Virginia Prescott

Host, On Second Thought

Virginia Prescott is the Gracie Award-winning host of On Second Thought for Georgia Public Broadcasting. Before joining GPB, she was host of Word of Mouth, Writers on A New England Stage and the I-Tunes Top Ten Podcasts Civics 101 and The 10-Minute Writers Workshop on New Hampshire Public Radio. Prior to joining NHPR, she was editor, producer, and director on NPR programs On Point and Here & Now, and Director of Interactive media for New York Public Radio.

Throughout her radio career, Virginia has worked to build sustainable independent radio in the developing world and has trained journalists in post-conflict zones from Sierra Leone to the Balkans. She was a member of the Peabody Award-winning production team for Jazz from Lincoln Center with Ed Bradley and the recipient of a Loeb Fellowship at Harvard University.

Virginia loves working as a radio and podcast host, but regrets that so many good outfits go unnoticed.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Hollywood's Golden Age and the rise of fascism in Europe were happening at the same time, a world apart. Those worlds collided when Hollywood decided to tackle fascism in film.

 

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. opened the exhibit Americans and the Holocaust last year. Now, a traveling event focuses on how depictions of the Nazi agenda influenced American audiences, and why we fought. The event, called What Were We Watching? Americans Response to Nazism Through Cinema, Radio and Media, takes place Tuesday night at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. 

 

 


 

A number of curious laws are still on the books in Georgia. We cribbed a few from idiotlaws.com, if that tells you anything. But as obscure – and seemingly silly – as they are, the law is the law. Georgia State University law professor Tanya Washington joined us with an explanation of how laws get made, and how hard they are to change.


Courtesy Peyton Fulford / Getty Images

Stock photos are often the butt of jokes for being unrealistic, generic, overused and, now, perpetuating stereotypes. A new campaign from Getty Images, Dove Beauty and GirlGaze is working to change that.

Together, they've launched #ShowUs, the largest stock photo collection created by women. Their goal? To subvert beauty stereotypes.


Leighton Rowell / GPB

Whether you go yellow or white, sweet or savory, grits are a Southern food staple now popping up on menus all over the country.

Food writer Erin Byers Murray goes deep in Grits: A Cultural and Culinary Journey Through the South, talking with growers, millers and chefs to understand the origins and evolution of grits. Along the way, she examines how race, gender and politics simmer in the significance of grits.


GPB

The busy season for Georgia state lawmakers is now over.  Yes, the legislative session wrapped up April 2, but Sunday marked the final close to the 2019 lawmaking season.  Gov. Brian Kemp had 40 days after Sine Die to publicly sign or veto bills.  Now, everything that hasn’t seen his pen automatically becomes law.


Sunday was Gov. Brian Kemp's last day to sign or veto legislation. GPB politics reporter Stephen Fowler joined On Second Thought to explain which bills are now law. Fowler also debriefed us on the U.S. House vote on relief funds for farmers and others recovering from natural disasters.


Don Ryan / AP

Gov. Brian Kemp on Friday signed a bill into law that allows Georgia farmers to grow hemp. The crop is the source of products ranging from rope to soap to CBD oil.

Flux Projects

On Second Thought regularly shares news stories: pictures of kids, babies and food via text and social media. Flux Projects executive director Anne Archer Dennington stopped by the studio and shared a song. 

Flux Projects will bring performance group Choir! Choir! Choir! to Atlanta on Mother's Day to lead  participants in a popular '90s song. The group will sing TLC's "Waterfalls" from a mother's point of view. 


Health care is the number one cause of personal bankruptcies in the U.S., and medical spending makes up more than 17% percent of the nation’s economy. In other words: going to the doctor can be darned expensive — especially in Georgia. Hear why prices here can be higher and can vary significantly, even in the same city.

 

 


Hope Givers Festival / Twitter

The U.S. Mental Health Care System is a multi-billion dollar industry, yet countless people living with or affected by mental illness fall through the cracks.

Georgia ranks 47th out of 50 for access to mental health care, resources and insurance coverage making it even tougher to live with disorders most data and experts find to be under-researched, undertreated and over-stigmatized.

Nasser Nasser / AP

Healthcare costs make up almost a fifth of spending in the U.S. economy, and they’re the number one cause of personal bankruptcies. It’s well known that doctor’s visits and medical procedures are expensive, but it turns out they can be especially pricey in some parts of Georgia. 


