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News

Parents File Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Savannah State University

Jun 2, 2016
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The parents of Christopher Starks, a student who was killed last year at Savannah State University, have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the State Board of Regents.

Starks was shot in August at the Student Union after an altercation with an unidentified individual. Starks died a short time later at a Savannah hospital.

Shean Williams is an attorney for the Starks family. He said even though the university is gated it still has a history of security issues and violent crime.

Linda Chen/GPB News

Friendships have ended, feelings have been hurt and a cultural war has been declared over the latest national debate to rage on social media: How do you like your grits? Sweet, salty, buttery or cheesy... how you flavor this dish calls into question taste and Southern identity.

We speak about this cultural divide and learn about the history of grits from chef and cookbook author Virginia Willis.

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Friendships have ended, feelings have been hurt and a cultural war has been declared over the latest national debate to rage on social media: How do you like your grits? We speak about this cultural divide and learn about the history of grits from chef and cookbook author Virginia Willis. 

 

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Atlanta is currently constructing two new stadiums, Mercedes-Benz Stadium in downtown Atlanta and SunTrust Field in Cobb County. Although the allure of a shiny new building is exciting for some, others are growing tired of the sacrifices Atlanta is making to create these billion dollar projects.

GPB's own Don Smith adds another installment to our "Gripe Bag" series and vents his frustration about Atlanta's fascination with athletic structures. 

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The Atlanta Braves are currently in the basement of MLB standings with only 15 wins this season. The team is banking on their move to SunTrust Park in Cobb County next year to galvanize the fan base. But rising costs to the construction project, along with several money saving cuts to traffic-reducing infrastructure, may only increase the congestion that Cobb County is already notorious for.

We talk with Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Dan Klepal and blogger Angie Scmitt of Streetsblog USA about the mounting problems surrounding the controversial stadium project.

Engage Cuba Coalition Launches Georgia Council

Jun 1, 2016
Matias Garabedian / Creative Commons

Engage Cuba, a national 501(c)(4) advocacy group focused on lifting the Cuban trade and travel embargo, established a state council in Georgia late last week. Addie Bryant, the chief of staff at Engage Cuba, said that Cuba imports almost 80 percent of its food. She explained that ending the embargo opens up the possibility to boost Georgia’s export economy.

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Last month, we discussed the #NeverTrump social media movement and asked if conservative voters would stick with the Republican Party or look for a different option should Donald Trump became the GOP nominee. Now, with Hillary Clinton approaching victory in the Democratic primary, a #NeverHillary movement has attracted voters who vow not to support her bid for the White House, no matter the options. This has pushed voters away from Clinton and toward Bernie Sanders, third party candidates, and even Trump.

Sean Powers / On Second Thought

Atlanta-based New York Daily News columnist Shaun King writes about race, justice, social inequality and, of course, politics.  He doesn’t shy away when it comes to his own politics.  In a recent op-ed, King revealed that he plans to leave the Democratic Party after the 2016 presidential election.  We talk to the life-long Democrat about why his political affiliation no longer resonates with him and what’s next.  

Last month, we discussed the #NeverTrump social media movement and asked if conservative voters would stick with the Republican Party or look for a different option should Donald Trump became the GOP nominee. Now, with Hillary Clinton approaching victory in the Democratic primary, a #NeverHillary movement has attracted voters who vow not to support her bid for the White House, no matter the options. This has pushed voters away from Clinton and toward Bernie Sanders, third party candidates, and even Trump.

Wiki Commons

A cry for help came in the form of a shocking Twitter handle last month. A user called @RapedAtSpelman sent a series of messages about a violent sexual attack on the campus of Spelman College. The anonymous author accused four men from Morehouse College of rape. 

Spelman is Morehouse's sister school. The writer also accused Spelman of a lack of response after she reported the crime, and she cited the close relationship between the two historically black institutions as the reason her story was swept under the rug. 

Professor Raymond Gavins passed away last week, at the age of 77,  leaving behind a powerful legacy from his time as a historian at Duke University. The Atlanta native helped build an audio treasure trove of previously unheard African-American voices from the era of legalized segregation.  The collection is known as the "Behind the Veil Project."

We take a moment to eulogize Gavins and remember the arduous journey he took in order to better his fellow man. 

Medical errors are now the third leading cause of death in the U.S. Why? We talk with a pair of experts about new research that points to what goes wrong during patient treatment and ask if the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should be involved in raising awareness about this as a public health issue.

Gucci Mane No Longer Behind Bars

May 31, 2016
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Atlanta rapper Gucci Mane is almost as known for his run-ins with the law as he is for his raw, Southern-fried lyrics. He was recently released from prison after serving almost three years, but incarceration didn’t do much to curb his creative drive. From behind bars, he released more than a dozen new albums, a movie, and an autobiography is in the works. 

We speak with Atlanta hip-hop artist Makonnen and hip-hop scholar Regina Bradley about Gucci Mane’s influence on hip-hop in the South.

NOAA National Hurricane Center

A tropical storm off the Southeastern coast caused flooding in several Savannah streets Memorial Day weekend.

