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Thursday October 21, 2010

Veteran NPR Journalist Fired For Comments About Muslims

The clip above from MSNBC shows the most complete footage of Williams’ appearance. FoxNews has not yet posted an excerpt.

NPR last night fired veteran journalist Juan Williams for comments it said were, “inconsistent with our editorial standards.” Williams told conservative talk show host Bill O’Reilly this week that he gets “nervous” and “worried” on a plane when he sees “people who are in Muslim garb” and “identifying first and foremost as Muslims.” Williams went on to warn against blaming all Muslims for the acts of extremists, but NPR says his comments “undermined his credibility as a news analyst.” We examine the issues in the case with Mark Jurkowitz, associate director of the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Pennsylvania Becomes Bellwether State For Midterm Elections

U.S. Senate races in several states are beginning to tighten up, with half a dozen contests now considered too close to call. One of the most watched races in the country is in Pennsylvania, where Democrat Joe Sestak and Republican Pat Toomey are on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Meanwhile, in the governor’s race, Democrat Dan Onorato trails Republican Tom Corbett by six points. We touch down in Pennsylvania with John Micek, state house reporter for the Morning Call newspaper.

Florida Schools Scramble To Meet Class Cap Requirements

This month, Florida schools are scrambling to comply with class size caps that Floridians embedded into their state Constitution in a 2002 referendum. To meet the requirements, some areas have resorted to shipping students from one school to another, canceling electives, enrolling students in online classes, clumping students from two grades into one class and even getting their districts to raise taxes. If the schools fail to meet the standards, they could face millions of dollars in fines. Now there’s a move to loosen the restrictions in a new referendum on the Florida ballot in November. Karen Aronowitz of United Teachers of Dade and Kathleen McGrory of the Miami Herald are our guests.

After 16 Years In Prison, Clemency Sought In $11 Robbery Case

Two Mississippi sisters have served 16 years of their consecutive life sentences for being accomplices to an armed robbery in which no one was hurt and only $11 was stolen. Mississippi governor Haley Barbour recently called for clemency and the local parole board is now reviewing the case, as one of the sisters struggles with kidney failure behind bars. We talk to Mississippi Clarion-Ledger reporter Chris Joyner about the case.

Tensions Flare Between The US And Pakistan

Army Lt. Kenneth Kovach speaks to members of Pakistan's paramilitary Frontier Corps over coils of concertina wire that separate Afghanistan and Pakistan. (David Gilkey/NPR)

Army Lt. Kenneth Kovach speaks to Pakistani border police over wire that separates Afghanistan and Pakistan. (David Gilkey/NPR)

Officials in Pakistan say there have been more than two dozen missile attacks launched by U.S. drones into the country’s tribal areas over the last two months. These unmanned attacks, targeting insurgents, caused Pakistan to close a major border crossing that NATO uses to supply troops in Afghanistan. Military analyst Andrew Bacevich joins us to talk about the war in Pakistan, as leaders from the two countries meet in Washington this week.

Not Your Grandfather’s Sherlock Holmes

He uses smart phones with GPS to track down villains. His sidekick writes a blog. Meet the modern Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in a new PBS Masterpiece Mystery series which begins this Sunday. Here & Now critic-at-large, Ed Siegel joins us for a preview.

Music From The Show

  • Peter Dixon, “Nagog Woods”
  • Ahmad Jamal, “Patterns”
  • Dean and Britta, “Herringbone Tweed”
  • Herbie Hancock, “Watermelon Man”
  • Marcus Roberts, “The Truth Is Spoken Here”
  • Dean and Britta, “Herringbone Tweed”
  • Radiohead, “There, There”
  • Christian McBride, “Theme for Kareem”
  • “How Can I Miss You (If You Won’t Go Away) performed by The Tiger Sharks
Robin and Jeremy

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

November 20 3 Comments

The Man Behind ‘Mockingjay’

Francis Lawrence describes the rewards and challenges of bringing "The Hunger Games" books to the screen.

November 20 Comment

Iraq War Vet Wins National Book Award For Fiction

The judges described the short stories in Phil Klay's collection "Redeployment" as brutal, piercing and sometimes darkly funny.

November 19 11 Comments

New Film Revisits The Jerry Sandusky Sex Abuse Case

The Penn State assistant football coach will likely spend the rest of his life in prison, but that's not the end of the story.

November 19 222 Comments

Without Slavery, Would The U.S. Be The Leading Economic Power?

Edward Baptist argues in his new book that slavery was integral to establishing the America as a world economic power.