Racism in Entertainment and Palm Trees in Los Angeles
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Black leaders today demanded that the entertainment industry--even rappers--stop using the "N" word, as the flap continues over Michael Richards' stand-up racism. Plus, they're as much a symbol of Los Angeles as is Hollywood, but has the era of palm trees come to an end?
The 'Kramer' Incident and the 'N' Word ()
Michael Richards was a supporting actor on Seinfeld, but he's the main figure in the latest celebrity scandal. The web sites YouTube and TMZ are still running the cell-phone video of his race-baiting rant at West Hollywood's Laugh Factory--even after Richards apologized on David Letterman's TV show and the Rev. Jesse Jackson's radio program. Today in Los Angeles, Jackson and black comedian Paul Mooney joined Congresswoman Maxine Waters in demanding that nobody--not even rappers--use the "N" word again. We hear two views.
- Todd Boyd: Professor of Critical Studies at USC, @Dr_Todd_Boyd
- Joe Hicks: Vice President of Community Advocates
LA Demotes Its Iconic Palm Tree ()
Only one kind of Palm tree is indigenous to Southern California. Others, imported since the Spanish missions, were established in the 18th Century. Canary Island Date Palms are still so popular in Beverly Hills, Las Vegas and the Arizona suburbs they can go for $20,000 when mature. Most of the local palms were planted early in the 20th Century, and in preparation for the 1932 Olympics. But now they are threatened by a deadly fungus--and by city planners who don't plan to replace them.
- Andy Lipkis: Founder and President of TreePeople, @AndyLipkis
- Leland Lai: President of the Palm Society of Southern California
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Which Way L.A.? is made possible in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation, which supports study and research into policy issues of the Los Angeles region.
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