Saturday died Larry King, the suspenders-sporting everyman whose televised interviews for half a century helped define American conversation with world leaders, movie stars, and ordinary Joes. He was eighty-seven.
King died in Los Angeles at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, his production company, Ora Media, tweeted. There was no cause of death, but a spokesman said Jan. 4 that King had COVID-19, had obtained supplementary oxygen, and had been taken out of intensive care. King’s death was also confirmed by his son, Chance Armstrong, CNN reported.
A long-time nationally syndicated radio host, he was a nightly regular on CNN from 1985 to 2010, winning numerous honours, including two Peabody awards.
King wasn’t just an enduring on-air personality with his celebrity interviews, political debates and topical discussions. Whether interviewing the attack survivor identified as the Central Park jogger or the billionaire industrialist Ross Perot, who in 1992 shocked the presidential contest by announcing his candidacy on King’s show, he also set himself apart with the interest he carried to every interview.
“Larry King Live” was based in Washington in its early years, which gave the show an air of gravitas. The King, likewise. He was the plain-spoken go-between that Beltway bigwigs could reach their audience through, and they did, winning the reputation of the show as a place where stuff happened, where news was made.
An approximate 50,000 on-air interviews were conducted by King. In 1995, with PLO President Yasser Arafat, King Hussein of Jordan and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, he chaired a Middle East peace conference. From the Dalai Lama to Elizabeth Taylor, from Mikhail Gorbachev to Barack Obama, Bill Gates to Lady Gaga, he invited everyone.
His shows were always in the thick of breaking celebrity news, especially after he moved to Los Angeles, including Paris Hilton talking about her stint in prison in 2007 and Michael Jackson’s friends and family members talking about his death in 2009.
King bragged about never over-preparing for an interview. His non-confrontational style relaxed his visitors and helped him connect to his audience easily.
“I don’t pretend to know everything,” he said in an interview with the Associated Press in 1995. Not,’ What about Cuba or Geneva?’ “I am wondering, ‘Mr. What don’t you like about this job, President? Or “What is the greatest mistake you have made?” ′ That’s fascinating.”
At a time when CNN was considered politically neutral as the lone player in cable news, and King was the essence of his middle-of-the-road stance, his show would be sought out by political figures and people at the centre of controversies.
And he was renowned for having visitors that were notoriously elusive. In what would be the singer’s last major TV appearance, Frank Sinatra, who rarely gave interviews and often lashed out at reporters, talked to King in 1988. Sinatra was the King’s old friend and behaved accordingly.
Why are you here? Why here? “Asks the King. Sinatra replies, “Because you asked me to come and I haven’t seen you in a long time to start with, I thought we should get together and chat, just talk a lot of stuff.”
King had never met Marlon Brando, who, when the acting giant asked to appear on King’s show in 1994, was even tougher to get and tougher to interview. So famously, the two hit it off that they ended their 90-minute talk with a song and an on-the-mouth kiss, a sight that in subsequent weeks was all over the papers.
King suddenly revealed he was retiring from his show after a gala week celebrating his 25th anniversary in June 2010, telling viewers, “It’s time to hang up my nightly suspenders.” Named in the time slot as his successor: Piers Morgan, British journalist and TV personality.
By King’s departure in December, speculation had emerged that he had been waiting too long for those suspenders to hang up. “He placed third in his time slot with less than half the nightly audience in his peak year, 1998, when “Larry King Live” attracted 1.64 million viewers, once the pioneer in cable TV news.
By then, his broad-eyed, regular-guy approach to interviewing seemed dated in an age of other hosts’ edgy, pushy or loaded questioning.
Occasional flubs, meanwhile, made him appear out of touch, or worse. A prime example from 2007 saw King asking Jerry Seinfeld whether his sitcom had voluntarily quit or his network, NBC, had cancelled him.
“I was the No. 1 TV show, Larry,” Seinfeld answered with a flabbergasted expression. “You know who I am, don’t you? ”
“Larry King always loved him and will miss him,” Seinfeld tweeted on Saturday. It was just me having fun with his little mistake, the ‘cancelled’ bit. Nothing else anymore. Or less so.
Always a workaholic, within a couple of months of carrying out his nightly duties, King will be back doing specials for CNN.
