All posts by Larry Buford

Larry Buford is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer, and author of Book/CD titled "Things Are Gettin' Outta Hand" (Steuben Pub.) He writes Human Interest articles and entertainment reviews for various newspapers across the country. He is also an editor, and provides services for press releases, interviews, business letters, resumes, etc. A native Detroiter, he is a former Motown songwriter.
George Pennacchio and ron brewington

George Pennacchio on ActorsE Chat with Ron Brewington (Watch)

Pennacchio (left) and Brewington

Pennacchio (left) and Brewington

(Hollywood) — Multi-award winning entertainment reporter George Pennacchio appeared on ActorsE Chat with host Ron Brewington.

Pennachio talked about his extensive duties as the “entertainment guru” at Los Angeles (CA) ABC affiliate, KABC7 “Eyewitness News” for the past 19 years.

He also discussed his thoughts about the changes in the entertainment industry over the past decade.

Other discussions included: Pennacchio’s experience interviewing numerous celebrities; appearing on the ‘red carpet’ during film openings and award shows; covering ‘Dancing With The Stars’ since the program began 19 seasons ago; the recent passing of actor Robin Williams and other related subjects.

Please click on the below link to see the program:

ActorsE Chat is a live chat show on Actors Entertainment, a channel on the Actors Podcast Network, a Pepper Jay Productions LLC, with PR-Marketing-Sales by Live Video Inc.

The program is rated “PG” and is an informational program about the guest. It is not a gossip show – no dishing.

ActorsE Chat (Actors Entertainment on IMDb) is now in its 6th season, and has had over 1,200 guests and almost 6 million viewers. The one-hour program is seen live Monday through Friday worldwide on the internet.

Rosey Grier & Ron Brewington

Watch the Legendary Rosey Grier on ActorsE Chat with Ron Brewington

Rosey Grier & Ron Brewington

*(Hollywood) – Actor, celebrity, athlete Rosey Grier, appeared on ActorsE Chat with host Ron Brewington.

Grier talked about his early days in Cuthbert, GA, where he came from a family of 15 brothers and sisters and rose to stardom in the professional football league.

He also discussed his thoughts about salaries of athletes today as compared to what it was when he played with the New York Giants (7 years) and the Los Angeles Rams (4 years) where he, Merlin Olsen, Lamar Lundy and Deacon Jones ruled the gridiron as “The Fearsome Foursome.”

Other subjects discussed included: The June 6, 1968 assassination of Robert F. Kennedy in LA’s famed Ambassador Hotel and how Grier placed his sizable thumb behind the trigger of the gun used by shooter Sirhan Sirhan to prevent the gun from discharging and hurting other people in the vicinity of Kennedy; his personal involvement with the Prostate Cancer Foundation with Michael Milken; importance of being a good father as well as a “role model” to others; his acting career in more than 85 television and film projects; his becoming a minister and current projects, i.e., cd’s, books, and “Industry of Athletics.”

Please click on the below link to see the program:


Could Jesus Be More Hurt? (Could We Care Any Less?)

Jesus1 Have you ever been in a situation that was so unbearable and you endured to the point where you just didn’t care what happens next? We’ve all used the expression, ‘I couldn’t care less’ meaning we’ve come to a certain end, to an empty place where feelings cannot be any less than what they are.

Hopeless people like those imprisoned for life have been known to risk escaping at all costs – mentally drained, inside they are already dead and feel they have nothing else to lose.

How inexplicable it must feel when you know you’ve done your very best, and yet you are still rejected and imprisoned through no fault of your own. Imagine how Jesus Christ must have felt as He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. First of all He had laid aside His deity to come and dwell among mankind (John 1:14).

With all the miracles, signs and wonders He performed, He was still rejected among men – even more so in His hometown of Nazareth. He was sinless and yet here He was now facing the inevitability of the cross. At that point we probably could surmise that He could not hurt any more albeit the cruel and brutal punishment; the slow agonizing death at the hands of the Romans awaited Him. For the purpose of being free, a prison escapee will die trying. For the purpose of freeing mankind Jesus was willing to sacrifice His life no matter the cost.

