May 13th, 2010
07:57 AM ET

Thursday's intriguing people

Ed Reyes

The Los Angeles, California, City Council on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved a boycott of Arizona-based businesses and governments unless the state repeals a new law giving police the power to question a detainee's immigration status. The city's legislative analyst reported that Los Angeles currently has $56 million in contracts with companies headquartered in Arizona.

According to The Los Angeles Times, during their debate on the resolution, council members compared Arizona's legislative behavior to Nazi Germany and the beginning of the Holocaust, as well as the internment and deportation of Japanese-Americans during World War II.

"Los Angeles is the second-largest city in this country, an immigrant city, an international city. It needs to have its voice heard," said Councilman Reyes, a resolution sponsor. "As an American, I cannot go to Arizona today without a passport. If I come across an officer who's having a bad day and feels that the picture on my ID is not me, I can be ... deported, no questions asked. That is not American."

CNN This Just In: Los Angeles passes Arizona boycott over immigration law

Los Angeles Times: L.A. council bans most official travel to Arizona

John Legend

The singer-songwriter-pianist is helping to raise funds for Gulf Coast fishing families and environmentalists facing the challenges of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Legend and many other top artists will perform May 14–16 at the Hangout Beach Music and Arts Festival in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Along with Legend will be such performers as Zac Brown Band, Alison Krauss, The Black Crowes, and Jakob Dylan.

Legend, the winner of six Grammy awards, is also scheduled to appear at the Gulf Aid benefit concert in New Orleans, Louisiana, on Sunday.

Hangout Festival website

John Legend website

Robert MacLean

An administrative judge has ruled that the Transportation Security Administration was within its rights when it fired the federal air marshal for leaking sensitive information to the media.

MacLean was fired in 2006, two years after he told an MSNBC reporter that the agency planned to remove air marshals from flights that required costly overnight hotels. The disclosure embarrassed the agency, coming only days after the government had sent out a warning about planned terror attacks on U.S. aircraft.

MacLean said he will appeal the administrative judge's decision and that he hopes for a suspension, not termination, as the appropriate punishment for his actions. He told CNN in 2009 that he never had to make an arrest in five years flying missions as an air marshal.

"It was a well-paying job with enormous responsibility, yet extremely tedious and mundane," he said. "You did the same thing every day, there was nothing new. You sat in your seat and prayed that nobody would set off an IED or ambush you mid-flight."

CNN This Just In: Judge upholds firing of federal air marshal

Maryam Ali

The 16-year-old sophomore at West Potomac High School in Alexandria, Virginia, wants to race with her school's crew team.

In a moving Washington Post profile, reporter Annie Gowen describes the challenges facing Ali - asthma, overweight, lives in subsidized housing - and how tough it was to pay for her $260 uniform and the team's $750 fees. And because she's not strong enough to row with others, her coach found her a separate boat to practice in.

Ali, who is African-American in a sport dominated by white competitive rowers, told the newspaper that her goal is to get in a race before the end of the season.

"I just want to do the best I can ... and be an important part of the team," she said.

Washington Post: Rower confronts class barriers with spot on crew team

Piers Sellers

The British-born NASA astronaut is taking a small piece of Sir Isaac Newton's famous apple tree into space on Friday on his trip to the International Space Station.

According to the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences, the mathematician and physicist saw an apple fall in his orchard at some time during 1665 or 1666. Newton then hypothesized that the same gravitational force that made the apple fall also governed the motion of the moon.

London's Guardian newspaper reports that Sellers, who has dual UK-U.S. citizenship, said he will let the slice from Newton's tree float around in the Atlantis shuttle.

"While it's up there, it will be experiencing no gravity, so if it had an apple on it, the apple wouldn't fall. ... Sir Isaac would have loved to see this, assuming he wasn't spacesick, as it would have proved his first law of motion to be correct."

The Guardian: Isaac Newton's apple tree to experience zero gravity

Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences: Newton's life

soundoff (575 Responses)
  1. Martin

    I for one will NOT be taking any business or vacations to Los Angeles.

