Current State

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Mid-Michigan's news destination for the informed, the caring and the curious. News and issues, arts and attitudes, and the personalities that make the heart of Michigan beat.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

'Moo Cluck Moo' bucks wage trend at $12 per hour

'Moo Cluck Moo' in Dearborn Heights starts its employees at $12 per hour. It's not precisely a living wage, but significantly higher than Michigan's minimum wage, which is $7.40 per hour.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Last week, thousands of fast food restaurant employees across the country walked out of their kitchens and into the streets to demand a living wage. They were demanding their companies pay them $15 per hour...well above the national average.  There were protests in several Michigan cities, including Detroit, Flint and Lansing.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Fall films are a mix of flair and fizzle

Current State's Emanuele Berry chats with MLive film critic John Serba about this fall's movie crop.
Credit Flickr/Joe & Jeanette Archie

From tales of slavery to adventures in outer space, this year’s crop of fall films runs the gamut.  Current State’s Emanuele Berry chats with MLive.com entertainment reporter and film critic John Serba about the upcoming film season.  They started with a film neither is excited to see: a dance flick entitled “Battle of the Year.”

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:33 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Current State #152 | September 5, 2013

Today on Current State: campaign helps Michigan residents understand Affordable Care Act; Detroit princess of 1800's; Michigan LGBT laws; and new exhibits at the Broad Art Museum.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:32 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Campaign helps Michigan residents navigate Affordable Care Act

Erin Knott, State Director for Enroll America, said that their mission is to educate people, provide them with resources and then get them to commit to seriously looking into Affordable Care Act plans when they are available on October 1st.
Credit Wikimedia commons

Though the Michigan Senate may have delayed the expansion of Medicaid until likely the spring, the fast approaching date of October 1st still looms large. That’s when the new health insurance marketplaces, one of the key components of the Affordable Care Act, will open for enrollment.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:30 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Detroit born princess considered Kim Kardashian of the 1800’s

Clara Ward was the daughter of Eber Ward, the first millionaire in Detroit.
Wikimedia Commons

Actress Grace Kelly was not the first American princess. In the late 19th century, young American heiresses exchanged their wealth for titles, marrying into the European elite. One such heiress was Clara Ward, who was born in Detroit in 1873. She married a Belgian Prince, becoming Princesse de Caraman-Chimay, but Clara’s story is no traditional fairy tale.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:29 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Michigan advocates assess LGBT landscape

The city of East Lansing is considering the establishment of a domestic partnership registry to more formally acknowledge gay and lesbian couples.
Credit Wikimedia commons

Last week, the Internal Revenue Service announced that for taxation purposes, it would recognize all legally married couples, gay and straight.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:26 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Hope Gangloff's portraits featured in Broad Art Museum

Alison Gass of the Broad Art Museum says the Gangloff works are kicking off a three-part series of exhibitions tying new works with others from the collection of the former Kresge Art Museum.
Credit Hope Gangloff

The Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University will open four new exhibitions this month, with artist Hope Gangloff launching the first on Friday.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:48 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Current State #151 | September 4, 2013

Today on Current State: Medicaid expansion in Michigan; Niowave redesigns controversial building; the impact of Ariel Castro's death on his victims; Public Poetry Announcement; aging out of foster care; and the Wharton Center's upcoming season. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:47 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Medicaid expansion goes to Governor as Feds consider waivers

Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to sign legislation the Medicaid expansion bill, though it was not given immediate effect.
Credit File photo/WKAR

Governor Rick Snyder says he looks forward to signing a Medicaid expansion bill when he returns in a couple of weeks from a trade mission to Asia. In the meantime, the state will continue to negotiate with the federal government on the program.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:45 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Walnut Neighborhood residents pleased with Niowave's final agreement on pole barn

Neighbors say they're satisfied with the revised look of the Niowave building.
Credit Courtesy/C2AE

