Stateside Staff

Stateside 8.23.2017

Aug 23, 2017

Today on Stateside, the mayor of Kalamazoo says donor money helps the city reach its goals after being "abandoned" by the state.  And, we learn how "shady ladies" celebrate emerging female authors in style.

What’s lighting up stages in Michigan this month?

David Kiley of Encore Michigan joined Stateside today to give his take on productions from professional theater companies around the state.

It’s an ancient way of life under 21st century economic pressures.

According to the state’s numbers, the food and agriculture industry pumps $101 billion into Michigan’s economy each year. It employs some 923,000 people. That’s nearly a quarter of Michigan’s workforce.

So, what does the next generation of farmers think about the future of agriculture in our state?

He was a welcome presence on ESPN and ABC for decades. During his 30 years at ESPN, John Saunders lived every sports fan’s dream job.

But even as this one-time Western Michigan University hockey player rose to become one of the country’s most popular sportscasters, he secretly battled depression – and endured personal traumas that are hard to believe.

Stateside 8.22.2017

Aug 22, 2017

A man who killed his gay admirer was released from prison today after 22 years. On Stateside, we revisit that story, which dominated headlines in 1995, to hear what the case means in today's world. And, we talk about John Saunders, the late ESPN broadcaster who opened up about depression and personal trauma to help others.

To find individual interviews, click here or see below: 

America has now seen back-to-back weekends with white supremacist marches. First in Charlottesville, Virginia, where one counter-protester was killed, then last Saturday in Boston, where a small "Free Speech Rally" was dwarfed by more than 10,000 counter-protesters.

After Charlottesville, President Donald Trump declared there was blame “on many sides," then later doubled down, declaring there were “fine people” on both sides.


If they know what it is, most people despise gerrymandering, the practice of drawing legislative or congressional districts largely based on partisan advantage. It’s hated, unless it's your party that's benefiting.

Last year, Stateside talked with David Daley, a former editor-in-chief of Salon and the author of Ratf**ked:Why Your Vote Doesn't Count, a book that deals with this very issue. Stateside​ host Lester Graham caught up with him to discuss the second edition's new epilogue on the 2016 election.

The Michigan Trump Republicans are rallying tonight in the West Michigan town of Hesperia, with more rallies planned around the state in coming months.

Meshawn Maddock, a rally organizer from the Michigan Trump Republicans and former co-chair of the Trump campaign in Oakland County, joined Stateside today to explain why she's rallying.

Stateside 8.21.2017

Aug 21, 2017

Today on Stateside, eclipse watchers react to watching the sun through their crackers, boxes, and special glasses. And we hear a columnist explain why she thinks Donald Trump and Charlottesville are symptoms of not dealing with slavery's legacy. Finally, a Trump rally organizer explains the "nonstop barrage of attacks" she's felt in the aftermath of Charlottesville. 

Stateside 8.18.2017

Aug 18, 2017

Today on Stateside, we talk about where things stand now with changes for marijuana in Michigan's future. And, we learn what it takes to buy and preserve a Great Lakes lighthouse.

Stateside 8.17.2017

Aug 17, 2017

Today on Stateside, we hear how Michigan State University is tapping parking lots for renewable energy and big savings. And, while "totality" will elude Michigan during Monday's solar eclipse, we hear an expert's advice for how best to watch it.

In 1969, the blues threw a party in Ann Arbor.

James Partridge, founder of the Ann Arbor Blues Society, calls that party “the first blues festival ever.”

Enough people came that it happened again, and again, and became the Ann Arbor Blues Festival, later re-christened the Ann Arbor Blues & Jazz Festival. Its last hurrah came in 2006.

But this year, musicians will breathe new life into that festival, as they work to reignite the energy that pulsed through the crowds so many years ago.

Thirty years ago today, a flight outbound from Detroit Metro Airport on its way to Phoenix never reached its destination. 

We're driving around Michigan a little faster this summer. It's the result of a package of bills signed earlier this year by Governor Snyder.

Speed limits are increasing to 65 miles an hour on 900 miles of non-freeways around the state. And on 600 miles of freeways, the speed limit goes up to 75.

In the mid-20th century, there was a smuggling ring running between western Upper Peninsula and people in Wisconsin. It didn’t involve whisky, or gun-running, but rather a substitute for butter.

Rachel Clarke with the Michigan History Center says there was demand in Wisconsin for margarine, which was illegal in the badger state, but was still for sale in stores in Michigan.

In 1960, the first oral contraceptive was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as contraception.

That drug, Enovid, changed the course of history for women.

Yet Beverly Strassmann, a professor of anthropology and a researcher at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, has a challenge for the drug companies that make hormonal birth control: don’t rest on your laurels.

Her research indicates it might be past time for pharmaceutical companies to tweak the formulation of the pill.

Stateside 8.16.2017

Aug 16, 2017

It's been 30 years since Flight 255 crashed in Romulus. Today on Stateside, two reporters say that day is still impossible to forget. And, we hear why one researcher says the safety of birth control pills is not "sufficiently well established."

The state has admitted it made a whopping mistake when it accused tens of thousands of Michiganders of cheating on their unemployment benefits.

The Unemployment Insurance Agency reviewed 62,784 cases where people were accused of fraud and hit with penalties.

In some 44,000 of those cases, that accusation was completely false – no fraud took place.

After wrongly accusing tens of thousands of people in Michigan of cheating on their unemployment benefits, the state is refunding $21 million to those Michiganders.

Attorney Jennifer Lord said that number is just “a drop in the bucket” of what the state has taken from those people, while Director of the Talent Investment Agency Wanda Stokes said the agency would do better in communicating with citizens and handling unemployment claims.

Amidst all of this, Zach Gorchow of Gongwer News Service has noted a conspicuous silence from one very important voice: Governor Rick Snyder.

Most people have heard of a bird or wildlife sanctuary, but fewer are familiar with sanctuaries for shipwrecks.

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary is one of only 14 national marine sanctuaries in the entire country operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and it’s situated in the northwest corner of Lake Huron, just off the shores of Alpena.

Looking for new music from the Detroit area that's perfect for the dog days of summer?

Khalid Bhatti​, executive editor of Detroit Music Magazine, has your back. So does Paul Young, the magazine's founder and publisher.

On yesterday's Stateside, we heard about a young Flint man named Justin Dawson.

Tony Dawson is Justin's grandmother.

"He's 28 years old, but I would say mentally probably about seven or eight years old," she said. "He's always been a good boy. He did graduate from special ed classes – just way behind, way behind mentally."

Stateside 8.15.2017

Aug 15, 2017

Today, we talk about what Justin Dawson's case reveals about the way our courts handle defendants who are mentally ill or developmentally disabled. And the state is refunding nearly $21 million to tens of thousands of people it wrongly accused of unemployment fraud. One advocate calls that a drop in the bucket.

He’s been writing and singing about Michigan for a good many years, and on Tuesday night, Michigan will say thank you to Jay Stielstra.

Michigan Senator Rebekah Warren will present Stielstra with a state of Michigan legislative tribute for his contributions in conserving Michigan’s natural resources. She’ll do this during a show called “A Michigan Tribute to Jay Stielstra” at The Ark in Ann Arbor, where an all-star group of Michigan singers, musicians and actors will perform in his honor.

The Next Idea

If you’re old enough, you might remember Schoolhouse Rock, a series of musical films that helped kids learn.

Emmanuel Smith is “Mr. E in the D,” and he’s updating that concept by using hip-hop to teach kids math.

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