Tuesday, March 29, 2011

400-408 – Brooks Douglass share the true story behind the movie Heaven's Rain (  There'll be a free public screening Wednesday night, April 13th, at the Reagan Library in the Air Force One Pavilion at 7pm.  But, they're expecting a big crowd, so RSVP at, or by calling 805-522-2977.  Afterwards, Greg Totten, Ventura County DA, will interview Brooks and lead the Q&A. 

• NBC Dateline Video (1/7/2011) The Haunting (The Story Behind Heaven's Rain).  Can you imagine forgiving the man who shot you, raped and shot your 12-year old sister, and murdered your parents?

The Making of Heavens Rain

Brooks Douglass and his sister, Leslie, grew up in a home filled with love, compassion, and faith. Their father, Richard, was a leader in the Baptist Church. Their mother, Marilyn, was a woman of faith and talent, turning down a scholarship to the renowned Juilliard School to join Richard in the Brazilian mission field.

On their return, Brooks age 16 and Leslie 12, Richard became pastor of a large church in Oklahoma City. On Oct. 15, 1979, Brooks opened the door of their modest family home to what he believed was a man in need. The man, a drugged-up drifter named Glen Ake, was joined by his partner, Steven Hatch. They pulled out guns, tied up the Douglasses, repeatedly assaulted Leslie, shot all four family members, and left them for dead.

Richard and Marilyn died at the scene. Brooks and Leslie recovered from their wounds, but their ordeal had just begun.

Ake and Hatch were caught, tried, and, in 1980, sentenced to death. For the next 16 years, however, the suffering rolled on as a legal system created to protect the rights of the accused dragged the Douglass children time after time to testify in court and relive that night.

The story became national news. But it was continuing bad news for Brooks and Leslie, forced to sell their family home and possessions to pay medical bills. Brooks struggled through high school and college, repeatedly failing out, drinking heavily, and given to bouts of rage. Leslie, once a beauty queen with a beautiful voice, fought to put her life together as she dealt with recurring nightmares and struggled in relationships.

In a 1986 retrial, Ake was convicted again but received life in prison instead death. Brooks Douglass became convicted as well, convicted that the system must no longer "step over the body of a victim to read the criminal his rights."

Brooks earned his law degree, and, at age 27, became the youngest state senator in Oklahoma history where he passed a series of victims' rights bill.

In 1995, a second turning point came. On a legislative tour of a state prison, Brooks saw Ake–requested a chance to talk to the man who had destroyed his family. HEAVEN'S RAIN shares the dramatic result of that meeting.

After three senate terms, Brooks changed directions, pursuing long-held creative desires. With Hollywood writer and director Paul Brown, Brooks co-wrote the HEAVEN'S RAIN script and produced and starred in the film.

While never shying from the hard facts, HEAVEN'S RAIN ultimately is a tribute to the love and faith of Brooks' parents. The Sunday before the tragedy, in fact, Richard Douglass preached on forgiveness. In a dramatization of that moment in the film, Brooks himself, playing his father, quotes the book of Matthew: "He sends the rain on the just and the unjust," and William Shakespeare: "The qualify of mercy is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven."

413-423 – Brooks Douglass

428-437 – Brooks Douglass

443-452 – Brooks Douglass.  After the movie, Greg Totten, Ventura County DA, will interview Brooks and lead the Q&A.

458-508 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?  Is it true that the armor we sometimes wear to protect ourselves from pain often becomes a suffocating diver's suit?  Is it true you have to forgive those who have hurt you in order for you to fully live?  Were you drinking poison in the hopes it would eventually kill the person who wronged you?  Like the monkey, have you been holding on to that orange, that anger, and have been trapped yourself?  When did you let go of the orange?

512-523 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?

528-539 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?

544-554 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?

