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LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Racial Justice

Vaccine Shipment To Arrive Today

Cover image for podcast episode

CREDIT: GUILLERMO SEVILLA/KPBS

Above: The closed entrance to the Petco Park vaccination site, Feb. 15, 2021.

San Diego County is expected to receive a vaccine shipment today that will allow the Petco Park Vaccination Super Station to reopen on Wednesday after being shuttered for three days. Plus, no clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccines were done on pregnant or breastfeeding women, standard practice for any new drug or vaccine, but some doctors and medical experts now say this was a mistake. And the city of San Diego is looking for ways to mitigate the most dire effects of climate change in our future. Then, how our education in black history shapes policy. Plus, the progress that newly elected Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón was elected to make is facing obstacles, including a lawsuit filed by his own prosecutors. Finally, get to know San Diego jazz saxophonist Charles McPherson and the works that shaped him and continue to drive his music.

Speaker 1: 00:00 A vaccine shipment is on the way when will Petco park Superstation reopen.

Speaker 2: 00:05 But we did hear that it is on track to arrive today. So that, that would mean that UC San Diego is planning to open up that site tomorrow.

Speaker 1: 00:11 I'm Jade Hindman with Maureen Kavanaugh. This is KPBS mid-day edition, A push to slow the damage from climate change.

Speaker 3: 00:27 And as a coastal city place like mission Bay will just be completely watered

Speaker 1: 00:32 And to look at black history, how it's being taught and how that shapes policy plus the latest project from San Diego, jazz saxophonist, Charles MacPherson that's ahead on midday edition, A shipment of vaccines that will allow the Superstation at Petco park to reopen is expected today. The vaccine location, one of the county's largest has been shut down since Sunday. If the shipment is received today, it will reopen Wednesday. So what does that mean for access and availability? Joining me to discuss the impact of the shutdown is KPBS reporter, Matt Hoffman, Matt. Welcome. Hey Jake. So first remind us what caused the Petco site to shut down

Speaker 2: 01:29 Last Friday, the County let everyone know that they had missed a large shipment of Madrona vaccines, and that had an effect on, uh, County wide operations, basically. Uh, they said that they would have to shut down operations at that UC San Diego site, which is the busiest in the County by far, I mean doing 5,000 vaccinations daily sometimes, well over. So they were closed Sunday, Monday and today. And we heard yesterday from UC San Diego health, that that shipment is on track and that they will reopen on Wednesday.

Speaker 1: 01:56 Do we know why the Moderna shipment was missed?

Speaker 2: 01:59 You know, we don't know why we just know it was missed. You know, I had a chance to ask supervisor Fletcher last week, if there's any, you know, fault here, we can say, you know, it's the county's fault, not placing an order or, you know, this is a shipment delay. Um, and he said, you know, this is just something that's like the ebbs and flows of the shipment process. You know, something like this we knew could happen. And unfortunately it did happen.

Speaker 1: 02:17 Why was Petco the only local vaccine site to be impacted?

Speaker 2: 02:21 Well, I will say that they're the only local vaccine site that completely shut down on Friday. The County said that, you know, wide that there will be an impact and vaccinations will slow. And in some cases we'll pause with appointments rescheduled. Now we don't know if that may have impacted some of the counties, smaller pods, a bunch of the counties, partners that they work with to get the vaccinations out. Um, but we do know that it is affecting other sites, but obviously not a complete closure like we saw at the downtown location.

Speaker 1: 02:45 As you mentioned, a vaccine shipment is expected to arrive today. Have you heard if it's been received yet?

Speaker 2: 02:50 I have not heard if it's been received it, but we did hear that it is on track to arrive today. So that, that would mean that UC San Diego is planning to open up that site tomorrow. And we do know that some of the other sites, you know, like the one at Grossmont center, some people we talked to there yesterday said that they were getting their model, their Madrona doses. So we know that doses are still going out and a lot of people are still getting Pfizer doses.

Speaker 1: 03:11 What do you know about access to this vaccine? I know it's been tough for people to get the appointments they need, but it's been particularly difficult for people of color. Why is that?

