Coachella Valley Independent

Indy Digest: April 13, 2023

The march toward fascism continues …

From the Missouri Independent:

Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey released details of an emergency rule Thursday seeking to make it harder for transgender children and adults to access certain medical procedures, calling them “experimental” and arguing they need “substantial guardrails.” …

Citing the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act—a law intended to prosecute fraudulent business practices—Bailey’s office prescribed a multi-faceted disclosure and screening process for physicians offering gender-affirming care.

The attorney general’s rule mandates that anyone receiving puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones or gender-transition surgery must first receive 15 hourly sessions with a psychologist or psychiatrist over at least 18 months.

The rules also include a provision that bars physicians from prescribing puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones unless a patient has three “most recent, consecutive years” of medical documentation showing gender dysphoria. …

“I will always fight to protect children because gender transition interventions are experimental,” Bailey said in a press release Thursday.

Shira Berkowitz, senior director of public policy and advocacy for LGBTQ advocacy organization PROMO, said Bailey’s office is “stating that they know better than not only all of the major medical professional associations, but also all practitioners following these guidelines and caring for patients.”

From NBC News:

Florida’s Republican-dominated Legislature on Thursday passed a ban on most abortions after six weeks, sending the bill to Gov. Ron DeSantis. He has said he would sign the measure into law.

Final passage came after a marathon floor hearing in the state House, which passed the proposal largely along party lines in a 70-40 vote after the state Senate passed the bill on April 3.

Democrats in the chamber forcefully opposed the legislation but were vastly outnumbered by Republican supermajorities in both chambers. GOP House Speaker Paul Renner had to close the public viewing galleries after protesters threw what appeared to be paper on the House floor.

It capped off what has been a hugely contentious process to pass the legislation, SB 300, which DeSantis has signaled support for, but it puts him in a tricky political position. He is considering a 2024 bid for president, but most public polling shows a six-week abortion ban is unpopular among both political parties.

From the Independent (U.K.):

(Donald Trump) made a series of all-caps rants on his Truth Social platform on Easter Sunday, just days after he made history as the first current or former U.S. president to ever be charged with a crime.


The tirade continued throughout the day with posts slamming the Biden administration as “the worst in history” in response to reports that the White House was blaming the Trump administration for issues the US faced during the 2021 withdrawal from Afghanistan. …

But, in perhaps the most disturbing post, Mr. Trump appeared to suggest violence with the three-word post: “WORLD WAR lll.”

Mr. Trump then doubled down on his comment on Monday morning, writing: “The way the U.S. is going, we will soon be in World War lll, with NO AMMUNITION!”

This is not normal, folks. This is not normal at all.

—Jimmy Boegle

From the Independent

Hardcore Growth: Knocked Loose Is Prepared to Be ‘the Scary Band’ at Coachella

By Matt King

April 11th, 2023

Over the past few years, the bands on the Coachella undercard have gotten heavier and heavier—and Knocked Loose continues that trend.

Educating and Showcasing: The McCallum Theatre’s Open Call Project Creates Community Through a Talent Competition

By Matt King

April 13th, 2023

During three shows on April 21 and 22, more than 60 members of the community will take the McCallum Theatre stage, with audience members voting for their favorites.

Reassuring Fest: DJ Kyle Watson Brings Dance Music and Determination to the Coachella Stage

By Matt King

April 12th, 2023

This wasn’t the first time DJ Kyle Watson has received the news that he was invited to Coachella; he was part of the 2020 lineup for the festival that never came to be.

Film to TV: Television Adaptations of Movies Don’t Always Work; Here Are Some That (Almost) Did

By Bill Frost

April 13th, 2023

These seven film-to-TV adaptations almost worked. Almost.

Exploratory Explosive Punk: The Destroy Boys Are Thrilled to Offer Coachella Attendees a Non-Cis-White Dose of Ear-Ringing Music

By Matt King

April 13th, 2023

Destroy Boys’ brand of hard-hitting, chord-burning jams are like firecrackers in your ears, with songs like “Vixen” and “Muzzle” offering an explosive combination of punk singing, wild instrumentals and emotionally expressive lyrics.

The Weekly Independent Comics Page for April 13, 2023!

By Staff

April 13th, 2023

Topics addressed this week include pregnancy tests, emancipation, real Americans, 55-gallon drums—and more!

More News

• A local great—Gail Christian, the co-founder of the Palm Springs Women’s Jazz Festival—has passed away. According to a post on the festival’s Facebook page: “Gail Christian has sprouted her wings and flown! With an extremely heavy heart, we let you know that she transitioned today with her life partner Lucy by her side. She was fighting to make it out of Cedars Sinai after surgery complications, but as strong-willed as we all knew her to be, it was time to meet her ancestors. Gail was a leader in the jazz and blues, LGBTQ, women’s, and Women of Color communities; we mourn the loss of one of our most iconic figures. She was a partner, mother, grandmother, and larger-than-life dear friend. Our hearts are very full—she will be missed by all who knew her!”

