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Using Gun Violence Restraining Orders To Prevent Mass Shootings

 May 27, 2021 at 12:03 PM PDT

Speaker 1: 00:00 A mass shooting in San Jose. How can we prevent the violence, Speaker 2: 00:05 The policies we need, social, uh, habits of action that apply more broadly. Speaker 1: 00:12 I'm Jade Hindman with Maureen Cavenaugh. This is KPBS midday edition, a spike in violence on airplanes. As travelers fight over mask, mandates Speaker 2: 00:29 Airlines have referred over 1300 incidents to the FAA for potential enforcement. And typically they only get about 180 cases that they actually enforced. So it's a huge increase Speaker 1: 00:43 And a new book explores how black reproduction can dismantle oppression. Plus sea turtles, living year round and LA Jolla. That's ahead on midday edition, investigators are trying to piece together a possible motive for yesterday's mass shooting in San Jose. A man killed nine people at his workplace, a light rail facility for the valley transportation authority. When law enforcement arrived, the gunman killed himself. How do we prevent mass shootings? Like yesterday's in San Jose, joining us to discuss that is Dr. Garren Winton mute director of the violence research prevention program at UC Davis school of medicine. Dr. Went to mute. Speaker 2: 01:29 Welcome. Thanks for having me. So the Speaker 1: 01:32 Ex-wife of the man who carried out the shooting said, he talked about killing people at work more than a decade ago, but she didn't take him seriously. What advice do you have for people in terms of recognizing and reporting that kind of behavior? Speaker 2: 01:46 I have some old new advice. If you see or hear something, say something 10 years ago, we did not have gun violence, restraining orders here in California. Now we do, and our group published some research, looking at their use in preventing mass shootings, precisely this sort of scenario, angry person says I'm going to shoot up my workplace and a gun violence restraining order is obtained. Firearms are recovered or in one case that I can recall purchases of firearms get blocked. We have 21 cases in which people threatened to commit a mass shooting and gun violence. Restraining orders were used. None of those 21 threats turned into an actual mass shooter beyond Speaker 1: 02:35 Threats. What other types of behaviors though, should people be looking Speaker 2: 02:38 Out for? Well, 80% of people who commit mass shootings in some way, declare their intent in advance. They may say something they may post on social media, et cetera. There is the other 20%. And in our series are a of cases in which there was a very suspicious pattern of behavior, but no threat was made in terms Speaker 1: 03:08 Of those gun violence, restraining orders. You mentioned I've read that some counties use them more than others. Can you talk a bit more Speaker 2: 03:14 About yes. Local champions make all the difference. Um, San Diego has frankly led the rest of the state in implementing this policy. The credit for that goes to a lot of people, but in particular to the San Diego city attorney's office and to the city attorney, Ms. Mara Elliott, that agency made it a priority. When this policy came online to study it, understand it, use it when appropriate. Um, and we're in the process of, uh, with their cooperation of evaluating the impact of what they've done, what can be done to make Speaker 1: 03:51 Other counties use those gun violence, restraining orders. You Speaker 2: 03:55 Mentioned, well, we can't make them. Our society doesn't work that way, but we can, we can over some overcome barriers and create some incentives. So it's, it's a new kind of law to some extent and counties have been concerned about, are we going to get it right? Um, it takes time. Counties have been concerned about how do we do this along with everything else that we do. So training is available. Um, San Diego actually got money from the state of California to provide training to city attorneys in other counties, but law enforcement agencies also need to know about this officers, um, on patrol, um, need to know about how this works. So there's a lot more training to be done. Um, and following these cases through court consumes resources. So I think the state could provide financial incentives to at least to remove the barrier, not in incentives to do it, but they could remove the barriers. Speaker 2: 04:54 The other thing is that while law enforcement and city attorneys are often the ones in court, the information that gets them there comes from the public most of the time. And there needs to be much more public awareness that this is available and that to circle back. Um, if I hear something or see something that's suspicious, I can call the cops and they can do something about it. We actually have a study coming out next week, showing that the public here in California is largely not aware of the existence of GVR arrows, but when we explain it to them, they say, oh, this is a great idea. Sure. I'd be happy to do this. If the circumstances are ropes. Speaker 1: 05:39 And you know, I, I'm curious, you know, because we, we have this same conversation every time there's a mass shooting. Yes we do. Where do you think the conversation needs to go now to prevent these from happening? Speaker 2: 05:51 We need to keep a couple of things in mind. Um, first we want to create policies to prevent the next event. That's exactly like the