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. Don

    Arrizona is just enforcing a law that the Federal Gov't is too stupid to enforce. I wish L.A. would boycott everyone.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Roger

    Its time all America BOYCOTTS all California products to show support for Arizona.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. RinkerDog

    Arizona should likewise rescind any contracts with LA & California overall. See whom feels the pinch more. Enough of the politicians spoutning off & courting the next election cycle. IF you come here legally, no problem, if you are here illegally, do not expect preferential treatment over what my ancestors whom came over here 6-8 generations ago. Not to metnion what the rest of us CITIZENS are held to now. I applaud Arizona for their courage. Clone Sherrif Joe Arpio. Send some troops to teh borders. I love USA.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. red

    What saddens me most is the aggressiveness and name calling that appears within the comments. I'm not sure who's at the helm at Newsweek..but some of these comments should not be able to appear. Whether you agree or not, the least we can do is be civil to one another....because otherwise...nobody is listening. There are two sides to every argument.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. kevin

    LA city council should be gearing their efforts towards stopping illegal immigration not investing tax dollars in a campaign to support illegal immigration. It is obvious that this campaign is to gain the hispanic vote. LA city council members should be immediately pulled for abusing their positions.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  6. DW

    Screw all you tree hugging liberal Californians! If all of your illegal buddies
    paid taxes and went through the correct process as an immigrant we would not
    need pass laws of this nature. But your supporting the very reason we had to.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Slappa Da Bass

    "I hope my leaders in Sacramento follow your lead and do the same, and I hope the Federal Goverment finally understands what we want. A wall 12ft high and 12ft underground with guard towers, razor wire, and guard dogs, Just like every other country in the world does."


    Really? What countries would these be?

    May 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John

    sn13, if the US bordered on Sweden and we were getting hundreds of thousands crossing our boarder every single year we would want that stopped just as well. This is not a race issue it is an illegal immigration issue and it has to stop. What gets old is people throwing out the race card when they have no leg to stand on in their arguments.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  9. GO AZ.


    May 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Lovin' It!

    Illegal is illegal, and that's the law. If racial profiling is LA's main concern, then whatever. I don't care. How sensitive must people be? I was just in Ukraine, and I was profiled and interrogated twice inside 4 days. And you know what? I'm glad I was. I had my paperwork and I was let go each time without problems. It helps security, and it is fair to the people of Ukraine. Kudos Arizona!!! Stay strong.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Brian

    It is nice to know there are still states with some backbone.

    Go Arizona .

    May 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Meggie

    Arlee...then let them come to your country and in a month see if you have the same stance, but let me warn you. when you see little signs that you would normally take for a garage sale sign that simply says M-13, MOVE... cuz the mexican mafia is in your neighborhood but you go ahead and invite them in for afternoon tea and see how fast they destroy you and your home.You can have the understanding of their situation and give them a hand showing them what to do when in YOUR country, how to be a legal immigrant, how to find a way to better themselves legallly and then just when you think your doing everything right and they realize they can get more benefits by remaining illegal, and they can work without being legal and they can get further in life by running drugs and moving their cartel in then you can come back and ask us how we managed to get them out of our country and BTW we are not talking about a few people as your making it sound.. We are talking that statistics say 8 MILLION or more. so you go ahead and take that 8 million into your country and good luck to you!

    May 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Terri

    Profiling wouldn't even be an issue if our government grew a backbone and enforced our laws. It's disgusting that this issue has brought our country to this point. Arizona is to be commended for taking a stand. The rest of the country should follow suit!

    May 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  14. David Curry

    I agree with everybody else, let's boycott california to support Arizona ! Go Arizona !

    May 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  15. The Dark Lord Approach

    Incorrect Red,

    There are an infinite number of sides to each issue however in America we now simply paint them white vs. black. Deomcrat vs. Republican. Liberal vs. Conservative. Right vs. Wrong

    This type of argumentative social combat hurts everyone involved. Good ideas get thrown aside because they are not "RADICAL" enough and meanwhile the viscious cycle of hate carries on.

    It is Beck, Hannity, Stewart, Colbert....CNN, MSNBC, FOX...All of you are sick people or have sick people running your companies. THis continual "I AM RIGHT YOU ARE WRONG" makes me think I am in the twighlight zone. I had a breakthrough last night though...YOU GUYS ARE CRAZY NOT ME!!!! Thanks for playing!! MOney and fame are powerful things to many people.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
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