s slatted railing afforded men at the ground-floor bar an intimate view of women as they ascended the steps.

A 2020 Times investigation also uncovered allegations of sexual misconduct, racism and other issues at the castle, home to the Academy of Magical Arts, arguably the world’s most prestigious club for magicians and magic enthusiasts. Academy leadership eventually opted to install wooden pieces along the railing to obscure the view from below.

That’s not the only contentious change at the prominent institution. In a March election widely seen as a referendum on the previous regime, the academy voted in eight new members to its board of directors, the powerful body that oversees the group’s business affairs. Only one of two incumbents on the ballot was reelected.

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PHOTO OF THE DAY

Two people stand looking at a wall of flowers and photos
A memorial to those who have lost their lives in the Russian war on Ukraine is visited by people in downtown Lviv on Saturday.
(Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

CALIFORNIA

A third top official disputes Sheriff Villanueva’s account of a cover-up. Former Chief LaJuana Haselrig said in a filing, which is a precursor to a lawsuit, that she gave a DVD containing a video of an incident in which a deputy kneeled on the head of a handcuffed inmate for three minutes to Assistant Sheriff Robin Limon. Limon told her she was “heading immediately from there to Villanueva’s office to show him the video.” Those accounts are at odds with the one offered by Villanueva.

Claims of hazing at the Golden West College police academy have prompted an investigation. Former training officer Sheddi Skeete submitted a complaint last week alleging that training officers were treating recruits unprofessionally. He has since left the academy, citing inappropriate and questionable practices he described as “improper, cruel and punitive.”

The Devil’s Hole pupfish has paddled back from the brink in a hellish desert domain. The world’s rarest, most inbred fish clings to existence in the smallest geographic range of any vertebrate: the shallow end of an oxygen-deprived pool in Death Valley National Park. The species reached a total population — in the wild and in captivity — of about 475 this spring.

‘I’m not doing anything wrong’: Pot-smoking L.A. moms on parenting while high. Modern-day mothers have been far more open than past generations about advocating for self-care to address the challenges and stresses of motherhood, and, as cannabis has continued to move mainstream, that conversation includes more moms who find a little weed does what a glass or two of Chardonnay did for their moms.

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All hail the drag queens raising L.A.’s tight-knit families. A drag mother is both a caregiver and a mentor. For many, the mothering they offer is something they were denied within their own biological families. These Los Angeles drag mothers are building support structures for the next generation of drag queens.

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NATION-WORLD

President Biden previews midterm offensive as he attacks ‘extreme’ MAGA Republicans in deficit speech. The speech marked a deliberate shift in tone for Biden, who has been reluctant to attack Republicans during his first 15 months in office as he pursued a more bipartisan approach to politicking and messaging on issues such as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and an infrastructure.

Early transgender identity in kids tends to endure, a study suggests. The research involved 317 children younger than 12. Five years later, 94% were living as transgender. The Pediatrics study is one of the largest to look at the issue as politicians seeking to outlaw or criminalize medical treatment for transgender youth argue children may change their minds or “retransition.”

Doug Emhoff will lead a U.S. delegation to South Korea’s presidential inauguration. Second Gentleman Emhoff will travel to Seoul, leading the American delegation to the inauguration of South Korea’s next president, Yoon Suk Yeol, a White House official said.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren pushes CEOs of three major banks to kill overdraft fees. The senator sent letters to Jamie Dimon, Wells Fargo & Co.’s Charlie Scharf and Bank of America Corp.’s Brian Moynihan, pushing them to follow the lead of some rivals and get rid of all fees for overdrafts. The letter was also signed by two other Democrats, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Rep. Carolyn Maloney of New York.

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Takeaways from former President Trump’s backing of ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ author, a test of his sway in GOP. Trump’s backing undercut the key message from J.D. Vance’s opponents — that he was a traitor to the Trump movement. Conservative groups such as Club for Growth spent millions to attack Vance on the airwaves, accusing him of disloyalty, only to find themselves crosswise with the president they were purporting to defend.

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

Whether it’s ‘Turning Red’ or ‘Everything Everywhere,’ the Asian (North) American mom has gone mainstream. Asian American moms are not a mom-olith. And it’s been gratifying to see so many recent mainstream movies arrive at that conclusion, several of them by way of richly imaginative premises that happily dispense with realism in favor of fantasy, science fiction and even horror, writes Times film critic Justin Chang.

Two Spice Girls are catfishing on Netflix’s reality TV experiment ‘The Circle.’ Emma Bunton and Mel B are both big fans of Netflix‘s social experiment/reality competition in which contestants build online personas for bonding and backstabbing one another without meeting face to face.