tragedy that occurred yesterday, because they're all different. We need policies. We need social, uh, habits of action that apply more broadly. So gun violence, restraining orders are certainly, um, one way to go. This particular case, I understand now involves, um, some advanced preparation. There were 11 loaded, uh, magazines on the shooter when his body was recovered. We haven't heard yet about how big those magazines were. Uh, but one thing that California is seeking to do is to outlaw the possession of high capacity ammunition magazines. We also have just launched in the last couple of years, a policy to regulate purchases of ammunition, largely in the way we regulate purchases and firearms. So we might, for example, pay particular attention on the law enforcement side to somebody who's maybe making some threats and also buying large amounts of ammunition. And, Speaker 1: 07:10 You know, our local agencies effective at tracking, uh, these types of weapons, Speaker 2: 07:14 Even in order to track weapons, there has to be a reason, um, for a law enforcement agency. So they have to be investigating a case. So, uh, but it's such an instance that gave rise to a gun violence restraining orders in part in California, um, a person who was making threats and was buying lots of firearms. The local agency did not look didn't recognize that pattern of behavior. So when they went and talked to him, they, they perhaps didn't pursue the matter quite as aggressively as they would in hindsight, because he went on to commit a mass killing using those, um, firearms. But it is the case that you're in California. If law enforcement has reason to be concerned that a person might be plotting, whether it's a mass killing or homicide, uh, they can access data and, uh, maintained by the justice department and learn about their purchasing, a firearms and ammunition. Speaker 1: 08:17 You know, this shooting was at a workplace. What can workplaces do to educate employees about the potential for violence Speaker 2: 08:23 They can do at the workplace level? Everything that we've just talked about, educate their employees to the importance of reporting on a threat or a pattern of suspicious behavior. There are specific circumstances now in which colleagues in the workplace can file a petition and request a gun violence restraining order themselves. They don't have to go through law enforcement. Um, I suspect to be honest, that most of the time colleagues will want to go through law enforcement anyway. So the major objective is to get them aware that this is something they can do. Okay. Speaker 1: 09:04 I've been speaking to Dr. Garren Winton mute director of the violence research prevention program at UC Davis school of medicine. Dr. Went to me. Thank you. Thanks again for having me. Speaker 3: 09:20 The COVID numbers are down. Vaccinations are up and people are ready to travel. AAA is Memorial day travel forecast says more than 37 million people are expected to hit the road or take to the skies for a long awaited getaway, but it's how people are acting when they take to the skies that has raised concerns. Recently, a woman was arrested last weekend at San Diego international for allegedly striking a Southwest airlines flight attendant. During a flight from Sacramento, a union spokesman says the flight attendant lost two teeth in the assault. The incident is just one example of a spate of airline passenger unruliness being reported. Joining me is LA times travel writer, Hugo Martine, and Hugo. Welcome. Speaker 2: 10:09 Hi, thanks for having me this story Speaker 3: 10:10 About a passenger knocking out a flight attendant's teeth is really shocking, but it kind of corresponds with a lot of stories about bad passenger behavior. Doesn't it? Yeah. Speaker 2: 10:21 There's been a surge of, of this sort of a problem in the past few months, the FAA reported that, uh, just this week they find five passengers, at least $10,000 each for, you know, unruly behavior. And most of those incidents involve people refusing to wear a mask. And, and when they were told to, uh, you know, put on their mask, they, they began to, you know, start a big ruckus, a yell, profanity, things like that. And this is just part of a, of a trend, uh, BFA reported to me just a couple of weeks ago that airlines have referred over 1300 incidents to the FAA or potential enforcement. And typically in a typical year, they only get about 180 cases that they actually enforced. So it's a huge increase. Speaker 3: 11:13 And what kinds of things have been happening? Speaker 2: 11:16 A lot of it revolves around, uh, around the mask mandate, which, you know, the DOD still requires people to wear masks on planes. And a lot of the incidents involve people refusing to wear the mask or drinking heavily and then refusing to wear the mask and getting belligerent and, uh, starting the, you know, some scene with the other passengers. And typically, um, you know, if, if the flight hasn't left the gate, they'll just take the person off right there. And if you know, they're, mid-flight, they'll wait until they land and then have law enforcement come on and take those people off. Speaker 3: 11:50 Uh, what are the COVID restrictions about and social distancing that are still in place for airline travel, Speaker 2: 11:58 It's still required that you wear a mask throughout the duration of the flight, uh, except for when eating or drinking early on. When the pandemic first took off in 2020, a lot of the