558-608 – Edward Amey, Executive Director of the Concordia K-12 Schools here in LA and the San Fernando Valley (, 888.770.2752), has just united several K-12 Lutheran schools to form Concordia Schools, and a sort-of Lutheran School District. is currently in the process of forming a Christian school district, and has just begun building a beautiful new campus in the Valley.  And, if someone would like a gym or a new school building named after an individual, call Edward :).  If you call now to begin the registration process for your child to enroll in Concordia Schools, Edward will waive the $300 registration fee…exclusively to the KKLA family.

612-623 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?

628-639 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?  If you need help letting go, call La Vie at 800-801-5242.

644-656 – Calls – Your story of forgiveness?

• LAT (3/29/2011) Hospital executives occupy top tier of California's public workers.  Controller's latest report shows CEOs of hospital districts among the highest-paid public employees. Healthcare-industry experts say those salaries reflect the rigors of the job and pale in comparison to the private sector.

• Controller John Chiang, Local Government Compensation Reports.  See the salaries of your city officials, i.e., your tax dollars at work.

• Fox News (3/28/2011) 11-Year-Old Girl Gang Raped in California Park Bathroom.

• ABC News (3/29/2011) Cloud Girlfriend: Start-Up Offers Fake Relationships for Facebookers.

• Breitbart (3/29/2011) Japan on 'maximum alert' over nuclear plant.

Obama Addresses Nation on Libya

Transcript (Fox News). Video (ABC News). 

From John McCain:  "I welcome the President's clarity that the U.S. goal is for Qaddafi to leave power.  But an equal amount of clarity is still required on how we will accomplish that goal" (CBS News).  

Obama didn't fare well in the fact check department (AP).   

From Victor Davis Hanson:  President Obama just gave a weird speech. Part George W. Bush, part trademark Obama — filled with his characteristic split-the-difference, straw-man ("some say, others say"), false-choice tropes.  Later:  Somehow, I don't think Qaddafi will be impressed enough to step down; the European allies will be somewhat confused over the degree of future American support; the rebels will wonder whether they should take Tripoli or should settle for a zone of sanctuary; critics won't know whether Obama will ever consult the Congress;  we still don't know why Qaddafi was worse than an Assad or Ahmadinejad — or who or what the rebels are and what the U.S. role will be to ensure something better than Qaddafi (NRO). 

William Kristol seemed to like the speech (Weekly Standard). 

Video of Palin's response (RCP). 

Tim Pawlenty told Hugh Hewitt he "supported the no-fly zone in early March when the rebels had Gaddafi on the ropes, when he was openly talking about leaving voluntarily, when they had him in a position to be able to manifest an opportunity to take over the country themselves without much involvement or intervention. And he didn't act decisively then, unfortunately. So now we have what we have, which is a three or four week delay from that, and a more challenging situation."  Pawlenty also gave tough talk on Syria, saying Obama's claim that the country is a partner for peace in the Middle East is "a complete crock, and it shows the naiveté of the Obama administration" (Townhall). 

From the Telegraph:  Under Bush, the United States was feared by her enemies, respected by her allies, and decisive in the face of a series of crises. His successor however seems all too often paralyzed when it comes to US leadership, and unable to act without a permission slip from the United Nations or the Arab League. Liberals should just admit it – George W. Bush led the world rather than followed it. In contrast, the professorial President Obama runs US foreign policy like a focus group, unable to act without the stamp of approval of other international actors, and projecting weakness in its wake (Telegraph). 

The Washington Times looks at the "mass of contradictions that makes this conflict a hard sell" for Obama (Washington Times). 

Obama's deputy national security adviser explained "We don't make decisions about questions like intervention based on consistency or precedent" (The Hill). 

There's talk Qaddafi's inner circle is cracking (Fox News). 

Meanwhile:  Syrian troops opened fire on a crowd of up to 4,000 protesters in the southern city of Daraa, The Associated Press reported, citing eyewitnesses. At least 61 civilians have been killed since rallies began March 18, said Human Rights Watch, after security forces opened fire on demonstrators in at least six locations around the nation (The Street).