In both cases, with that driving passion, what could hurt more? Well there is something – the eternal consequence of obedience and disobedience. However, in the natural there is a peculiar mindset at the critical point of no return. In the garden Jesus prayed, ‘Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.’ Jesus suffered through His obedience even to the extent of the anguish of separation from God as He cried out on the cross, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ [Matt. 27:46] Jesus was confirming His deity (Ps. 22:1), while at the same time ‘God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.’ [2 Cor. 5:21]. Jesus2 Now if Jesus suffered all that He did through obedience, what is the hope of the disobedient? God’s grace answers the question, but for how long? Could Jesus be more hurt? Yes! Could we care any less? I don’t think so! It seems we care the least even today as we continue to reject Him individually and collectively, in our homes and throughout the land. Yet He continues to show mercy and share in our suffering. He still cares.

However, time is on His side, not ours. In his poem called ‘Retribution’ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow writes, ‘Though the mills of God grind slowly; Yet they grind exceeding small; Though with patience he stands waiting, With exactness grinds he all.’ There’ll come a time when Jesus will not suffer with us anymore.

Scripture says, ‘The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.’ [2 Pet. 3:9,10] All scripture was taken from the NIV.

John F. Banzhaf III

Botched Arizona Execution May Halt Lethal Injections – Lead to Pills

John F. Banzhaf III

John F. Banzhaf III

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Another apparent botched execution, this time in Arizona, in which inmate Joseph Wood reportedly snorted and struggled to breathe for nearly two hours – and in which a federal judge has ordered physical evidence from the body to be preserved, presumably for some future legal proceeding – may halt legal injections for an indefinite period.

This, only the most recent in a string of apparent botched lethal-injection executions, may finally push authorities to consider switching to lethal barbiturate pills, of the type used in “Death With Dignity” states and procedures, says public interest law professor John Banzhaf.

Virtually all of the problems associated with using drugs to execute convicted murderers occur because the drugs are being injected. These many problems include finding a suitable vein, positioning the needle, making sure the catheter is properly located, being sure it doesn’t come out, using a syringe, problems with tubing which may crimp or clog, etc.

Problems also include finding people with medical training competent to start and maintain intravenous lines who are not prohibited from participating in executions by ethical and professional guidelines, locating sufficient quantities of injectable drugs now that many drug companies are trying to prevent them from being used in executions, and a federal judge who has barred the importation of most of those injectable drugs because the FDA hasn’t found them both safe and effective to kill people – an obvious contradiction for drugs used in executions, says Banzhaf.

Fortunately, there appears to be a simple, easy, and inexpensive means to avoid most all of these problems, including drug company restrictions on injectable drugs, expiration dates on injectable drugs now faced in several states, and the Arizona and other so-called “botched executions” involving injecting lethal drugs cited by death penalty opponents – putting the condemned on the pill.

Since most of the concerns of using drugs for capital punishment involve problems with injecting the drugs, an obvious alternative probably meeting constitutional muster would be for states to simply use pills rather than injections to administer drugs such as barbiturates, which are readily available and whose lethal properties are well known and very clearly established.

“Providing the condemned with barbiturate pills to cause a quick painless death does not require any trained (much less medical) personnel, and could avoid the many medical problems with injections, as well as restrictions and expiration dates on injectable drugs,” suggests Banzhaf.

Barbiturate pills are approved for certain medical uses, and are even covered by Medicare Part D.   So the common practice of prescribing drugs for “off-label use” – using a drug approved for one purpose to do something else – would seemingly permit states to use barbiturate pills in executions, says Banzhaf.

Oregon’s death with dignity program helps terminally ill patients end their lives simply and painlessly by providing prescriptions for Seconal (a barbiturate) pills which the patient takes himself.

“If this method is appropriate and permissible for totally innocent elderly persons simply seeking death with dignity, it should be good enough for condemned murderers,” Banzhaf argues.

If the prisoner refuses to take the pills, or only pretends to swallow them, he can hardly complain later about unconstitutional “cruel and unusual punishment” if the state thereafter has no choice but to use lethal injections with all the risks involved.   To paraphrase an old legal saying, he had the key to his own freedom from pain, says Banzhaf.