When the platform emerged, he discovered a new kind of popularity as a plain-spoken natural on Twitter, winning over more than 2 million fans who simultaneously ridiculed and admired him for his esoteric style.
“I was never in a canoe at all. #Itsmy2cents, he said in 2015, in a typical tweet.
His Twitter account was basically a reboot of a column he wrote for two decades, full of one-off, disjointed opinions, on USA Today. When he played King on “Saturday Night Live,” with deadpan lines like, “The more I think about it, the more I appreciate the equator,” Norm Macdonald delivered a parody version of the column.
King was regularly parodied, often by old-age jokes from hosts like David Letterman and Conan O’Brien on late-night talk shows, often posing with the latter to get in on the roasting himself.
The King came honestly through his voracious yet no-frills manner.
He was born in 1933 to Lawrence Harvey Zeiger, the son of Eastern European Jewish immigrants who owned a bar and grill in Brooklyn. But he faced a troubled, often destitute youth after the death of his father when Larry was a child.
A fan of radio stars like Arthur Godfrey and comedians like Bob & Ray, King set his sights on a broadcasting career when he reached adulthood. He moved south in 1957 with word that Miami was a good place to break in, and landed a job sweeping floors at a tiny AM station. King was put on the air when a deejay suddenly left, and was handed his new surname by the station manager, who felt Zeiger was “too Jewish.”
He relocated to a bigger station a year later, where his duties were extended from the regular patter to act as host of a daily interview show broadcasting from a local restaurant. He soon proved to be equally adept at speaking to the waitresses and the celebrities who started to drop by.
King had gone to a bigger Miami station by the early 1960s, scoring a newspaper column and becoming himself a local celebrity.
At the same time, he became a victim of living high.
He wrote in his autobiography, “It was important for me to come across as a “big guy,” which meant “I made a lot of money and spread it profusely around.
He had debts and his first broken relationships accrued (he was married eight times to seven women). He gambled, wildly lent and refused to pay his taxes. In a plan to bankroll an investigation into the assassination of President John Kennedy, he was also involved with a shady financier. But when King skimmed some of the money to pay his unpaid taxes, he was sued in 1971 by his partner for grand larceny. The charges were dismissed, but the prestige of the King seemed ruined.
King lost his radio show and tried to find employment for many years. By 1975, however, the controversy had largely blown over and he was offered another chance by a Miami station. King was signed to host the first national call-in show on radio in 1978, regaining his local fame.
“The Larry King Show” was ultimately heard on more than 300 stations, originating from Washington on the Mutual network, and made King a national phenomenon.
CNN creator Ted Turner gave King a spot on his young network a few years later. On June 1, 1985, “Larry King Live” premiered and became CNN’s top-rated show. Ultimately, King’s starting salary of $100,000 a year rose to more than $7 million.
In 1987, a three-pack-a-day cigarette habit led to a heart attack, but he was not slowed down by King’s quintuple-bypass surgery.
Meanwhile, in his words, “I’m not good at marriage, but I am a great boyfriend,” he proceeded to prove that.
He was just 18 when, in 1952, he married his high school girlfriend, Freda Miller. The wedding lasted for less than a year. He married Annette Kay, Alene Akins (twice), Mickey Sutfin, Sharon Lepore and Julie Alexander in the decades that followed.
He married Shawn Southwick in 1997, a country singer and actress who was 26 years his junior. In 2010, they would apply for divorce, rescind the filing, and file again in 2019 for divorce.
The couple had two sons — King’s fourth and fifth kids, Chance, born in 1999, and Cannon Edward, born in 2000. King lost his two older sons, Andy King and Chaia King, in 2020, who died within weeks of each other from unrelated health problems.
In recent decades, he has had numerous other medical complications, including further heart attacks and type 2 diabetes and lung cancer diagnosis.
He continued to work in his late 80s despite his losses, taking on internet talk shows and infomercials as his CNN appearances became smaller.
“Work,” King said one time. “It’s the simplest thing I can do.”
“Funeral arrangements and a memorial service will later be announced, according to the tweet from Ora Media, in coordination with the King family, “who are calling for their privacy at this time.
Denzel Washington recently revealed what God has been telling him to do every time he prays.
