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The Lure of Comic-Con
14 Jul 2015

The Lure of Comic-Con

Out of my element at Comic-Con 2015, where 250,000 movie fans, comic devotees and techno geeks gather, I had an expectation of being trampled in a sea of humanity.  Instead, I found enthusiastic, welcoming people whose entry badges were like a symbol of solidarity. It’s like we were all part of some giant, secret club. Women and men of every age entertained their favorite fantasies,...

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Why the George Takei “Blackface” Dust-up Costs More Than We Think
08 Jul 2015

Why the George Takei “Blackface” Dust-up Costs More Than We Think

Actor and activist George Takei got into hot water for his reaction to Justice Clarence Thomas’ remarks following the Supreme Court’s gay marriage ruling. Mr. Takei’s calling Justice Thomas a “Clown in black face” was disrespectful and over the top. But was his rage understandable? Here are Justice Thomas’ comments: “[H]uman dignity cannot be taken away by the government. Slaves did not lose their dignity...

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Will Charleston Unity Demonstrations Make a Difference?
25 Jun 2015

Will Charleston Unity Demonstrations Make a Difference?

More than twenty thousand people from around the country gathered on Charleston’s Arthur Ravenel Bridge as a sign of unity and support for the Charleston shooting victims and their families. Hundreds of thousands more took to social media to express their grief, outrage and solidarity. But will these demonstrations make a difference going forward or do they just serve to make us feel better in...

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Jazz Greats Acoustic Alchemy Inspire Art for Its Own Sake
21 Jun 2015

Jazz Greats Acoustic Alchemy Inspire Art for Its Own Sake

Watching Acoustic Alchemy last night at the Catalina Jazz Grill in Hollywood, my hubby, friends and I pinched ourselves, incredulous at our good fortune. Being entertained by superior talents like these in a small supper club seemed unbelievable.  The crowd was most appreciative, yet the place was not sold out. I kept thinking, where the hell is the rest of L.A.? They don’t know what...

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Will Veteran Homelessness Soon Be a Crisis of the Past?
18 Jun 2015

Will Veteran Homelessness Soon Be a Crisis of the Past?

Homelessness has long seemed an insurmountable problem and veteran homelessness is a particular tragedy. Making positive progress on such an overwhelming issue has often felt fruitless, with solutions that are not much more than band-aids. But in Houston, which once had one of the highest populations of Veteran homelessness in the country, over 35 agencies partnered to tackle this situation with stunning results. In the...

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Working Too Hard May Be Hurting the Economy
11 Jun 2015

Working Too Hard May Be Hurting the Economy

Americans are working longer hours with fewer vacations and greater stress, but employees are not the only ones who may suffer from those habits. A study examined in the New York Times shows that companies are also hurting themselves – and their economic growth – by being too demanding. Big companies are hoarding cash and still aren’t putting the money back into their employees, which...

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Is Poverty Porn the New Trend in Reality TV?
05 Jun 2015

Is Poverty Porn the New Trend in Reality TV?

CBS’ new reality show, The Briefcase, debuted last week to big numbers and per The Week, “continues a long American tradition of putting the poor under a microscope.” First, The Briefcase teases two financially strapped families with a briefcase containing $101,000 cash. As they learn about each other’s hardships, the families are pitted against one another and must decide how much of that cash –...

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Shocking Number of Professors on Public Assistance
03 Jun 2015

Shocking Number of Professors on Public Assistance

I have long had a stereotyped view of affluent college professors living in relative comfort, but in a trend reflective of America’s new economic model, many colleges are dealing with drastic budget cuts by relying more heavily on part-time contractors, without job security or benefits.   The result is that a substantial number of college professors are living below the poverty line. A recent piece by...

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Louis C.K.’s Controversial Monologue: He’s Laughing All The Way to the Bank
19 May 2015

Louis C.K.’s Controversial Monologue: He’s Laughing All The Way to the Bank

Comic Louis C.K. caused quite a stir after hosting the season finale of the 40th season of Saturday Night Live. Though he tackled a few sensitive subjects such as racism and the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, it was his monologue on child molestation that had both media critics and social media buzzing. (You can see the controversial portion of the monologue at 5:30 in the video below.)...

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Despite Inequality, Women Refuse To Be Frozen Out At Box Office
09 May 2015

Despite Inequality, Women Refuse To Be Frozen Out At Box Office

  The smaller presence of women on the big screen reflects society at large.  Often, women are still relegated to a lesser seat at the big table.  Shocking when you consider author and commentator Anita Finlay’s comments that “Women are driving 60% of ticket sales today, yet it’s still tough to find story lines where we’re not window dressing.  Clearly we’re going out to see...

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