airlines try to do some physical distancing on the plane by leaving like the middle seat vacant, but as demand for air travel is increased. You know, that policy has gone away. All the airlines are now just filling as many seats as passengers want in the terminals. They are trying to continue to impose some kind of physical distancing, especially on the lines on the cues when people line up to get on the planes. But once on the planes, there's really not a whole lot. You could do as far as physical distancing. Speaker 3: 12:41 And you mentioned about the FAA coming out this week with those big fines, for the people who didn't wear masks. Is that going to be the case going forward? In other words, if people don't wear masks on planes while it's required, are they going to get hit with those fines too? Speaker 2: 12:55 Yeah. The, the mandate has been extended to September 13th. So as far as we know, that's how far into the future the FAA is going to impose this. Now the problem has gotten so bad that the FAA instituted a zero tolerance policy a few months ago. And so what that did was previously, if you caused a wreck us on a plane, you became unruly, they might recommend that you seek therapy, or they would ban you from a flight. The FAA has said, you know, it's now a zero tolerance policy. And once you do this, you're definitely going to get imposed for some kind of fine. And the fines could go up to $35,000. So they're pretty set. Speaker 3: 13:38 I've heard several people say that flying today has just become an unpleasant experience. As you said, middle seats are full again, and people seem angry. Is that what you've been hearing? Speaker 2: 13:50 Yeah. And it is a little scary. I mean, for, for most of us, you know, that we, we haven't done these sort of things for, you know, months on end. And, and so there's a lot of anxiety. You know, the airlines have also started to go back to pre pandemic policy, such as, you know, charging for change fees. Uh, you know, if you change your reservations, other things like that, that they had waived during the pandemic or during the start of the pandemic, they waived a lot of these things. They're starting to impose them again. So it's starting to, as I said, in my story, airlines are starting to act like airlines again. So that is I'm sure contributed to it, but just the sort of anxiety about getting back on a plane, I'm sure is, is hitting a lot of people. Speaker 3: 14:35 Let's bring it down to the ground for a minute and talk about travel destinations like Disneyland. It's open now for out-of-state visitors, isn't it? Speaker 2: 14:45 Yeah. They just announced that. And so starting today, you could start booking reservations for Disneyland. If you're outside of California, the date is June 15th. When out of state visitors can actually enter the park, but you could start today to buy your tickets Speaker 3: 15:02 Will be the criteria for masking and social distancing at Disneyland after June 15th, will there be any requirements? Speaker 2: 15:11 The state is announced that starting on June 15, they will lift most of the restrictions at theme parks. So the capacity limits that have been imposed since April are going to be gone. Uh, so the parks could let in as many people as they want the restrictions on physical distancing will be gone previously. They said, you know, if you're an aligned for the matter horn or any of the other rides, you have to stand six feet away from other park visitors that requirement's going to go away. They had a requirement that said that rides that put people inside for 15 minutes or more that's going away. So pretty much all the restrictions that have been imposed on theme parks are lifting on June 15th. The only one that isn't changing is the mask mandate. Now the CDC recommends that people wear masks. The CDC also recommends that people that go to theme parks be vaccinated or show a negative test result for a COVID test. But the theme parks, the only thing that they're requiring is the masks. So, so far Disneyland says they're not going to require people to show proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID test, but they are going to require people to wear masks during the visit to the park. Speaker 3: 16:26 Do you have any tips on particularly good places to visit for what is really many people's first holiday weekends, since the pandemic, as Speaker 2: 16:35 You mentioned, the auto club did a survey and they found that most people are going to be doing road trips, especially here in Southern California road. Trips are going to be big because as we talked about, people are still anxious about flying, getting cooped up in a cabin with hundreds of other strangers. So there'll be a lot of road trips. And a lot of national parks. Zion is a big place, a Yosemite, all these places are really becoming very popular. And I mean, the weather is great and people feel like they feel safer if they're outdoors. So yeah, I'm anticipating. And I think most people are that, uh, this will be the summer of the road trip and the summer of the national parks. Speaker 3: 17:12 Very interesting. Okay. I've been speaking with LA times, travel writer, Hugo Martine, you go, thank you so much. All right. Thanks for having me. Speaker 4: 17:28 [inaudible]. Speaker 3: 17:31 This is KPBS midday edition. I'm worrying Cavenaugh with Jade Hyman. It looks like outdoor dining is here to stay in San Diego. What started as a lifeline for restaurants during the pandemic