history

Things That Go Boom

S4 E1 – Fee-fi-fo-fear

2020 has been a scary year. In an effort to get to the root of why we’re all feeling the way we are, the first thing we did was something we probably should have done a long time ago… we reached out to a psychiatrist. We also asked all of you — our listeners, our friends, our family — to tell us the answer to what might seem like a pretty simple question: How safe do you feel? But the answers didn’t feel simple at all.

GUESTS: Arash Javanbakht, MD; Bunmi Akinnusotu, Host of What in the World?; You guys!

ADDITIONAL READING:

Sex and Death in the Rational World of Defense Intellectuals, Carol Cohn.

The Politics of Fear: How Fear Goes Tribal, Allowing Us To Be Manipulated, Arash Javanbakht.

When Mask-Wearing Rules in the 1918 Pandemic Faced Resistance, Becky Little.

As the 1918 Flu Emerged, Cover-Up and Denial Helped It Spread, Becky Little.

The Takeaway

Truth Gap Emerges as White House Attempts to Conceal President Trump’s Full Medical Picture 2020-10-05

Truth Gap Emerges as White House Attempts to Conceal President Trump’s Full Medical Picture

The president’s sudden hospitalization has led to a yawning truth gap between what the White House knows about his condition and what the media and the public know.

Amid Trump’s COVID Diagnosis, A Look Back at Presidential Health in the White House

There’s a long history of health concerns in the White House, both physical and mental.

A Votar: Exploring the Issues that Matter Most to Latinos in the 2020 Election

The Takeaway kicks off our series, “A Votar: A Look at Latino Voters in the 2020 U.S. Election,” with a look at what polling data can tell us about the Latino electorate. 

The Underground Railroad Helping Slaves Escape…to Mexico

We take a look at this little-known history, of how slaves escaped to Mexico.

Things That Go Boom

S3 E4 (The Wrong Apocalypse) – This Is Not a Drill

Are we in the middle of a new Cold War? Or have we rewritten the game? With old nuclear arms treaties expiring, and no new ones being signed, are we adapting to the times or playing with fire?

In this episode, we look at the past and present of civil defense and nuclear arms control and ask what we can do — as individuals and as a nation — to prevent the existential threat of nuclear war.

GUESTS: Alex Wellerstein, professor at the Stevens Institute of Technology and historian of nuclear weapons; Alexandra Bell, Senior Policy Director at the Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation.

ADDITIONAL READING:

NUKEMAP.

Trump Will Withdraw From Open Skies Treaty, New York Times.

Time Running Out on the Last US-Russia Nuclear Arms Treaty, Defense News.

Will Donald Trump Resume Nuclear Testing?, The Economist.

The Takeaway

Privacy Concerns Mount as Coronavirus Spreads 2020-04-09

Privacy Concerns Mount as Coronavirus Spreads

Around the world, privacy advocates are sounding the alarm on heightened surveillance measures that have popped up amid the ongoing pandemic. 

In New Jersey, COVID-19 Cases Continue to Rise

The Takeaway speaks to New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy about how COVID-19 is playing out in his state. 

Nightly Gratitude and Applause for Health Care Workers Around the World

All over the world, people have been clapping and cheering for health care workers in a nightly ritual to celebrate those on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Number of COVID-19 Deaths in New York City May Actually Be Even Greater Than Reported

A significant rise in the number of at-home deaths suggests that the city is not counting everyone dying from COVID-19.

Alan Yang and Tzi Ma Peel Back the Layers of an Immigrant’s Story in ‘Tigertail’

Alan Yang is best known as the co-creator of ‘Master of None,’ but for ‘Tigertail,’ his first film as a writer and director, he decided to tell a more dramatic personal story.

The Takeaway

Trump Administration Targets U.S. Intelligence Community 2020-02-24

Trump Administration Targets U.S. Intelligence Community

Last week, President Donald Trump announced Richard Grenell, the U.S. ambassador to Germany, as the acting director of national intelligence. 