Speaker 2: 03:20 Yeah, we know that at least in the, in the Latino population, that they have been most heavily impacted by COVID-19 in San Diego County, but they're not getting the majority of the vaccinations now. Uh, you know, there's a bunch of ways the county's trying to address that. And the state, you know, uh, working on pilot programs with promo Torres, who are community health workers hitting the South Bay, um, areas like city Heights and, you know, talking to some of the people on the ground, some of those Promatores, you know, they say a lot of people in that, in those areas, you know, don't have easy access to transportation. And really what they're hearing in those communities is that the people want the vaccines to be taken directly to them, you know, open up a big, large vaccination site in city Heights where people can just, you know, walk outside their door, you know, maybe less than half a mile and go get vaccinated.

Speaker 1: 03:59 We're not the only area to be impacted by vaccine shortages. Are we?

Speaker 2: 04:03 No, we're not. You know, we saw some stuff up in LA. They haven't, you know, pause and shut down some of their vaccination sites. So not only is it affecting, you know, San Diego, it's also affecting Southern California

Speaker 1: 04:14 And will people who had appointments scheduled over the last three days, be the first to be vaccinated once the site reopens.

Speaker 2: 04:20 I don't know if there'll be the first to be vaccinated, but UC San Diego health officials tell us that their appointments were automatically rescheduled something interesting though. Um, you know, obviously we know that the site was going to be close for a few days. They obviously said that they notified people, but yesterday we were downtown, um, near that Petco park location. Um, and there was a lot of people driving up, you know, clearly looking for their appointments. Um, you know, surprised when the guard at the gate turned them away. Um, he was saying that on Sunday, there was a lot of cars that came by looking for their appointments. So people, you know, need to check their emails to see, you know, or, you know, check their messages to make sure that they're getting these updates. I know for some people, you know, even though there's a vaccination site downtown, some people are coming, you know, from Valley center from Vista. Um, and sometimes, you know, take a day off work, maybe take a loved one down. There is a lot. So make sure you're checking those emails. Cause some appointments are getting rescheduled with these vaccine shortages.

Speaker 1: 05:06 And for those who haven't been vaccinated yet or scheduled appointments, what's the best way to do that right now.

Speaker 2: 05:12 Yeah. So the best way is to go to the county's website because there's a couple of like competing portals, so to speak, you know, UC San Diego, the Petco park Superstation they use my chart. Now a lot of the stations are on the state's platform called my turn. And then you have some of the Cal fire San Diego sites that also use a different platform, uh, as they reach, you know, some of those rural communities. So the county's website has all those listed right there and that's the best place you can go to find all that info.

Speaker 1: 05:35 I've been speaking with KPBS reporter, Matt Hoffman, Matt. Thank you. Thanks shade.

Speaker 4: 05:45 [inaudible]

Speaker 1: 05:48 While the vaccine shortages are delaying some from being vaccinated, others, including some pregnant or breastfeeding women are uneasy about getting the vaccine at all it's standard practice to keep women who are pregnant or breastfeeding out of clinical trials for new vaccines. But now some doctors say in the case of COVID, that was a mistake KPBS reporter Claire triggers, or tells us researchers are now turning their attention to studying breast milk from women. Who've got the shots

Speaker 5: 06:17 I panicked. I was like, what have I done? Oh my God, this is Donald mistake

Speaker 6: 06:22 For L well a nurse at UC San Diego recalls a scary moment after breastfeeding her eight month old son, she had just received her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and knew the science behind her decision.

Speaker 5: 06:36 I don't know. It just seemed like an easy way to help my baby. But yeah, I think initially right afterwards, I got home fed the baby and then I looked at my husband and I was like, should I not have done that? You know,

Speaker 6: 06:49 Doctors and medical experts recommend women who receive the vaccines continue breastfeeding. In fact, the conventional wisdom is that women who get the vaccine likely pass on protective antibodies to the baby through their milk. But LLS uncertainty is understandable given the fact that no clinical trials of COVID 19 vaccines were done on pregnant or breastfeeding women.

Speaker 5: 07:16 Well, hindsight is 2020. Uh, although we shouldn't use 20, 20 anymore as an example, because that was a horrible year clearly. Yeah.

Speaker 6: 07:22 Dr. Lars Bordeaux runs the UC San Diego mother milk infant center of research excellence, which is now studying impact of the vaccine on breast milk.

