La'Raven Taylor

On Second Thought Producer

La'Raven was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi, so she’s no stranger to the south. La'Raven developed a passion for storytelling at a very young age. She became a features editor on her high school’s newspaper staff and an anchor on the school’s station. She graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with a degree in journalism. She started working as an associate producer for WLBT in Jackson, MS. There, she worked her way up to become a senior producer. She also did some reporting. La'Raven is a member of NABJ and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She loves reading, traveling and spending time with her family. She lives by the quote: “I think, therefore I am” by Descartes.

La'Raven Taylor

If you're looking to take a break away from holiday shopping, several holiday events in and around Atlanta are attracting friends and families from all over. 

"On Second Thought" invited theater critic and Arts ATL contributor Kelundra Smith to give her picks of holiday performances and shows. Floyd Hall also joined the conversation from Miami, where he's wrapping up work from the 2018 Art Basel show. Hall is also an Arts ATL contributor and co-host of Blklanta podcast. 


Golden Globe nominations have been announced, and several Georgia-based productions are in the running. The list came as a "Boycott Georgia" hashtag is being used by some film industry insiders. Some are protesting the victory of Brian Kemp, while others say they're concerned about the religious freedom bill the governor-elect expressed support for on the campaign trail. Opponents say the proposed legislation would discriminate against the LGBTQ community. 

GPB's "The Credits" podcast host Kalena Boller spoke to "On Second Thought" host Virginia Prescott about the controversial issue. 

 


GPB

Golden Globe nominations have been announced, and several Georgia-based productions are in the running. The list came as a "Boycott Georgia" hashtag is being used by some film industry insiders. Some are protesting the victory of Brian Kemp, while others say they're concerned about the religious freedom bill the governor-elect expressed support for on the campaign trail. Opponents say the proposed legislation would discriminate against the LGBTQ community. 

 

GPB's "The Credits" podcast host Kalena Boller spoke to "On Second Thought" host Virginia Prescott about the controversial issue. 

 


Flickr/Rolf Venema

'Tis the season for giving and figuring out what to give people. May we suggest books? They're personal, easy to wrap and great stocking stuffers.

"On Second Thought" invited a group of Georgia independent bookstore owners to give through their recommendations for a spectrum of readers. 

Jessica Osborne from E Shaver in Savannah, Janet Geddis from Avid Bookshop in Athens and Charles Robinson from Eagle Eye Bookshop in Decatur all joined the conversation.


Today's show celebrated the complex histories of prohibition and Atlanta's Cyclorama, along with a preview of "The Bitter Southerner Podcast."


A new series on Discovery showcases competition, history, skill and  a cultural fascination with weaponry. Blacksmiths and gunsmiths from all over are assigned to build traditional weapons, including battle axes and swords. The winner walks away with $10,000 and the title, "Master of Arms."

The weapons are field-tested by a former special forces soldier and judged by a panel that includes Georgia native Trenton Tye. Tye is a blacksmith who runs a professional blacksmith shop in southwest Georgia. 

 


Courtesy Trenton Tye

A new series on Discovery showcases competition, history, skill and  a cultural fascination with weaponry. Blacksmiths and gunsmiths from all over are assigned to build traditional weapons, including battle axes and swords. The winner walks away with $10,000 and the title, "Master of Arms."

The weapons are field-tested by a former special forces soldier and judged by a panel that includes Georgia native Trenton Tye. Tye is a blacksmith who runs a professional blacksmith shop in southwest Georgia. 


Tuesday is again Election Day in Georgia with runoffs for secretary of state and a spot on the Public Service Commission. Voters will choose between Democrat John Barrow and Republican Brad Raffensberger for Brian Kemp's replacement as secretary of state and between Republican Chuck Eaton, the incumbent, and Democrat Lindy Miller for the Public Service Commission's third district. 


Courtesy Kennesaw State University

Are you looking to diversify your reading list? Look no further. Anthony Grooms is an author and creative writing professor at Kennesaw State University. He gave "On Second Thought" his recommendations for our "Southern Reading List" series on books that define and reflect the south. Grooms' recommendations include Patrick Phillips' "Blood at the Root" ; Gray Stewart's "Haylow"; and Ernest Gaines' "A Lesson Before Dying." 

Grooms' latest novel, "The Vain Conversation" focuses on the question of redemption from racial crimes. 


