Good morning. It’s Friday, May 12.
- Supreme Court upholds state law on humane pork sales.
- Reports identify NBC executive as new Twitter CEO.
- And migrants huddle at San Diego border as Title 42 ends.
The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a California law requiring that pork sold in the state come from breeding pigs housed in spaces big enough for them move freely. Industry groups had argued that the law imposed a substantial burden on interstate commerce. “While the Constitution addresses many weighty issues, the type of pork chops California merchants may sell is not on that list,” Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in an opinion joined by both liberal and conservative justices. A.P. | Washington Post
Jamarcus Purley, a staffer for Sen. Dianne Feinstein, was fired last year after he raised alarms about what he said was the senator’s dementia and his belief that she cared “more about her dog, Kirby, than she does about Black people.” Later, in a form of protest, he ate psychedelic mushrooms and filmed himself dancing and smoking a joint in Feinstein’s office, then posted the video to Instagram. The press barely noticed. Politico Magazine
- Feinstein is finally back at work, but she needs a lot of helping hands. L.A. Times
On this week’s California Sun Podcast, host Jeff Schechtman interviews Erik Davis, a historian of California counterculture. Davis talked about how the openness that has shaped California also prepared its residents for the rise of new technologies. “Especially,” he said, “when you think about the way that new technologies aren’t just changing business; they’re changing us. They’re changing who we are.”
NBCUniversal’s head of advertising, Linda Yaccarino, is in talks to become chief executive of Twitter, several reports said Thursday, citing anonymous sources. Elon Musk announced that he had hired a new CEO, but didn’t say who it was. “She will be starting in ~6 weeks!” he tweeted. In Yaccarino, Twitter would get an executive with deep ties to the advertising industry as the social media platform tries to win back advertisers spooked by Musk’s erratic leadership. Wall Street Journal | The Verge
Prosecutors said Nima Momeni, the man accused of killing Bob Lee, had confronted the tech executive over whether Momeni’s sister was taking drugs. But in interviews, former friends and colleagues said it was Momeni who had a drug problem. His cocaine addiction was so severe, one said, it “made him unable to reason and speak.” Momeni’s business faltered, friends fell away, and his personal life unraveled. Mission Local
After Natalie Ryan began winning major disc golf tournaments, the sport’s governing body updated its rules in November to effectively prohibit transgender women from competing in the women’s category. Ryan, who is transgender, said she was “broken” by the decision and sued. On Thursday, a judge granted a temporary restraining order forcing the disc golf association to let Ryan compete in a women’s tournament this weekend in Stockton. “Plaintiff is a professional woman disc golfer,” Judge Troy Nunley wrote. Sacramento Bee | Ultiworld Disc Golf
There’s a mansion nestled directly below the Bay Bridge. The Nimitz House was built on Yerba Buena Island in 1900 as a residence for the commandant of the only U.S. Navy training station on the West Coast. In 1998, the residence became a bizarre flashpoint in the construction of the new Bay Bridge when the Navy refused to let Caltrans engineers onto the island over concerns that the span would spoil the home’s ambiance. Construction didn’t restart for a year and a half, when the Navy’s fears came to pass. SFGATE
Title 42, the statute used during the pandemic to keep asylum seekers out of the U.S., expired Thursday night. Officials have estimated that the number of people crossing the border each day could rise to as many as 13,000, up from about 6,000 on a typical day. Hundreds of migrants huddled Thursday along the steel bollards separating Tijuana from San Diego in what amounted to an open-air holding cell. Advocates called the conditions as “absolutely horrendous.” Enrique Lucero, a migration services official in Tijuana, said so many people are seeking asylum that many of the city’s shelters are at capacity. “I’ve never seen this before,” he said. “People are desperate.” N.Y. Times | S.D. Union-Tribune | KPBS
- Scenes from the border as Title 42 expires. 👉 N.Y. Times | L.A. Times
On Nov. 24, 2021, a daredevil named Trevor Jacob leapt, selfie stick in hand, from a small aircraft after it appeared to stall over the Los Padres National Forest. He posted video to YouTube under the headline “I Crashed My Plane” that drew nearly 3 million views. But it was all a stunt devised to attract attention, federal prosecutors say. On Thursday, Jacob pleaded guilty to a felony charge of obstructing a federal investigation. He faces up to 20 years in prison. L.A. Times | A.P.
While paused at a stop sign in Escondido on Monday, Christopher Elizaga heard a faint “meow” coming from nearby. He pulled his pickup truck into a parking lot to investigate and discovered an 8-week-old kitten with her head stuck in the vehicle’s frame. He called the local humane society, whose workers were able to safely dislodge the kitten using sedation and Q-tips. Elizaga said he hopes to adopt her: “It was kind of meant to be.” @sdhumane | S.D. Union-Tribune
Nestled along the arid mountain interstate that connects Los Angeles with points north, a piercingly blue lake suddenly appears almost like a mirage. Pyramid Lake, formed by a dam in early 1970s, stores water for delivery to Southern California. But it also offers a gorgeous pit stop for travelers right off the stretch of 5 Freeway known as the Grapevine, with picnic areas along a shoreline lined by cottonwoods and pines and a little museum that tells the story of California’s water system. Rent a small boat — $45 for two hours — and you can explore tiny Chumash Island, pictured above. Water.ca.gov | Nature Seeker
In case you missed it
Five items that got big views over the past week:
- Charles Cushman, a voracious traveler from small-town Indiana, was an early adopter of color photography. From 1938 to 1969, he created nearly 2,000 Kodachrome color slides in San Francisco. Here are 22 favorites. 👉 California Sun
- An aerospace engineer built an animatronic puppet and piano robot that plays “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton, then filmed it cruising around San Francisco. Watch for the little girl in the pink sweater at about the 1:50 mark. 👉 bendhoward/YouTube (~4 mins)
- Lesley Hu wanted to vaccinate her 9-year-old son, Pierce. Her ex-husband, Stephen O’Loughlin, was adamantly opposed. Then one day in early 2021, Hu went to pick up Pierce from his school in San Francisco and he wasn’t there. Atavist Magazine
- A campground with views of the Golden Gate Bridge. A wonderland of colorful murals in San Diego. And a historic inn high up on Mount Tamalpais. A travel writer shared his bucket list of 19 places to visit in California in 2023. L.A. Times
- Ansel Troy, of Oakland, put two tiny homes in his yard as a way to make extra cash. They are now his primary source of income. Insider
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The California Sun is written by Mike McPhate, a former California correspondent for the New York Times.
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