Noise. Noise is an environmental pollutant that needs to be acknowledged, addressed and limited like other environmental pollution. Many laws that already exist are not well enforced, and other laws that address emerging sources of noise need to be enacted.
Overreaction to the Problem of Child Abuse. In the late 1970s, child sexual abuse moved front and center as one of our society's major problems. There is no question that it is a problem that needs our full attention. Abuse of any person by another in any way is unacceptable. Unfortunately, an establishment soon formed to take advantage of the extreme emotional nature of the problem, and social conservatives (among others) began to realize that they had an opportunity to affect social policy in ways that were previously impossible.
Those who take advantage of this issue for their own personal advancement and other reasons have been referred to in my writing and others' as the "Child Abuse Industry". It consists of psychologists, social workers, law enforcement personnel and others who claim to be working to eliminate child abuse (regrettably this is an unattainable goal, like trying to eliminate drug use), but engage in activities that make the problem worse, not better. It is an "Industry" in the sense that if the problem ever went away, these people know they would be out of jobs.
Those who use the emotionality of the issue to affect social policy are the same types who invoke the fear of terrorism to make exceptions to privacy rights, individual freedoms, even constitutional guarantees.
Excesses, even when the issues are as serious as these, must be monitored, identified and stopped.
Police Arrogance and Other Abuses. I have no doubt that my attitude toward the police was formed in large part by what I saw and heard about (and felt, on a few occasions) during my first adult years in the 1960s and '70s. Obviously, police are necessary. I know that, and so do they. Considering the awesome power our society gives them to limit the freedom of other human beings, when they overstep their bounds, they must be held accountable.
Society's Ambivalence Toward Adolescents, Particularly Boys. Everyone loves babies. After that, there is not much love left for any social group, including -- maybe especially -- adolescents. Paradoxically, adolescence is a time when lifetime social and sexual patterns and attitudes are learned, just like early childhood is a time when cognitive and motor skills are developed. Instead of preparing kids for adulthood, they are protected far too long, sheltered and deprived until some magical birthday when they are pushed out of the nest without functioning wings. This can't be in our best interests as a society.
August 2012, Inland Empire Magazine - Ellen DeGeneres on the June 2012 cover
6 November 2008, Los Angeles Times - Obama election adds variety, not diversity
5 June 2008, Los Angeles Times - Smoking Ban for Apartment Dwellers
5 October 2007, Los Angeles Times - Justice Clarence Thomas's Conservative Solutions to Social problems
15 June 2005, Los Angeles Times - Michael Jackson's Acquittal
31 October 2003, Los Angeles Times - How to Solve the MTA Strike
8 September 2003, (unpublished) - Recall of California Governor (proposed Op-Ed piece)
2 July 2003, Los Angeles Times - Supreme Court Reinstates Statute of Limitations for Sex Crimes
12 November 2002, Daily Trojan (USC) - Cell Phone Addiction
22 May 2002, Los Angeles Times - Double Standard Regarding Underage Sexual Behavior
20 May 2002, Time Magazine - How to Minimize the Effect of Sexual Abuse
11 May 2000, Los Angeles Times - LAPD Arrogance, Not Laxity, Caused Rampart Scandal
9 February 2000, Los Angeles Times -
Judge's Ruling That High School Gay/Straight Support Group May Meet on Campus
23 May 1999, Los Angeles Times - Disruptive Noise at USC's Commencement
28 April 1998, Los Angeles Times - Suspected Bank Robber Innocent Until Proven Guilty
28 January 1998, Los Angeles Times - President Clinton's Privacy in the Lewinsky Affair
9 October 1997, Los Angeles Times - Ellie Nesler's Apology for Courtroom Murder
22 January 1995, Los Angeles Times Magazine - The Trouble With Boys
14 November 1994, Los Angeles Times - Down With Excessive Noise
7 June 1991, Los Angeles Times - Gangs
10 September 1990, Los Angeles Times - Young Black Males in America
20 June 1990, The Chronicle of Higher Education - Modern Society Robs Adolescents
9 March 1990, Daily Trojan (USC) - Advertising for Sexual Abstinence Lecture
4 February 1990, (unpublished) - Assembly Member's Use of the Word "Faggot"
30 January 1990, Los Angeles Times -
Supreme Court Decides Teachers Not Entitled To Damages for Malicious Prosecution
13 October 1989, Daily Trojan (USC) - USC Food Service Workers
8 October 1989, Los Angeles Times Weekly Listings (Television) -
Double Standard Regarding Underage Sexual Behavior
8 May 1989, Los Angeles Times - Society's Problems With Adolescence
27 February 1988, Los Angeles Times - Jimmy Swaggart Scandal
9 January 1988, Los Angeles Times - Jeffrey Mullican's Death from AIDS
19 October 1987, Daily Trojan (USC) - Restricting Loud Music in Public
18 July 1987, Los Angeles Times - Harvard Sophomore Accused of Stealing
12 March 1987, Los Angeles Times - How to deal with Traffic Gridlock
24 November 1985, Los Angeles Times - "Latino" vs "Hispanic"
9 November 1985, Los Angeles Times - Literal Interpretation of The Bible
11 July 1985, The Christian Science Monitor - Hatred for Terrorists Counterproductive
28 April 1985, Los Angeles Times - Interuterine vs Intrauterine
25 June 1983, Los Angeles Times - Time to Change the Names of Public Schools?
22 August 1982, Los Angeles Times - The Death of Henry Fonda
9 June 1982, Los Angeles Times - Horatio Alger
14 April 1982, Daily Trojan (USC) - Campus Rallies
9 February 1982, Los Angeles Times - Parking Abuses by Police and Other Official Vehicles
7 June 1981, Los Angeles Times - Concert Audience Reactions
15 April 1980 (1 of 3), Los Angeles Times - Kiddie Porn
15 April 1980 (2 of 3), (unpublished) - Kiddie Porn
15 April 1980 (3 of 3), (unpublished) - Kiddie Porn
28 February 1980, Los Angeles Times - Assembly Member's Request for Equal TV Time
23 December 1979, Los Angeles Times - Singers' Rights
21 January 1979, Los Angeles Times - Movie Prices
11 August 1977, Los Angeles Times - State Senator Briggs' Proposal to Ban Gay Teachers
29 November 1976, Los Angeles Times -
LAPD's Exaggerations Regarding Sexual Exploitation of Children
24 February 1974, Los Angeles Times - Movie Rating System
30 October 1973, Daily Trojan (USC) - Neighborhood Kids Harrassed on Campus
1 September 1973, The Christian Science Monitor - Houston Murders
31 May 1973, The Daily Report (Ontario, California) - Response to anti-"Bananas" Ad
20 May 1973, Los Angeles Times - Gabby Movie Audiences
15 March 1972, Los Angeles Advocate - The Bible and homosexuality