Gerry Broome/AP Photo

The Georgia Bureau of Investigations is now caught up on processing a backlog of sexual assault kits. These so-called "rape kits" preserve evidence that can be critical to prosecuting rapists. In 2016, the Georgia legislature passed a bill requiring faster submission of kits to the state crime lab.

That law followed the discovery of more than 1,300 untested kits at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta and subsequent revelations of nearly 10,000 untested kits statewide. The Georgia Bureau of Investigations finished testing those kits last month. Ann Burdges from End Violence Against Women Inernational joined "On Second Thought" to speak about the investigation and the latest developments. 


Georiga saw record turnout for the November midterms, but, as the state heads into runoff elections on Tuesday, early voting numbers are weak, especially among minorities.

“On Second Thought” invited Adrienne Jones to speak about the upcoming runoff election and voting issues. Jones is a political science assistant professor at Morehouse College. Ari Berman from Mother Jones also joined the conversation.

 


John Bazemore/AP Photo

Georgia saw record turnout for the November midterms, but, as the state heads into runoff elections on Tuesday, early voting numbers are weak, especially among minorities.

“On Second Thought” invited Adrienne Jones to speak about the upcoming runoff election and voting issues. Jones is a political science assistant professor at Morehouse College. Ari Berman from Mother Jones also joined the conversation.


Christiane Amanpour has been with CNN almost as long as the network has existed. She's covered the Gulf War, Bosnian War and Arab Spring. Amanpour moved to Atlanta in 1983 when she was hired by CNN as an entry-level desk assistant. She worked her way up to become chief international anchor for the international network.  

Armanpour was recently in Atlanta to accept her award in the Atlanta Press Club Hall of Fame. "On Second Thought" host Virginia Prescott met up with Amanpour before the ceremony and asked her about career as an international journalist.


On this Giving Tuesday, we learned about developments in climate change. The Trump administration recently released a major new report on climate change. The 1,600-page National Climate Assessment was published by the U.S. Global Change Research Program, a group of 13 federal agencies including the Department of Defense, the Environmental Protection Agency and NASA.

Michael Wall, director of farmer services for Georgia Organics, spoke with "On Second Thought" about what this report means for Georgia farmers and what some farmers are already doing to curb the effects of climate change. Kim Wall, a climate scientist and director of the Global Change Project at Georgia Tech, also spoke with us about the major takeaways from this report as well as efforts to fight climate change on Georgia's coast.  


Courtesy Next Generation Men and Women

Georgia’s high school graduation rate has increased over the past several years. For the second year in a row, the state’s graduation rate is above 80 percent. That’s according to the Georgia Department of Education.


It's National Adoption Awareness Month. Georgia's foster care system is in crisis. The number of kids in the state's custody rose 60 percent from 2010-2017. This year alone, 20,000 children have been in the state's foster care system — and there just aren't enough homes to house them.

Today we spoke with Dr. John Degarmo and Samantha Max about Georgia's foster care system and stigmas associated with fostering children. 


Courtesy: United States Department of Agriculture

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formally known as SNAP, was created in 1939 to help Americans who earn little or no money to buy food. In 2008, congressional leaders placed food programs like SNAP in the farm bill. That's when food assistance was seen as a largely urban issue. 

The idea was to encourage lawmakers with districts in cities to support rural agriculture. The SNAP map has since shifted. New U.S. Department of Agriculture numbers show SNAP participation is now highest in rural areas.


Today we filled up on music and stories of community before Thanksgiving. We spoke with Sharon Collins, whose documentary named "The Macon Sound" premieres Nov. 20 on GPB. The documentary explores musicians like Otis Redding and Little Richard who helped make the town a destination for artists all over the country.

We also figured out how to navigate tense family holiday situations with some wisdom from author Anita Sanchez, plus heard some Thanksgiving stories from Kay Powell and Dame Wilburn.


GPB

You know James Brown, Otis Redding and The Allman Brothers Band. They all carried big sounds all over the world and started in the fairly small city of Macon. A new documentary highlights some of Macon's most influential musicians and performers. It's called "The Macon Sound."

The film's executive producer and narrator, Sharon Collins, gave "On Second Thought" a preview.  "The Macon Sound" premieres Tuesday at 8 p.m. on GPB TV .


Today "On Second Thought" explored Georgia's economic and political landscape. We checked in with "Political Rewind" host Bill Nigut to discuss Brian Kemp's plans as the new governor of Georgia.