Every year around Mother's Day, Michele Filgate braces herself for the affectionate photos and social media tributes to mothers. It's not for lack of wanting to see women celebrated, but the painful awareness of her own strained relationship with her mother.

That void deepened when the author and literary critic published an essay entitled "What My Mother and I Don't Talk About," about serial abuse by her stepfather and her mother's denial of it.


Growing up in Atlanta in the 1970s, Jonathan Weisman didn't think much about anti-Semitism. In fact, he didn't think much about being Jewish until 2016. That's when, as deputy editor of the Washington Bureau of The New York Times, he posted a quote from an op-ed about facism on Twitter. That tweet unleashed a torrent of anti-Semitic images, threats and other forms of cyber-stalking that shattered his complacency.


Gnats don’t read maps, but the bugs do seem hesitant to cross an unseen, geographic boundary in Georgia. Learn about the disparities north and south of the "gnat line" from Tales from the Gnat Line author and longtime state lawmaker Larry Walker.


La'Raven Taylor

In the American South, there are state borders, variations in topography and accents. There's also the gnat line. That's the fall line where the piedmont meets the coastal plain. It's actually the sandy soil south of the line where gnats or pesky little critters live out their short lives, but they also have a penchant for flying into noses and eyes.


Courtesy of Happy Fish Productions

Professional wrestling boomed when cable hit in the late '70s and early '80s. Shows like Georgia Championship Wrestling and Mid-South Wrestling planted dreams of glory in the heads and hearts of muscular southern boys. Ted "The Million Dollar Man" DiBiase, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka and Billy "Superstar" Graham all had important matches in Georgia. They are among dozens of stars who took hits outside the ring. 

The documentary film 350 Days looks into the hard knock lives of professional wrestlers in what's known as the golden age of wrestling.


Courtesy Daniel Parvis

Most Americans say they know at least some of their neighbors, but admit they tend to interact less with neighbors who don't belong to the same class, race or political party, according to the Pew Research Center. So, when Tania del Valle and her husband Pablo move into the fixer-upper next door to Frank and Virginia Butley's historic home, a saga of microaggressions ensues.

Those racial, generational and economic tensions play out in Native Gardens, on stage this month at Lawrenceville's Aurora Theatre. Costars Fedra Ramirez-Olivares and Carolyn Cook, who portray Tania del Valle and Virginia Butley, respectively, joined On Second Thought in studio to share more about their production and the play's real-life parallels in Gwinnett County. 


Even if you can't put your finger on it, Takénobu's music might sound familiar to you. That's because the "cinematic folk" from the classically trained Atlanta locals are frequently used on NPR shows and in video or film, including the new documentary 42 Grams.

Takénobu takes its name from cellist Nick Ogawa, who performs with his violinist (and fiancée) Kathryn Koch. The two have a new album called Conclusion coming out on May 24, and an upcoming tour with Kishi Bashi. But before they gear up for a big 2019, they joined On Second Thought to share their story.


Credit: Gregory Miller

Even if you can't put your finger on it, Takénobu's music might sound familiar to you. That's because the "cinematic folk" from the classically trained Atlanta locals is frequently used on NPR shows and in video or film, including the new documentary 42 Grams.

 

Courtesy Alex Williamson / Teaching Tolerance

Grade school teachers reported more than 3,000 hate incidents in schools during the fall 2018 semester, a new survey from the Southern Poverty Law Center's Teaching Tolerance program has found. Those incidents, however, often went undisciplined by school leaders – and less than a third made it into the news.

Teaching Tolerance Director Maureen Costello joined On Second Thought on the line from Montgomery, Alabama, to share more of the report's findings. 


Hate incidents are on the rise in American schools, according to a new report from the Teaching Tolerance project at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Teaching Tolerance Director Maureen Costello joined On Second Thought on the line from Montgomery, Alabama, to discuss the report's findings.


Courtesy of Ten Speed Press

Ernest Matthew Mickler's White Trash Cooking was released in 1986 to mixed reviews. Some of the recipes in the cookbook include "Uncle Willie's Swamp Cabbage Stew," "Rabbit Pie" and "Broiled Squirrel." Critics wondered if the book was for shock value or if it was just another elitist dig at poor southerners.  

Michael Adno's profile of Mickler portrays a man who took pride in his disappearing southern heritage and in the food served by his Florida relatives and neighbors —the same people he felt rejected by as a gay man.


