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FROM THIS EPISODE

Politicians have started weighing in on the debate over vaccines. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Then, one woman’s story of how she went from anti-vaccine to pro. In other health-related news, the New York Attorney General has cracked down on bunk herbal supplements sold at chain retailers, but that’s not stopping Silicon Valley types from trying to “hack” their biology with strange ingredients and prescriptions. Turning to literature, Harper Lee is publishing a new novel this summer, 55 years after her first and only work, “To Kill a Mockingbird.” What’s the new book about, and why now? Author Kwame Alexander, who won the Newbery Medal yesterday, talks about his young adult novel “The Crossover.” And finally, in our regular car roundup, why does Google want in on Uber’s business model, and vice versa?

Banner Photo Credit: Hannah Smith/KOMU

Producers:
Andrew Walsh
Christian Bordal
Matt Holzman
Jolie Myers
Anna Scott

The Politics of Vaccinations 8 MIN, 9 SEC

After a measles outbreak that originated at Disneyland, President Obama says kids should be fully vaccinated. But New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, visiting a vaccine lab in England, said parents should have, “some measure of choice” about whether to vaccinate for diseases. And Republican senator Rand Paul, another possible 2016 Presidential candidate, went even further in an interview on CNBC yesterday, saying that he’s heard of cases of vaccinated children suffering severe consequences. Are there dangers in politicizing the debate?

Guests:
Josh Kraushaar, National Journal (@HotlineJosh)

Eula Biss’ Vaccine About-Face 9 MIN, 42 SEC

So the vaccine debate has gone political. But for most parents, it’s an intensely personal decision about what is best for their children. Essayist Eula Biss’ book about vaccination starts with her own personal questions about giving her child vaccines. But she ends up believing that a mother’s decision to vaccinate her child is not personal at all. Madeleine spoke to Biss last October, and we re-air part of the conversation today.

Guests:
Eula Biss, author, 'On Immunity'

On Immunity

Eula Biss

So-Called Smart Drugs 7 MIN, 33 SEC

Herbal supplements are a huge business, even though lots of them have no proven effects. And in fact, some may be a total scam. Yesterday, the New York State attorney general cracked down on supplements sold at Target and other stores that were fake, and in many cases contaminated with non-listed ingredients. But that won’t keep people from trying to “hack” their biology with so-called smart drugs. We hear about the attempts, and the pitfalls.

Guests:
Marek Kohn, Neurobiologist (@marekkohn)

“To Kill a Mockingbird” Sequel Coming This Summer 6 MIN, 38 SEC

Huge news from the book world today: Harper Lee has announced she’ll publish a sequel to her classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s called Go Set a Watchman, and it comes out July 14th. Lee is 88 years old. She never published another novel after Mockingbird, which has sold more than 40 million copies and has been translated into more than 40 languages. What’s the new book about, and why now?

Guests:
Charles Shields, Author

Newbery Award Winner Kwame Alexander on “The Crossover” 6 MIN, 30 SEC

Poet and author Kwame Alexander won the highest award yesterday for children’s literature, the Newbery Medal. It’s for his novel The Crossover, about a pair of 12-year-old, African-American, basketball-playing twin brothers. It’s a coming-of-age story, but with a modern and serious twist. Alexander joins us to talk about why he decided to write the story entirely in verse, his inspirations, and why he was shocked to get the Newbery.

Guests:
Kwame Alexander, Author of "The Crossover" (@kwamealexander)

The Crossover

Kwame Alexander

Self-Driving Cars, Uber, Google, and Other Car News 8 MIN, 16 SEC

Uber wants to get into the self-driving car business. Google wants to get into the ride-sharing business. And the government is recalling cars that have already been recalled. The auto industry is turned upside down! We hear about all that and more in our regular car news segment.

Guests:
Aaron Robinson, Car and Driver magazine

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