has become a popular feature of city living. And most of that new dining space used to be parked cars, KPBS, Metro reporter, Andrew Bowen takes a look at how COVID-19 has forced a conversation about just how important parking really is. So this was, uh, Speaker 5: 18:01 Parking space. Um, prior to the pandemic, Timmy Speaker 6: 18:05 Peale walks me through the patio dining space at her north park restaurant. One door. Once Speaker 5: 18:10 We closed, excuse me, into our dining. Um, we decided to make this an outdoor space for people to enjoy. And, you know, we could continue to be open this Speaker 6: 18:20 Lot used to provide 12 parking spaces for employees cars. Now it can accommodate up to 80 paying customers peel also put tables and chairs on four street parking spaces. She says without converting parking to dining space, she likely would have gone out of business. Speaker 5: 18:37 Really wanted to do everything that we could to keep our employees employed. And this allowed us to limp along so that we could continue our business. You know, as things began to open up even more parking Speaker 6: 18:51 Is a sensitive subject in north park. In 2019, the city proposed removing street parking to create protected bike lanes, a group called save 30th street. Parking sued the city to stop the project. A judge allowed it to proceed anyway, but the controversy underscores how passionate some San Diego ones are about parking before the pandemic PO says, employees would complain about trouble finding a parking spot, but now even with less parking, Speaker 5: 19:18 I don't think I've heard about a parking complaint since we've reopened. And everybody has been back to working consistently. They've really found ways to accommodate and that it can be that can include biking to work Speaker 6: 19:31 Over the years. Businesses and residents have fought hard for parking in virtually every San Diego neighborhood. But when the city council voted to extend outdoor dining permits last week, no one called into the meeting to ask for their parking spaces back. Speaker 7: 19:45 There is kind of this misconception that parking in front of my store. If I don't have that space, I'm going to be losing business. Michael Speaker 6: 19:53 Trimble is executive director of the Gaslamp quarter association for the past year. The city has been closing fifth avenue to cars in the afternoons and evenings Trimble says rather than creating problems, the change has solved them. It's more walkable. There's no double parking and the police and fire departments can get to emergencies faster. Speaker 7: 20:12 The loss of parking really has not been any real issue because there is close to 3000 spots within walking distance of the gas network. Speaker 6: 20:21 The Gaslamp quarter association has been planning for a fully pedestrianized fifth avenue prominence for years, originally city officials thought it would cost $40 million and take up to eight years to get done. But once again, COVID-19 forced them to think differently. Everyone Speaker 7: 20:38 Got the outdoor dining, they got the exposure to eat on the street. We got to close the street and show them that it really does work and that the public wants it. And really it sped up the project. I would say by at least five years, while the city Speaker 6: 20:51 Works to reclaim the Gaslamp quarter for pedestrians, some fear other neighborhoods will be left behind Speaker 7: 20:57 Smoke, everything. What are, what are Oak? And this is a brisket that we're cooking Speaker 6: 21:02 Close stance is the owner of bow legged, barbecue in the Mount hope neighborhood. He also turned his back parking lot into a dining space and it's been a huge success. And it's kind Speaker 7: 21:11 Of, kind of goes with the barbecue flavor in the backyard. And we wanted to have an experience that when you're outside, you hear the good music and have a good atmosphere for eating your food. Still Speaker 6: 21:21 This part of market street, isn't pedestrian friendly cars go too fast and there aren't enough trees or crosswalks stance came up with his own resources to keep his business afloat during the pandemic. But he loved to see the city invest in Mount hope. Like it has a north park and the gas lamp. Speaker 7: 21:38 We are paying our sales taxes, we're paying our payroll taxes. We're, we're putting young people to work. Uh, so I think it's important for us to, for the longevity to have that kind of support. It would be welcomed. Speaker 6: 21:50 Most restaurants have had their outdoor dining permits extended to July, 2022. In the meantime, the city is working to make the program permanent. Speaker 3: 21:59 Joining me is KPBS Metro reporter, Andrew Bo, and Andrew. Welcome. Hi Maureen. Thanks. We've heard so much about the unintended consequences of the pandemic is this re-imagining about parking spaces. One of them, Speaker 6: 22:14 You know, Carlos stance, the owner of a bow legged, barbecue, who I interviewed told me that before COVID it had never occurred to him to put dining space on this private lot that he had. And I think that's a similar story for many different restaurants. So yes, I think that it is one of those things. One of those many, many things about COVID-19 that has just forced, uh, business owners, residents, cities, to just completely reassess, uh, how we're doing things and what is the best use of our built environment and our public right of way. I think a lot of restaurants and businesses have thought