» LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner expressed frustration with the suggestion that city officials might sue the district to reopen school campuses. “Grandstanding political stunts like this are precisely why schools in Los Angeles remain closed,” he said. “It was not the decision of Los Angeles Unified to reopen card rooms or indoor malls before infection rates were low enough to unlock the schoolyard gates.” [Los Angeles Times]
» As vaccine supply in Los Angeles remains extremely limited, the county’s supersites will no longer bother giving out first doses for the time being. Those sites will be used to administer second doses to those who have already gotten a first shot. [ABC Los Angeles]
» Church of the Epiphany in Lincoln Heights, built in 1887, has been named to the National Register of Historic Places. The oldest Episcopal church in L.A. earned the status for its role as a cradle of the Chicano civil rights movement. [Spectrum News]
» LeBron James says he has “zero energy and zero excitement” about participating in an NBA All Star Game. He’s one of several players who have criticized the league’s plan to move forward with the event, which has raised pandemic protocol concerns because it requires members of multiple teams to mix for a single match and then return to their clubs. [ESPN]
» Hollywood counts on exporting American films to China, but China’s own film industry is on a rapid rise, keeping screens filled with content that favors government-endorsed themes. A look at a power and culture shift in the world’s biggest movie ticket market. [Los Angeles Times]
TOP STORIES FROM L.A. MAG
» The Dodger Stadium Anti-Vaxxers Vow to Continue Being a Nuisance The conspiracy theorists who were part of last weekend’s demonstration and other recent anti-science, anti-government displays tell the L.A. Times they aren’t done with the disruptions
» California Lawmakers Push for Big Theme Parks to Open Sooner than They’re Slated To Assembly Bill 420 would move Disneyland and its ilk from the Yellow Tier into the Orange Tier
» Amid a Health and Economic Crisis, Some Local Grocery Stores Offload Their Delivery Drivers Albertsons Companies—which owns Vons and Pavilions—are looking to the gig economy instead
ONE MORE THING
Black History Month Spotlight: Col. Allen Allensworth, Founder of a Black Utopian Township
Born enslaved in Kentucky, Allen Allensworth (1842-1914) was already an ordained minister, an Army chaplain, the first African American to reach the rank of lieutenant colonel in the Army, an RNC delegate, and a military manual writer when he moved to Los Angeles in 1906. In 1908, he formed the self-sufficient utopian Black American community of Allensworth Township near Bakersfield. According to the Los Angeles Times:
At its dedication, he reminded his followers of their purpose in separating from their former, mostly white communities. “If we expect to be given due credit for our efforts and achievements, they must be made where they will stand out distinctively and alone,” he said, exhorting the residents to “settle upon the bare desert and cause it to blossom as a rose.”
At its peak, the Allensworth Township boasted 400 residents, its own school district, library, and voting system. Sadly, Colonel Allensworth was killed by a motorcyclist in Monrovia in 1914, and the town he had dreamed of died out shortly after. However, much of the town is now Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park.
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