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Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
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Friday July 24, 2009
British journalist Sean Langan was kidnapped last year by a Taliban-affiliated group known as the Haqanni Network, the same group Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl is believed to be in the hands of. (photo provided by Sean Langan)

British journalist Sean Langan was kidnapped last year by a Taliban-affiliated group known as the Haqanni Network, the same group Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl is believed to be in the hands of. (photo by Sean Langan)

Taken by the Taliban

Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl, an American soldier who was kidnapped near his base in Afghanistan on June 30, is believed to be in the hands of a Taliban-affiliated group known as the Haqanni Network. Award-winning British journalist Sean Langan was kidnapped by the same group last year. Langan describes his three-month ordeal and how he coped by marking the daily routines of life in captivity– like washing, eating, and staring through a tiny hole at the apricot tree that was growing nearby.

Pot Tax Hike

Earlier this week, voters in Oakland, Calif., approved a tax increase on medical marijuana, which is legal there. Richard Lee says he’s happy to pay more taxes — they are cheaper than legal bills. Lee is president of Oaksterdam University in Oakland. Founded in 2007, it is described as the country’s first cannabis college, with a mission to train people for the cannabis industry. Lee and others see the tax as another step toward the overall legalization of marijuana.

A Policeman’s View of Professor Gates’ Arrest

Henry Louis Gates Jr., a prominent Harvard professor, was arrested last week on a disorderly conduct charge. The professor is African American; the arresting officer is white. The charge was dropped, but the incident remains a contentious issue. We speak to Lt. Charles Wilson, chairman of the National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers.

Steely Dan

Here & Now music critic Tim Riley joins us with an appreciation of Steely Dan. Walter Becker and Donald Fagan are still together after more than 30 years.

Music from the Show

  • Air, “Mike Mills”
  • The Sea and Cake, “Seemingly”
  • Benevento Russo Duo, “Sunny’s Song”
  • Steely Dan “Aja”
  • Walter Becker and Donald Fagen “I Mean to Shine” performed by Barbra Streisand
  • Steely Dan “Reelin’ in the Years”
  • Steely Dan “Hey Nineteen”
  • Walter Becker “Circus Money”
  • Steely Dan “Black Cow”
  • Steely Dan “Two Against Nature”
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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