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Morning Brief: Coachella 2022, YIMBYs, And Navigating Puberty

A young white man on a stage holds the microphone towards a massive outdoor crowd. He wears a mesh sports jersey with the number 76 and white pants. A colorful structure and a Ferris wheel can be seen in the background. It is daytime.
Dylan Minnette of Wallows performs onstage at the Outdoor Theatre during at Coachella on April 16, 2022.
(Frazer Harrison
Getty Images for Coachella)
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Good morning, L.A. It’s April 25.

After two years of being canceled due to COVID-19, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival made its glorious, flower-crowned return these past two weekends. A reported 750,000 people were in attendance, and masks were few and far between in the crushing crowds.

That’s because festival organizers ultimately decided not to require vaccinations, testing or masks for attendees.

That decision evolved in the months leading up to the festival. In October, organizers announced that they’d accept a negative test result in lieu of proof of vaccination, opening the door for unvaccinated folks to attend.

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Prior to that, they’d said that vaccination would be required.

According to The Desert Sun, COVID-19 cases increased 77% in the region following the first weekend of the festival. Scottish-American singer-songwriter Bishop Briggs and DJ Satori both had to cancel their performances for the second weekend after testing positive.

The latest omicron variant, BA.2, has been spreading rapidly through Southern California. It appears to be more contagious than previous variants, but not more severe.

Health experts had expressed concern when festival producers removed any requirements for vaccinations, negative tests or masks.

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Andrew Noymer, a UC Irvine epidemiologist and demographer, told us “the wise thing to do would be to require testing and vaccination upon entry.” The reality, he said, is we’re back to “partying like it's 2019.”

“I think it's gonna be a challenge to have our cake and eat it too, in terms of back to normal on the one hand and the fact that COVID is still with us on the other hand.”

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A., and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know Today

  • In L.A. County, more than half a million children have had COVID since the pandemic began. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles is one of the few hospitals with a clinical program dedicated to long COVID recovery care
  • Yesterday marked the 107th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, and the L.A.-based Armenian Genocide Committee commemorated the day with music, talks and scholars. 
  • A handful of YIMBYs are on the front lines of enforcing California’s new law allowing multi-unit housing on lots previously reserved for single-family homes. 
  • As America approaches a million deaths from COVID-19, many families wonder just how big a role misinformation and conspiracy theories played in their loved ones dying. 
  • Lilly and Lana Wachowski, the sisters behind The Matrix and other blockbuster films, are auctioning off props and memorabilia to raise money to support trans youth.

Before You Go ... This New Puberty Book Is Simple, Straightforward And Inclusive

A row of pre-teens jump in the air and smile. They are outdoors on what appears to be a nature hike.
(Chang Duong
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A new, 150-page book called You-ology: A Puberty Guide for Everybody is one a handful of new publications that aim to be more inclusive. Written for pre-teens 9 to 13, the book includes information for girls, boys, nonbinary youth and more.

Penned by three co-authors who are all physicians and parents, the book explains body parts and how they change in clear, accessible ways, while assuring kids that there's a wide range to what is normal.

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