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Short Takes for Wednesday

February 1st, 2012 by Celeste Fremon


HUNDREDS PROTEST THE UNWISDOM OF LAUSD’S PLAN TO ELIMINATE ADULT ED—COMPLETELY

In the budget presented to the LAUSD board last month, the $$ allocation for Adult Education was not just slashed, it was eliminated altogether.

On Tuesday afternoon, around 300 adult ed students demonstrated to protest the proposed vaporizing of the classes that more than 300,000 adults in Los Angeles County depend on for a multiplicity of reasons—highest among them, affordable job training and/or retraining for those out of work.

LAUSD has 35 adult education centers, which include 24 community adult schools, six regional occupational centers, and five skills centers, which offer hugely popular skills and jobs training courses.

Some of the skills center courses, in particular, are so coveted for the quality of their training classes, that they have huge waiting lists.

When I watched the State of the Union during which President Obama harped repeatedly on the importance of job training, I imagined adult ed teachers all over Los Angeles shouting back at their TVs: “Tell that to LAUSD!”

The LA Times has more on Tuesday’s demonstration.

Here’s what I wrote in 2009 about the reasons NOT to put adult ed on the chopping block.


SO FAR THE MUCH FEARED BOGEYMAN OF CALIFORNIA’S REALIGNMENT PROGRAM HAS BEEN “BENIGN,” ACCORDING TO LA’S LAW ENFORCEMENT

KPCC’S “On Central” has the story.

But the bullet points are: crime is still down and the jails aren’t being overrun. Obviously, this is early in the program. However, these are good signs that perhaps the sky isn’t going to come crashing down after all.


IS OHIO KEEPING AN INNOCENT MAN ON DEATH ROW?

The Atlantic Monthly’s Andrew Cohen examines the troubling death row case of Tyrone Noling.

Here’s a clip:

….There are several legitimate reasons why Noling deserves a new trial, especially in a state with a long history of wrongful capital convictions. There are a lot of flawed capital convictions all over the country — pick a state, any state, where the death penalty is still a priority for prosecutors and you’ll find such a case. But a closer look at this case reveals virtually all of the system’s main flaws at one time and in one place. The only thing missing from the story is racial bias, which likely would have only made things worse. (As of September 30, 2011, there were 148 inmates on Ohio’s death row, 65 of them white males like Noling.)


UPDATES ON OR7 AKA JOURNEY, OUR NEW LONE CALIFORNIA WOLF

It seems everyone is fascinated with OR7, the young grey wolf who wandered into California on December 28—the first wild wolf to be on California soil in 88 years

Patt Morrison is a devoted critter person, so it was natural that she would do a show on the wolf updating us on his most recent activities.

It seems OR7 has at least two Twitter accounts. (Here and here.)

And now both the New York Times and Time Magazine have done slightly giddy articles on Mr. OR7. (As well they should.)


WASHINGTON STATE AND COLORADO WILL LIKELY HAVE POT LEGALIZATION PROPOSITIONS ON THE NOVEMBER BALLOT

Reuters has the story. Here’s a clip:

Pot legalization supporters have argued for decades that prohibition has failed to curb pot use, and that the policy enriches drug cartels, hurts casual users and deprives governments of a potentially lucrative source of tax revenue.

Now, they see momentum on their side, pointing to an October Gallup Poll that found a record 50 percent of Americans support legalizing marijuana use, up from 36 percent five years before.

The poll also found 62 percent of those between the ages of 18 and 29 back legalization, and that the young are driving the shift in attitudes.

“There’s a set of factors that suggest both the Washington and Colorado initiates have a better chance of winning than any of the initiatives that have happened before,” said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance.

“But that said, even with a majority of likely voters in both states saying they favor legal marijuana, we know in the final stretch there’s always a small percentage that get nervous or scared off or fearful of change,” he said.


Posted in LAUSD, Must Reads, Realignment, wolves | 3 Comments »

3 Responses

  1. Rob Grocholski Says:

    The measure to legalize cannabis in WA, I-502, officially qualified for the Nov ballot last Friday.

  2. jim hitchcock Says:

    I love the fact that the travels of OR7 are of interest to so many people. I wonder if it’s that it just feels so real to us, whereas modern day life so often seems divorced from the natural world (pardon the ramblings of an amateur, hackneyed philosopher :) .

  3. Celeste Fremon Says:

    Thanks, Rob.

    And, exactly, Jim, I’m very cheered by the attention paid to OR7. It’s as if, as you said, for a moment, people allow themselves to be tethered to earth again.

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