- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Trump’s decision

Officials of the Miss California USA pageant strongly criticized some of the actions of titleholder Carrie Prejean on Monday but said it’s not their decision whether she should be stripped of her crown, Associated Press reports.

Co-executive directors Keith Lewis and Shanna Moakler told a press conference that only Miss USA pageant owner Donald Trump can make that decision. He plans to hold a press conference at 11 a.m. Tuesday in New York City.

The officials say Miss Prejean has been “unavailable” and so in the meantime they have appointed the state pageant’s runner-up, Tami Farrell, as a “Beauty of California Ambassador” to fulfill any duties the winner normally would handle.

Mr. Lewis says that if Mr. Trump allows Miss Prejean to retain her crown, state pageant officials would welcome her back and encourage her to take part in her normal duties.

Miss Prejean, 21, of San Diego, created controversy during the Miss USA pageant when she answered a judge’s question by saying she thinks marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

The state pageant has been investigating whether she violated her contract by making public appearances with groups opposed to same-sex marriage. Miss Prejean also failed to reveal that she posed in her underwear as a teenager.

Miss Moakler says Miss Prejean’s failure to reveal the photo to organizers shows she entered the pageant under false pretenses.

Aiding union

Actor Danny Glover joined labor, political and civil-rights leaders Monday on one of the first stops of a four-day, 11-state tour supporting U.S. manufacturing workers.

The “Lethal Weapon” star told a crowd of mainly union workers in the Detroit suburb of Hamtramck that the “de-industrialization of the nation” began in Michigan, and its workers can be “the architects of their own rescue,” AP reports.

Mr. Glover, the son of union members, said he stands with those affected by plant closings.

The event also included the Rev. Jesse Jackson, U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Michigan Democrat, and United Steelworkers International President Leo Gerard.

Mr. Glover, 61, said it would be his only appearance because he has to return to Los Angeles for work.

Kiefer gets wrist slap

Kiefer Sutherland’s lawyer says an investigation by New York City officials into a charge he head-butted a fashion designer will show he was not an instigator.

The star of Fox’s “24” was charged Thursday with third-degree assault after fashion designer Jack McCollough reported the incident. Police say the two apparently argued at a party in Manhattan before Mr. McCollough was head-butted. Mr. Sutherland was interviewed by investigators, given a ticket and released on his own recognizance, AP says. The minor charge is akin to a speeding ticket.

However, representatives for Mr. McCollough say his injuries are more serious than initially noted on the police report. They claim his nose was broken in several places. The police report says he suffered a cut on his nose.

Racy pics?

It may not be clear if the nude pictures reportedly featuring Rihanna are genuine, but her people sure seem to be upset about them.

According to TMZ, the New York Daily News reported Monday that Island Def Jam Music Group is cracking down on at least one Web site for posting the photos. Although the letter does not state that the photos are of the 21-year-old Rihanna, it reportedly does not deny that either, TMZ says.

The photos in question show different parts of a woman’s nude body in a bathroom. At least two photos show a partially clothed woman who looks very much like Rihanna, although her face is partially concealed.

The pop star is noted for having several tattoos, none of which can be seen in any of the photographs. It isn’t clear, however, exactly when the pictures were taken, the Daily News says.

This isn’t the first time the singer’s life has generated headlines. A photo of her battered and bruised face taken after a reported altercation with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown caused quite a stir earlier this year. The legal battle over the incident is in the California courts.

Center celebrates

New York’s Lincoln Center kicked off its yearlong 50th-anniversary celebration on Monday with a special ceremony in the new Alice Tully Hall, AP reports.

New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert, violinist Itzhak Perlman, jazz legend Wynton Marsalis and the Juilliard Orchestra were among those scheduled to perform.

Fifty years ago, President Dwight D. Eisenhower stood at Columbus and 64th Street and pushed a shovel into the earth to break ground for the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.

The sprawling arts complex was a catalyst for urban renewal and played a significant role in reviving its Upper West Side neighborhood, AP notes.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports

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