if customers don't have that quick and convenient and free or cheap parking that's right by their business, then no one will come, but COVID-19 really forced this little experiment where restaurants felt like they had no choice, but to take away that free or convenient parking and precisely because of that decision, uh, they were able to stay in business and it kept them afloat. So it's really changed the calculus for a lot of people. And I think even after the June 15 three opening, when restaurants will be allowed to have full indoor capacity, many of them plan on keeping these outdoor dining spaces as long as they can, because they've lost a lot of money over the past year. And so, you know, it's a way for them to kind of recoup some of those losses Speaker 3: 23:32 And how many outdoor dining permits has the city issued so far Speaker 6: 23:36 When the city council extended the temporary program, the staffers said that they had approved 415 permits for outdoor business. So that could include dining. It could also include retail gyms or hair salons, et cetera. So, uh, and, and that's only for the public street parking. So the city, um, last year also decided that they would not require a permit to put an outdoor dining space on a private parking lot or a, for a little sidewalk cafe, as long as some basic rules are followed. And you still have, you know, ADA compliance with, with the width of the sidewalk. Um, they've also granted a number of special events permits. So, uh, the Gaslamp, uh, street promenade on fifth avenue is one example. There's also, um, the one in little Italy and one in LA Jolla Speaker 3: 24:23 Now. And can you tell us more about the effort to make the outdoor dining permanent Speaker 6: 24:28 It's branded as spaces as places and staff, uh, city staffers have been working on this for a few months. They expect to present it to the city council in the fall, and they'll, they'll be doing outreach over the summer. It's meant to be a transition from this sort of emergency COVID response to a more permanent program. That's kind of well thought out and, and, you know, you consider all the different, um, obstacles and, and things. So they, they, they plan on going beyond just outdoor dining. Uh, it could include, um, promenades public art, educational exhibits in the public right of way. And the city wants to create a design manual with a menu of options for businesses or other organizations, uh, to choose from. And the city actually attempted something similar to this before COVID-19, it was called the place-making program. And it was meant to be kind of a quick build, a way to, to repurpose the public right of way. But it just hasn't been very well utilized. And so this new program would, um, uh, hopefully, uh, be better utilized and maybe even go a little bit further. Speaker 3: 25:29 Now, one of the restaurant owners who we spoke with, talked about how her employees were finding alternatives to driving, to work and parking their cars where the outdoor dining is now, what alternatives did they find? Speaker 6: 25:42 She mentioned specifically a biking to work. So, uh, you know, presumably some of our employees are biking. Um, many of them, she said also live close by enough to walk to work. And, uh, there's also a parking garage. That's about a 10 minute walk from her restaurant. So, you know, if, if you, if somebody is really in a pinch or, or, or they just know that they're not going to be able to find parking close enough to walk, uh, less than 10 minutes, um, they can always go to that parking garage. Um, there's a land use consultant in San Diego has this catchphrase that, um, I always found kind of amusing it's that San Diego doesn't have a parking problem. It has a walking problem. So if you're willing to maybe pay a little bit more for parking, or if you're just willing to walk a little bit, then you can usually find a spot, you know, reasonably, um, uh, close to wherever you're going. Now. Speaker 3: 26:31 Honestly, not everybody has the physical ability to bike, to places or even walk great distances. Isn't getting rid of access to easy parking, an obstacle for the physically challenged or, Speaker 6: 26:44 Yeah, this is an area where I expect there will be. I expect there will be a lot more discussion in San Diego. Um, I do know at least for the 30th street bike lane project that I mentioned in my story, every blue curb parking space, it will be replaced on a side street. So they might remove some parking on the, the 30th street itself, but for every, um, disabled parking space, uh, that, that is removed, it will be placed, uh, nearby Speaker 3: 27:11 All of us made concessions and changes during the pandemic. Could it be the reason that people did not complain about the disappearing parking spaces during the COVID emergency was because it was during the COVID emergency and people are going to start complaining. Now we're close to having the emergency over. Speaker 6: 27:30 Yes. I, I definitely think that there were, you know, some of the, the lack of opposition to this program has just been, because we've all been kind of busy worrying and fretting about other things. And we have bigger things on our minds than just how easy is it, is it to find a parking space wherever I'm going? But I do think one thing that has changed is in the past, when we've had discussions about removing parking or whatever, there, there are, uh, there's a contingent that is pretty absolutist about it saying