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One Serious Problem Gone (Jewish Journal, February 1, 2012)

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The City Council's Shameless Pander (The Wide Angle, October 20, 2011)

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Stout Awards Honors Olney, Morrison and Mantle (The Wide Angle, October 20, 2011)

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Dance With Who Brung ‘Ya (Jewish Journal, September 28, 2011)

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Jury Got It Right in the ‘Irvine 11’ Case (The OC Register, September 23, 2011)

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'Irvine 11' Muslim student protesters found guilty on both charges (KPCC’s Airtalk, September 23, 2011)

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Voting Rights Act Outdated in Modern Day LA (The Daily News, August 21, 2011)

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What Los Angeles Can Teach the UK (BBC News World, August 15, 2011)

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When Did Carrying An ID Become A “White Thing”? (The OC Register, August 15, 2011)

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Bill Crafts Disneyland Version of History (The Sacramento Bee, July 14, 2011)

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An Education Game Changer (The Wide Angles, July 12 2011)

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A Flotilla of Fools (The Wide Angle Blog, July 8, 2011)

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Advocacy, the Academy and Mushy Thinking (The Wide Angle Blog, July 1, 2011)

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Tragic Fiction comes to Life (The Wide Angle, June 23, 2011)

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Coalition Sues to Keep Circumcision Ban Off Ballot (The Jewish Journal, June 22, 2011)

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The Circumcision Wars (The Wall Street Journal, June 3, 2011)

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Male Circumcision Ban Proposed in Santa Monica (The Jerusalem Post, May 25, 2011)

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Right Goal, Wrong Strategy (The Wide Angle Blog, May 11, 2011)

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The Bus Has Left the Station (City Journal, April 1, 2011)

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UCLA Leads the Pack (The Wide Angle Blog, March 29, 2011)

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Mixed Race Marriages and Our Attitudes (The Wide Angles, March 25, 2011)

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The Uncle Tom Accusation, Again (The Wide Angle Blog, March 18, 2011)

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A Forward Looking Decision in Civil Rights (The Wide Angle Blog, March 9, 2011)

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A Rising Wave of Anti-Semitism (Los Angeles Times, September 16, 2009)

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The Wide Angle, A Community Advocates Blog (July - September, 2009)

July… August… September…

Israeli Consul General, Palestinian Lobbyist Reach Mock Peace Agreement (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, May 6, 2009)

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Critical Issues Seminar—Mock Peace Summit in conjunction with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, April 29, 2009)

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In Battle Between Teachers, LAUSD, It’s the Kids Who Lose (Daily News, March 6, 2009)

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L.A. at the Tipping Point (www.RonKaye.LA, February 13, 2009)

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Theatrics by the Teachers (Daily News, February 8, 2009)

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Chicago Vs. Los Angeles Their Supe Is Obama’s New Education Man. Our Supe is Nice But… (LA Weekly, January 23, 2009)

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Critical Issues Seminar—Millennials Remaking America with KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, January 21, 2009)

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The Good News About Gaza in America (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, January 21, 2009)

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What Oakland Should be Protesting (Los Angeles Times, January 19, 2009)

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Calling All Radical Reformers to LAUSD (Daily News, December 14, 2008)

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Attention Politicians: Pandering Won’t Fly (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, November 12, 2008)

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Presentation to Ayaan Hirsi Ali of Ziegler Prize for Courage of Conviction (Japan American Theatre, October 22, 2008)

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The Problems and Potential of South L.A., A Dust-Up Exchange between Joe R. Hicks and Earl Ofari Hutchinson (Los Angeles Times, August 11-15, 2008)

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Find Fresh Ideas to Battle Hate, Letter to the Editor (Los Angeles Times, August 4, 2008)

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Fast Food Freeze is a Good Choice for South LA by Jan Perry, Los Angeles Times, August 4, 2008)

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Do You Want Poppycock With That? by Tim Rutten (Los Angeles Times, August 2, 2008)

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Fast-food Moratorium is Meddling (Los Angeles Times, July 31, 2008)

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Critical Issues Seminar on the Role of Race in the 2008 Elections in conjunction with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, June 27, 2008)

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Shalom is not Funny (Letter to the Editor, Los Angeles Downtown News, June 23, 2008)

