FROM Karl Vick
What's It Like to Be a Cop in America? There are some 680,000 sworn police officers in the United States. Thanks to a year of cellphone videos spread on social media, "every one of them has had to answer, in one way or another, for the actions of colleagues they will never meet." Such videos of shootings, beatings and apparent racial profiling have reduced public confidence in police all over the country. When every local encounter has the potential for national news coverage, street cops say, "Everything is just harder." Many departments are engaging in damage control by re-training officers to think of themselves as guardians, rather than warriors. But critics say that's not enough -- that the justice system is rigged in the cops' favor, and the only true reform is to hold them accountable.
Will American Tourists Spoil Cuba? Next week, the Presidents of the US and Cuba will meet for the first time since Fidel Castro's revolution of 1959. The US embargo is still on, but there's now an opening for American tourists who want to see Cuba before it becomes "Americanized." Historic buildings and old cars create nostalgia for life in the 50's — but when average wages are $20 a month they also illustrate poverty and decay. Is Havana a museum piece that's about to be "spoiled," or the capital of a desperate nation hungry for change?
New Rules for Violence in a Changing Middle East The death toll from six days of Israeli strikes in Gaza is approaching 100 with 700 wounded. Yesterday, a bomb missed its intended target, killing 11 people, including nine in three generations of a single family. During years of sporadic rocket attacks from Gaza, Tel Aviv has seemed, somehow, beyond the conflict. Friday that came to a shattering change as air raid sirens wailed and Israelis sought cover under the tables of sidewalk cafes. Rockets fired from the Gaza Strip continue to fall in Israel, as Israel's retaliatory airstrikes kill more civilians in Gaza. We update the resumption of violence, the Arab spring and Israeli politics.
New Rules for Violence in a Changing Middle East The death toll from Israeli attacks in Gaza is now close to 100, many children included, with almost 800 wounded. Yesterday, a bomb missed its intended target, killing 11 people, including nine in three generations of a single family. Three Israelis have been killed by rocket fire that’s come close to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Hamas, the elected leadership in Gaza, appears emboldened by the Arab Spring, and says the barrage won’t end until Israel agrees to concessions. Prime Minister Netanyahu, facing a re-election campaign, refuses to halt Israeli airstrikes until rockets from Gaza stop falling. We update the prospects for a ceasefire, the Arab spring and Israeli politics.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.