Speaker 5: 07:33 The notion was originally to protect women from research when they're in this vulnerable space of either being pregnant or breastfeeding. But really what we should do is we should protect women and their babies by including them in the research to then have data, whether it's safe or not.

Speaker 6: 07:50 For the past six years, UC San Diego has run a collection center for breast milk called mommy's milk that studies the effects of all kinds of things on mother's milk. Dr. Christina Chambers is the founder and

Speaker 5: 08:03 Can, uh, the mother, in addition to protecting herself with a vaccine, um, produce antibodies to the virus that will actually benefit her child as well. Um, and then we'll also look at other things about the milk. Does it, uh, you know, the fat protein, carbohydrate composition change at all? Is there any difference in, um, milk supply? So,

Speaker 6: 08:25 So far 1200 women from across the country who've received a vaccine are shipping mommy's milk bags of pumped breast milk. One from before the vaccine and seven more over two months after getting the first dose answers to questions about the vaccines impact on the health of babies will take the most time, but the researchers are cautiously optimistic. They will find antibodies. They also expect to find that the vaccines do not put in breast milk that is harmful to babies. All of these theories are compelling to Dr. Christina paid an ER doctor at Rady children's hospital and mother of a six month old. She took the vaccine continues to breastfeed and is one of the studies participants as any breastfeeding mother knows it can feel painful to give up any pumped milk, but paid says it was worth it. In this case, there really are only asking for one to two ounces with each sample.

Speaker 6: 09:25 So I think it ended up being like 15 to 20 ounces, which in the end is not, you know, not even a day's worth of feed. And so, um, I felt like it was worth it for science. That science is what other moms like Carly Keats are waiting for. She is breastfeeding her son and is generally very pro-vaccine, but says it's hard to make a decision without data. There really isn't, um, actual data yet saying that it doesn't pass through. And if it does, maybe that's a good thing. Maybe it's a bad thing, but there really isn't anything statistically or data-driven that's telling me, yes, it's a hundred percent going to be good for you and for your baby. Keats may have an answer by the time it's her turn for a vaccine as results from the first 500 women from the UC San Diego study are expected in a few months, Claire Treg, Asser KPBS news.

Speaker 7: 10:27 This is KPBS mid day edition. I'm wearing Cavenaugh with Jade Heinemann San Diego's ambitious climate action campaign is aimed at reducing and slowing down the causes of climate change. Now, the city is launching an effort to adapt to the present and future effects of a warming planet. Using information from recent studies on the local impacts of climate change. City officials have targeted four main areas of concern, sea level rise, flooding and drought, extreme heat and wildfires. Joining me is San Diego union Tribune, reporter David Garrick and David welcome. Hey, thanks for having me. Now, this campaign is called climate resilient SD what's its overall goal

Speaker 8: 11:12 It's overall goal is to have the city be in a position to adapt well to climate change so that it doesn't impact people's lives and the economy is as badly as it might, uh, without such an effort. So the main climate action plan was to reduce the effects of climate change. This is sort of a component of that, but it's separate it's how can we adapt to climate change in a way that the city isn't as adversely affected as it could be,

Speaker 7: 11:36 If you would, about some of the projections that climate scientists are making about the impact in San Diego of those four main concerns of this project. For instance, what about sea level rise?

Speaker 8: 11:48 Yeah. On sea level rise, uh, the projections that the, that the city is using a show that I, the level of the sea could increase 3.6 feet to 10.2 feet in the next century, which compared to the 19 hundreds less entry, it was 0.71 feet. So it's really a huge, huge impact. And as a coastal city, a place like mission Bay will just be completely water at some point.

Speaker 7: 12:10 And they also project, uh, either big bouts of rain or longer periods of drought. Is that right?

Speaker 8: 12:18 Exactly. Right. There'll be more intense rainstorms and then there'll be longer droughts and more extreme droughts. And it's definitely a big issue.

Speaker 7: 12:24 What about the projections on extreme heat?

Speaker 8: 12:27 Yeah, there's supposed to be more here is of extreme heat and they're supposed to be more severe. And if you're looking for numbers, they say by the 2040s, the average daily high temperature could be five degrees Fahrenheit higher than it is now, which would turn San Diego and, you know, has the one most mild appealing climates around and it would become, you know, not quite as mild and appealing,

Speaker 7: 12:47 I guess some of those factors will affect our wildfires.