The last year has been a trying one for Lansing’s Niowave Corporation and its residential neighbors in the area north of downtown. The Lansing Economic Area Partnership has spent months forging an agreement between the company and its neighbors over how to improve the appearance of a large metal building that went up  last summer.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:45 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Public Poetry Announcement: Brenda Shaughnessy

Credit Flickr/d'emploi

Brenda Shaughnessy's "Visitor" is the featured Public Poetry Announcement read by Current State contributor Stephanie Glazier.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:44 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

MSU expert weighs impact of Ariel Castro's death on victims

Ariel Castro held his captives in this Cleveland home.
Credit Flickr/mikelynaugh

Ariel Castro, the man who was recently convicted for holding three women captive in his Cleveland home for nearly a decade, was found hanged in his cell earlier today. Prison officials are calling it a suicide.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:37 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Neighbors in Action: Teens aging out of foster care face many challenges

Our Neighbors in Action series this week looks at social work professionals who help children who age out of the foster care system. St. Vincent Catholic Charities in Lansing offers a long term residential care program for children aged five to 17.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:36 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Highlights of new Wharton Center season include 'Book of Mormon'

'The Book of Mormon' headlines the Wharton Center Broadway schedule in June of 2014. Mark Evans stars.
Credit Wharton Center/Joan Marcus

September brings the start of the season for many activities on the MSU campus, including events at the Wharton Center for Performing Arts

Current State's Peter Whorf checks in with Wharton executive director Mike Brand for a preview of the 2013-14 lineup.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:26 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Current State #150 | September 3, 2013

 

Today on Current State: MSU professor on the conflict in Syria; Detroit’s Water Renaissance series; Right to Work after first Labor Day; Al Jazeera America launches Detroit bureau; and the HopCat bar in East Lansing.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:24 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Few paths forward in Syria lead to desirable outcomes

According to MSU professor Mohammed Ayoob, there is no good path forward in Syria. The situation is very complex with more than one proxy war being fought.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

 More than 100,000 people have been killed and nearly a quarter of Syria’s population has been displaced since the uprising against President Bashar al Assad began in March 2011. 

While the Obama administration up until this point has largely avoided any direct involvement in the conflict, the administration claims an August 21 chemical weapons attack that left 1400 civilians dead was the work of Assad’s forces.  Calling the use of chemical weapons “a red line," President Obama has asked for Congressional approval for a U.S. military strike.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:19 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Detroit’s Water Renaissance: New shorelines, old problems on the Detroit River

The Detroit River from the Refuge Gateway. This unassuming site has been reengineered from steel and cement to a 'soft' shore.
Credit Lewis Wallace

Water attracted early settlers to Detroit and water fueled its growth. Now it’s an important asset to the city’s recovery.

Today we continue to explore Detroit’s waterfront in our series "Detroit Water Renaissance."

Last week we looked at the unearthing of Detroit streams. For the second segment, reporter Lewis Wallace examines efforts to re-engineer the Detroit River’s concrete shoreline.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:06 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Michigan’s first Labor Day after Right to Work legislation

Michigan was the 24th state in the country to enact right to work, amid protests. Some took place in Lansing last December at the Capitol building.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Yesterday was the first Labor Day in Michigan since Right to Work legislation was signed into law.

John Beck, associate director of the School of Human Resources and Labor Relations at MSU, joined Current State to talk about organized labor, especially post-Right To Work.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:02 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Foreign-owned television network Al Jazeera launches Detroit bureau

Al Jazeera, which literally means 'the island', is an Arabic news and current affairs satellite TV channel.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

On August 20th, the TV network known as Current became Al Jazeera America. The network, owned by the government of Qatar, bought Current for about half a billion dollars. One of the Al Jazeera America domestic news bureaus is in Detroit, which has been placed in the hands of former WDIV-TV reporter Bisi Onile-Ere.