Since only a few grams of certain barbiturates are necessary to cause death, and pills may be much harder for drug companies to restrict than liquid injectable drugs, the amount necessary to cause a quick and painless death might be administered in several easy-to-swallow pills.

Concerns that the convict would fill his stomach with food to slow the absorption of the ingested drug aren’t valid because condemned prisoners are usually kept under constant watch at least 24 hours before the time of execution. Also, any such ploy would likewise make the condemned himself responsible for any pain he might suffer if a subsequent drug-injection execution became necessary.

Likewise, since oral administration takes somewhat longer for the drugs to reach the system than with injections, this method of capital punishment is much less likely to trigger the sudden reactions lethal injections have sometimes been said to cause – perhaps also Wednesday in Arizona.

For example, in another recent execution in Arizona, a 63-year-old convicted killer reportedly shook for several seconds upon receiving a lethal injection of pentobarbital.

In another execution in Ohio, the condemned man loudly gasped for air several times during his execution, and took an unexpectedly long 25 minutes to finally die. Lethal-injection executions were actually halted in Oklahoma and Ohio after problems apparently occurred.

Using well-known, more easily available pills rather than injections for executions might overcome any constitutional objections, avoid the major problems with lethal injections highlighted by death penalty opponents, eliminate the need for medically trained personnel (who often refuse on ethical and/or professional grounds) to participate in executions, and have many other advantages, suggests Banzhaf, who has not taken a public position on capital punishment.


Professor of Public Interest Law
George Washington University Law School,
FAMRI Dr. William Cahan Distinguished Professor,
Fellow, World Technology Network,
Founder, Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)

2000 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20052, USA @profbanzhaf

George McKenna

Betty Pleasant: The Assassination of George McKenna

George McKenna - target of smear campaign

George McKenna – target of smear campaign

Another smear on Los Angeles politics within the LA Unified School District – the following article (released 7/22/14) is re-printed in its entirety by permission of CityWatch news editor:

The Assassination of George McKenna  - by Betty Pleasant

VOICES-THIS IS IT! — For the past seven months, the people of Los Angeles County have been engaged in a great war against the politicians we elected to represent us. For the most part, our battles have been pity-pat encounters to make our local politicians respond to our needs — rather than to their own obsessions to reign over us as little kings doing everything they can to create and/or perpetuate rich dynasties for themselves, their kin and their sycophants.

Well, nuclear war was declared this week when residents of LAUSD’s District 1 received two sets of campaign mailings in support of the election of Alex Johnson, King Mark Ridley-Thomas’ chosen minion, to the district’s seat on the Board of Education. These mailings are the worst pieces of campaign literature I’ve ever seen in my lengthy career. They are full of boldface lies about the people’s candidate, George McKenna (photo), and constitute the nastiest smear campaign money can buy. I did not believe King Mark could stoop that low.

Sentinel publisher Danny Bakewell and I have not agreed on a single thing in almost 50 years — until now. We both wholeheartedly support the election of McKenna — who last week received the overwhelming endorsement of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, and today was endorsed by LAUSD board member Monica Ratliff, who, like everyone else, maintains that McKenna’s “years of experience as a dedicated and successful teacher, principal and administrator will continue to serve the students and parents of District 1 well.”

It’s time to fight nuclear bombs with nuclear bombs. The only people who support Johnson are preachers who tow King Mark’s line because they have charter school and preschool contracts with LA County which they believe would be jeopardized if they didn’t back Johnson. They told me that and told others in the community as well. It’s now common knowledge, particularly in view of what reportedly happened in one of our largest black churches a couple of Sundays ago when the pastor refused to interrupt his service to allow Johnson and King Mark to speak to his congregation. The preachers are getting bold, as they come to realize that the election of the truly qualified candidate, McKenna, would set them free.

The first batch of smear literature against McKenna sported the disclaimer that it was not sent by the candidate or his campaign committee. It did state, however, that it was sent by the African American Voter Registration, Education, Participation Project (AAVREP), which, as we all know, is King Mark’s pet organization. He founded it and he is, therefore, responsible for viciously maligning McKenna’s stellar career.