    The LA Council is ignoring the fact that over 60% of AMERICANS support the bill in Arizona, and many states are following suit.

    I'm VERY surprised that a state with a LEGAL immigrant as Governor doesn't do more to clamp down on illegals.

    If California doesn't want to do anything about illegals, then other states near them should advertise this fact. California state government is completely broke, and doesn't seem to have a problem with paying for education, health care, and policing costs for millions of illegals who pay absolutely ZERO in taxes to contribute to state funds. Let them have them.

    I would be happy to take a vacation in Arizona, given the stance they've taken.

    At least there willl be less people there due to all these idiotic boycotts !!

    May 13, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  2. jmack

    All true Americans... boycott the boycotters.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  3. kiki

    If you are here illegally you are breaking federal laws just as if you were in Mexico they deport their illegals no questions asked there should be no double standard plus all the crimes being perpetrated by Mexican nationals has to stop, I am a victim NO AMNESTY elections are coming up soon and illegals cant vote.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  4. Robert Daniel Upstate New York

    Does this mean that no one will steel the hubcaps off my car?

    May 13, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  5. Mr. Tea

    Danz-

    Epic Win.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  6. Arlee

    Just one more thing while you are spending good work time posting your opinion, an opinion that will not solve anything, those same people (illegals) that you say are taking your job are out there working, after all they are not smuggling computers across the border are they?

    May 13, 2010 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  7. ZakB

    It cost me and my family of four just over $10 000 to come to the US Legally! I think I should move to LA and sue the city for a refund! I know the response is going to be that the illegals cannot afford it! Shame lame excuse is all I can say. I sacrificed my life savings to be here legally and to live the American dream.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  8. Mr. Tea

    It's called a lunch break Arlee. What's your excuse for being here?

    May 13, 2010 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  9. Kumquat

    People simply do not get it! This is NOT about shear immigration but voting. Keep the Republicans in power by getting rid of poor low waged immigrants so these do not vote democratic in elections. For eight years, the Bush administration turned a doleful eye away from allowing low waged illegals to be hired by employers bent on lowing the wage levels, keeping costs as low as possible. Millions of these illegals were hired into various jobs by illegally hiring them by employers allowed to get away with this. Now, after the Great Recession, the need for low waged illegals has stemmed to such a point that these are now deemed unwanted by the Republican right. This is the modus operendi for getting rid of these illegals because many of them went home after jobs disappeared. Those remaining will be hunted down in Arizona to be gotten rid of and get expelled from the state. It is all about voting rolls and not what it all appears to be. The boycott of Arizona will only gain steam after the likes of San Fransisco and Los Angeles have already agreed to boycott Arizona. Arizona will learn that money does matter and will rescind their vote on this matter!

    May 13, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  10. John

    This is crazy we should ALL Boycott CALF!!!

    May 13, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  11. Katie

    SHAME ON YOU, LA! HOW WOULD YOU LIKE LIKE THE REST OF THE COUNTRY TO BOYCOTT LA?

    I THINK I WILL. NO DOGER GAMES, LA TIMES, LA TV, LA PLAYS.

    LET'S ALL MOVE TO AZ AND SEE HOW LA LIKES BEING BOYCOTTED!

    May 13, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  12. Tina

    Apparently being a racist no longer means thinking a certain ethnic group is somehow inferior; it means not agreeing certain ethnic groups are exempt from the law. In that case, sign me up, I am now officially a racist.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  13. skydy11

    my god what has happened to this country im sure this is not what our founding fathers had in mind when this country was born the gov has way to much control its time american citizens take control before we lose it all together

    May 13, 2010 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  14. K from AZ

    It would be a more legitimate discussion if the protesters would read (that's if they know how to) the law. BTW, won't set foot in LA or California as long as this foolishness continues.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  15. Lisa

    This law needs to be voted on in every state. It may be defeated in Florida, New York and California.

    May 13, 2010 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39