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Morning Brief: A Dark Day

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Good morning, L.A.

If you’re not sure what to think or how to feel after yesterday, you’re not alone. As the U.S. Congress prepared to confirm the votes of the Electoral College, pro-Trump insurrectionists invaded the Capitol building — scaling walls, breaking windows and breaching the House and Senate chambers and lawmakers’ offices.

Law enforcement eventually secured the area, but not before the reality of what we witnessed hit Americans who were paying attention.

Calling the insurgency “reprehensible,” Gov. Gavin Newsom added that it was an “assault to our democratic institutions.” L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti echoed Newsom’s sentiment, saying that it was a “dark day for America.”

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But the events weren’t limited to the nation’s capitol. In downtown L.A., Trump supporters clashed violently with counter-protesters, with several people bloodied and reportedly arrested. The gathering was eventually declared an unlawful assembly by LAPD.

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

What You Need To Know Today

Mental Wellness: If the events of yesterday — or the entire past year — have you feeling depressed, overwhelmed or otherwise not like yourself, here’s our guide to mental health support.

L.A.’s Surge: Another deadly day brings the total number of L.A. County residents who have died from coronavirus to 11,328. California's Public Health Officer has ordered hospitals to postpone non-serious surgeries and to accept patients from other hospitals that are over-capacity.

Uproar In The Capitol: Several SoCal members of Congress described their experience as the House chamber was evacuated: “I just never thought I'd see a day like this.” Joe Biden addressed the insurgency. Members of Congress reconvened on Wednesday evening to continue the process of certifying President-elect Joe Biden's White House win.

L.A. Kids: An L.A.-based therapist offers tips for parents on how to talk to kids about the D.C. insurrection.

Getting Groceries: Vons confirmed that it will lay off its delivery drivers and will instead use "third party" services.

Coming Up: From the vaccine rollout to drought and wildfires to the pandemic’s long-term effects on children, here are the stories our reporters will be following closely in 2021.

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L.A. History: Biddy Mason, a formerly enslaved woman, went on to become one of the most important — and one of the wealthiest — landowners, midwives and philanthropists in early-American Los Angeles.

Before You Go… WeHo Gets Artsy

A sign for available restaurant space for lease is seen amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, is seen on May 15, 2020, on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

The Windows of WeHo program aims to extend a helping hand to the local artist community while also bringing light, color, and hopefully business to struggling stores.

“We’ve heard that over 95% of our artists are reporting a loss of income,” said Rebecca Ehemann, West Hollywood’s acting arts manager. “And in the creative city ... that number is significant, because artists are small businesses.”

The city is inviting artists to submit applications online, which will then be reviewed by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission The city expects to have eight to 10 finalists who will each receive a $1,000 reward.

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