Tuesday, April 9, 2013

AirTalk for Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Contact: Producers Joel Patterson, Jasmin Tuffaha, Anny Celsi & Fiona Ng



Wednesday, April 10, 2013


11:06 –11:20

Topic: Deal reached on migrant farm workers?: On Tuesday Dianne Feinstein announced that senators had reached a “tentative” deal between farm businesses and labor groups on the framework of a reformed program to bring foreign farm workers to the US. The issue is a central caveat in the senate immigration bill, and has pitted the concerns of agriculture businesses against labor groups over fair minimums wages for workers and caps to the amount of visas to extend. Farm businesses have claimed a number of factors -- stronger enforcement of immigration laws, a slow and expensive current H2A visa program, an aversion to farming jobs from current US citizens -- as being responsible for the shortage of farm labor and the need to build a new guest worker program. Labor groups, meanwhile, are fighting to keep the visa cap low and the base wage to be high to ensure that workers are not mistreated. Are the sides moving closer to an agreement? What will it take to make each side satisfied?


Guest:  Paul Wenger, President of the California Farm Bureau Federation. His group has lobbied legislators to create a better legal guest worker program that deals with shortages of farm workers.


Guest: TBA, United Farm Workers of America?


11:20 -11:40

Topic: Los Angeles Targets Chinese “Birth Tourists”: The lure of citizenship has brought a number of pregnant women from China to the U.S. to give birth. Their top destination in Los Angeles is the San Gabriel Valley, which has a sizable Chinese population. These expectant mothers typically spend three to four months in the area, staying at maternity wards—typically single-family homes or apartment units that have been converted illegally to house them—until after they give birth. These women usually leave the country with their babies once they get their documents. Irate residents living close to these maternity wards have long complained about sanitary and noise issues. But safety is another concern. “They’re a moneymaking machine. They’re totally unsafe,” Los Angeles Supervisor Don Knabe, who’s been looking into the issue, recently told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s so obvious that they jeopardise not only the health of the baby, but the mother as well.” Last week, the City of Arcadia said it’s hiring a full-time detective to look into what options are available to reign in these birthing homes. Should more be done to keep maternity tourists from coming to Los Angeles? Critics say they are just exploiting the system, but there are also those who say they benefit the local economy, both in the short and long run.

Guest: Don Knabe, member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, serving the Fourth District


Guest: Kathleen Brush, a global business, leadership and strategy consultant. Her articles have appeared in the The Washington Post, CNBC, Financial Times China and many other publications. She wrote a piece on The Street looking at the economic benefits of maternity tourism in Los Angeles and New York.




Topic: Is the “Accidental Racist” song, well, accidentally racist?: Combining country music and hip hop in one song may be offensive all its own, but a new song that does just that is drawing criticism for a much deeper reason. The lyrics of "Accidental Racist," by country singer Brad Paisley and hip hop legend L.L. Cool J, are played as a conversation between a regular ol' Southern white guy and a regular ol' African American guy. It drops conscious, yet prideful, references to the confederate flag, du-rags and saggy pants, along with Abe Lincoln, Robert E. Lee and slavery. Paisley explains his intentions: "I'm doing it because it just feels more relevant than it even did a few years ago. I think that we're going through an adolescence in America when it comes to race.... [The song] is two guys that believe in who they are and where they're from very honestly having a conversation and trying to reconcile." It's worth reading the lyrics yourself and perhaps having a listen. (LINKS) Where do you stand on the intention and execution of this song? Is it inherently racist to portray a southern white man defending his association with the Confederate flag? Are the sympathetic voices used by both characters a good way to get at the differing world views, or should the white character be presented negatively in the song?  If so, would the song be of any interest?

Guest: Kelefa Sanneh, staff writer for The New Yorker


Guest: Mychal Denzel Smith, freelance writer for The Guardian



12:06 – 12:20

Topic: State of the City: (TEMP HEAD)

Guest: Antonio Villaraigosa, Los Angeles Mayor



12:20 – 12:30



12:30 – 1:00

Topic: Why anti-bullying policies hurt more than help: As the public looks at adolescent development to make sense of violent tragedies, anti-bullying programs and policies are growing. However, an educator and clinician for 25 years asked herself a question, “Why have our views toward aggression changed when the kids haven’t changed?” Her answer was Columbine. This educator, Susan Eva Porter, said that the nation considered the shooters Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold as victims of bullying, and the nation quickly and fearfully adopted zero-tolerance policies to prevent future victims of bullying. In “Bully Nation: Why America’s Approach to Childhood Aggression is Bad for Everyone,” Porter argues that labeling children as bullies is equivalent to calling them “stupid” because it gives them a “fixed mindset” about how they perceive themselves. Do anti-bullying programs cause more harm than help? Is bullying in schools a problem? What’s the best way to help victims of bullying? Are children more aggressive today than in the past?

Guest: Susan Porter, Ph.D, author of “Bully Nation: Why America’s Approach to Childhood Aggression is Bad for Everyone” (Paragon House); Dean of Students at The Branson School in Ross, California; she has worked in schools for 25 years.

IN STUDIO                                       


Warm regards,

Jasmin Tuffaha    office: 626.583.5162 

Producer, “AirTalk with Larry Mantle” 


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