I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. We are going to talk a bit today about people on the move. Around the world and throughout time, people have moved from one place to another in search of better lives. But how they're doing it and how much they're doing it are changing. Coming up, we'll look at how thousands of Central Americans are trying to pass through Mexico to the U.S. border every year by clinging to the tops of rusty cargo trains.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, it's no secret that it's getting harder to move on up in this country, to achieve upward mobility that is. Last week, we asked whether the ability of Americans to literally move to different parts of the country is playing a role in this. We heard from so many listeners about this that we decided to dig into the story a bit more, and we'll have that in just a few minutes.
The struggle of infertility can bring tensions to any marriage. The new film, Mother of George, shines a light on how that experience affects a newlywed Nigerian couple living in New York. Host Michel Martin speaks with director Andrew Dosunmu and actress Danai Gurira about the film.
And now it's time for the occasional series we call In Your Ear. That's where some of the guests of our program tell us about the music that's on their personal playlists. Today, we hear some of the songs that actress Alfre Woodard likes to groove to. Alfre Woodard is certainly known for a long list of impactful appearances, most recently in the film "12 Years a Slave." Here's what's playing in her ear.
ALFRE WOODARD: Hi, I'm Alfre Woodard. And right now, playing in my ear is Trombone Shorty, "Something Beautiful."
This is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Later, if you want to find out what actress Alfre Woodard likes to listen to, to relax or get inspired, we will tell you. But first, we want to talk football. This is the time of year when a number of schools are celebrating homecoming, but there was no homecoming football game at Jackson State University in Mississippi this past weekend. That's because a majority of players on the visiting team, Grambling State University, refused to play.
We'd like to turn now to a different subject, a painful one for those who follow the history of the civil rights movement. What we want to tell you about a lawsuit filed by the famed entertainer and activist Harry Belafonte. He filed suit last Tuesday against the three surviving children of Martin Luther King Jr. At issue is a document - well, actually, three documents - that were formally part of Belafonte's collection of photos, letters and memorabilia that chronicled his friendship with Dr. King.
Latinos are one of the fastest growing segments of the population, but marketers aren't always keeping up with them. Host Michel Martin speaks with Chiqui Cartagena, the Vice President of Corporate Marketing at Univision, and author of Latino Boom II.
President Obama recently announced that he would be turning his attention to immigration reform. But what's a realistic expectation, and what are immigrant communities really hoping for? Host Michel Martin talks with Fernando Espuelas of Univision, and Eduardo De Souza, a soccer coach at Longwood University.
Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 3:32 pm
Call it a linguistic identity crisis.
Growing up in Westchester, N.Y., 25-year-old Danielle Alvarez says, she and her two siblings didn't have much need for Spanish. With few other Hispanic families around, she got by with the few phrases she had picked up from her Mexican-born father: good night, put a coat on, be careful.
The history of Africans in the Americas is a long and complicated one, filled with tragic twists and hopeful turns. Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. has taken on the task of telling the story in its entirety in the new PBS documentary The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up in this program, states and cities across the country are facing major budget problems and so some leaders there are saying it's time to slash public pensions. We'll talk about that in just a few minutes.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Later in the program, we'll hear about the latest project by Harvard professor and documentary filmmaker Henry Louis Gates Jr. It's a sweeping six-part series about the history of Africans in the Americas dating back to the 1500s. He'll tell us more about that in just a few minutes.
Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 3:44 pm
People aren't exempted from new regulations because they're old and crotchety, even if that's what it sounds like when we say they're "grandfathered in."
The term "grandfathered" has become part of the language. It's an easy way to describe individuals or companies who get to keep operating under an existing set of expectations when new rules are put in place.
It's been 20 years today since a small East African country descended into turmoil after the death of its president, and I'm not talking about Rwanda. A year before the genocide in that county, the Hutu president of neighboring Burundi Melchoir Ndadaye was assassinated. Hutus retaliated by slaughtering thousands of their Tutsi neighbors, perhaps as many as 25,000. A decade later, the United Nations International Commission of Inquiry for Burundi called it a genocide.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, one blogger wants black women to be more welcome in the world of comic books, videogames and science fiction. We'll talk about her efforts to change geek culture in just a few minutes.
I'm Celeste Headlee and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, it's the 20th anniversary of the horrific genocide in Burundi that took thousands of lives. We'll hear from a survivor about how he found healing and forgiveness for his tormentors through running. That's just ahead. But first, off the top of your head, how many black female comic book characters can you name? There's Storm of course from the X-Men. She was my favorite growing up. But other than that, who else?
Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 9:08 am
The Slants, a six-member band from Portland, Ore., calls their sound "Chinatown Dance Rock" — a little bit New Order, a little bit Depeche Mode. They describe themselves as one of the first Asian-American rock bands. Their music caters to an Asian-American crowd, they've spoken at various Asian-American events, and they're proud of all of it.
There's a true American saga on screens this weekend.
Twelve Years a Slave tells the story of Solomon Northup. He was an African-American musician from New York — a free man, until he was kidnapped in Washington, D.C., and sold into slavery. After an unlikely rescue from a Louisiana cotton plantation, he returned home and wrote a memoir, first published 160 years ago.
But the end of Northup's story is an unsolved mystery that has confounded historians for years.
Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 8:48 am
"We the undersigned, are distressed about the continuing divide that persists in the North American evangelical church in the area of racial harmony."
That's the first line of a four-page open letter to American Evangelicals ("On Cultural Insensitivity and Reconciliation in the Church") from a coalition called Asian American Christians United. The letter was released earlier this week.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Now it's time for our weekly visit to the Barbershop where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds. Sitting in the chairs for a shape-up this week are writer Jimi Izrael with us from Cleveland. But in Washington, D.C., I have Dave Zirin, sports editor at the progressive magazine The Nation, Paul Butler, law professor at Georgetown University, and what do you know, NPR editor Ammad Omar sticking around. Take it away, Jimi.
And now it's time for Backtalk. That's where we hear from you. Editor Ammad Omar is back with us once again. What's going on today, Ammad?
AMMAD OMAR, BYLINE: Hey, Michel, so it's been a week of heated debate here in Washington. As you know, we've had the shutdown, the debt ceiling debate. But if you look at our listener inbox, nothing got the passions more heated than our conversation about dodgeball.
(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DODGEBALL: A TRUE UNDERDOG STORY")
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Later this hour, our Friday features, the Barbershop guys will be here and we'll meet a mother who says she and her husband did everything their conservative church asked of them, including campaign against same-sex marriage, until they realized their own son is gay. And she'll tell us how she's now trying to reconcile her love of her church with her love of her son. That's Faith Matters and that's coming up.
Wendy Montgomery was raised, and raised her children, in the Mormon church. She was part of the church's campaign to aid a ballot initiative banning same-sex marriage in California. But her faith was shaken when she found out her teenage son is gay. She talks to Tell Me More host Michel Martin about how she came to accept her son and her faith, and is now trying to change the Mormon Church from the inside.
It opened in the late 19th century as the Bluefield Colored Institute, created to educate the children of black coal miners in segregated West Virginia. Although it still receives the federal funding that comes with its designation as a historically black institution, today Bluefield State College is 90 percent white. The road that separates those realities is as rocky as any story of racial transition in post-World War II America.
We went to the campus of Bluefield State to see what campus life was like at this unusual college.