Census 2020: Making Latino Communities Heard in Texas

Texas lawmakers declined to fund census outreach efforts in their state, which could lead to an undercount in 2020, particularly among Latino communities.

Guns and Domestic Violence: Overview

In the United States, domestic violence incidents involving guns are on the rise, and women are especially vulnerable.

Can Baseball Survive This Cheating Scandal?

The Houston Astros were caught using cameras to read opposing teams’ signs to give their hitters an advantage.

The Takeaway

Climate Change Finds Its Way onto the Debate Stage in Nevada 2020-02-20

Climate Change Finds Its Way onto the Debate Stage in Nevada

Studies have also shown that Latino voters are more engaged with the issue of climate change than other voting groups.

Why Aren’t There More Famous Female Magicians?

Sexism and social biases have historically prevented female magicians from becoming as famous as male magicians.

Indigenous-Led Pipeline Protests Bring Canada to a Standstill

For two weeks now, activists across Canada have blockaded rail lines and ports to protest the construction of a natural gas pipeline on Wet’suwet’en First Nation territory.

A Honduran Girl, Separated from Her Family for Six Years

In 2013, a 10-year-old Honduran girl requested asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border. After being placed into the system, their family never heard from her again.

The Takeaway

Mixed Messages As Secretary Pompeo Visits Africa 2020-02-19

Mixed Messages As Secretary Pompeo Visits Africa

It’s only the second visit by a Secretary of State during this administration.

California to Apologize to Japanese Americans for Internment Camps

The state of California is issuing an apology in the form of a bipartisan bill that’s expected to pass today. 

Bankruptcy Filing Complicates Future of Abuse Cases Against the Boy Scouts of America

On Tuesday, the Boy Scouts of America filed for bankruptcy. The bankruptcy filing has raised concerns about what the move means for the future of sexual abuse cases against the group. 

The Takeaway

Trump Administration Escalates Crackdown on Sanctuary Cities 2020-02-17

Trump Administration Escalates Crackdown on Sanctuary Cities

It will deploy dozens of border patrol agents in cities that have pushed back against its immigration enforcement policies, including Los Angeles and Houston.  

Why Public Transportation Is Such an Important Site of Civil Rights Protest

Transportation has long been a staging ground for civil rights protests. And U.S. history is filled with the stories of those who stood up to discrimination on public transit.

The Exploitative Contracts Between Strippers and Strip Clubs

Genea Sky fell from a 15-foot pole in Dallas. As a contract worker, she cannot access workers compensation or employee insurance. 

The Takeaway

Iowa Prepares to Caucus as Impeachment Trial Kicks Off 2020-01-21

Iowa Prepares to Caucus as Impeachment Trial Kicks Off

How The Trumps and Kushners Got Rich Off Federal Policies

President Trump is no stranger to using his influence to seek favors. It’s a strategy that is not out of the ordinary in the world where he made his fortune, New York real estate.

In Puerto Rico, Fallout Over Unused Aid Raises Questions about Government Mismanagement

Over the weekend, a video went viral on social media, showing a warehouse full of unused disaster supplies in the city of Ponce.

The Barriers to Finding Mental Healthcare While Black

Only a quarter of Black Americans seek out care, compared with 40% of white people.

The Takeaway

Richmond Braces for Major Rally Against Gun Control 2020-01-20

Richmond Braces for Major Rally Against Gun Control

Thousands of gun rights activists are expected to rally against a series of proposed gun control laws in Virginia.

Martin Luther King Jr. Was Surveilled by the FBI. Today, Law Enforcement Still Tracks Black Activists

The FBI and law enforcement agencies have come under fire for their surveillance practices of Black activists.

Bad Boys Director Adil El Arbi on Taking the Leap from Belgium to Hollywood

The FBI and law enforcement agencies have come under fire for their surveillance practices of Black activists.

A New Wave of Progressive Prosecutors and the Barriers They Face

Many left-leaning district attorneys are seeking reforms that are seeing pushback.

The Quiet Rise of Meth Overdoses During the Opioid Epidemic

There is now a rise in the number of deaths and overdoses from methamphetamine and cocaine.