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A Dangerous and Precedent Setting Intrusion (Jewish Journal, June 13, 2008)

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“Ziman and Lee” (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, May 16, 2008

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We Don’t Need More Gabfests on Diversity (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, May 2, 2008)

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Families Deserve More than a Moratorium (Los Angeles Times, Blowback, April 10, 2008)

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On Any Given Sunday, Rev. Wright is Wrong (www.theroot.com, March 26, 2008)

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Obama’s Minister (KPCC’s Airtalk, March 18, 2008)

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LA Gang Violence Spikes (Associated Press, March 6, 2008)

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Critical Issues Seminar on The State of the Black Civil Rights Movement Today in conjunction with the Los Angeles Public Library and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, February)

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Asking Too Much (Los Angeles Times, January 31, 2008)

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Playing a Frayed and Faded Race Card (Jewish Journal, January 18, 2008)

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Limiting Fast Food Outlets---Path to Better Health? (KCET’s Life & Times, December 20, 2007)

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The State Bar and Revealing Data on Minority Passage Rates (KCET’s Life & Times, December 18, 2007)

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Divisions in the Jewish Community—Talking About Jerusalem (KCET’s Life & Times, December 12, 2007)

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Do Los Angeles’ Anti-Gang Programs Work? (KCET’s Life & Times, December 6, 2007)

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Sharpton Leads Call for Federal Investigation of Hate Crimes (Los Angeles Times, November 17, 2007)

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Race Card Backlash (Los Angeles Times, October 30, 2007)

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Critical Issues Seminar on Charter Schools in conjunction with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, October 5, 2007)

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The Private Lives of Public Officials (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, October 2, 2007)

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“Smart Growth” and Los Angeles Planning (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, September 20, 2007)

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Civil Rights in Louisiana (To the Point, KCRW-FM, September 20, 2007)

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The Racial/Ethnic Educational Achievement Gap (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, September 12, 2007)

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Board Vote Not Aimed At Students (Los Angeles Daily News, September 9, 2007)

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Healthcare Reform and Politics (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, September 5, 2007)

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The Constitution and Sex Offenders (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, August 30, 2007)

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‘Profiles in Courage’ ( Jewish Journal, August 24, 2007)

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Where’s the Fire? (Washington Post, August 2, 2007)

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Race and Politics in a Changing South LA (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, June 20, 2007)

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Gangsta Rap and its Impact (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, June 13, 2007)

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Mexican Americans and Drunk Driving (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, June 6, 2007)

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Baseball and the Decline in African-American Players (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, May 30, 2007)

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Los Angeles Unified’s New Board (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, May 23, 2007)

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Hollywood and its Impact on Political Discourse (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, May 16, 2007)

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New Times and the NAACP (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, May 9, 2007)

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Downtown Homeless and the LAPD (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, May 2, 2007)

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Immigration and the new Sanctuary Movement (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, April 25, 2007)

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The Teachers’ Union and School Reform, (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, April 18, 2007)

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Drop the Race Card (Washington Post, April 15, 2007)

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The Takeover of the Times (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, April 11, 2007)

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The Governor’s Health Care Plan (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, March 28, 2007)

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Racism in the LA Fire Department? (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, March 14, 2007)

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Critical Issues Seminar in conjunction with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, February 26, 2007)

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“Has the Nanny State Gone Too Far?” (KCET’s Life & Times, Kitchen Table Conversation, February 28, 2007)

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“Justice Takes A Beating In Long Beach Racial Hatred Case” ( Jewish Journal, February 16, 2007)

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“Gang ‘Marshall Plan’ - Will It Work?” (KCET’s Life & Times’ Kitchen Table Conversation, February 14, 2007)

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“Living Wages or Dying Businesses?” (KCET’s Life & Times Kitchen Table Conversation, January 31, 2007)

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“Gangs of New York and LA” (Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, January 26, 2007)

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KCET’s Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding “The Future of the Middle Class in Los Angeles” (Life & Times, January 17, 2007)

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“Does Abe Foxman Have An Anti-Anti-Semite Problem?”, (New York Times Magazine, January 14, 2007)

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KCET’s Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding “Military Recruitment on Campus---Right or Wrong?” January 3, 2007

