More and more kids spend long hours on the Internet. At the same time, reading scores are declining. Is there a connection? Does the brain work differently with a book than with a computer? What’s the impact on reading proficiency? Should schools recognize that young people are on the Internet and teach them how to use it well? Also, the scientist facing indictment in the anthrax case dies in apparent suicide, and slugger Manny Ramirez outlived his welcome from the Boston Red Sox. We hear what the LA Dodgers may be in for.
FROM THIS EPISODE
Shortly after 9/11, anthrax showed up in mailings that killed five people, crippled the Post Office, shut down a Senate office building and spread fear that terrorists were striking again. Tuesday, the FBI's prime suspect died from apparent suicide. He was 62-year old Bruce Ivins, for 18 years a research scientist at the Army's bio-defense research lab at Ft. Detrick, Maryland. Reporter Carol Leonnig of the Washington Post has more.
The National Endowment for the Arts has a program called The Big Read, encouraging Americans to read books and talk about them together. The NEA program is one response to a disturbing finding: Americans are reading less and reading less well. That's according to an analysis of 40 different studies. Human beings are not genetically programmed to read; they have to learn over time—by reading books. But books are giving way to the Internet. As reading scores decline, some researchers claim the Internet is promoting quick, superficial thinking instead of the wisdom that comes with patient study. Nobody wants to get rid of books, but kids spend more time on the Internet. Should schools teach them to use it critically? Should Internet 1A be part of the basic curriculum?
Sunil Iyengar, Director of Research and Analysis, National Endowment for the Arts
Maryanne Wolf, Director, Tufts University's Center for Reading and Language Research
Elizabeth Birr Moje, Professor of Literacy, Language and Culture, University of Michigan
Lee Siegel, writer and author
In seven and a half seasons with the Boston Red Sox, Manny Ramirez was an eight-time All Star. He's hit 500 homers and is guaranteed for the Hall of Fame. Ramirez showed up for spring training on this year and in great shape, but after that, things started to go down hill. Now the Red Sox have shipped him off, as glad to get rid of him as the Los Angeles Dodgers are to pick him up. Amalie Benjamin covers the Red Sox for the Boston Globe.
More From To the Point
Kavanaugh Supreme Court Nomination Meets #MeToo Senate confirmation looked like a done deal, but gender politics are disrupting the process. Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s unblemished record is up against a woman’s lifetime of trauma--depending on who you believe. What are the options for Senate Republicans less than two months before this year’s elections?
White House ‘Norms:’ Past and Present President Trump has famously violated traditional rules of presidential behavior. Now Barack Obama has broken the studied silence maintained by former presidents. He’s even attacked Trump by name. Warren explores the historical context and future implications with Tim Naftali, who once ran the Richard Nixon Library and Museum.
Climate Change and Big Money for New Technology California leads the nation in reducing greenhouse emissions, but Governor Jerry Brown concedes that’s just the beginning. Will his global conference on climate change make any difference? Not without trillions of dollars, which will have to come from private investors. We’ll hear about some exotic technologies attracting that kind of money.
The Supreme Court and the End of Judicial Restraint Senate confirmation for SCOTUS nominees has become a political circus. That’s because unelected judges have seized legislative powers--when Congress fails to take action. Ruth Bader Ginsburg says Roe v. Wade is bad constitutional law, even though she agrees with the outcome. Should abortion have been left to the voters? Will Brett Kavanaugh make a difference?
LATEST BLOG POSTS
LA teachers and students work to curb cannabis use On a sunny Saturday afternoon in September, about a dozen high school health teachers gathered around a semi-circle of tables at the Los Angeles Unified School District’s downtown headquarters. The… Read More
Now that recreational marijuana is legal, what should advertising look like? Just east of West Hollywood, right before the iconic Sunset Strip, a MedMen billboard looms over pedestrians and al fresco diners eating burgers at nearby cafe. The billboard features a… Read More