The Reckoning

As allegations of sexual misconduct continue to dominate the news, a look at how we are dealing with high-profile offenders and who is being ignored. Plus, a critical reexamination of Bill Clinton's reputation, the difficulty of processing good art made by bad people, and how to brace ourselves for the potential backlash.
  1. Rebecca Traister [@rtraister], writer-at-large for New York Magazine, on how sexual harassment stories at the national level resonate with our own familiar relationships to power and gender. 
  2. Michelle Goldberg [@michelleinbklyn], columnist for The New York Times, on the claims of sexual misconduct made against Bill Clinton. 

  3. Sarah Smarsh [@Sarah_Smarsh], writer and reporter, on the sexual harassment accusations that won't make the news, especially those of the working poor. 

4. Lily Loofbourow [@Millicentsomer], culture critic for The Week, on preparing for a public backlash against the Continue reading "The Reckoning"

Scary Clowns

The days are getting shorter, the leaves are changing and Halloween is on its way. And with these annual rites comes another yearly tradition: the coming of the clowns. Last year at this time, to believe the reporting, the country was overrun with so-called “evil clowns,” terrorizing communities across the United States. At the time, Bob spoke with Benjamin Radford, author of Bad Clowns and a research fellow with the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry about our historic and cultural relationship with clown sightings. With clowns again making their resurgence, we’re sharing that interview as this week's podcast extra.

It’s the End of the World and We Know It

In our upcoming episode we’ll examine how science fiction has taken on the challenge of imagining life after global warming. There’s drought, flood, grievous loss and even some optimism. So with that in mind, we thought we’d whet your appetite for annihilation by replaying this interview Brooke did with author Ben Winters a few years back. In his trilogy “The Last Policeman” it isn’t the slow creep of  melting glaciers and devastating drought that heralds the end of the world, it’s an asteroid. All the action takes place in the 6 final months before the the date of impact which spurs responses ranging from frolicking on beaches to suicide to murder. But the central character in Winter’s trilogy is a policeman who just wants to do his job.  

The Slants Win the Day!

On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled that a law denying federal trademark protection to names deemed disparaging is unconstitutional. Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the unanimous decision that “it offends a bedrock First Amendment principle: speech may not be banned on the ground that it expresses ideas that offend.” The suit was brought by the Portland dance-rock band The Slants, a group of Asian-American musicians who have taken their name from an ethnic slur and worn it with pride. The musicians sued because when they tried to register trademark for their name, the US Patent and Trademark Office said, “The Slants? No no no no no no." Bob spoke to the founder of The Slants, Simon Tam, exactly 2 years ago, when the band had just lost its appeal at the Federal Circuit Court.

Focus

In the wake of the Manchester attack, tech companies are again under pressure to fight extremism online. A look at whether they’re really doing all that they can. Also, can reporters inform the public about terrorist attacks without supplying the very notoriety the killers crave? Plus: how the South is grappling with taking down monuments to the Confederacy -- and what to put in their place.

Shiny Objects

With an administration that seems to break new traditions every day, we look at the rapid-fire changes to the White House story about Comey's firing. What they mean for communications between the President and the public. Plus, some worry that the media are too reliant on old tricks to keep up. How is the press adapting? And, why local TV news may soon take on a more conservative agenda.

WATCH: Newscaster Learns of Her Husband’s Death During Live Broadcast

Indian newscaster, Supreet Kaur, went above and beyond the call of duty Saturday when, after learning of her husband’s death on live television, continued her broadcast without missing a beat. Kaur, a journalist with India’s IBC 24 channel was informed of her husband’s death in a car accident in the middle of her broadcast, India Express reported Sunday. “For a moment her voice trembled, but she collected herself and carried on reading the news till the bulletin got over 10 minutes later,” said Ravikant Mittal, IBC 24’s editor-in-chief, The New York Daily News reported. Kaur reportedly broke down immediately after she was finished. “It speaks volumes about her sense of duty and professionalism that she continued and kept her calm for another 10 minutes,’’ an IBC 24 editor told Indian Express. “The moment the cameras were off she began calling her relatives and broke down.” Watch the entire video Continue reading "WATCH: Newscaster Learns of Her Husband’s Death During Live Broadcast"