Speaker 8: 12:51 Oh, for sure. Yeah. The, the, the drought will make the, uh, the ground that lights on fire dryer. Um, and then the greater heat will increase the likelihood of a wildfire. So it's all one giant unfortunate, uh, cycle where it all builds on itself.

Speaker 7: 13:08 No, hasn't the city already taken some steps to prepare for the effects of climate change.

Speaker 8: 13:13 They, they definitely have, um, they they've been doing other studies and they've, uh, they've made a lot of plans and obviously their fight wildfires have been a priority in the city since the seventies. So it's not like anything here is completely new, but the idea of putting it all together in one plan called climate resilient SD, and coming up with a full-blown comprehensive adaptation strategy is important because then the city is going to figure out how to prioritize what, what the efforts they're going to make. But the key is let's know what the challenges are and let's know which ones we face and let's prioritize them when we're looking at them all in one, you know, one big group and deciding which ones we're going to do first and which communities we're going to prioritize and what we're going to spend on.

Speaker 7: 13:54 And in fact, the city points to two, um, mitigating efforts that they've already taken, and that is developing the city's tree canopy and the pure water project. Isn't that right?

Speaker 8: 14:06 Yes. Yes. The pure water project is recycling, uh, you know, treated sewage water, which makes San Diego more water independent, which as water becomes scarcer and scarcer as the climate warms is going to become steadily more important. Um, there's also a desalination plant in Carlsbad that you're familiar with. So yeah, those are, those are key issues. The tree canopy, the city has studied that they came up with different studies that show different levels of the city's tree canopy tree canopy is really important because it decreases those extreme heat events. When you're in a neighborhood with lots of trees overhanging, it doesn't get quite as warm. So that's, it makes a big difference. Uh, and one of the strategies I thought was kind of clever is that the city is going to study what neighborhoods are, maybe are low income and have less houses with air conditioning and maybe try to focus on increasing the tree canopy in those neighborhoods. So the 20 years from now, when there's an extreme heat event, those neighborhoods won't be as adversely affected because we'll have a stronger tree canopy.

Speaker 7: 14:57 And that's part of the equity factor that's in, that's being taken into consideration as San Diego moves forward on this climate resilient SD thing, right?

Speaker 8: 15:07 It's great timing because equity has become a much bigger priority at city hall. And since the protest last fall, and they have a new office on race and equity that a Councilwoman Monica Montgomery step is leading, uh, and it fits it dovetails well with this because different neighborhoods are going to be affected differently by climate change and the different neighborhoods don't have the resources to adapt well to climate change. You're in a wealthy home and you have a lot of money. You put an air conditioning. If it gets too hot, some neighborhoods, the folks don't make enough money to really put in an air conditioning system or put in a pool and they don't have the easy access to get to the beach. So it does impact people differently. The equity element will take that into account

Speaker 7: 15:42 In an unrelated effort toward equity among San Diego neighborhoods. Didn't the city council just announced an effort to pave dirt roads in low-income neighborhoods.

Speaker 8: 15:51 That is correct. Yeah. They found that there's about 60 miles of dirt roads and alleys that are mostly South state, route 94, not all, but, but mostly it's certainly a district, a council district four and eight, uh, and the city had a law for liability reasons saying that they couldn't be held responsible for those dirt roads. A lot of them date back to the farming era and, uh, basically the, what the city council voted on last week was to say, no, we can be responsible for those. We do have the power to fix them. And we're going to put them in our big pile of capital improvement projects. We consider every year, like new libraries and new fire stations and paving roads all over. Whereas in the past they were separated and they weren't part of that because the city wasn't allowed to deal with them.

Speaker 7: 16:31 The climate resilient SD program with adaptation to climate change as its goal signal, that the city is less optimistic about its climate action plan, being able to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Speaker 8: 16:44 You know, it's an interesting perspective. I don't think they would say that. I think what they would say was that we are hopeful that our plan is going to make a difference, but we understand that, you know, this climate change has been a problem. That's been brewing since the industrial revolution began. And since carbon emissions, greenhouse gas emissions began. And the idea that the city's climate action plan is going to solve it a hundred percent would be overly optimistic. Let's prepare and try to mitigate the impacts.

