Thursday, January 12, 2012

Patt Morrison for Friday, 1/13/2012


Friday, January 13, 2012

1-3 p.m.


1:00 – 1:30


1:30 – 1:50

A transgender child in the Girl Scouts

Many people love the crunchy sweet taste of Girl Scout cookies, but not everyone loves the inclusion of a transgender child into the actual Girl Scouts organization. Last fall, the Girl Scouts of the USA admitted then 7-year-old Bobby Montoya, a child born a boy, but who identifies as a girl, to a troop in Colorado. Both widespread backlash and support have followed that decision. “For 100 years, Girl Scouts has prided itself on being an inclusive organization serving girls from all walks of life,” Girl Scouts of the USA has said in a statement. “We handle cases involving transgender children on a case by case basis with a focus on ensuring the welfare and best interests of the child in question and the other girls in the troop as our highest priority.” But in a video posted to the site, a 14-year-old girl who only identifies herself as Taylor and a Girl Scout herself rails against the decision, and calls for a boycott of Girl Scout cookies in protest. “Right now, Girl Scouts of the USA … is not being honest with us girls, its troops, its leaders, its parents or the American public,” she says in the video. Do you think transgender children and teens should be accepted as Girl Scouts? Do you side with the organization’s stance of inclusivity, or with Taylor?


TBA, anti gay-inclusion in the Girl Scouts-voice

Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality

CALL HER @ office 202-903-0112

Backup cell @ 202-746-6272

Girl Scouts of the USA not speaking on the record, but provided a written statement:

”For 100 years, Girl Scouts has prided itself on being an inclusive organization serving girls from all walks of life.  We handle cases involving transgender children on a case by case basis with a focus on ensuring the welfare and best interests of the child in question and the other girls in the troop as our highest priority.

As a beloved American institution, the Girl Scout Cookie Program is a natural target for those seeking to draw attention to themselves or their cause.  It's important for everyone to know that nearly 100% of the proceeds from these sales stay in the local market and are used to fund programs for girls."


100 billion planets and counting in the Milky Way, according to new survey

The Earth really is a tiny grain of sand on a cosmic beach, according to a new survey that indicates 100 billion planets exist in the Milky Way galaxy alone. The approximation is based on a study headed by lead astronomer Arnaud Cassan at the Institute of Astrophysics in Paris. Dr. Cassan and his colleagues examined 100 billion stars up to 25,000 light years from Earth and by their calculation most of the stars have at least one planet orbiting them. “One can point at almost any random star and say there are planets orbiting that star,” said astronomer Uffe Grae Jorgensen, who was a member of Dr. Cassan’s team as reported by the Wall Street Journal. Researchers say 100 billion planets is the most conservative estimate and that most of these planets are larger than Earth, but that none of the alien planets identified so far appear suitable for carbon-based life. The most unique discovery associated with the survey is that millions of these planets may circle two stars, a circumstance previously considered to be virtually non-existent.

How might we benefit from studying billions of other planets? How important is this type of research in terms of practicality? How does the realization that Earth is a minuscule speck of dust impact the way humans contemplate our existence in the universe?


Kilash Sahu (KY-lash), inaugural researcher on the study and staff astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STSCI), one of twenty observatories involved in the research

2:00 – 2:20

1965, 1992 and 2012: change for African-Americans in L.A.?

In 1965, at the request of local citizens’ groups after what has come to be known as the Watts Riots, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., traveled to Los Angeles to inspect the situation and attempt to ease tensions. Stunned by what he saw, King wrote that not only had federal, state, and city governments failed to do their due diligence for Los Angeles’ African American community, but that the Southern civil rights movement was also culpable, due to its failure to provide the kind of organizational support necessary to help Northern communities. King’s legacy in Los Angeles began before this visit and continued long after, but 1965 was a watershed moment in the effort to end poverty and economic inequality in South Los Angeles via community organizing. While many of the original community activist groups in Southern Los Angeles have either folded or been folded into larger (sometimes governmental) organizations, other groups continue to arrive – and thrive, such as the Community Coalition of Los Angeles, founded in 1990 by Congresswoman Karen Bass, D-CA’s 33rd District.  Originally established in response to the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980s, the Community Coalition expanded exponentially after the 1992 riots which followed a jury acquittal of four LAPD officers accused in the videotaped beating of black motorist Rodney King following a high-speed pursuit. particularly its approach towards eliminating “nuisance businesses” – such as liquor stores – in Southern Los Angeles. On today’s program, Patt checks in with Congresswoman Bass and current Community Coalition president and CEO, Marqueece Harris-Dawson, about King’s legacy of community activism and its effect on Southern Los Angeles, especially post-1992.


Rep. Karen Bass (D – Los Angeles), member of the House Budget and Foreign Affairs Committees and of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Marqueece Harris-Dawson, president and CEO of the Community Coalition of South L.A.

2:20 - 2:40

Zombie bees: what’s really to blame for colony collapse?

Colony collapse – the sudden deaths of entire honeybee colonies – has caught the attention and imagination of many. It’s not a gradual extinction, but a sudden and sharp disappearance, or silencing. Theories and explanations have varied, including viruses and fungi, and now there’s a new culprit in town; researchers at San Francisco State University have discovered a type of parasitic fly that may be to blame. The phorid fly lays its eggs in bees’ abdomens, causing disorientation that ultimately causes them to abandon the hive. In the words of the Associated Press, the fly “hijacks their bodies” – leaving “zombie bees” behind. Whether the fly is the sole reason for colony collapse is unknown, but the San Francisco team discovered the fly in three-quarters of the hives they surveyed.

John Hafernick, professor of Biology, San Francisco State University, trustee and president, California Academy of Sciences and discoverer of the parasitic phorid fly


David Hackenberg, former president of the American Beekeeping Federation and owner of Hackenberg Apiaries, he is widely credited with discovering the bee colony collapse disorder and he joins us live from the annual American Bee Keeping Federation meeting in Las Vegas

2:40 - 3:00

“The Artist”: the artistry of wordlessness

In a modern era inundated with multi-million dollar entertainment extravaganzas filled with 3-D special effects that were unimaginable a few decades ago, who would have guessed that a silent black and white film would be not only successful, but a critically acclaimed hit? Even the makers of “The Artist” probably could not have predicted how well-received the film would be, but nonetheless the picture has won over audiences and critics alike. The film’s story begins in 1927 and focuses on the relationship between the silent film movie star George Valentin, played by Jean Dujardin, and young starlet Peppy Miller, played by Berenice Bejo. The movie illustrates the impact the addition of sound had on the previously silent movie-making industry and on Hollywood culture. At its core, “The Artist” is a good old-fashioned love story, but the film is also an homage to the silent era through. How surprised are you that a silent black and white film has gained immense popularity in the age of  “Avatar” and “Transformers”? What does the success of “The Artist” say about American audiences tastes?



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