The Takeaway

Monday through Thursday from 12 pm to 1 pm
  • Hosted by John Hockenberry

Produced by Public Radio International, WGBH and WNYC. The Takeaway is America's weekday conversation.

Almost two years ago, The Takeaway brought listeners the story of Alex Diaz, a high school dropout, former gang member and convicted felon who had his sights firmly fixed on going to college. Diaz told us that merely starting out on the pathway towards college was a struggle because of his troubled past, which required him to challenge others' low expectations.

For a decade, journalist Paula Froelich was the deputy editor of the New York Post’s celebrity and gossip section, Page Six. Like many others who have traveled in Hollywood circles, she has a story about the now-infamous media mogul, Harvey Weinstein.

Her story begins in the year 2000, when Froelich attended a party — a party where Weinstein was also a guest.

Mike Blake/Reuters

Deadly wildfires are ripping across Northern California, scorching more than 115,000 acres across eight counties. At least 13 people have been confirmed dead.

Multiple fires are now burning across the region’s wine country, which includes Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino counties. The blazes have forced tens of thousands of people to evacuate and destroyed 1,500 structures, including mobile home parks, houses and wineries.

Puerto Rico calls for more federal help after Hurricane Maria

Sep 26, 2017
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters 

Over the weekend, President Donald Trump spent his time criticizing athletes who protest during the national anthem, all while Puerto Ricans struggled to find gas and water, and their governor pleaded for aid.

Would Superman be a DACA recipient?

Sep 20, 2017
Courtesy of DC Comics

The latest issue of the “Superman” comic has outraged some, and inspired others.

In Action Comics #987, the iconic character steps up to defend immigrants from an armed white American who is angry over the loss of his factory job.

Barbuda needs the world's help right now

Sep 13, 2017

Barbuda has been left completely devastated by Hurricane Irma. An estimated 95 percent of Barbuda’s structures are damaged, and the entire island of around 1,800 people has been evacuated.

“The damage is complete,” says Ambassador Ronald Sanders, who has served as Antigua and Barbuda’s ambassador to the US since 2015. “For the first time in 300 years, there’s not a single living person on the island of Barbuda — a civilization that has existed on that island for over 300 years has now been extinguished.”

Salman Rushdie is the author of 12 novels, but he’s still best known for his 1988 book “The Satanic Verses.” It garnered charges of blasphemy from Islamist extremists and even led to the ayatollah of Iran placing a $6 million bounty on Rushdie’s head. Rushdie stretched the bounds of realism and fantasy in “The Satanic Verses,” but in his latest novel he’s doing the opposite.

Trump's Arpaio pardon draws bipartisan criticism

Aug 28, 2017
Brian Snyder/Reuters file photo

Late last month, former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio was convicted by a federal judge of criminal contempt. The judge ruled that Arpaio had deliberately ignored a 2011 federal injunction to stop racially profiling Latinos, which stemmed from a class action lawsuit.

John Hockenberry gives us his takeaway

Aug 11, 2017
The Takeaway 

So, what do you say about nearly 10 years of your life measured out in radio programs?

For me, it's that long, though not for most of you, because this show was birthed in the shadows of a long-forgotten mission to become a public radio alternative in morning drive time. That goal, which was written into grant proposals and pitches, launched The Takeaway. Then two of the biggest stories of the century — the election of Barack Obama and the financial debacle that almost took down the global economy — lifted us steadily as a place where people could hear ideas mixed with the news.

The Trump-Russia investigation: A timeline

Aug 10, 2017
Carlos Barria/Reuters 

Possible ties between the Kremlin and President Donald Trump have dominated headlines for months. Here's everything you need to know about the ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the Kremlin's alleged collusion with the Trump campaign.

<a href="https://story.californiasunday.com/mario-woods-after-shooting">Erica Deeman/California Sunday</a>

Michael Brown, Philando Castile, Walter Scott — these names have entered the public lexicon as attention and outrage continue to mount over officer-involved shootings. But there’s another name on that list you may not be so familiar with: Mario Woods.

In December 2015, Woods died after he was shot 21 times by San Francisco Police officers. He was 26.

Sonia Narang

Since World War II, the US has operated a large military base in the central part of Okinawa — a now-crowded island city in Japan's southernmost prefecture. More than half of about 50,000 US service members in Japan are stationed on Okinawa.

Now, the US and Japanese governments are planning to move the Marine base to a more pristine place — the rural fishing village of Henoko. There's already a small base there, but locals are waging a major fight against the expansion.

'Act of terrorism' at Minnesota mosque rattles Muslims

Aug 8, 2017
Courtesy of Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center Facebook page

A violent message was delivered to Minnesota’s Muslim population early Saturday morning. At 5:05 a.m. local time, an improvised explosive device went off inside an imam’s office at the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington, Minnesota.

About a dozen worshipers were gathered nearby in the mosque for morning prayers, but no one was injured in the explosion. Congregants called the attack a hate crime, a sentiment echoed by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton.

Momentum builds to end surgery on intersex newborns

Aug 4, 2017

America is at something of a turning point when it comes to issues of gender identity and gender expression.

Though messaging from the White House has become increasingly hostile, transgender Americans are slowly gaining more societal acceptance. Just this week, the commandant of the US Coast Guard said he would not “break faith” with transgender personnel, and would not enforce President Donald Trump’s ban on transgender servicemembers in the military.

As the complicated and messy fight over immigration policy drags on, immigration detention centers are costing American taxpayers billions.

