We start by talking to the managing director of the Midnight Mission on Skid Row, where celebrities and regular citizens alike will be serving up Thanksgiving meals to the homeless tomorrow. Then, a look at some new science on how addiction works, including a recent study on alcoholism from the Centers for Disease Control. Next up, the EPA is proposing new, tighter rules on ozone emissions: What does it mean for Southern California? We hear from legendary talk show host Dick Cavett about his new memoir, and, finally, in our weekly web roundup we discuss how the situation in Ferguson, Mo., is playing out in social media.
FROM THIS EPISODE
Thanksgiving is a rare day on L.A.’s Skid Row, when you can find celebrities and city officials serving up meals to the homeless. The Midnight Mission is especially popular with volunteers, and it’s preparing for a big crowd tomorrow. Madeleine catches up with one man who’s been there day in, day out longer than anyone else.
The Centers for Disease Control has released a surprising new report saying that only 10 percent of heavy drinkers actually meet the criteria for alcoholism. The study is one of many recent publications diving into the science of addiction. While all this information is shedding new light on how addiction works, it also highlights how much is still a mystery. We try to get a handle on the latest research.
Timothy Fong, UCLA Gambling Studies Program
The Environmental Protection Agency proposed new smog rules today. The stricter standards target smog-producing factories and power plants by limiting how much ozone they can pump into the air. Ozone is the emission that causes smog. Smog, in turn, causes all kinds of health problems: asthma, heart disease, even premature death. And it just so happens that California is the capital of smog in America.
Dick Cavett was always an unusual TV talk show host. He’s a Yale-educated literary buff known for interviews that flow more like conversations between old friends. During the heyday of The Dick Cavett Show in the 1960s and ‘70s, Cavett conversed with movie stars, rock stars, authors, heads of state … and his guests were often surprisingly candid. Cavett’s new book, Brief Encounters, chronicles his experiences in show biz -- and some outside it.
Dick Cavett, Former television talk show host. His new book is “Brief Encounters.”
The stories coming out of Ferguson, Missouri, didn’t only dominate headlines this week. They also dominated our Facebook pages and Twitter accounts, replacing cat pictures with images of angry protestors and burning cars. This is no surprise: Any time a controversial story like this blows up, the debate moves online. But is social media creating a healthy national dialogue or exacerbating divisions?
More From Press Play with Madeleine Brand
California case: free speech v. abortion rights Crisis pregnancy centers are generally run by pro-life groups that aim to convince pregnant women not to get abortions. A California law requires that employees tell their clients that the state offers free and low-cost abortions and other family planning services. Now a group of these centers is arguing that the law violates their freedom of speech.
Does copyright law cover graffiti? Clothing company H&M did a fashion shoot in Brooklyn featuring models standing against a gray wall painted with black waving lines. The graffiti was the work of an LA-based street artist, who wanted compensation. H&M responded by filing a lawsuit against him, then dropped it a few days later.
Taylor Mac takes on U.S. history in 246 songs, two dozen costume changes Taylor Mac will perform his “24-Decade History of Popular Music” starting Thursday in LA. It’s divided into four shows on four separate nights. It’s about this history of oppression and activism in the U.S. -- from 1776 to present day.
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