The Academy Award-winning actor was among the speakers at a Christian men’s conference hosted by First Baptist Orlando in Florida on Saturday, The Cristian Post reports.
“At 66, getting ready to be 67, having just buried my mother, I made a promise to her and to God, not just to do good the right way, but to honor my mother and my father by the way I live my life, the rest of my days on this Earth. I’m here to serve, to help, to provide,” Washington shared at “The Better Man Event.”
“In every prayer, all I hear is: ‘Feed my sheep.’ That’s what God wants me to do,” the actor added.
“What’s that mean? What I found out in the last couple of years is there are all kinds of sheep. So that’s why I talk to experienced shepherds to help guide me.
“The world has changed. What is our role as a man? The John Wayne formula is not quite a fit right now. But strength, leadership, power, authority, guidance, patience are God’s gift to us as men. We have to cherish that, not abuse it.”
Action Press/MediaPunch / BACKGRID
The “Malcolm X” star continued:
“[The Bible] says in the last days we’ll become lovers of ourselves. The number one photograph now is a selfie. So we all want to lead. We’re willing to do anything — ladies and young men — to be influential… Fame is a monster and we all have these ladders and battles, roads we have to walk in our given lives. Be you famous or whoever’s out there listening, we all have our individual challenges. It’s cliché [but] money, don’t make it better. It doesn’t. Fame just magnifies the problems and the opportunities.”
The three-time Golden Globes winner added:
“Stay on your knees. Watch me, but listen to God. I hope that the words in my mouth and the meditation of my heart are pleasing in God’s sight, but I’m human. I’m just like you. What I have will not keep me on this Earth for one more day. Share what you know, inspire who you can, seek advice. If you want to talk to one someone, talk to the one that can do something about it. Constantly develop those habits.”
Washington concluded by acknowledging that although he has money and fame, what he’s discovered is that one always needs to leave “room to learn.”
The Biden administration is seeking dishonorable discharges for 46% of troops who refuse to get the Covid-19 mRNA vaccine.
The Pentagon mandated vaccines for all U.S. service members (1.3 million) last month.
However, a reported 600,000 service members have declined to roll up their sleeves for the mRNA vaccines.
The White House issued a statement saying a proposed GOP NDAA bill preventing dishonorable discharges would “detract from readiness and limit a commander’s options for enforcing good order and discipline when a Service member fails to obey a lawful order to receive a vaccination.”
Marko Geber / DigitalVision
The statement said dishonorable discharges are necessary “To enable a uniformed force to fight with discipline, commanders must have the ability to give orders and take appropriate disciplinary measures.”
GOP Representative Mark Green of Tennessee said he was “appalled” at the Biden administration for suggesting dishonorable discharges for service members who refuse the shots.
“No American who raises their hand to serve our Nation should be punished for making a highly personal medical decision,” Green said.
Lieutenant Col Paul Douglas Hague resigned and forfeited his pension after 19 years of service because he “refuses President Biden’s ‘unethical, immoral and tyrannical’ vaccine mandate.”
“I cannot and will not contribute to the fall of this great nation and its people,” the father of seven wrote.
The House is expected to vote on the GOP’s NDAA bill, preventing dishonorable discharges, on Thursday morning.
“I was able to be still for a long time. Inspiration finally came when I remembered the little things that I love to do, the simple things that make me happy: grocery shopping, taking walks, going on bike rides, cooking.
“Those little things that I’m trying to incorporate into my lifestyle now that the outside is opening up again and we’re about to get right back into what things used to look like. I’m trying to make sure that I still keep those things in my life.”
When it comes to her own self-confidence, Rihanna said:
“I make a point to be present, I look at what’s around me, who is around me.
“And then I’m just grateful for those things; grateful for the moment. I think about how far I’ve come. And how much worse it could be — I could have missed all of this.”
However, there are still days when she doesn’t feel so confident, and she has a tip for those days.
“Pretend. Just pretend, girl. You have your days where you do and your days where you don’t, but push through, just be sure. You belong here, you’re sexy. Own your sh*t.”
Teyana Taylor is bidding farewell to her fans with a final tour.
The 30-year-old singer announced the dates for her upcoming 12-city “Last Rose Petal Tour” on Instagram Wednesday.
