fbpx
Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Anthony Beilenson, Maverick State Legislator, Congressman, 84

Enjoying this article?

You'll love our roundtable.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Anthony C. Beilenson, a state legislator and 10-term congressman who fought for abortion rights, environmental protection and gun control, died March 5 in Los Angeles. He was 84.

Beilenson had been recovering from a heart attack last month and died at his home in Westwood, according to his son, Adam, the Los Angeles Times reported.

- Advertisement -

In 20 years of representing congressional districts that included the San Fernando Valley, Thousand Oaks and Agoura Hills, Beilenson, a Democrat, championed affordable health care, environmental safeguards such as the Clean Air Act, and cuts to defense spending, the L.A. Times reported. He also persuaded fellow California legislators and then-Gov. Ronald Reagan 50 years ago to approve what was then one of the nation’s most permissive abortion rights bills, The New York Times wrote.

Anthony Charles Beilenson was born Oct. 26, 1932, in New Rochelle, N.Y. His parents owned a small book publishing company, and he grew up in an affluent suburb outside New York City. After graduating from Phillips Academy in Andover, Md., he attended Harvard University, where he earned a degree in American government. After earning a law degree from Harvard in 1957, he moved to Southern California to work in his cousin’s entertainment law firm.

He served in the State Assembly from 1963 to 1966 and the State Senate from 1967 to 1976. He was credited with writing more than 200 state laws, including major consumer and environmental legislation, The Washington Post wrote.

He attributed his ambition to enter politics to a lecture at Harvard, where then-Rep. Helen Gahagan Douglas (D-Calif.) spoke about the plight of migrant farm workers.

“You are in a position to help a lot of people when you are in public office,” he said.

- Advertisement -

In 1976, after Democratic Rep. Thomas Rees announced his retirement and said “the Watergate mess” had cast a pall over public service, Beilenson joined the race to succeed him, the L.A. Times reported.

Once in Congress, Beilenson proved fiercely independent. For instance, he opposed the creation of a federal Department of Education; education, he argued, was a state responsibility, The New York Times reported. He was against making the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday a national holiday; he said federal government employees already had enough days off. He opposed officially celebrating Grandparents’ Day; it was a concession to the greeting card industry, he said.

He also supported the death penalty for drug lords and limits on legal immigration (to reduce competition with citizens for jobs), The New York Times wrote.

Former county Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, who also served on the L.A. City Council, praised Beilenson in the L.A. Times obituary for staying focused on progressive priorities after redistricting altered the legislative map and removed a chunk of reliably liberal Westside constituents. Beilenson’s new district was more evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans and had more conservative enclaves such as Thousand Oaks, the Times said.

“It took a lot of courage,” Yaroslavsky said. “It’s easy to have courage when you represent the Westside as a progressive. It’s another thing when part of your district is in eastern Ventura County.”

- Advertisement -

The Times also noted that Beilenson helped secure federal funding that created Lake Balboa Park, which now bears his name, and the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Refuge.

Besides his son Adam, Beilenson is survived by his wife, the former Dolores Martin; daughter Dayna; son Peter; nine grandchildren; sister Elizabeth Beilenson Schildkraut; and brother Roger.

- Advertisement -

Enjoyed this article?

You'll love our email updates.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact
- Advertisement -

Popular Articles

Bernie Sanders Suspends His Presidential Campaign

Sanders ran an aggressive Jewish campaign this time, blasting videos with Jewish messages over social media.

ShemeshFarms: A Story About Resilience

This article was written by Michelle Cait https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CLBTBgkFtcw&t=57s   In times of adversity and the unknown we look for inspiration all around us in hope of harnessing...

New York City Has Become A Strange, Social-Distance Ghost Town

Walking on Sunday afternoon in Central Park, we encountered a small village of white tents under construction in a space called the East Meadow...

Funkadelic, Passover, Shabbat, COVID-19 and Me

What does it mean to be a slave? There is a redundancy of time and tasks; each day looks like the previous one and...

Lithuania’s Hidden Holocaust and the Writers Who Revealed It

“Our People: Discovering Lithuania’s Hidden Holocaust” is a powerful, poignant and painful exploration of the murder by bullets of Lithuanian Jews by Lithuanian nationalists...

The Guardian: Trump Is a Nazi and Jews Are His Enablers

To compare Trump — the father of a Jewish daughter and grandfather to three Jewish grandchildren — to Lindbergh/Hitler is an affront to the memory of 1.5 million Jewish children murdered by the Nazis.

Medical Device Company’s Israel Division to Provide Ventilator Blueprints for Free

The Israel division of the medical device company Medtronic will provide the blueprints for its ventilators for free to companies seeking to manufacture them. Yaron...