On a much happier note, an amazingly cool event is making its debut at Demuth Park this weekend. According to Shann Carr (who, I should disclose, is a friend of mine and the Independent): “The first World Art Day Festival and ‘Art in the Park in the Dark’ will be held Saturday, April 15, from 3 to 10 p.m., in Demuth Park. This new, free, family-friendly event is presented by the City of Palm Springs and Shann Carr’s Desert Whimsy, and will take place in Demuth Park on Mesquite Avenue between the pickleball courts and the playground. The event is part of a global celebration of World Art Day, in honor of Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday. The daytime portion of the event, produced by Palm Springs Parks and Recreation Department, includes a student art gallery, open chalk walk drawing, interactive art classes, food vendors, and community performances from 3 to 6 p.m. Art in the Park in the Dark is the late-night part of the Festival from 6 to 10 p.m. filled with lasers, a lighted bike parade, flaggers, interactive glow art, and live painting. The whole day is a hands-on experience that is free and appropriate for all ages. … Attendees are encouraged to participate in the City of Palm Springs’ World Art Day Festival from 3-6 p.m., and then stay as the lights come on during the twilight hours. Participants are encouraged to bring a blacklight flashlight and wear a black or white T-shirt to become a walking canvas for artistic creations. Glow sticks, neon, blacklight fabrics, twinkly lights, and any other light-up accessories are highly encouraged.”

The cost of postage is going up. CNN says: “The U.S. Postal Service said Monday that it filed a notice with its regulators to increase prices on first-class mail stamps to 66 cents from 63 cents. If approved, the change would take effect in July, raising the cost of mailing a first-class letter by about 5.4%. The Postal Service said the hike was necessary to offset a rise in operating expenses. Surging prices have dented business across the global economy over the past two years, pushing up workers’ wages and increasing the costs of doing business. Although inflation has been cooling over the past nine months—prices were up 5% last month on an annual basis—it remains above the central bank’s target of around 2%. ‘These price adjustments are needed to provide the Postal Service with much needed revenue,’ the agency said in a statement. If the latest hike is approved, it would amount to a 32% increase over the past four years.”

Also going up: Rates of sexually transmitted infections—especially syphilis. ABC News reports: “A total of 2.53 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis were recorded in 2021, according to a new report published Tuesday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s a 5.8% increase from the 2.39 million cases reported in 2020 and a 7% increase from five years ago when 2.37 million STIs were recorded in 2017. ‘I’d like people to understand that this data actually impacts them whether they think it does or not and it’s because STIs happen to everyone, regardless of socioeconomic, religious, political lifestyle,’ Dr. Kameelah Phillips, an OBGYN in New York City, told ABC News. ‘I’d like them to really understand that routine testing at their health care office is super important … gonorrhea doesn’t care who you are.’ While certain STIs did not reach pre-pandemic levels, others—such as syphilis—are recording the highest numbers seen in more than 70 years.”

Meanwhile, in better news, egg prices are going down. According to CNBC: “Egg prices fell by almost 11% in March, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said Wednesday, following a 7% decline in February and delivering relief from record-high prices over the winter. The decrease is largely due to a recovery in egg production and weaker consumer demand, said Brian Moscogiuri, global trade strategist at Eggs Unlimited, an egg supplier. … Consumers paid $4.21 for a dozen Grade A, large eggs in February, on average, according to most recent federal data. That’s more than double the price in February 2022, when a dozen eggs cost $2, but is down 61 cents from $4.82 in January 2023, which was a record high. … There hasn’t been a confirmed (bird flu) case at commercial egg farms since December, and supply has rebounded, Moscogiuri said.”

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has not been in Washington, D.C., since a bout with shingles in February. Her absence is starting to cause problems. The Los Angeles Times reports: “Though working at home in San Francisco while recuperating, Feinstein’s absence from the U.S. Capitol has halted confirmation hearings for federal judges in the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is split evenly with 10 Democrats and 10 Republicans because of Feinstein’s absence. The committee’s last vote on a Biden judicial nominee was Feb. 16. That has prompted calls for her to resign from some Democrats, who say the party’s agenda in Washington is more important than showing deference to her distinguished career, according to a story by Alexandra E. Petri. Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Fremont) was among the first to publicly call for Feinstein to step down. … The story of Feinstein’s fate in Washington was gathering steam all day Wednesday and, finally, the senator put out a statement to address it. Feinstein said her return to Washington has been delayed by ‘continued complications related to my diagnosis,’ but that she had no plans to head for the door.”

And finally … just what the world does NOT need: a self-firing gun. The Washington Post reports: “The P320 is one of the nation’s most popular handguns. A variant of the weapon is the standard-issue sidearm for every branch of the U.S. military. Since the gun’s introduction to the commercial market in 2014, manufacturer SIG Sauer has sold the P320 to hundreds of thousands of civilians, and it has been used by officers at more than a thousand law enforcement agencies across the nation, court records show. It has also gruesomely injured scores of people who say the gun has a potentially deadly defect. More than 100 people allege that their P320 pistols discharged when they did not pull the trigger, an eight-month investigation by The Washington Post and The Trace has found. At least 80 people were wounded in the shootings, which date to 2016.”

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Jimmy Boegle is the founding editor and publisher of the Coachella Valley Independent. He is also the executive editor and publisher of the Reno News & Review in Reno, Nev. A native of Reno, the Dodgers...