Science, politics and race

By Jamila Bey

We have two special guests today to discuss the need for inclusivity in science realm. Dr. Danielle Lee, The Urban Scientist, is a biologist and expert in animal behavior, mammalogy, and ecology. Dr. Chris Emdin is an Associate Professor at Teachers College, Columbia University. Both join the Sex Politics And Religion hour to talk about the fact that there’s much work being done to make science more inclusive.

From code-switching to becoming an economy of entrepreneurs, science is at the heart of what we do, but we’re unfortunately missing the story that much of what’s happening.

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A very racist Halloween!

#BlackTwitter strikes again! When a trio posted on social media a photo of themselves dressed up as “Robbin’ da Hood,” “George Zimmerman” with fingers pointed as if a gun toward, a bloody-hoodied, black-faced “Trayvon Martin,” folks inundated the workplaces of at least two of the posers with e-mails, phone calls and social media messages.
Joining me to talk about the power, and the responsibility of online activists is Mikki Kendall. She’s a blogger, a writer, and the brains behind “Hood Feminism”. We also bring up Julianne Hough and her unfortunate blackface Halloween costume as well.

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“1 in 3” – Ending the stigma of abortion in America


By Jamila Bey

The reality in America is that abortion is neither rare nor concentrated among any singular segment of society.

One in three women in the US will have an abortion in her lifetime. This week kicks off a week of activists giving people the opportunity to speak up about their own abortions. College campuses around the country are hosting events, and the “1 in 3 Campaign” is hosting many of the stories shared by individuals who often spoke about their abortion for the first time. Carly Manes, a junior at the University of Michigan, and Julia Reticker-Flynn, the Youth Activist Network Manager at Advocates for Youth, are my guests.


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Gitmo solidarity hunger striker takes force-feeding in DC

By Carmen Russell-Sluchansky

The DC District Court heard arguments today over an appeal by Guantanamo inmates charging that the force-feeding of hunger striking detainees is cruel and inhumane.

To emphasize this, protestors gathered outside the court after the proceedings and held a vigil that included a volunteer undergoing a real force-feeding himself to demonstrate just how painful it is. More than 160 detainees remain in detention at the base in Cuba, with 15 still on hunger-strike and being force-fed.

Voice of Russia talked to Todd Pierce, a retired U.S. Army Reserve officer with 20 years of active duty during which he served as defense counsel in the office of military commissions. He currently represents a Guantanamo detainee.

Part 1:

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Voice of Russia also talked to Tighe Barry, CodePink activist trained as an EMT who participated in a rally against the force-feeding of Guantanamo detainees.

Part 2:

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Video of Andres Thomas Conteris (of http://www.closegitmo.net/) being force-fed in front of the Federal Court of Appeals in Washington DC on Friday. He is on his 103rd day of a hunger strike in solidarity of Guantanamo Bay detainees. Filmed by Liudmila Chernova & edited by Sean Nevins.

Slide show of the Rally held outside the Federal Court of Appeals, Washington DC. Photos by Liudmila Chernova. 

Britain’s “Iron Lady” was no friend to organized labor

Margaret Thatcher changed history when she brought her iron will to bear on the UK’s labor unions.

Voice of Russia’s Carmen Russell-Sluchansky and Jamila Bey continue a conversation about how Thatcher shall be remembered in terms of her role in the 1984 UK miners’ strike:

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GOP making progress in outreach to African Americans, expert says

As the GOP continues to rebuild its image in the wake of an election that saw constituents of color and different ethnic backgrounds vote overwhelmingly for the Democratic Party, Republicans have started several outreach programs to gain popularity among these groups.

Most notably the issue of immigration has forced the GOP to re-evaluate its position on the matter with many politicians paying attention to the prominence of Latinos in the U.S.

However, the GOP is also focusing on outreach to African Americans.

The most recent step in this goal includes the hiring of Raffi Williams by the Republican National Committee to serve as the group’s deputy press secretary. Williams is the 24-year-old son of commentator Juan Williams.

The hiring is seen by some as a step in the right direction and now puts GOP chair Reince Priebus in the lead against President Barack Obama in terms of African American hires since his re-election.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with conservative political commentator Raynard Jackson to discuss the forward progress of the Republican Party in terms of its outreach to African Americans.


Expert: Cruz should have thought twice before proposing amendment

Two senators have an angry confrontation over funding and China’s abortion policies.

Voice of Russia’s Carmen Russell-Sluchansky talks with Jamila Bey:


Senator Mary Landrieu (D. LA) is taking Ted “McCarthy” Cruz (R. TX) to task over his efforts to create an amendment that would deny funding to the European Union due to China’s abortion policies. Bey says that Cruz should have “had a nap” before making this resolution, since nobody on the floor would have supported it.


Arkansas women feel under attack after new abortion law passes

After the Arkansas state legislature put into place the most restrictive abortion law in the United States last week, giving a woman just 12 weeks to obtain an abortion, pro-choice groups everywhere are protesting the law.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with Jamie Goswick, a humanist minister who is part of a group protesting the law, to discuss the story.



Lawyer: Duvalier’s 25 years in exile won’t take back pain from Haitians

Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier, the brutal leader of Haiti until his oust in 1986, has returned to Haiti to face charges of fraud and political violence, but he’s claiming he can’t stand trial because of medical distress.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with Brian Concannon, Jr., human rights lawyer and director of the Institute for Justice & Democracy, to consider how Duvalier might be brought to justice.


Atheists hope to raise political profile at annual convention

Atheists from across the country will gather in San Francisco this weekend for the National Atheist Party Convention and one topic the group hopes to address will be how to raise the political profile of one of the nation’s largest growing demographics in the religion category.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with Troy Boyle, president of the National Atheist Party, to discuss the weekend’s agenda.



Teacher: Too Many Politicians Have Too Little Experience With Education

President Barack Obama has been vocalizing his stance on education quite a bit recently—between his inaugural address and his State of the Union address—but those in the schools have noticed how public officials continue to fail to understand what really goes on in the classroom.

Between standardized testing and the No Child Left Behind law, some say that U.S. education policy has done nothing but make teaching more difficult.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with Dr. Anthony Nelson, a high school science teacher from near Chicago, to discuss what can be done to address these shortfalls.



Groups Harnessing Power of Women to Send More Females to Public Office

Now that the Congresswomen who now compose the greatest number of women in the U.S. House of Representatives and in the Senate have settled into their jobs, the battles over gender and policy have continued.

Host Jamila Bey spoke with L. Joy Williams, founder of New York City-based LJW Community Strategies,to talk about how younger women, African American women and those who have not usually been empowered are making waves in the larger culture.