we can't, we cannot lose one single space. If anything, we should be adding parking spaces cause it's hard enough already. And I think that is a perspective that has maybe softened a little bit as, as you know, over the past year, because you know, the city in these cases is not removing parking for the sake of making it hard to park they're removing parking and then giving the community something that by all accounts is, is pretty popular. Speaker 3: 28:26 I've been speaking with KPBS, Metro reporter, Andrew Bowen, Andrew. Thanks a lot. My pleasure, Maureen, Speaker 1: 28:37 A new book called the black reproductive looks at black freedom and the dismantling of oppressive systems through the lens of black reproduction and black feminist theory. Sarah Clark Kaplan is associate professor of ethnic studies and critical gender studies at the university of California, San Diego. She is also co-founder of UCF black studies project and author of the black reproductive unfree labor and insurgent motherhood, professor Kaplan. Welcome. Speaker 2: 29:05 Thanks so much, Jay. Thanks for having me. Speaker 1: 29:08 So first, what was the inspiration for writing this book? Well, Speaker 2: 29:13 You know, this book for me, um, was a long-term labor of love and it actually came out of an attempt for me to understand the history of black women's reproduction that goes back to slavery. But to understand it not simply in the context that we so often hear about, which is, you know, the sort of levels of oppression and the ways in which coerced preproduction happened, but to understand it as a black feminist today as a site of empowerment of struggle of contestations and conflict, and to really rethink what it would mean to think about, about black politics in the context of, um, black reproduction in black motherhood Speaker 1: 30:02 And the black reproductive, you explore the ways slavery relied on the reproduction and other labors of unfree black women. And you make the case that nearly four centuries later black reproduction is still used to meet the demands of white supremacy, capitalism. And heteropatriarchy, uh, in what ways do you see this happening? Speaker 2: 30:23 Well, you know, I think we're all very aware on at least some anecdotal level of the centrality of black women's reproduction to us, slavery, you, as you know, the U S is the only slave system that after the end of the Atlantic slave trade continued to expand exponentially precisely because black women gave birth to children who also were by law automatically slaves. So we can really think about the ways in which every single aspect of the us economy, every aspect of us expansion, westward to grow cotton and other crops, all of that relied upon black women's in slave reproduction. But in the book, I try to go beyond those sort of practical and economic aspects to think about the ideologies and the cultural aspects. I think about things like how, the idea of the mammy or the idea that black women would automatically give up raising their own children in order to raise white people's children. Speaker 2: 31:25 How that idea is embedded in our notions of bad black mothers. I talk about how everything from the anxiety that black women during slavery were not having enough children and therefore must be somehow they imagined killing their children to today's notion where the eighties notion that black women on welfare were having too many children and we're there for a draining the state. So I really argue that from the beginning of this country, onward, that whether it be slave mothers who were imagined to commit infanticide or welfare Queens, or hyper fertile black women in the south to today's ideas about baby mamas, black matriarchs or video Vixens, that these ideas about black women's reproduction are part of how we understand race and gender in the U S on every level. Speaker 1: 32:20 You know, when we talk about black reproduction, um, today we see sharp disparities in maternal and infant health care. What policies are you seeing that perpetuate black infant and maternal death rates and negative outcomes? Speaker 2: 32:35 You know, I think it's an interesting question because we can start at the level of policy. Absolutely. And we could talk about things like how hospitals, um, treat patients who come in through the ER, we could talk about the ways in which healthcare policy in this country, as we've been discussing at great length, discriminate against people who have, um, gig labor, less consistent jobs and difficulty accessing insurance. All of which we know that poor and working class black for black folk have a harder time doing, but I would like to talk even beyond policy to what I think are more core issues. We can talk about things like the idea that black women are still understood by doctors to be less likely to feel pain are still understood, to be more likely to exaggerate their medical condition and are understood to be less likely to be compliant patients. Speaker 2: 33:31 And so what we have when we, and these things, again, go back to slavery, they go back to the idea that our earliest reproductive medical technologies, the father of gynecology, Marion Sims practice his technologies, his early gynecological technologies on enslaved black women without anesthesia, because the notion was that these poor women who had had multiple children with rough outcomes that had caused, um, problems with their bodies, anatomical problems with their bodies, that