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Gregg Reese

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Recent Stories

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‘Coming out of the Shadows’

Minority cannabis advocates meet in Culver City

The California Minority Alliance (CMA) recently held a seminar titled “Coming Out Of The Shadows In The Cannabis Industry After Proposition M” at the Veterans Memorial Complex in Culver City. They discussed how people of color can take advantage of business opportunities in the newly legal medical and recreational marijuana industry. The fact that the auditorium was filled to capacity is an indicator of the public’s interest to hear from the distinguished panelists.

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Where do we go from here?

The precarious dynamic between the LAPD and its Black constituency remains a point of contention

Now that the dust has settled in the wake of numerous documentaries, television news specials, formal studies by educational centers, think tanks and other entities in this, the 25th anniversary of the 1992 revolt/riot/uprising of Los Angeles, we may ask the burning questions: What did it mean, and where do we go from here? In light of the billions of dollars spent in well-publicized efforts to rebuild and/or revitalize the city, a few well-placed voices from differing vantage points consented to give their “take” on the passage of time, and the changes that have or have not taken place.

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‘Bronzeville, Little Tokyo’ serves up WWII L.A.

As the 33rd iteration of the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (http://festival.vconline.org/2017/) gets underway today through May 3, a special

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Documentaries look back on the events of April, 1992

The history of motion pictures, now over a century old, has spawned legions of genres and sub-genres, most of them fictional, or made up stories meant to replicate reality.

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‘Guerrilla’ revisits Black Radicalism within the United Kingdom

John Ridley is on a roll. A seasoned writer whose credits stretch back to the 1990s, his 2013 Oscar winning screenplay for “12 Years a Slave” vaulted him into the stratosphere of show biz.

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Unapologetically Black

A 35-year retrospective of painter Kerry James Marshall comes to his home town

Drawing is a staple of everyone’s childhood and is an important avenue of cognitive development. Very few of us continue this activity into adulthood, and fewer still progress to the point where it becomes a profession or life’s work. Los Angeles-bred Kerry James Marshall has transcended this and more. Today, he is internationally known for his artwork (especially paintings) commenting on the narrative of the African-American experience.

‘I called him Morgan’ revisits a Jazz tragedy

Jazz and the crime film, or more precisely “film noire” is as a perfect a fit as any in the canon of film genres. In the hands of the right musician(s), improvisation can make for an intriguing counterpoint to the moody visuals of dimly lit scenes usually shot at night, with generous amounts of shadows and smoke (preferably in black and white), mounted on a plot complete with degenerate behavior, jilted lovers, and above all, a protagonist who is doomed from the start.

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There goes the neighborhood

The colonies of Baldwin Hills, Ladera Heights, and View Park-Windsor Hills comprise one of the most affluent Black residential areas in the United States. Baldwin Hills specifically has been dubbed “the Black Beverly Hills” (a title it shares with View Park) given by the African American Digest, Atlanta Black Star and other news organs serving Black audiences, as well as spawning an eponymous reality show on Black Entertainment Television.

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Down the rabbit hole of the radical Left

A 19-year-old heiress, the product of one of America’s wealthiest families, is abducted by a left-wing revolutionary band of college-educated-suburbanites-turned-terrorists, led by an escaped convict and recent convert to Marxism. Within a couple of months, the kidnappers forward a “communiqué” via audio recording to a radio station, in which the victim proclaims her solidarity with her captors; denounces her parents; repudiates her past life of privilege leading to speculation that she’s been “brainwashed.” Two weeks later, videotape from a bank robbery features the captive wielding a military rifle, as an apparently willing participant.

Racial tensions of 1992 revisited at CAAM

The California African American Museum (CAAM) continues its string of socially relevant offerings with a commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the 1992 Los Angeles riot/uprising, titled “No Justice, No Peace.” This multi-media exhibit utilizes archival materials including documents, newspapers and videos, curated by Tyree Boyd-Pates to revisit those turbulent times, along with the decades leading up to them. This compelling display is accompanied by four equally forceful presentations addressing the African American experience.

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