Last year, Immigration and Customs Enforcement spent more than $3 billion dealing with immigrants facing deportation. But that figure doesn’t tell the whole story.

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/mattradickal/6214765816/">Matt Radick/The State News</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0 (image cropped)</a>

Just over a year after President Barack Obama introduced a new policy to allow transgender people to serve openly in the US military, President Donald Trump is reinstating a ban on transgender service members.

He announced the reforms on Wednesday over Twitter:

The Indiana Jones of the art world may solve history’s biggest art heist

Jul 25, 2017

Back in 1990, two thieves disguised as police officers walked into Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and walked out with 13 pieces of art worth $500 million. In May, decades after the statute of limitations expired on the crime, the museum doubled the reward — to $10 million — for the return of the pieces.

Signs of American military life are everywhere in the cramped Tijuana apartment: a US flag hangs on the wall, Army patches cover a camouflaged backpack and photos of uniformed men line a shelf.

"It was very difficult to transition, the first couple months," said Hector Barajas, a former US Army paratrooper, who was deported to Mexico in 2010 and calls the apartment home.

Army veteran Mario Martinez spent six years of his life fighting for the United States.

Now, he's fighting for the right to keep living here.

Martinez, 54, was born in Mexico, but came to the US as a young child and became a legal resident. He joined the Army, served with the 82nd Airborne Division, and earned an honorable discharge. But more than a decade after he left the service, he was convicted of a felony, putting his immigration status in jeopardy.

After a series of secretive meetings, Republican lawmakers in the Senate have finally revealed their plan to repeal and replace huge parts of the Affordable Care Act.

The Ocean Cleanup

Plastics, litter and all sorts of debris have polluted our waters for years. While prevention is key, ocean cleanup also presents a daunting task.

One young ocean lover is confronting this challenge head on.

The Confederate origins of Memorial Day

May 29, 2017
Brian Snyder/Reuters

The following is not a full transcript; for the full story, listen to the audio.

Memorial Day is typically considered the unofficial beginning of summer. In the US we inaugurate the season with barbecues, beach parties, blockbuster films, and bargain hunting. But that's not how Memorial Day was envisioned by the Southern women who honored the fallen soldiers of the Civil War.

How immigration detention creates a shadow prison system

May 18, 2017
Lucy Nicholson/Reuters&nbsp;

For much of the 20th century, immigration detention was a concept that was scoffed at. But today, the practice of apprehending immigrants and holding them in custody has created a shadow prison system, served by hundreds of federal and private facilities throughout the country.

With Comey's dismissal, are we careening towards a constitutional crisis?

May 10, 2017
Joshua Roberts/Reuters&nbsp;

For many people, President Donald Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey brings back memories of former President Richard Nixon, who called for the dismissal of the special prosecutor investigating the Watergate scandal.

Jeffrey Rosen, a professor of law at George Washington University and president of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, says while it has raised a lot of questions, Trump was acting within his authority when he terminated Comey. 

Former NSA director says this White House can't handle the truth

May 9, 2017
Larry Downing/Reuters&nbsp;

On Monday, it was revealed that former President Barack Obama warned then-President-elect Donald Trump not to hire Gen. Michael Flynn. That was two days after the November presidential election. Despite the warning, President Trump selected Flynn as national security adviser. Flynn was later fired for lying to Vice President Mike Pence about his discussions with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

<a href="http://www.wmfe.org/a-boy-in-prison-by-age-fourteen/71033" style="font-size: 13.008px;">St. Edwards University/WMFE</a>&nbsp;

Each year, millions of children flock to Orange County, Florida, to visit Disney World. But in the background, there is a darker story at work.

Orange County has the highest number of juvenile arrests in the state. From June 2015 to June 2016, police arrested more young people in Orange County than Miami-Dade County, where the population is almost double. Nearly 64 percent of those incarcerated are African American boys.

Finland's guaranteed basic income is working to tackle poverty

May 6, 2017
Tuomas Forsell/Reuters&nbsp;

In several corners of the world, nonprofits and governments are introducing guaranteed basic income.

Entire villages in Kenya have been receiving a basic income through a charity program, there's a small test initiative in the Netherlands, India is considering it, and Canada is rolling out a basic income pilot program in several cities in Ontario this summer.

Meet LoweBot, a customer-service robot here to give you 'superpowers'

May 4, 2017
Isabel Angell/The Takeaway

It's the free market that decides which jobs stay and which jobs go, and technology and innovation are changing the present and shaping the future of the US labor market.

A trip to a Lowe’s hardware store in the San Francisco Bay Area shows this shift well. On the floor of this big-box home improvement store in east San Jose, shoppers can interact with a white plastic pillar that is touchscreen-enabled and speaks directly to users.

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/usdagov/6238070477/">USDA</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>&nbsp;(image cropped)

Nutritional standards in schools, which were established in the Obama era and championed by former first lady Michelle Obama, are now being relaxed under the Trump administration.

On Monday, the US Department of Agriculture announced that it “will provide greater flexibility in nutrition requirements for school meal programs” — which advocates say could lead to lower standards for milk, sodium and whole grains, among other things.

What we know so far about the police shooting of Jordan Edwards

May 2, 2017
Courtesy of Lee Merritt

Details are still emerging on the latest police shooting of an unarmed black teen. On Saturday, a police officer in the Dallas suburb of Balch Springs shot 15-year-old Jordan Edwards, a high school freshman, through the passenger side window of a car. The officers were responding to calls of underage drinking at a house party.

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