Speaker 7: 17:07 The public is being asked to get involved in the climate resilient effort to create adaptation strategies. How can they get involved?

Speaker 8: 17:16 Yeah, there's a survey. If they go to the city's website, the city planning department website, they can go and fill out a survey. And the idea is the city wants to go into people's neighborhoods and get a feel for what's unique about your neighborhood that we as city officials maybe don't know that will help us come up with an adaptation strategy that we haven't thought of just because we're not familiar with the nooks and crannies of each individual neighborhood. Okay.

Speaker 7: 17:39 Okay. Then I've been speaking with San Diego union Tribune, reporter David Garrick, David. Thanks.

Speaker 8: 17:45 Thanks very much, Maureen. You

Speaker 7: 17:47 Can find a link to climate resilient SD on the KPBS website@kpbs.org.

Speaker 1: 18:00 As we celebrate black history month, it's time to do a check on how far this country has come and understanding its past and how well schools are teaching it, especially here in California. Sarah Kaplan is an associate professor of ethnic studies and critical gender studies at the university of California, San Diego, and a founder of [inaudible] black studies project, professor Kaplan. Welcome. Thanks

Speaker 9: 18:23 So much, Jane. It's great to be here. Why

Speaker 1: 18:25 Is this month of celebration so important

Speaker 9: 18:28 Because we still live in a time when the history of black people's experiences lives, contributions and struggles are not incorporated into the school curriculums and the ways in which we learn about our country in the ways that you would imagine that it should be. Despite the fact that in reality, the United States wouldn't exist as the nation that it is today without black people having been here since 16, 19, the new

Speaker 1: 18:57 More inclusive standard was implemented in school history books for California's students. Can you tell me about those changes as it pertains to black history?

Speaker 9: 19:07 Things that has been very exciting about the changes in California's history curriculum, particularly increased attention to the centrality of black people in the building of the United States. What I would say, however, is that one of the difficulties that we still have in California and across the country are the ways in which schools choose to fully engage that curriculum and the ways in which, um, students learn that in the ways in which it gets incorporated for different classrooms in different places. And really the extent to which the full picture, including the more difficult parts are truly incorporated

Speaker 1: 19:45 Reconstruction African-Americans were able to build communities. Talk to me about that period

Speaker 9: 19:51 Reconstruction, for those of us who study black history is both was a moment of incredible promise and incredible tragedy. So as you may know, radical reconstruction lasted for only a period of about 10 to 12 years by 1877. Most of the benefits of reconstruction had given completely decimated. So we have a period of time immediately following the civil war, where we see the introduction of many new initiatives. We begin to see all kinds of really critical shifts in voting and franchisement access to the polls access to political power for African-Americans possibility for land ownership shifts, obviously, and citizenship laws that benefited not just African-Americans, but were inconsistently extended at times to benefit other racialized immigrants. But then within a very short period of time, what becomes very clear is that even for northerners and particularly in the South, this notion of black political enfranchisement was so deeply undermining the structures of white supremacy on which the U S was built.

Speaker 9: 21:06 That the only way to imagine a unified nation again, and to implement a unified nation was to do it on white supremacy. That's when we begin to see a rollback, we begin to see policies that no longer allowed black people to own land. We see the rise of white terrorist organizations like the KU Klux Klan. We see the laws that are now called, you know, sort of grandfather laws that said that if you couldn't prove that your grandfather could vote, that you were no longer allowed to vote. So we see the wholesale disenfranchisement and erosion of reconstruction that ended by the 1890s with the implementation of Jim Crow laws and the wholesale disenfranchisement of African-Americans from the vote

Speaker 1: 21:52 Since reconstruction ended. Do you think America has been able to reverse the damage done to African-Americans by white supremacists, terrorism, Jim Crow laws, and, uh, the exclusion from the political system, as you mentioned,

Speaker 9: 22:05 I try to tell my students, and in fact, everyone, I talk to that, the story of African-Americans and white supremacy in the U S post reconstruction is not one of damage, but one of resilience that despite every structure being created against African-American opportunity, well-being health or long life, we have still seen an incredibly resilient community. But do I believe that to this day, if we look at everything from lifespan to wealth, to projected income, to, uh, rates of death at the hands of both the police and extra legal forces, have we seen that the structures that deeply undermine black opportunity and possibility still remain deeply slated against them? Absolutely. That the, you know, it's not just that there's a sort of historic damage to be undone. It's much more that we can continue to, um, structure things in ways that make life much harder for African-Americans and to not really, um, take fully into account the ways that those happen.

