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Posts Tagged ‘journalism’
In the latest edition of The Weekly Voice’s “Let’s Talk” segment, the topic of in-depth discussion is the ongoing diplomatic crisis between US/EU/Russia/Ukraine over Crimea.
Kamila Orlova is a student from Russia majoring in political science.
Dr. Roger Kanet is a International Studies professor and longtime academic focussing on all things related to Russia and Europe.
Hyan Freitas is the host of “The Weekly Voice” which airs Fridays at 10am on 90.5FM and online at WVUM.org
[Show originally aired March 21, 2014]
Michael Grunwald is the Senior National Correspondent for TIME Magazine and the author of The New New Deal: The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era. It’s a book that has gotten a lot of praise for its descriptions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or as you may remember it, the stimulus package passed by President Barack Obama in 2009. He spoke to WVUM to preview his appearance at the Florida Book Awards Panel at the Miami Book Fair this Saturday at 4p.m.
(Image Credit: The Raw Story)
Since all the headlines are being dominated by the Syria situation, there isn’t a lot of current material for me to write about in my column, so this week, I’ll quickly touch on the favorite punching bag for the tech world at the moment: the NSA. A while ago, it was revealed by some of the documents Edward Snowden obtained and then released that the agency had hacked into Al Jazeera’s internal correspondences. The information comes a week after the revelations that the NSA had hacked into UN video calls.
I understand that “Al Jazeera” and “Al Qaeda” share an “Al” prefix, but seriously? It’s a news network, not a terrorism organization. The report cited communications sent to the network by “interesting targets” as the reason for the hacking. Even if the so-called “interesting targets” were anything/anyone that should be on the U.S.’s radar, it is unacceptable that the government is/was able to tap into a news source’s communications, no matter how “anti-American” their bias may be.
While anyone could probably guess what I think about this from the above paragraph, I think it’s worth mentioning that this seems to be part of a bigger pattern recently: as we learn more about the PRISM program and the NSA in general, the doomsayers’ predictions are starting to come true. As I said earlier, a while back it was revealed that the NSA spied on the UN video conferences, which is worthy on an article itself, but I’ll only invoke the fact that we are friendly and cooperative with the UN for now; the news that the PRISM program was used by low-level NSA employees; and also that NSA employees had regularly used the program to spy on their love interests, among other notable pieces of Snowden’s leaks. Taken separately, these are “only” egregious, but taken together, the chilling effects on personal liberties are potentially massive.
Personally, I think it’s time for another Amash Amendment to go up for a vote; this needs to stop.
With the murder trial of George Zimmerman now underway, there has been a lot of attention not only placed on the prosecution and defendant, but also on the jury listening to their arguments. Although the identities of the jurors in the case will not be released, we do know some information about the individuals, like that all six of them are women.
Opening statements in the Zimmerman trial began on monday. the jurors from then on faced the task of providing impartial deliberation in this controversial case.
George Zimmerman was charged with the second-degree murder of unarmed 17-year old Trayvon Martin in April 2012.
With that being said, we thought it would be beneficial to bring in an expert on the subject of juries. For some insights, we spoke with UM Law professor Scott Sandby. Sandby graduated from Cornell law school with his juris doctor and serves as the dean’s distinguished scholar at the University of Miami law school. He has contributed research to understanding juries, specifically in trials involving the death penalty. Listen in to the discussion below.
The Weekly Voice, WVUM’s community affairs talk show, airs live Fridays at 10a.m. ET.
The Counterpoint team presents their preliminary thoughts on the historic cases in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in 2013 including looks at the Voting Rights Act and two cases regarding same-sex marriage. Aired June 21, 2013.
Counterpoint is live Fridays at 1pm ET on WVUM 90.5FM in South Florida and worldwide at WVUM.org
- Obama’s “red line” was the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian civil war— and now the US is arming the rebels. The incident of the use of sarin gas on the battlefield only caused 150 deaths compared to the 90,000 deaths caused by conventional warfare.
- We’ve seen the same rhetoric pre-Iraq war with the promise of WMDs as a reason to intervene militarily.
- We’ve also seen the same premise of arming the rebels to defeat a common enemy of the people and the United States (The Mujahideen in Afghanistan).
- The types of military support the US is offering is not enough to topple Assad’s regime but only to exacerbate an already bloody war.
- We have no way of controlling who the arms are given to. Al-Nursa is one of the opposition groups that have openly stated their connection to al-Qaeda.
- Supporting the rebels does not mean we have allies in this war. Non-state actors are unpredictable and don’t need to claim allegiance to any country.
- Syria has become the stage for competing international interests in the Middle East. Russia and Iran supporting the Assad regime and the West (US, UK, France, Germany) supporting the opposition; making it a proxy war.
Our debate on the relevance of affirmative action was easily one of the most heated ones we’ve ever had on the show (a clip is below). Race is always a tricky topic to talk about when many of the issues surrounding it remain unsolved in our country. But debates such as the one we had was one that needed to happen. People seldom confront the issue of race head-on in the media and we at Counterpoint were happy to be able to delve into such a subject.
With that said, I think its important for us (especially as Americans) to not think that because we are starting to see more black people in positions of power that we live in a “post-racial America”. Racism, particularly towards blacks remains an open wound that has not healed even after years of progress. Those who are not minorities may think, “How unfair, why is it necessary to still have these policies when we are not in the 60s?” It is easy to not understand the importance of such policies when you are not a black, Latino, or Asian in America.
Affirmative action opens doors for minorities and with that, it puts people of different backgrounds in settings such as a school or workplace. And in that setting we are confronted with race, we come face-to-face with the ugly history and reality of America. Once confronted with these themes, we can either continue with ignorance or learn to embrace differences with an open mind. Affirmative action is not some gateway for minorities to get whatever job they want or get into a good school without putting forth effort. Actually minorities have to work harder than anyone else to prove stereotypes wrong and break barriers.
As I stated in the show, you cannot get into Harvard or some other Ivy League school with a bad GPA or test score, regardless of race. And as we all know from our experience of applying to various universities they look at more than just your test score. There’s essays, extracurricular activities, teacher recommendations, etc that also add to your application. So to say that the student at University of Texas was rejected solely on the premise that she’s white, is completely baseless. I can only hope that the Supreme Court will also understand the value of diversity in schools/workplace made possible by affirmative action.
We should not undervalue or underestimate the importance of diversity. It’s one the reasons I chose UM, even though it still remains a majority white school. But UM still tries to value the diversity of its students by enrolling people of not just different races but also nationalities. Affirmative action is still a work in progress as many universities remain overwhelmingly white but the positives of these policies can be seen in not just our elected officials like the president but in business, entertainment, and sports.
I’m proud to be a voice for blacks and women on Counterpoint and I hope that our show continues to challenge and inspire not just our contributors but our listeners as well.
Below is a clip of our discussion on the subject during our live show. Counterpoint airs live Fridays at 1pm ET.