FROM Farai Chideya
Race in America: the Issue that Won’t Go Away President Obama is in Dallas today to memorialize the deaths of five policemen, gunned down by a black sniper last week during an otherwise peaceful rally. He’s called the act “a hate crime”—and at the same time he’s supporting the goals of Black Lives Matter. We’ll hear from a black journalist who’s been to “The Heart of Whiteness,” and talk about police reform with a white cop who has three decades of service. What are the prospects for that “post-racial America” that’s been so much discussed—even though it’s never actually happened?
Is Ferguson a Microcosm of the USA? Ferguson, Missouri erupted last night after a grand jury held that white Officer Darren Wilson’s killing of black teenager Michael Brown was not a crime. Asked if refusing to take the matter to trial was passing the buck, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch released all the trove of evidence the grand jury looked at in making its decision. “No one can just file charges and go to a jury trial… We’re gathering evidence, presenting it to the grand jury. We do this every day, day in and day out. It’s certainly not passing the buck” Benjamin Crump, attorney for Brown’s family, vigorously disagreed, “The process is broken, the process should be indicted.” After months of media coverage, the nation was ready for the decision, violence in Ferguson and protests in other cities. We get an update on reaction to last night’s decision, look at the process, the mountain of evidence and what the incident could mean for the country.
Writing the Rails It all started with a musing from novelist, Alexander Chee. “I wish Amtrak had residencies for writers,” he told an interviewer. A few tweets and nine months later, Amtrak has announced its first group of writers for its train residency. Madeleine talks to one of the winners: author and radio host, Farai Chideya.
The free-flowing leaks in the Trump White House President Obama tried to clamp down on leakers, but the Trump Administration is besieged almost as never before. Are the "anonymous sources" partisans or worried professionals? Are they endangering the republic or performing a public service?
Free speech and the ideological fight for college campuses Conservatives claim that American colleges and universities are bastions of liberal orthodoxy, shielding students from alternative ways of thinking. What better place for a protest than UC Berkeley? What better agent of controversy than Ann Coulter?
Trump fires FBI Director James Comey Vice President Mike Pence took the Administration's lead today in explaining why the President fired the Head of the FBI, saying, "The president made the right decision at the right time." Trump's action is being compared to the so-called "Saturday Night Massacre" that led to President Richard Nixon's resignation in 1973.