The offending document lists as supporters, King Mark, Rep. Diane Watson (ret.), Supervisor Yvonne Brathwaite Burke (ret.), Congresswoman Janice Hahn, L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson and SEIU #99, Education Workers United. Now, it really upsets me when people I like do something I hate.

So I called them for an explanation. I called Hahn in Washington D.C. and Watson at her house and both women were appalled that their names appeared on such a raunchy piece of campaign literature.

“You know I’ve never participated in anything like that!” Watson said. “Johnson came to my house and presented himself well and asked for my support if he ran for the school board,” Watson explained.

“This was early when the election was finally agreed upon and I wanted McKenna in the seat, but he said he did not want to run for it. So I agreed to support Johnson, not realizing that McKenna would change his mind,” Watson said.

“Now that he’s in the race, I definitely support McKenna and I do not like having my name on campaign pieces that attack him. I’m going to get to the bottom of this,” Watson said.

Like Watson, Rep. Hahn said she made an early commitment to support Johnson when he took her to lunch, where he made a decent impression on her. “Politics can get really dirty sometimes and this looks like one of those times,” Hahn said. “I must call over there,” she added.

The other supporters named are obvious, as Burke’s support of Johnson is quid pro quo for King Mark’s support of her daughter for the Assembly, and Wesson’s support may have something to do with the rumors that Wesson has been anointed to replace King Mark on the Board of Supervisors when he terms out. We will speak of this, and related matters, some more.

(Betty Pleasant writes Soulvine for the WAVE newspapers … except for this column which they refused to print. She is a longtime urban and South LA voice.)

- cw

lynn manning & ron brewington

Poet/Playwright/Actor Lynn Manning on ActorsE Chat with Ron Brewington

Lynn Manning and Ron Brewington

Lynn Manning (left) and Ron Brewington

On July 17 poet, playwright and actor Lynn Manning was interviewed on ActorsE Chat by host Ron Brewington.

It’s a very interesting and insightful interview as Manning tells the story of how, in 1978 at age 23, he was shot while hanging out at his favorite local Hollywood bar by someone who disliked him for reasons he never knew. He was blinded as a result. The person who shot him has never been brought to justice.

Manning views his blindness not as a handicap, but rather a turning point. He admits that the worst possible thing that can happen is to lose your sight, but his inner-strength has taken him through doors he otherwise would not have entered. He says he had to learn patience, how to plan ahead, and how to trust people. He’s learned to use his other senses better after being freed from what he calls ‘lookism.’ In the dialog in his one-man show he says, ‘In the process of learning to use those other tools [senses] I recognize what a distraction sight is…we are very visual creatures…we miss so much…we don’t hear, we don’t smell, we don’t feel the world around us.’

Watch the interview as Manning tells how after losing his sight, he re-directed his energy and focus to writing. He describes his very interesting technique for memorizing his work.

Lynn Manning and Ron Brewington

You’ll be thrilled to hear Manning recite one of his poems titled ‘Where Does It Hurt?’ which is included (in part) in his autobiographical solo show called ‘Weights.’

Listen to the story of how, in 1990, Manning became the World Champion of Blind Judo.

Manning’s new play, ‘Hollywood in the ‘Hood’ opens this weekend July 26, and 27 at 11AM. It’s a literal ‘tour play’ whereby the audience is tour-guided to four different locations where the scenes are played out in the city of Watts, California. Tickets are available online. For further information please visit

Watch entire interview below:

ActorsE Chat is a live chat show on Actors Entertainment, a channel on the Actors Podcast Network, a Pepper Jay Productions LLC, with PR-Marketing-Sales by Live Video Inc.

The program is rated “PG” and is an informational program about the guest. It is not a gossip show – no dishing.

ActorsE Chat (Actors Entertainment on IMDb) is now in its 6th season, and has had over 1,200 guests and almost 6 million viewers. The one-hour program is seen live Monday through Friday worldwide on the internet.