Dolly Parton, Eminem and Lionel Richie lead the 2022 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees. Parton, who made global headlines recently when she asked that her nomination be withdrawn, will nevertheless be inducted later this year, organizers announced, as part of a varied group of acts that includes Pat Benatar, Duran Duran and more.

With the suspect in the attack on Dave Chappelle in custody, questions about the event’s security have arisen. Isaiah Lee was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and was being held on $30,000 bail, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Authorities are investigating how Lee entered the venue and was able to evade security checks to get near the stage.

BUSINESS

The Fed has made its biggest rate hike since 2000 to combat inflation. For the first time in 22 years, the Federal Reserve pushed up interest rates by a full half-percentage point — a significant escalation of its efforts to get control of troublingly high inflation.

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Intuit will pay $141 million over its misleading TurboTax ads. Under the terms of a settlement signed by the attorneys general of all 50 states, Mountain View, Calif.-based Intuit will suspend TurboTax’s “free, free, free” ad campaign and pay restitution to nearly 4.4 million taxpayers. The investigation was sparked by a 2019 ProPublica report that found the company was using deceptive tactics.

SPORTS

In Game 2 of their playoff series, the L.A. Kings lost to the Edmonton Oilers in a blowout. For eight Kings players, it was their first playoff loss. The first-round series moves back to Los Angeles tied 1 to 1.

Liz Cambage is the star the Sparks got — and a voice the WNBA needs more than ever. ‘I speak truths’: The WBNA has encouraged strong voices more than any other pro league. Will it warm to the bracing candor of the new Sparks star?

Canelo Álvarez’s obsession with golf could be his career after boxing. Álvarez operates by the mantra “No Boxing, No Life,” but once he gives up his gloves, he’ll look for greener pastures with a golf club. His goal is to be good enough to consider pursuing a professional golf career, after picking up the sport in May 2019.

Xavier Moon on how Clippers helped his future in the NBA. During a season when the Clippers’ rotations at times looked like a revolving door because of numerous absences related either to injuries or COVID-19 infections, Moon became the most familiar of the new faces.

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OPINION

The majority of Americans, who quietly support abortion rights, just learned the danger of silence. We should take a good, hard look at a popular culture in which the reality and importance of reproductive rights have been rigorously ignored. Mary McNamara says she can count on one hand the number of storylines involving abortion as it most often occurs, and erasure only reinforces ignorance and shame.

ONLY IN L.A.

The three round domes of an observatory with a statue in front of the building.
Griffith Observatory, named for Griffith J. Griffith, who donated the money to have it built, is seen on a vintage postcard.
(Patt Morrison / Los Angeles Times)

Griffith Park is named for a guy who shot his wife — and other true stories of L.A. parks. We don’t often wonder about the names of the places where we disport ourselves. But how did some parks get named for some people? The heroes and pioneers you know already. Throughout the city and county of Los Angeles, parks are named for Jesse Owens and Cesar Chavez, George Washington Carver and Ritchie Valens, Mary McLeod Bethune and Jackie Robinson, along with dimly recalled politicians and developers.

Patt Morrison takes you on a journey through the weird and wild history of area parks. And if parks aren’t enough for you, Patt also dove deep into L.A.’s buildings and landmarks.

FROM THE ARCHIVES

Three men crouch near a huddle of football players.
Oct. 5, 1934: The Stooges, alongside a football team, made an appearance in the pages of The Times.

Eighty-eight years ago today, Columbia Pictures released the first short film from the Three Stooges, “Woman Haters.” In our Hollywood Walk of Fame series, The Times wrote that Moe Howard, brother Jerome “Curly” Howard and failed violinist and boxer Larry Fine performed in the late 1920s as a three-man act. They appeared on Broadway with comedian Ted Healy, who brought them to Hollywood in 1930 and later left the act. The trio made more than 200 film shorts for Columbia.

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In a standalone photo in The Times five months after their first film debuted, the threesome were shown alongside the Loyola Marymount football team. The caption (which included the question mark) read: “Larry Fine and Jerry and Moe Howard — known affectionately (?) by their admirers as the Three Stooges — get in some high class stooging at the Loyola grid workout for the Arizona State game tonight at the Gilmore Stadium. Jerry gouged Moe for making a ‘pass’ at him; Larry slapped Jerry for interfering with the interference and Coach Tom Lieb added a few more gray hairs to his collection before he finally booted the stooges from the field.”

We appreciate that you took the time to read Today’s Headlines! Comments or ideas? Feel free to drop us a note at headlines@latimes.com.

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