We also heard from professors, journalists and policy makers about Georgia's Amazon HQ2 bid and why Atlanta ranks worst in the nation for income inequality.

Flickr/tennisbear

Transgender Awareness Week is observed in November to educate people about transgender and gender non-conforming people and the issues associated with their transition or identity. The week ends with Transgender Day of Remembrance. The Transgender Day of Remembrance is observed annually on Nov. 20. TDOR was first coordinated in 1998 as a vigil to commemorate transgender individuals lost to violence during that year.

List of Events Celebrating Transgender Awareness Week: 

Today on the show, we heard from Shannon Browning-Mullis, curator of history and decorative arts for Telfair Museums. Browning-Mullis said Telfair Museums' Owens-Thomas House and Slave Quarters plans to reveal the newly-refurbished slave quarters at the Regency-era mansion to the public on Saturday, Nov. 17.


Jason Isbell/Twitter

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit's new album, "Live From The Ryman," is the band's latest live album. We spoke with Josh Jackson, Paste Magazine's editor-in-chief, about the new music. We also discussed upcoming performances from Kamasi Washington, Jim James and Migos.


Today on the show, we heard from the first black flight dispatcher for Delta, Joe Jackson. He retired this year after a career spanning 50 years with the company.

We also heard from "Votes That Count and Voters Who Don't" co-author and University of Texas professor Sharon Jarvis. She discussed how elections coverage affects voters and voting. Alison Law, host of the podcast "Literary Atlanta," shared her favorite southern books in another edition of our series, "Southern Reading List."


Alison Law/Twitter

The holidays are just around the corner. As we turn up the heat and the to-do lists grow, we recommend reading.

Alison Law is host of Literary Atlanta, a podcast for readers and writers. 


Joe Jackson

When Joe Jackson started working for Delta Airlines in 1968, he didn't realize he would become the first black flight dispatcher in Atlanta. Jackson's Delta career started in Miami where he entered the field as a ramp agent.


Over the past two decades, thousands of Catholic clergy worldwide have been accused as pedophiles. Last week, the Archdiocese of Atlanta and the Diocese of Savannah released the names of priests and seminarians under their respective authorities who have been "credibly" accused of sexually abusing minors dating back to the 1960s.

In most states, the statute of limitations on these cases has meant many accused priests have not faced criminal charges. But last month, a legal loophole led to former Savannah Diocese priest Wayland Brown pleading guilty to nine charges of criminal sexual conduct for abusing two boys in the 1970s and 1980s. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison..

One of those boys was Chris Templeton. Templeton was in eighth grade at St. James Catholic School in Savannah when the abuse began. Now 45, Templeton is sharing his story of resilience and his message of hope for other survivors of clergy sex abuse. 


The armistice declaring the end of World War I, on the "11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month" of 1918, was signed 100 years ago. Georgia contributed more than 100,000 men and women to the war effort, according to the New Georgia Encyclopedia. During U.S. involvement in the war from 1917-1918, the state was also home to more training camps than any other state.

   Georgia Humanities president Laura McCarty stopped by "On Second Thought" to talk about Georgians' contributions to the war effort and highlight some lesser known stories, including those of Moina Michael and Eugene Bullard. Michael, a former University of Georgia administrator, is credited with popularizing the poppy as a symbol of remembrance for those lost in the war. Bullard, from Columbus, Georgia, was the first African-American fighter pilot. Serving in the French military, Bullard predated the Tuskegee Airmen by more than 20 years. 

"On Second Thought" took a break from election coverage to hear from creatives all over Georgia about their work and what inspires them. We spoke with documentary filmmakers about "The Wanderer," a new GPB documentary about the penultimate slave ship to land in the U.S.. We also heard from Kalena Boller, whose GPB podcast, "The Credits," debuts today. 

We spoke to a group of people who make the creative economy possible. Susanna Spiccia from Re:Imagine ATL, Mitch Martin from BMI and Jason Hoch from How Stuff Works all joined the conversation.   

                                                                                                                                    

"The Credits"

Atlanta is nicknamed the "Hollywood of the South." Kalena Boller is an Atlanta-based location manager on major film and television projects. She decided to launch "The Credits" podcast, now on GPB, to tell the stories of the hardworking people who are are behind the cameras.


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