Speaker 1: 23:18 So how does our understanding of black history then shape the present, especially when it comes to policy?

Speaker 9: 23:24 Such a great question. So, you know, I'm going to just use one very concrete example. One of the most fascinating things that I teach as somebody who studies black women's history is I take something like with my students, like say the notion of the black welfare queen, which we know emerged as a kind of trope under Reagan, this idea that there were tons of black women with tons of children who were taking advantage of welfare checks and having kids just to get more money. And it became this fantasy, this racist fantasy that became so accepted as common sense that no matter how many statistics you gave people, no matter what you say, people continue to believe that somehow the real problem with our social system is welfare that goes to black women. And I always go back and trace it to the origins of welfare.

Speaker 9: 24:13 When welfare first began aid for women with children began in the beginning of the 20th century, it was actually created in a way that excluded black women from it. It was only for white women who were widows with children. And the notion was that if black women received welfare, then they would no longer go to work. And they were needed to work in the sharecropping. They were needed to work as tenant farmers. They were needed to work as domestics. And so in fact, they were classified as necessary workers and excluded from the benefits of welfare. So I point out to my students that in fact, this idea that black women are taking advantage of welfare actually goes back to the idea that black women never deserved help in the first place as we understood it. And now I tell my students, when we think about which workers are getting early access to the COVID vaccine, we see doctors, we see nursing home workers.

Speaker 9: 25:10 We see other people who are seen as essential workers, but those people who are working in our grocery stores, who are doing low wage, high risk, frontline labor, that tend to predominantly be black and Brown, poor people, they are not being prioritized. No one is, you know, looking up at 7:00 PM and clapping for them every night. And yet they are risking their lives every day so that we can have the things that we need to function. And I argue that it's in continuation, that goes all the way back to slavery of the idea that black people's lives are expendable. As long as they perform the labor that we need from them.

Speaker 1: 25:48 I've been speaking with Sarah Kaplan and associate professor of ethnic studies and critical gender studies at the university of California, professor Kaplan. Thank you very much for joining us. Thank you. Jane Californ

Speaker 7: 26:06 Criminal justice reform movement is facing a backlash and the conflict is playing out in the Los Angeles district attorney's office, newly elected da George gas cone says he will appeal a judge's ruling, stopping him from banning the use of sentence enhancements. Those enhancements can add years to a criminal conviction because of certain aspects of the crime or because of previous felonies. It was gas cones, own prosecutors who sued to stop his reform and district attorneys across the state, including San Diego summer. Stephan are speaking out against gas cones, sweeping reforms. Joining me is Anita [inaudible] reporter for the Los Angeles times. Anita, welcome. Thanks for having me on, why did the judge rule against gas cone? Doesn't he have prosecutorial discretion on asking for sentence enhancements?

Speaker 10: 27:00 Well, he does, and prosecutors carry a great deal of power. What this decision is referring to is cases that have already been filed in Los Angeles courts and the ability to go back and change how those were filed. So this is actually a more limited ruling than it appears on the surface

Speaker 7: 27:20 Gas cones ordered not to seek sentencing enhancements is what got San Diego da summer Stephan to reclaim jurisdiction in one case involving an alleged crime spree. Can he tell us about that?

Speaker 10: 27:33 You know, she is not alone. There's also a case up in Northern California where the da felt that guest's gone was not going to be appropriately punitive in his recommendations for how the charges went. And so in the, in the case in San Diego, she simply decided to take back jurisdiction of that case to ensure that it was prosecuted in the way that she felt comfortable with. And it's interesting, you are seeing DAS for the first time that I've ever heard of in California, uh, having that conversation amongst themselves and amongst law enforcements about which jurisdiction when there is an option they want to file in

Speaker 7: 28:12 What other reforms besides sentencing enhancements has gas cone introduced.

Speaker 10: 28:17 He, uh, you know, does not believe in the death penalty and is not pursuing that in cases he's not charging juveniles as adults, which is, again, something that we've seen in other progressive offices across the state. He, uh, has indicated that he's not going to, uh, have bail in almost all cases at all.

