Posts tagged ‘southern california’

November 19, 2012

Southern California has many options for celebrating Halloween

By Krista Brooks

Published Wednesday, October 24, 2012 – The Daily 49er

For the young generation in Southern California, Halloween isn’t just a one night celebration; it is spread out for a couple of weeks. From decorating the home to choosing the perfect costume, the occasion is fun for many.

There are a wide range of fall festivities to participate in, harvest festivals, haunted mazes, special showings of horror movies in theatres and trick-or-treating spotlight the wide range of characters and costumes. Last year, the psychology department set up a haunted asylum attraction on campus. This year they will follow up with a zombie-filled department.

Off-campus, theme parks like Knott’s Berry Farm and Universal Studios Hollywood transform into scary attractions filled with horror. This is meant for a particular audience that is into Halloween for the fright.

For another audience, dancing is the plan for this season. Halloween is one of the holidays where the rave scene goes all out. Spring break events don’t necessarily celebrate Easter, and summer raves aren’t particularly thrown for a holiday event.  Many Electronic Dance Music (EDM) lovers follow these raves around California as if they were following a band’s tour. Whether it be in March or August, these committed music lovers dress up in something different than their everyday clothing.

Sounds a lot like our annual Halloween traditions, huh? EDM enthusiasts go all out for festivals throughout the year but go the extra mile to stand out for this particular holiday. Going to a rave that is not Halloween-themed may not look any different than college parties. This season is for those dedicated attendees to show off their best rave outfits.

Southern California is a hot spot for these music festivals where people come from around the state to attend. Escape from Wonderland is held in San Bernadino at the NOS Events Center. To decipher the event from other festivals, there will be mazes, horror art installations and three haunted houses. This event attracts EDM lovers as well as horror lovers.

In Los Angeles, there is HARD Haunted Mansion’s Day of the Dead. This festival is focused more on the Dia de losMuertos side of Halloween and not about glitzy and flashy glamour. This event is held Nov. 3, the Saturday after Halloween.

Monster Massive was once a very popular Halloween rave until 2010 when 40 people were arrested and 16 were hospitalized. The following year, the event was cancelled last minute, but thankfully most were reimbursed for tickets. This year, the event is the same day as Escape from Wonderland, at Downtown Los Angeles Center Studios.

Whether it be trick-or-treating or raving, be safe this Halloween. EDM enthusiasts, you’ve had plenty of practice dressing up don’t fall short on the day it counts.

Krista Brooks is a junior journalism major and the assistant opinions editor for the Daily 49er.

September 4, 2012

Claiming antidepressants as a reason for wrongdoing is not a worthy plea

By Krista Brooks

Published Wednesday, June 20, 2012 – The Daily 49er

An ex-cop was charged with two counts of rape, assault and armed kidnapping, to which he blamed his medication for making him “unconscious.”

The former Westminster police detective, Anthony Nicholas Orban, claimed that his Zoloft antidepressant caused him to black out and was not aware of his actions.

Orban’s defense attorney, James Blatt, defended the seven charges further by explaining his client’s prescription change.

Orban had stopped taking the medication for a period of time, and then resumed taking it at full dose, which could have caused his zombie behavior and possibly psychotic break.

Orban’s victim reported he had threatened her with a gun to her mouth after unloading a round of his semi-automatic service pistol before her eyes.

He threatened to kill her if she had cried and to take her to the desert for more.

These are not acts of zombies.

These are acts of a drunk man.

Witnesses admitted to seeing Orban drink that night, and that he was looking to get laid.

His case has some substance to it, because the Zoloft prescription could have influenced lower inhibitions and motor skills—when mixed with large amounts of alcohol.

Most medications and prescriptions have warning labels to not mix with alcohol.

Even if the antidepressant was a factor in this man’s “black out,” the alcohol in his system is clearly the culprit.

The court denied his “Zoloft defense,” and the jury of eight women and four men found Orban guilty of multiple counts—rape, forced oral copulation, sexual penetration with a foreign object, making a criminal threat and a sentence enhancement of using a firearm in commission of a kidnapping.

Orban is a veteran of the Iraq war.

With the recent buzz of the “zombie” that attacked and ate another man’s face, this is another fail to add to the mess.

The man who was reported to be high on bath salts, contaminated LSD or other substances was an animal in his own way.

That man was tazered and shot repeatedly before being killed. Orban was distracted by a call on his cellphone when his victim ran free.

Zombies can’t work cellphones.

This man’s defense to blame an antidepressant was not extreme; commercials and advertisements warn against several severe side-effects, except becoming a zombie and raping young women.

Here are the factors that make this case, as the judge claimed, “baloney.”

A Zoloft warning label warning not to mix with alcohol, the common knowledge of becoming less thoughtful with alcohol consumption and the police background of Orban should grant him an insanity plea.

Orban will face a sanity hearing before sentencing.

Next time, think of something else wild. “Zombie” is getting old, when the apocalypse happens, you’ll know.

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