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KCET’s Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding “Is There An Assault on Christmas?” December 13, 2006

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Racism Claims a Stretch" (Daily News, December 1, 2006)

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KCET’s Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding “What is Racism Today?” November 29, 2006

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"Racism in Entertainment", (KCRW's "Which Way LA?", November 27,2006)

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KCET’s Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding “Border Fence---Boondogle or Barrier?” (life & Times, November 15, 2006)

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“LA’s Jews and Other Minorities---Oh How They Danced” (Los Angeles Jewish Journal, November 11, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "Racial Profiling and a National ID Card" (Life & Times, October 18, 2006)

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Critical Issues Seminar in conjunction with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy and KPCC (KPCC's Airtalk, October 9, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "Immigration Debate Divides Conservatives" (Life & Times, October 5, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "Drugs in Sports" (Life & Times, October 3, 2006)

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Award Dispute", KPCC's Airtalk, September 15,2006

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"Two Faced On Terrorism", Los Angeles Times, September 14, 2006

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Award to Islamic Leader Hathout Stirs Dispute", KCRW's Which Way LA?, September 14, 2006

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "California's High School Exit Exam?", ( Life & Times, August 23, 2006)

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"4 Los Angeles Latino Gang Members Convicted of Anti-Black Conspiracy" (Los Angeles Times, August 2, 2006)

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"Muslim Council's Bias All Too Clear" (Los Angeles Daily News, August 1, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "UCLA's Minority Admissions, (Life & Times, July 19, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "Celebrity Causes--Ego or Altruism?", ( Life & Times, July 13, 2006)

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Did Anti-Semitism Take Root at the South Central Farm? (Jewish Journal, June 23,2006)

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KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversations regarding Immigration and Employment (Life & Times, June 21,2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of news segment on the South Los Angeles Farm controversy (Life & Times, June 6, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kithcen-table Conversation regarding the Mayoral takeover of the Los Angeles Unified School District (Life & Times, June 6, 2006)

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Letter to the Editor regarding Race, Religion, and Demographic Change (Los Angeles Times, June 4, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Hybrid Cars and Energy Conservation (Life & Times, May 23, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Teen Sex (Life & Times, May 18, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Black Brown Tensions in LA (Life & Times, May 2, 2006)

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Debate education policy, not race (Los Angeles Times, April 22, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Fatherless Parenting (Life & Times, April 11, 2006)

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Border Protests Not Fight for Civil Rights (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, April 7, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Black-Brown tensions (Life & Times, April 4, 2006)

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Civil Rights? How About Lawlessness? (Los Angeles Times, April 1, 2006)

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KCET's Life & Times transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding Immigration (Life & Times, March 30, 2006)

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Differing Views of Race in L.A. Collide in 'Crash' (Los Angeles Times, March 2, 2006)

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Disputed Film Draws Muted Response (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, February 10, 2006)

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Blacks vs. Latinos at Work (Wall Street Journal, January 24, 2006)

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The Munich Concern Is Us--Not Film (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, January 20, 2006) with Dr. Michael Berenbaum

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NAACP Leader Turned Heads By Backing Tookie (Baltimore Sun, January 15, 2006) Joe Hicks quoted

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Munich Portrays Real World Issues (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, December 23,2005), with Dr. Michael Berenbaum

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New Farrakhan Embodies Old Message (Los Angeles Jewish Journal, October 21, 2005)

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Levees Let Loose An Ugly Flood of Black Paranoia (Los Angeles Times, October 2, 2005)

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Lessons From the Ruins (LA Weekly, August 12, 2005)

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Let's Make A Diploma Mean Something (Los Angeles Times, August 27, 2005)

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Police Beating of Minister Disputed (Los Angeles Times, August 27, 2005)

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We Only Burned Ourselves, Baby (Los Angeles Times, August 7, 2005)

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Knee-jerk Activists and Their Tantrum Politics (Los Angeles Times, July 24, 2005)

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"Crash" Is No Picture of the Real Los Angeles (Los Angeles Daily News, June 24, 2005)

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Hit Film Paints Inaccurate Picture of Diverse LA (89.3 KPCC Perspectives, June 23, 2005)
Joe Hicks, the vice president of Community Advocates, says the hit movie Crash ...
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Jackson Trial Reaction Shows How Unimportant Race Is in US (Los Angeles Daily News, June 19, 2005)

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"Reel Life" (Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, June 10, 2005)

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Joe Hicks talks about the election results (89.3 KPCC AirTalk, May 18, 2005)
with KPCC's Larry Mantle and reporter Adolfo Guzman Lopez, Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, Raphe Sonenshein, Bill Rosendahl, Rick Caruso, Antonia Hernandez, , Joel Kotkin and D.J. Waldie.
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Life & Times Transcript , July 13, 2006

KCET's Life & Times Transcript of Kitchen-table Conversation regarding "Celebrity Causes--Ego or Altruism?"

