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Patt Morrison
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Why do trolls troll? Media scholar Whitney  Phillips has spent years figuring that out -- here's what she told me in my "Patt Morrison Asks" column.
The British government just put up a website with advice on how to fight back against Internet trolls. Popular Science magazine decided "trolls and spambots" were shouting down scientific debate; Christianity Today also ended online comments on its news and features, and the news service Reuters pulled the plug on its comment page for news stories. Humans have said and written nasty things about each other ever since there were humans; has the In...
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John Perry and a few like-minded San Juan Capistrano residents beat their city in court over tiered water rates; now Perry's on the city council that has to deal with the drought.
It started with a few ticked-off residents of the Orange County town of San Juan Capistrano. The city was charging them too much for water, they argued, in violation of the California Constitution, courtesy of Proposition 218, a taxpayer-revolt law passed in 1996. A state court of appeal agreed last month. Now San Juan Capistrano — and by extension other cities — may have to stop conserving water through tiered pricing that's based on the princip...
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Now you don't have to wait for a +StoryCorps StoryBooth to come to town. The new app lets you record your own interviews and send them to the +LibraryOfCongress  
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A California medieval arms expert who rode as a knight in King Richard III's reburial procession explains to me why a monarch dead these 530 years still matters today.
England's King Richard III was killed twice: first by his challenger, Henry Tudor, at the battle of Bosworth Field in 1485, and again, in posthumous reputation, by Tudor historians and by Shakespeare, who portrayed the last English king to die in battle as a "bunch-backed toad" and accused him of murdering his young nephews in the Tower of London to become king. Richard's skeleton was, astonishingly, discovered in 2012 and identified through DNA...
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How to save Los Angeles' fabulous historic buildings -- a new city website and an old hand at doing that.
One of the symbols on Los Angeles' official city seal is a stylized castle. Maybe it should appear with a wrecking ball hanging over it. Raze first, ask questions later has often been the drill with historic buildings. But the city, working with the Getty Conservation Institute, has crafted a website of historical resources, HistoricPlacesLA.org, to inventory sites of "rich social significance" and alert public and private interests to their ex...
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The worse the way of the world, the more desperate the need to empower ourselves by laughing at them. Iranian-American wit Maz Jobrani analyzes political comedy.
When you grow up as Maz Jobrani did, as one of the few Iranian American kids in the rich Bay Area town of Tiburon, a kid embarrassed when his dad drove him to school in a Rolls-Royce instead of a Volvo like the other parents — comedy might come naturally. His family moved here from Tehran when he was 6. Out of a culture not known for stand-up, he found his calling, as he details in his book, "I'm Not a Terrorist but I've Played One on TV: Memoi...
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Forty years in LA's public life -- and now the ebullient, indefatigable TomLaBonge, teen volunteer, council aide, mayoral aide and councilman himself, is termed out. What's he thinking, and how's he feeling?
Man and boy, Tom LaBonge has been a fixture in Los Angeles' City Hall for more than 40 years: a teenager on Mayor Tom Bradley's youth council, community relations director at the Department of Water and Power, right-hand man to council powerhouse John Ferraro, aide to Mayor Richard Riordan and, to his enduring delight, elected in 2001 as councilman for the "great 4th" District. For LaBonge, everything about L.A. is "great." Well, maybe not that...
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Abraham Lincoln appeared to be dead as he slumped in his chair in the presidential box of Ford's Theatre 150 years ago; a very young doctor revived him, and kept him breathing for another nine hours, perhaps thanks to a then-neglected technique that has saved myriad of 20th-century lives.
Abraham Lincoln drew his last mortal breath at 7:22 a.m. on Saturday, April 15, 1865 – 150 years ago.
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In the handful of days between April 9 and Lincoln's assassination 150 years ago, this event--the surrender that presaged the end of the Civil War--was the most important news in the nation.
A century and a half ago, a brief encounter between two men, a Northerner and Southerner, altered the course of American history. I don't mean what you probably have in mind; the Lincoln assassination happened five days later. It was the surrender of Gen. Robert E. Lee to Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. For modern Americans, President Lincoln's assassination has eclipsed the surrender that signaled the end of a savage war. But at the time, souvenir hunter...
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White males keep calling shots in Hollywood as multicultural films show a box-office demand for more diversity. Darnell Hunt's annual survey of vertical diversity in film and TV may hold some answers to why changes should be afoot.
One hundred years ago "The Clansman" premiered in a downtown L.A. theater. Later retitled "The Birth of a Nation," it featured portrayals of black Americans that were so outrageous and so outlandish that the fledgling NAACP tried to have the film banned. Fast forward to now, to the UCLA office of Darnell Hunt, where a copy of the film's poster hangs on the wall. Hunt heads the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies and co-writes an a...
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It's her dream job -- going to Mars -- and Elena Shateni wants to be one of the first four "homo sapiens Martiansis" to make it to the Red Planet.
In a decade or so, when most people her age will be retiring from their working lives, Elena Shateni, now 58, plans to be starting a new life planting the human flag on Mars. Or so she hopes. The Santa Monica holistic medicine specialist is one of 100 semifinalists vying to become the first humans to live on Mars, as part of the Mars One project. That's "one" as in something never done before, and as in a one-way trip (no return flight is possibl...
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How about a little "broken windows" enforcement for building codes and zoning?
First, it was something I wrote. Then, it was something I read.
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Have her in circles
55 people
Ashok Anbarasu's profile photo
Johnnie Jackson's profile photo
George S McQuade's profile photo
Jocelyn Y. Stewart's profile photo
Anh Do's profile photo
Olivia Armour's profile photo
C.Ana Fenton's profile photo
Shrinath Bhooyar's profile photo
Jason Wells's profile photo
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Patt Morrison, Los Angeles Times columnist and Emmy-winning broadcaster
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