they could be operated on without anesthesia, because they didn't feel pain. So if we think back to today, if we think about whether it's a poor black woman or whether it's Serina Williams, uh, we know that when black women show up and they weren't, in fact, any black person who was giving birth shows up and they say, I think there's something wrong. I think there's a problem. Or they show with less than ideal conditions that they're less likely to be taken seriously. They're less likely to be medicated. They're less likely to receive will interventions. And this is something that goes beyond policy. It goes to actually a retraining of doctors and medical institutions from the ground up. Speaker 1: 34:46 How can black women's reproduction be used to dismantle systems of oppression? Ah, Speaker 2: 34:53 Great question. And this is something that I talk about in a few different ways. So, you know, I'm a literature scholar. So one of the things that I'm interested in are those very subtle, um, kinds of cultural interventions. I look at novels by people like Tony Morrison or Gail Jones or Barbara Chase, rebel, black, feminist authors. And I look at how they invoke this idea of the black mother to really, and a black reproduction to really force us, to rethink our ideas about freedom, about kinship, about property in ways that really call into question some of our existing assumptions about how we understand everything from family to, to love to can. But I also want to give you a sort of more, two more specific examples. And one example I talk about at great length in the book, which is the story of Sally Hemings, Thomas Jefferson's enslaved concubine, and who was later proven to have had up to five children by him, um, through DNA evidence in 2000. Speaker 2: 36:01 And I argue in the book that if we actually rethink the history of the United States, not through founding fathers or through women like Betsy Ross, but if we understand somebody like Sally Hemings, a 15 year old enslaved girl who became the concubine and long-term sexual partner of our founding father, who said that slavery was terrible as he owned 603 slaves, um, and said, miscegenation was going to destroy the S then we actually have a different national origin story that in fact, our founding mother is Sally Hemings and that everything we want to understand about relations of race and intimacy of power and labor can be understood differently. And so that really requires us to challenge how we think about blackness. And anti-blackness in the context of white supremacy in the United States. Speaker 1: 37:05 I've been speaking with Sarah Clark Kaplan, associate professor of ethnic studies and critical gender studies at the university of California, San Diego. She is also co-founder of UCF black studies project and the author of the black reproductive unfree labor and insurgent motherhood, professor Kaplan. Thank you so much for joining us. Speaker 2: 37:27 Thank you so much, Jade. It's always a pleasure. Speaker 3: 37:37 This is KPBS mid day edition. I'm worrying Kavanaugh with Jade. Heinemann one Marine researcher says they are among the most beautiful things you can see in the ocean. And they're friendly. Scientists have been studying a small group of east Pacific green sea turtles who seem to have found an ocean home off LA Jolla shores. Finding the four turtles has surprised biologists because the water is cooler here than in the tropics. These creatures usually prefer. And because of the way they've been behaving with divers, that turtle seem to like hanging out with humans. Johnnie Mae is biologist Megan Hannah and environmental analyst for the Navy whose research into the LA Jolla turtles was just published in the journal frontiers in Marine science and Megan, welcome to the program. Speaker 2: 38:26 Hi, thank you so much. It's nice to be here for those Speaker 3: 38:29 Among us who have never seen an east Pacific green sea turtle. Can you tell us what makes them different from the average turtle? Speaker 2: 38:37 Typically, I think what people are used to seeing are the, um, Hawaiian greens, which have a care pistes, which is their shell that is more caramel and color. Whereas the east Pacific green turtles have a shell. That's a little bit darker olive, um, almost a black color and their plaster on the underside of their belly is going to be typically a little bit more yellow or gray. And how big are they? Well, shockingly enough, in general, in fact, in San Diego bay, we have some that are almost four feet ranging from like 300 to 400 pounds at the largest. And then I'd say in LA Hoya, they were probably closer to about two and a half to three and a half feet, much smaller. And Speaker 3: 39:19 There's some sort of debate about how long they live. Everybody knows they are long lived creatures, but can they make it up to 100 years? Speaker 2: 39:28 If you ask my boss, Dr. Jeffrey seminar, I think he would say yes, about 90 to a hundred years. I think we have documentation of at least 70 years so far, but we haven't been able to document them living for much longer than we've been studying them for about 20, 30 years, at least Speaker 3: 39:46 Some speculation that they may outlive some of the researchers trying to study them. Speaker 2: 39:51 I would not be surprised at all. Speaker 3: 39:53 So where are these turtles usually found? I know you just said there were some in San Diego bay, but where do they usually make their home? Speaker 2: 40:00 