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FROM THIS EPISODE

In the wake of Tuesday’s Germanwings Airbus crash, we look at safety rules and regulations for pilots in the cockpit. Then, a two-part look at the U.S. Supreme Court. First, its ruling today on the case of a worker who sued UPS for not accommodating her pregnancy. Then, a look at the court’s lack of diversity and how it might be problematic. Next, we hear from a man who set out to improve email. Why doesn’t it work better? And finally, in our weekly web roundup, Twitter has a new streaming video service.

Banner Image Credit: Aero Icarus

Producers:
Jolie Myers
Matt Holzman
Anna Scott
Christian Bordal

Air Safety and Cockpit Protocol 9 MIN, 15 SEC

During a press conference earlier today, French officials said that Tuesday’s crash of the Germanwing Airbus was deliberately caused by the plane’s co-pilot, a 28-year-old German man named Andreas Lubitz. According to voice recordings, in the minutes before the plane slammed into the Alps, Lubitz locked the captain out of the cockpit. Some of the many questions people are asking today include how something like this could technically happen and what the security protocols are for cockpits. We look at what rules are in place and how they might change in the wake of this accident.

Guests:
Seth Kaplan, Airline Weekly

SCOTUS Rules on Pregnant Woman’s Workplace Case 6 MIN, 11 SEC

The U.S. Supreme Court decided yesterday in favor of a pregnant woman who sued her employer for putting her on unpaid leave. Peggy Young asked UPS if they would accommodate her because she couldn’t lift heavy boxes, and they said no. Her manager reportedly told her that "she was too much of a liability" to work as a driver or be given another job temporarily. The Supreme Court's 6-3 decision in her favor doesn’t rule on the merits of Young’s case, but ensures that she gets to argue her claim before a lower court. What could the ruling mean for Young and future cases?

Guests:
Lisa McElroy, Drexel University (@ProfLisaMcElroy)

The Supreme Court’s Diversity Problem 8 MIN, 53 SEC

People have often complained that the country’s Supreme Court isn’t diverse enough: not enough women and not enough minorities. Still, it has improved. There are three women on the court now, one of them Hispanic. And there’s one African-American justice. Yet, while the court isn’t all white men anymore, there are other kinds of diversity that aren’t as obvious as skin color. For example, all the current justices went to Harvard or Yale law schools, and all but one were judges before being appointed. Is this a problem?

Guests:
Stephen Vladeck, American University (@steve_vladeck)

The Pain and Promise of Email 12 MIN, 43 SEC

What happens almost two hundred billion times a day across this planet of ours? Probably not what you’re thinking. We’re talking about emails getting sent. There’s all that emailing going on, but does anyone even like it? All we seem to do is complain how much email clogs our inbox and how we can’t find old emails. We’re bombarded with it 24-7. Madeleine spoke earlier this week with one man who set out to design a better way to email.

Guests:
Chris Kirk, Slate (@chrkirk)

Web Roundup: Twitter Gets Into the Streaming Video Game 9 MIN, 31 SEC

Twitter releases its very own streaming video app today. It’s called Periscope, and it allows you to run a live stream straight from your phone and into the eyeballs of all your fans/friends via Twitter. We discuss that and more in this week’s installment of our weekly web roundup.

Guests:
Xeni Jardin, BoingBoing.net (@xeni)

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