The Last Rose Petal Tour kicks off in San Francisco on November 7, and concludes on November 30 in Atlanta, Ga.
James Devaney/GC Images
The mom-of-two said she was “lucky” to be able to retire at a young age.
“How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard. However for every goodbye God makes the next hello closer. Come out and watch me, leave it all out on the stage… One last time… Just for you & as my last rose petal falls, I say farewell…”
Her last sentence left some fans confused. Teyana reportedly underwent a double mastectomy after discovering lumps in her breasts in Miami earlier this year.
Due to her family history of cancer she decided not to take any chances.
James Devaney/GC Images
Teyana and her husband, NBA star Iman Shumpert share two daughters named Iman Tayla and Rue.
A cleanup organizer described the third world conditions that exist at the Haitian immigrant encampment under the Del Rio international bridge.
John Rourke, who organizes cleanups around the world, appeared on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show on Wednesday.
Rourke said he was disturbed by the unsanitary conditions where thousands of Haitians live in squalor under the bridge.
He said his organization picked up thousands of pounds of garbage from under the bridge.
PAUL RATJE/AFP via Getty Images
Rourke described Haitians using sticks and branches to build makeshift lean-to shelters under trees near the bridge. The migrants were forced to move because the mounds of smelly garbage attracted flies, coyotes, roaches, and red ants.
John Moore/Getty Images
John Moore/Getty Images
“Let me tell you what I saw,” Rourke told Tucker.
“I saw people washing babies in the Rio Grande.
“I saw ladies breastfeeding babies, sleeping in dirt, 107 degrees outside, red ants everywhere, real coyotes – the ones that have four legs walking around.
“People are literally knocking down trees and setting up lean-tos and teepees and sleeping under those.”
John Moore/Getty Images
Over 15,000 Haitians made the perilous journey from South America and Mexico after messages on What’s app told them U.S. Pres. Joe Biden would treat them kindly and give them jobs.
On the last leg of the trip – crossing the Rio Grande in knee-deep water – they were met by Border Patrol agents who herded them back into the murky water.
PAUL RATJE/AFP via Getty Images
Viral photos and videos of Border Patrol agents on horseback chasing frightened Haitian people sparked outrage around the world.
Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images
After nearly a week of silence on the issue, Congresswoman Maxine Waters stepped in front of cameras on Wednesday to rail against the Biden administration.
Using strong language, Waters said “I’m pissed!”. She called out the Biden administration for “taking us back to slavery days.”
“I’m unhappy, and I’m not just unhappy with the cowboys who were running down Haitians and using their reins to whip them — I’m [unhappy] with the [Biden] administration.
“We are following the Trump policy. He is the one that does not follow the Constitution and would not allow those seeking refuge to be able to petition to get into the country.
What the HELL are we doing here?”
AFP via Getty Images
Waters addressed Pres. Joe Biden directly.
“We’re saying to the president and everybody else: you’ve got to stop this madness!”
She concluded by urging reporters to “write the story” about the horrific treatment of Black people by the current administration.
“Write the story! Tell the story about what is going on and let people know that they’re trying to take us back to slavery days!”
Project Veritas released the second video of its undercover Covid-19 vaccine investigative series on Wednesday.
Part 2 exposes a U.S. Food and Drug Administration [FDA] official calling for forced vaccinations of Black people.
According to the CDC, over 70% of Black New Yorkers are unvaccinated.
Project Veritas went undercover to record FDA economist, Taylor Lee, calling for forced vaccinations of Black people and keeping a “registry” for all unvaccinated Americans.
In the video, Lee said U.S. Government policy should be similar to Nazi Germany when it comes to forcing people to take the vaccine.
AFP via Getty Images
Lee said health officials should go door-to-door forcing vaccines on people who are hesitant or fearful.
“Census goes door-to-door if you don’t respond. So, we have the infrastructure to do it. I mean, it’ll cost a ton of money. But I think, at that point, I think there needs to be a registry of people who aren’t vaccinated. Although that’s sounding very [much like Nazi] Germany.”
He also suggested blowing vaccine-filled darts at Black people who don’t comply.
“I think that a lot of the time — so there’s also this issue of — I remember reading about how with Covid trials, they were having an issue recruiting African American people. It was because of a different medication the government tried to do that was specifically designed to kill African Americans.”