You may have heard Curtis Harding's voice before, perhaps without realizing it. That's because, for a number of years, he worked with a familiar Atlanta native: CeeLo Green. Harding sang back-up vocals for CeeLo and even co-wrote songs with the Grammy Award-winning musician, like "Grand Canyon" — which was a bonus track on CeeLo's 2010 album, The Lady Killer

After that and several other collaborations, Harding launched his solo career, applying his distinctive falsetto vocals to his own style of music, which he calls "slop 'n' soul."

 


Credit: Matt Correia

You may have heard Curtis Harding's voice before, perhaps without realizing it. That's because, for a number of years, he worked with a familiar Atlanta native: CeeLo Green. Harding sang back-up vocals for CeeLo and even co-wrote songs with the Grammy Award-winning musician, like "Grand Canyon" — which was a bonus track on CeeLo's 2010 album, The Lady Killer

After that and several other collaborations, Harding launched his solo career, applying his distinctive falsetto vocals to his own style of music, which he calls "slop 'n' soul."

Over his 19-year career with the Navy SEALs, Special Operations Chief Edward "Eddie" Gallagher earned high honors for valor and leadership as a medic, sniper and explosives expert. But less than a year after Gallagher returned from his eighth deployment – fighting the Islamic State in Mosul, Iraq – he drew a different kind of attention from the Navy: he was charged with war crimes, among them premeditated murder. Gallagher's case goes to trial in May. He and his family have denied all charges.

When New York Times national correspondent Dave Philipps began reporting on Gallagher's case, he thought he might learn that Gallagher had suffered some kind of psychotic break as the result of numerous combat deployments over the course of nearly two decades. But what Philipps has found, through interviews and hundreds of pages of internal military documents, defied expectations. Joining on the line from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Philipps told On Second Thought that Gallagher's case reveals a Navy SEAL culture "split between loyalty and justice." 

 


Over his 19-year career with the Navy SEALs, Special Operations Chief Edward "Eddie" Gallagher earned high honors for valor and leadership as a medic, sniper and explosives expert. But less than a year after Gallagher returned from his eighth deployment – fighting the Islamic State in Mosul, Iraq – he drew a different kind of attention from the Navy: he was charged with war crimes, among them premeditated murder. Gallagher's case goes to trial in May. He and his family have denied all charges.

When New York Times national correspondent Dave Philipps began reporting on Gallagher's case, he thought he might learn that Gallagher had suffered some kind of psychotic break as the result of numerous combat deployments over the course of nearly two decades. But what Philipps has found, through interviews and hundreds of pages of internal military documents, defied expectations. Joining on the line from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Philipps told On Second Thought that Gallagher's case reveals a Navy SEAL culture "split between loyalty and justice." 


courtesy of Synchronocity Theater

We hear stories about the sacrifices military spouses make. But the wife's perspective is rarely at the center. That's why playwright Aline Lathrop decided to highlight that angle in The Hero's Wife - a play that's showing at Synchronicity Theater in Atlanta. It's an intimate look at a couple dealing with the invisible wounds of combat.


Jae C. Hong / AP Images

Georgia is home to hundreds of thousands of military veterans. The state also boasts tens of thousands of active duty and reserve personnel. Sometimes, those numbers come with four letters: PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. 

On Second Thought continued a conversation with New York Times reporter David Philipps about his investigative research on Navy Seals and war crimes. Liza Zwiebach also joined the conversation with her clinical expertise. 


Upon first listen, you may not realize that the dreamy indie-pop music of Philadelphia-based Japanese Breakfast was inspired by grief.

Michelle Zauner, the woman behind the songs, began the project while navigating her mother's battle with cancer, and mourning her death. Both of Japanese Breakfast's albums — 2016's Psychopomp and 2017's Soft Sounds From Another Planet — were an exploration of that pain and sadness. That does not mean the albums sound morose, though.

 


Courtesy Kyanna Simone Simpson

Kyanna Simone Simpson shows no signs of stopping. The Decatur native and University of Georgia student's first Netflix series, Chambers, was just released. Her new film Ma, with Octavia Spencer, hits theaters May 31. And Oprah Winfrey told Vanity Fair she'd pick Simpson to portray her in a biopic. 

Simpson's previous credits include The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, in which she acted alongside Winfrey as the younger version of Winfrey's character, Deborah Lacks. She's also appeared as Keisha in the CW's Black Lightning.


Pages