Val Zavala>> Whether it's Daryl Hannah in a tree or Brad Pitt in Africa, celebrities have been taking on causes for years, but do they do it out of compassion or to bolster their egos and images? For a fiery conversation on this topic, we brought three people together in the Los Feliz home of David Lehrer, President of CommUnity Advocates and our moderator.

Joining him are Julie Bergman Sender of The Cause which links actors to issues, and Lionel Chetwynd, an outspoken Hollywood producer who's critical of some actors' political activism.

David Lehrer>> Celebrities kind of dumb down issues. They bring the cameras, but may over-simplify and our fascination is with celebrity and not the issue?

Lionel Chetwynd>> In general, I think celebrities need to be civic-minded rather than issue-minded. I think in that part of Hollywood that's dominated by the left, it's very important to have an issue because, if you don't have an issue, then you don't really qualify.

I'd also separate them out. I think there are people like Gary Sinise, with "Operation Iraqi Children" who does all of that in the darkness. He's spent tens of millions of dollars on school supplies in the Iraqi schools and changed the lives of millions of Iraqi kids. No one knows about it. Sandra Bullock, who gives a million dollars to Katrina and other places doesn't speak about it. I think they're remarkable.

David Lehrer>> Can't you argue that, if you have celebrity and you care about an issue, you could bring public focus on an issue that otherwise would go by --

Lionel Chetwynd>> -- but you made a leap there. If you have celebrity and you care about an issue, you should do something as a citizen and not as a celebrity, but as a citizen. Here is what goes on. I am a celebrity. Now I must find an issue because that's an important career credential, and that goes on.

Julie Bergman Sender>> But I would argue that people know the difference between a celebrity who has integrity and knows something about what they're doing, and a celebrity who's doing what you say, of which there are some on both sides, who feel the need --

Lionel Chetwynd>> -- well, we don't have any celebrities on our side (laughter).

Julie Bergman Sender>> Let's not go there.

David Lehrer>> Let's say the governor of the state of California.

Lionel Chetwynd>> But he's not a celebrity. He's someone who left the world of celebrity to become politically active.

Julie Bergman Sender>> Yeah, but for many years before he did that, he ran the Special Olympics and he was very involved in what one would call things that draw celebrities.

Lionel Chetwynd>> But he wasn't doing things like going to flood-ravaged New Orleans with two photographers and a shotgun like Sean Penn who did nothing to ease the problems. All he did was bring attention to himself.

Julie Bergman Sender>> Well, that's one example.

David Lehrer>> Let's put the narcissists to the side.

Lionel Chetwynd>> Okay. Who are we left with? I mean, that's the issue.

David Lehrer>> Well, look at --

Lionel Chetwynd>> - a few dozen maybe.

David Lehrer>> Robert Redford, Paul Newman. Paul Newman doesn't go for a whole lot of credit and he gives all his profits from his dressings.

Lionel Chetwynd>> But that's not who brings us to this table. What brings us to the table are the drive-by celebrities. You mentioned the L.A. Forum, Daryl Hannah in a tree. That's what I think is more of a drive-by celebrity, someone who suddenly emerges in the middle of an issue and makes it their issue. Sean Penn is a drive-by celebrity.

David Lehrer>> Is Daryl Hannah a drive-by celebrity?

Lionel Chetwynd>> He's a drive-by celebrity with Katrina. He's almost a Jesse Jackson of Hollywood celebrity.

Julie Bergman Sender>> Well, I have to say that I respectfully disagree with your characterization of both Daryl Hannah and Sean Penn. I don't know what his activities were in New Orleans because I didn't pay attention to it. I do know of his consistent, thoughtful writing and appearances on issues that matter to him greatly.