Speaker 7: 28:37 And what does Gascon say these reforms will accomplish?

Speaker 10: 28:41 This is a large conversation about criminal justice across the country. And what we've seen over decades is mass incarceration of black and Brown people that our prisons are filled with black and Brown people who have been treated more harshly by the system. Really, you don't have a lot of DAS from either side of this arguing that we have a problem with mass incarceration. It's how to fix that. And Gascon gone believes, uh, as do many prosecutors in his camp across the country that ultimately the fixes with prosecutors, that they have the power to simply stop putting black and Brown people in jail. And so his reforms are really looking at it through that lens of racial equity that has led to mass incarceration.

Speaker 7: 29:26 Um, so something like ending cash bail, California voters just rejected that in a ballot measure last November, does gas con have the power to order a reform like that?

Speaker 10: 29:37 Well, I mean, I think we're, we'll see a lot of dissent around it again, but yes, it's up to the prosecutor to decide whether to ask for bail or not, but there is a general sentiment in California that we do need to not keep people in jail, waiting for trial for months and months on, on small charges. So there that's one of the reforms where Gascon probably will have a little bit more support than other places, just because it is more widely accepted that we do have a problem with bail.

Speaker 7: 30:08 Why are some of gas, guns, own prosecutors working against these reforms?

Speaker 10: 30:13 Well, I think that depends on who you ask. So, you know, the official line is that these reforms go too far. They're an overreach of power where he's making law instead of enforcing law, um, and, uh, really overstepping his bounds and ignoring victim's rights is what you'll hear a lot. Uh, if you ask the other side of this, he's doing exactly what he was elected to do, and he's, he's doing it quickly. And, um, in an important way. So one tack that you will hear is that his prosecutors are simply standing up for the law and standing up for victims rights, but there is also a sense that he came into an office that already was on certain about him. Didn't know a lot of what he was going to do and came down with a very heavy-handed approach. He just said, this is what we're doing starting immediately. And there is a feeling that perhaps, you know, he could have moved slower, brought more people on board with his thinking before making those. So I think it's probably a little bit of both. Um, and you'll, you'll see this continue to go on. I don't think there's an easy resolution.

Speaker 7: 31:17 Uh, as you said, uh, the San Diego da summer Stephan is just one of many district attorneys who oppose many of gas scones reforms is that kind of friction between jurisdictions unusual.

Speaker 10: 31:30 The friction itself is not unusual. The public nature of it is shocking. I cannot remember a time when I have heard a elected official elected DA's or elected go after another elected official in a different jurisdiction. So to have this fight break out between California's DAS in public is, is pretty shocking.

Speaker 7: 31:53 I've been speaking with reporter Anita [inaudible] with the Los Angeles times. Anita, thank you so much. Thank you for having me. This is KPBS mid day edition. I'm worrying Kavanaugh with Jade Heinemann Charles McPherson is one of Jazz's most prolific saxophonists, still performing and releasing new music. Even in his eighties. Most recently, he put out an album called jazz dance suites inspired by his time working as composer in residence at the San Diego ballet. We asked McPherson to put us together a playlist of the music that got him into jazz, shaped his style and continues to drive his music, even during pandemic

Speaker 3: 32:40 Here's Charles McPherson.

Speaker 11: 32:42 If I can't before just to have music in my mind, I hear in my mind, and to be able to just go to the piano and play a few chords or, or go to the saxophone and play what I hear are. So I try to be busy and try to be creative, even though that, uh, these are some trying times, just the passion and the love I have for the art itself. It just makes me happy just to the fact that I, I can do it and hear it. And then I could actually entertain myself.

Speaker 3: 33:24 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 33:25 One of my, uh, inspirations is Charlie Parker and one of the first compositions or song that I heard that Charlie Parker play was a song called Tiko T

Speaker 3: 33:38 Cool. [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 33:57 I didn't know Charlie Parker. I had never heard him before. And, uh, when I heard that, uh, I heard it on a jukebox in my neighborhood. It immediately resonated with me. I was about 14 years old when I first heard this. And even though I did not know how to, to explain why this resonated with me, but really what it was I could hear, even at that young age, his sense of logic, melodic, linear logic. In other words, these long, beautiful musical phrases, improvise freezes were well connected, you know, in a linear melodic in a very logical way. And even though I was a kid, I could hear this logic. It made sense to me,

Speaker 3: 34:59 [inaudible],

Speaker 11: 35:04 There's an album by Billy holiday. That impressed me a lot.