Israeli Babysitter Maven Comes to Corona Rescue [VIDEO]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RErKhGx8y08&feature=emb_title I know it sounds cliché already, but it’s true that some good things are coming out of the Corona crisis. For one, I’ve gotten...

Israel’s Health Minister Has COVID-19 and Is Under Fire for Allegedly Defying His Own Department’s Orders

Litzman’s critics say he downplayed the situation initially and was slow to institute, and then enforce, social distancing measures in the haredi community.

First Plane Bringing Vital Medical Supplies to Israel from China Touches Down

El Al flights will land at a rate of two per day until all 20 tons of medical equipment, including 900,000 surgical masks, 500,00 protective suits and several ventilators, have been delivered.

Uber Eats Delivers Passover Food to NYC Holocaust Survivors

Holocaust survivors are staying home amid fears of contracting COVID-19.

Bill Gould on Faith No More’s Jewish Roots and New ‘Talking Book II’ Album

As a co-founder of legendary band Faith No More, Bill Gould first found international success when the 1987 single "We Care A Lot" took...

Haredim Are Being Scapegoated for Coronavirus in Israel

Well done, Israeli media. After the deluge of negative headlines over the last two weeks, when COVID-19 is finally beaten back, it will be the...

We Must Maintain Our Humanity – Not Wealth – During COVID-19

Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl wrote, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose...

Culture

Idina Menzel, Ben Platt, Rabbis David Wolpe, Sharon Brous and More Invite You to a Virtual Seder

It would have been enough to vicariously see our favorite Broadway and Hollywood stars celebrating Passover on social media, but now fans will get...

Recipes for Mimouna, The Moroccan Celebration of Spring

The mimouna table overflows with sweet treats like orange jam, eggplant jam, marzipan, meringues and, of course, the famous moufleta, crepes served with butter and honey.

Rabbi Donin’s Trilogy Speaks Volumes About Jewish Life

Donin himself conceived of his work as “a practical handbook on how to live a Jewish life,” but he also acknowledges that the overarching goal of the three books in the series is “to answer the constant query, ‘Why?’

Gloves, Masks, Curbsides: Passover Shopping During a Pandemic

Passover shopping is hectic enough in normal times.

Jews Are Celebrating Passover – Hospitalized with COVID-19, Or Not

Even with abnormal hospital restrictions, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center is ensuring Jews can still have a seder.

Trending
Trending

BDS Founder Says It’s OK to Use Israeli Coronavirus Vaccine

Omar Barghouti, the founder of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement, said in an April 5 Facebook livestream that it’s perfectly fine for...

Since you can’t attend a poetry reading, a group of authors have come together to present “And The People Stayed Home” by Kitty O’Meara.

Since you can't attend a poetry reading, a group of authors have come together to present "And The People Stayed Home" by Kitty O'Meara.

Hamas Leader Threatens to ‘Stop the Breathing of 6 Million Israelis’ If Gaza Doesn’t Get Ventilators

Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar threatened to kill millions of Israelis if the Gaza Strip doesn’t receive ventilators to combat the coronavirus. The Times of Israel...

Pandemic Times Episode 15: Rabbi Lori Shapiro on finding light in darkness

New David Suissa Podcast Every Morning at 11am. Founder of Open Temple in Venice Beach, Rabbi Lori Shapiro shares words of wisdom on navigating this...

Empire Kosher Closes Chicken Processing Plant for 2 Weeks After Employees Test Positive for the Coronavirus

(JTA) — Empire Kosher closed its processing plant in Pennsylvania after two employees tested positive for the coronavirus. But chickens are expected to be available...

Hollywood

Larry David Says Bernie Sanders Should Drop Out of Presidential Race

Larry David, the Bernie Sanders doppelganger who often portrays the presidential candidate in skits on “Saturday Night Live,” says the senator from Vermont should...

‘On the Map’ Free Online Screening and Q&A This Sunday

The documentary “On the Map” tells the story of the underdog Israeli basketball team’s triumphant victory at the European championship in 1977. Set against...

‘Frozen’ at the Pantages: It Doesn’t Have to Be Jewish

Let’s face it, there’s nothing particularly Jewish about the Disney musical “Frozen.” Unless you count Idina Menzel and Josh Gad, both of whom appeared...
- Advertisement -

Podcasts

Pandemic Times Episode 18: Can family stories nourish us during pandemic times?

New David Suissa Podcast Every Morning at 11am. As we prepare to tell the Passover story, a refection on the value of our own family...

Let My Bagels Go

The only bagel-related thing you should be consuming this Passover is...new and classic episodes of The Bagel Report! Erin and Esther reflect on the meaning of...

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

x