Author: The Argonaut

S·O·S (Save Our Sea)

Volunteers target 18 million pounds of trash on Coastal Cleanup Day Story by Joe Piasecki and Gary Walker The submerged plastic bag on the cover of this week’s issue is more dangerous than it looks. Scientists say the millions of tons of plastic debris floating in the world’s oceans breaks down into trillions of smaller toxic particles that wreak havoc on ecosystems, poisoning not only fish but everything that eats them — including people. From 9 a.m. to noon Saturday (Sept. 16), thousands of volunteers will gather to remove trash and debris from beaches and watersheds throughout Los Angeles...

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And Finally, It Begins

EIR that will trigger Ballona Wetlands Restoration Project is complete and will soon become public By Gary Walker After five years of interruptions, delays and mounting frustrations among local environmentalists, the preliminary environmental impact report for the Ballona Wetlands Restoration Project is substantially complete and will be made public by early October or even the end of September, state and federal officials have confirmed. Release of the document triggers a public hearing process that will determine the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s restoration strategy for the nearly 600-acre state ecological reserve in Playa del Rey, the only remaining...

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‘They Picked the Wrong Town’

Alt-right agitators targeting racial justice group encounter massive show of community solidarity in Santa Monica By Joe Piasecki White nationalist and alt-right groups threatening to mount a small army of protesters to disrupt the work of a racial justice organization in Santa Monica got more than they’d bargained for on Sunday. Facing a massive counter-demonstration of community solidarity supported by a muscular police presence at Virginia Avenue Park, all but two participants in the ongoing fringe-right effort to antagonize the Committee for Racial Justice wimped out. Six days before mid-August’s violent white nationalist protests in Charlottesville, more than two...

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‘Now There’s Uncertainty’

DACA reversal is blow to local immigrant youth, but also a call to activism By Gary Walker Carlos Arreola wasn’t surprised to hear the Trump administration will rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, President Obama’s 2012 executive order shielding immigrant youth brought to the U.S. as children from deportation. “This was inevitable. I knew this was going to come,” said Arreola, a constituent services administrator for L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn, whose district includes Marina del Rey and Playa del Rey. A Cal State L.A. student brought to the U.S. from Mexico when he was three...

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In Memoriam: A Life Built on Love

The Rev. Steven Weller, chaplain for Venice’s homeless, saw value in all people By Gary Walker Nearly every day for 20 years, the Rev. Steven H. Weller and his wife Regina combed the Venice Boardwalk for opportunities to extend their friendship and service to the homeless. As chaplains and co-founders of the LAPD’s Homeless Task Force, the Wellers built genuine relationships with their clients and were able to convince many who shied away from social services to come in from the cold. In 2015 and 2016 alone they helped 320 people find immediate shelter or permanent housing, often tapping...

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