Speaker 3: 35:17 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 35:18 And of course it's a famous records is it's entitled lady in satin. I mean, I cry now talking about it and listening to some of this

Speaker 3: 35:37 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 35:49 I learned so much from Billie holiday in particular, not just this record, but Billy holiday in particular, because besides herring, this really nice pleasant voice, there is this high level of degree

Speaker 3: 36:05 Of honesty, uh,

Speaker 11: 36:08 In, in how she sings and how she interprets. There's no egoic sense of trying to impress people. She opens her mouth. She Stangs the song and there's no air affectations. There's no trying to prove anything. There's nothing narcissistic about it. It's just pure emotional honesty and a very deep understanding of the words that she's

Speaker 3: 37:03 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 37:16 Bar talk. I'd really love him. And I got interested in him. It's funny, the way it came about, I moved into this apartment and the proceeding people had left a bunch of classical records that they didn't take with them, and they were in good shape. They were LPs. And one of them was a symphony called the miraculous Mandarin suite by Baylor

Speaker 3: 37:57 [inaudible].

Speaker 11: 37:57 I listened to this and I was mesmerized for about 40 minutes. So however long it is, and I fell in love,

Speaker 3: 38:06 Right then

Speaker 11: 38:15 Logically and harmonically is just, uh, just gorgeous as far as I'm concerned. And I learned a lot and that sorta interested, uh, introduced me to classical music, um, in more of a, uh, a deeper way. I really started actively listening to composers. Anytime you learn anything new, it broadens you are just gives you more dimension as an artist and as a person.

Speaker 3: 38:54 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 38:54 The thing about, uh, Charles Mingus is writing his ballot. Writing is just beautiful. I mean, there are many tunes balance that Mingus wrote that I love. Portrait is one

Speaker 3: 39:19 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 39:19 Mingus is ballot writing in particular, there was something haunting about his melodies mixed with sensuality, and also his melodic inventions were a little different musical curve balls all over the place. Yeah,

Speaker 3: 39:54 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 39:55 I worked with being as firm, about 12 years. I was about 20 years old when I first joined his band. Mingus was in his early forties, I think, and with my own writing every now and then I can hear influences from Mingus and not because I'm trying to do it on a conscious level, uh, just because of osmosis and four years of being with him and having, you know, the sounds and chords from some of his music in my, in my mind,

Speaker 3: 40:59 [inaudible]

Speaker 11: 41:00 Also, I did learn from Mingus how to be thematic in my writing because Mingus wrote lyrics to his tools. He was very political and he wrote political songs with were with war protest words, but he wrote love songs and he wrote his own words. And he also wrote ballet music. He wrote for, for dance and movement. I think that also influenced me, uh, where that I started thinking about music in an episodic way. Cause he certainly did. I think that kind of consciousness he brought to me, I became aware of that, that you just don't write a bunch of notes. You have a reason, you have a story that you want to,

Speaker 4: 42:12 But, uh, what I learned from, uh,

Speaker 11: 42:14 This bar talk and all the just different variety of music and styles that I've, I've listened to through the years, all of that has impacted how I think about music and certainly led to me thinking episodically about music and not just writing notes for instruments to play, but also for people to dance. And that experience as being resident composer with the San Diego ballet really brought all that to four. I learned how to write for dance and how to be aware of a storyline and not just to ramble, but write meaningfully and to be structured. And, um, also my daughter, um, Camille is like one of the principal dances with the San Diego ballet. So basically she's the inspiration for doing that project to jazz dance suites

Speaker 4: 43:19 That was San Diego, jazz saxophonist, Charles McPherson. You can find links to the songs that influenced him as well as McPherson's latest record on our website@kpbs.org. [inaudible].

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KPBS Midday Edition

KPBS Midday Edition is a daily talk show hosted by Maureen Cavanaugh and Jade Hindmon, keeping San Diegans in the know on everything from politics to the arts.