 

The National Weather Service is encouraging residents to remain well guarded against flood areas and seek alternate routes. Officials say never attempt to drive through standing water.

 

The Breakroom gang joins guest host Adam Ragusea to weigh in on the week's news.

Guest host Adam Ragusea revisits a conversation about white nose syndrome, the deadly fungal disease that has rapidly reduced Georgia's bat population. We discuss the effects on the state's vulnerable agriculture industry.

 

Then, we add to our ever-growing, essential Georgia Playlist with help from singer Chandra Currelley. This weekend, she will perform at the Atlanta Jazz Festival.

GPB

Marvel Comics dropped a bombshell this week about one of its most popular characters, Captain America. The passionate reaction to the news shows what a close connection fans can feel to comic book characters.  This weekend, that connection will be celebrated at the annual MomoCon convention in Atlanta.  We talk with Atlanta comic book artist Dexter Vines, who’s one of the event's featured speakers.

 

 

The big game returns to Georgia! Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank and civil rights leader Andrew Young made a successful pitch to host the Super Bowl in Atlanta in 2019. That new stadium didn't hurt the bid much either.

Courtesy of the Atlanta Jazz Festival

Twenty years ago, Atlanta singer and songwriter Joi transcended the traditional sounds of R&B with the release of her debut album, “The Pendulum Vibe.” She’s now considered as one of the originators of the neo-soul music movement and has collaborated with artists like OutKast and Goodie Mob. She returns home this week to headline the Atlanta Jazz Festival on Friday night.

We speak with Joi about her music and how the Atlanta music scene has changed. 

alist / flickr

Many air travelers are experiencing long lines and headaches as extreme delays continue at airport security checkpoints across the country. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed told reporters this week that he doesn't want Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport to become a poster child for stalled traveler traffic. 

Our country is growing ever grayer as baby boomers age in large numbers. A massive study at Emory University that takes an in-depth look at the aging process is underway. Emory hopes to bring together 100,000 people to study physical and mental health, sickness, and other factors that affect the elderly. We sit down with university researcher Michele Marcus to learn a little bit more about the study and what they hope to uncover.  

wikipedia.org

Our country is growing ever grayer as the baby boomers age in large numbers. A massive study at Emory University that takes an in-depth look at the aging process is underway. Emory hopes to bring together 100,000 people to study physical and mental health, sickness, and other factors that affect the elderly.  We sit down with university researcher Michele Marcus to learn a little bit more about the study and what they hope to uncover. 

Come this December, millions of American workers will be eligible for overtime pay. That's because of a new policy finalized by the Labor Department. In our regular series, “Break It Down,” we talk about the history of the 40-hour work week. Then, Wall Street Journal reporter Melanie Trottman discusses how the new overtime protections work and who’s covered by them.

Waffle House

Come this December, millions of American workers will be eligible for overtime pay. That's because of a new policy finalized by the Labor Department. In our regular series, “Break It Down,” we talk about the history of the 40-hour work week. Then, Wall Street Journal reporter Melanie Trottman discusses how the new overtime protections work and who’s covered by them.

Wiki Commons

A poll by the evangelical firm Barna Group found Christians who regularly attend church, and those who don’t, have very different feelings when it comes to presidential candidate Donald Trump. More than a third of churchgoers hold unfavorable opinions of the de facto Republican nominee while other Republicans who identify as Christian generally like him.

First, we speak with Anthony Mackie, who is currently lighting up the silver screen as Falcon in “Captain America: Civil War.” Mackie’s next role is a completely different heroic challenge. He plays Martin Luther King Jr. in the upcoming HBO film, “All the Way.” Bryan Cranston will star alongside Mackie in the role of Lyndon B. Johnson. The story introduces the two political figures at the height of the Civil Rights movement in a country torn apart by the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

Olivia Reingold/GPB News

The Breakroom comes together to discuss the week’s news, including tuition for sports and whether the viewing habits of our politicians matter.

Joining us for The Breakroom:

  • Greg Williams, host of the conservative radio show "Greg’s List"
  • Bee Nguyen, Executive Director of Athena’s Warehouse
  • Roxanne Donovan, Associate Professor of Psychology and Interdisciplinary Studies at Kennesaw State University
  • Chuck Reece, Editor of the Bitter Southerner 

wikipedia.org

The nationwide debate concerning transgender bathroom access has finally made its way to Georgia. A policy issued from the White House states that school systems that deny transgender youths access to the facilities of their choice could lose federal aid as a result.

We chat with Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Eric Stirgus about the mandate and what effect it may have on Georgia schools.

Some were sentenced to prison. Some to jail. Others to home confinement. But many of the eleven Atlanta Public Schools educators who were convicted of racketeering in a cheating scandal last year can now return to the classroom. We learn more from Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Molly Bloom. Plus, the Atlanta Public Schools cheating trial was the longest in the state’s history. The appeals process is set to begin later this year. But before that can happen, transcripts of months of testimony need to be completed. That task falls to court reporter Evelyn Parker.

Kent D. Johnson / Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP, Pool, File

Many of the 11 Atlanta Public Schools educators who were convicted of racketeering in a cheating scandal last year can now return to the classroom. We learn more from Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Molly Bloom. 

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