So traditionally these specific greens have nesting beaches that are off mainly on Mexico and the coast of Southern Baja, California, or islands just off of Baja, California. And what they do is they basically start nesting and then make their way up the coast of Baja, California in Mexico, and settle down in areas over there for foraging or off the coast of Southern California in places like San Diego bay, LA Jolla now, and even as far north as, um, long beach. Speaker 3: 40:29 Now the LA Jolla turtles seem to have adapted to humans in a way that the San Diego bay turtles haven't. Can you tell us about that? Yeah. Speaker 2: 40:38 I think LA Jolla presents a very different and unique opportunity and it's in that it's an area where, uh, there's a lot of tourism and the water's a little bit more clear, so people can snorkel and actually see the reef and the wildlife there. Whereas in San Diego bay, the water isn't as clear, and there's not exactly a lot of tourism. So I think that the turtles in the choir have had the opportunity to be around recreational divers, snorkelers, kayakers, and I've had an opportunity to kind of acclimate to that a little bit. Now Speaker 3: 41:09 Swimming with these turtles is described as really an incredible experience. They sort of float and glide beside you. Have you been in the water with them? Speaker 2: 41:19 Yes, of course the photographers that actually helps out with the citizen science project helped show me around and take photographs with them. And we do always make sure that we do our best to keep our distance and not alter their in any way, but it truly is extraordinary experience. Speaker 3: 41:36 Why is it so extraordinary? Speaker 2: 41:39 I think because they have somewhat of a calm nature. So just watching them move about with the current in the surf grass. Some people call them little surfers when they see them over there and just watching them forage. So peacefully is really awesome Speaker 3: 41:54 Water at LA Jolla shores. And even in San Diego bay is cooler than, as you were saying, the traditional nesting grounds for these animals. How does the cooler water affect the turtles Speaker 2: 42:06 Cooler water causes turtles to go into a state of what we would call brumation in which they somewhat slow down their metabolism and try to hunker down sometimes under like rock shelf or in the, um, substrate that they are president. And this is just a way for them to lower their metabolism, save up their calories and kind of conserve the energy that they have and stay a little bit warmer. Speaker 3: 42:32 Watch migration northward. Tell us about these turtles and about conservation efforts. We definitely Speaker 2: 42:38 Think that the migration northwards we think is caused by years of successful conservation efforts, um, in Southern Mexico, which includes, um, reduce poaching and illegal hunting and protection of nesting beaches. We think this has caused the east Pacific population and we know it has caused them to grow in numbers. And we think that their population is now expanding out of regions, that we traditionally saw them in, into regions further north, as their numbers increase. Speaker 3: 43:09 And it is important for people to know that the east Pacific green sea turtle is a protected species. So if you do see one swimming with you, what should you avoid doing? Speaker 2: 43:20 Essentially you should definitely avoid altering its behavior in any kind. Um, so try to keep a distance, definitely do not touch or chase the turtle, but it is a very cool and spirit experience. So try to relax and just watch from a distance and enjoy. Speaker 3: 43:34 Can you ever see these turtles just hanging out on the beach? Speaker 2: 43:37 They do not nest on beaches here, so they are just foraging. So the best way to see them is, um, over the reef shelf where there's a lot of red algae. Speaker 3: 43:47 Okay, then, so from what I understand, there were only four in the group. Now, do you expect the numbers of these turtles in LA Jolla to increase? Speaker 2: 43:56 I do. We actually had a recent sighting about a month or two ago, and I'm hoping that this turtle is not just transient and that it decides to, uh, make LA Jolla at home as well. But with conditions being a little bit poor lately for diving and snorkeling, we aren't quite sure if the turtle has stuck around, but the last recruit was in 2019. So hopefully they will be increasing in numbers over the years. Speaker 3: 44:22 Okay. I've been speaking with biologists, Megan Hannah and environmental analyst for the Navy who's research into the LA Jolla turtles was just published in the journal frontiers in Marine science. And Megan, thank you so much. Of course. Thank you so much for your time.

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How do we prevent mass shootings like yesterday’s in San Jose? Gun violence restraining orders could be part of the solution. Plus, a Southwest Airlines flight attendant lost two teeth when she was attacked by a passenger this weekend, and the president of her union calls it part of a disturbing increase in unruly passengers. And the city of San Diego has approved hundreds of outdoor dining permits since the pandemic began. Yet despite causing a big loss in parking across the city, the program appears to have widespread support. Finally, to the pleasant surprise of marine biologists, a group of highly social turtles has been discovered living year-round off the coast of La Jolla.