And I do know that Daryl Hannah happens to have been an environmental advocate on a whole host of issues having to do with the environment for many, many, many years. Therefore, when she sees something going on, whether we agree or we don't agree that she should have been there or she shouldn't have been there, she saw an issue that fit in with the things that she's passionate about and she decided to become an advocate for it.

I would only add one more thing to the Sean Penn piece that you mentioned. He wanted to know more about what's going on in Iraq and he went in as a reporter for the Mercury News. He didn't tell any cameras he was going and he didn't care whether anybody found out --

Lionel Chetwynd>> -- that is so untrue.

Julie Bergman Sender>> No, it's true.

Lionel Chetwynd>> He went all over the place.

Julie Bergman Sender>> It's not true. The minute the cameras found him, he left and came back to America.

Lionel Chetwynd>> With respect, the claim that Sean Penn went into Iraq with anything other than a huge caravan and trumpets blaring is hard for me to credit. Everyone knew about it. Everyone knew that he was going. He's about as much a journalist as I am a ballet dancer. It's ridiculous. That was just staged.

Julie Bergman Sender>> I don't think he was claiming to be a journalist. He was claiming to write editorials for the Mercury News and he wanted to go there himself in order to be able to do that. As a person, he was interested. Now a non-celebrity could make the same decision.

David Lehrer>> You counsel them and help get them up to snuff?

Julie Bergman Sender>> Well, I mean, sometimes I do. You know, often when I do the work that I do in the media where I do sometimes use celebrity, I try and find celebrities that I feel already have integrity and authenticity on those issues because it makes it a whole lot easier.

Redford is a really great example. You know, global warming is now at a tipping point. On the other hand, he's been doing this war for thirty years. So if he wants to now suddenly be in the limelight a little bit more in order to shed light on things that are going on that he thinks will make a difference in peoples' lives about how to wrap their brains around global warming, what's wrong with that?

Lionel Chetwynd>> Well, for every Robert Redford -- and I just give you obviously Sean Penn, but I can find others -- for every Robert Redford, there are dozens of other minor celebrities who get themselves implicated in these causes about which they know very little. But it's part of their persona and they want to be out there and it's part of the limelight disease for too many of them.

That's not true of certainly Newman and certainly not of Redford who have spent their lives doing this. Who comes closer to my model is Sinise. Nobody knows what he's done. Nobody knows --

Julie Bergman Sender>> -- well, I know what he's done. I've known Gary Sinise for many years, but I know what he's done in that regard because I've seen it in People Magazine and I've seen him on CNN. We can agree, you and I, even though we come from different political beds, you know, Bono and others who have great integrity in what they're doing even if you and I don't necessarily agree on everything.

David Lehrer>> And I think, on that note, the fact that you're both coming from different sides of the spectrum, the fact is, the genuineness and authenticity is perceptible and that the narcissist and phony everybody could see transparently.

Lionel Chetwynd>> I don't think anyone really gives a damn what Hollywood people think. My theory has always been that I don't care. If some guy is going to vote Democrat or Republican because Susan Sarandon suggested he do that, you know, I don't want to --

Julie Bergman Sender>> -- you know what? That's a cop-out because no one finds out.

Lionel Chetwynd>> I don't think anyone really listens to the celebrities. I don't think an hour on Larry King will have any impact on the outcome of the farm. I think it's something we do here for one another. It's a little part of the great, you know, Kabuki dance we do to impress one another.

Julie Bergman Sender>> But I think you have to look beyond it. In other words, by the time Daryl Hannah appeared on Larry King, the issue was larger. The issue was no longer the farm. The issue was about how do we talk about the issue of greening in urban blight? How do we talk about creating green space for children and families who otherwise will not have it? It became a larger issue about the social good and that's where it's important.

Lionel Chetwynd>> And the way you press that issue is at this mayor we have, Villaraigosa. Not at a guy who bought the land from the city. You got the wrong victim.

David Lehrer>> On that note of a political pathway, we thank you both for having this frank and, I think, vigorous discussion about a very interesting issue. Thank you, Julie, and thank you, Lionel.

Julie Bergman Sender>> You're welcome.

 

 
   
 
 
   

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