 

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:56 am
Tue September 3, 2013

Former Spartan opens HopCat bar in East Lansing

Credit Flickr/cheongwah2002

No Lansing area bar has generated a buzz lately like the HopCat in East Lansing. Lines have been common since its opening just over a week ago at Grove and Albert in downtown East Lansing.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
4:08 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

On 90.5 - Current State/Current Sports Live from Adams Field

Credit WKAR

Listen Now Here |  Current State presents a special Current Sports broadcast with Al Martin, live from Adams Field on the campus of Michigan State University. It's a pre-game special from WKAR, as MSU hosts WMU for the season-opening night game at Spartan Stadium.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:38 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Current State #148 | August 29, 2013

Today on Current State: August's biggest's stories in review; Chicago-based "Wavelength" trains Lansing teachers using humor; 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice; Michigan railroads; and a film commentary on End of the World films. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:37 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Month in Review: August 2013

With the end of the month, we take some time to review the month’s most impactful Michigan news stories. Tim Skubick, the host of WKAR-TV’s ‘Off the Record”, Zach Gorchow, editor for Gongwer News Michigan and Kathleen Gray, who covers the state capitol for the Detroit Free Press, came into our studios to discuss the issues that made news in August.

Radio Made in Michigan
1:37 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Chicago-based group uses humor to train Lansing teachers

  

For over 30 years, a unique troupe of American performers has taken to stages across America—and around the world—targeting a particular audience.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:36 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Book Review: 200th Anniversary of Pride and Prejudice

Samuel Clemens, a.k.a. Mark Twain, once wrote, “Every time I read Pride and Prejudice, I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone.” The her in that sentence is, of course, author Jane Austen.  

This wasn't the only time Twain complained about Miss Austen. Here is another gem: “It seems a great pity that they allowed her to die a natural death.”

Now, I don’t normally disagree with Mr. Clemens, but here, I have to take an exception.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:35 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Michigan railroads crucial to state; conference meets to discuss challenges

Railroads in Michigan are critical for the transportation of agriculture commodities out of the state.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Michigan railroads employ thousands of workers, maintain thousands of miles of track, move millions of tons freight, and generate billions of dollars. The system’s health is crucial to commerce in the state.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:33 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Film Commentary with Jeffrey Wray: End of the World films

"The question is why such movies now?" Jeffrey Wray said in regard to the End of the World movie theme of the summer, "Can films be read like tea leaves or fossilized bones? Are they stealth clues to the period or hard indicators of collective angst of our time...or any time?"
Credit Wikimedia Commons

As the summer comes to a close, so do this season’s apocalyptic films. Current State contributor, MSU professor and filmmaker Jeffrey Wray offers this commentary on the end of the world through cinema.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:55 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Current State #147 | August 28, 2013

Today on Current State: Michigan Senate votes on Medicaid; Lansing delegation attends 50th anniversary of March on Washington; Dr. Lee June remembers Civil Rights Era; the legacy of Malcolm X in Lansing and our Neighbors in Action segment features Gateway Community Services.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:53 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

MPRN’s Rick Pluta Updates Senate Medicaid Decision

The plan Michigan lawmakers approved will provide Medicaid health care coverage to 470,000 low-income residents.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

 

A controversial measure that would expand Medicaid health coverage to more than 400-thousand Michigan citizens passed the state Senate last night.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:52 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Impact of Malcolm X in Lansing, his hometown

Dennis Burnside co-founded the X Foundation, the group which successfully pushed for Main Street in Lansing to be re-named for Malcolm X. Lansing and New York City are the only two known cities in which streets named for Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. intersect.
Credit Kevin Lavery / WKAR

 

 

The March on Washington in August 1963 was one of the largest mass protests ever held in the U.S.  Its physical and spiritual leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., based his entire campaign on nonviolent resistance.  But his strategy was not endorsed by everyone.  Another giant of the civil rights era had other ideas about the African-American struggle.

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