Have you heard the story of Dorothy Gale from Kansas? Either you know her as the spirited young lady who is swept off to a magical land where she has to face a wicked witch; or you know her as a governmental tool used to attack a revolutionary leader with a green face. The first example is from the pen of Frank L Baum, the genius behind Oz; the second is by Gregory Maguire, author of the very popular "Wicked" series, which is arguably the most successful fan fiction ever.
Today on Current State: The Knapp's Centre reopens; East Africans facing unwarranted Ebola profiling; Neighbors in Action: Youth Service Corps; how the media impact perceptions of climate change; and the demolition of a burned-out house in Flint.
An historic corner in downtown Lansing has been revitalized. Tomorrow is the grand re-opening of the Knapp's Centre. The event caps a $36-million redevelopment of the five-story art deco structure, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Yesterday, the last patient known to have Ebola in the United States was released from a New York City hospital. Dr. Craig Spencer was infected with the virus while working in Guinea with the group Doctors Without Borders. His case contrasts with that of Kacie Hickox, the nurse from Maine who recently fought legal efforts to have her movements restricted following a stint in West Africa treating ebola patients.
It’s Wednesday and time for our Neighbors in Action segment, where we feature people and organizations working to make our community a better place. Today, we’re talking about the Allen Neighborhood Center’s Youth Service Corps program, which uses urban agriculture to teach job and life skills to youth on Lansing’s Eastside.
Warnings about the climate change have gotten increasingly dire over the past decade. In its latest report, released earlier this month, the International Panel on Climate Change says mitigating the effects of global warming will require immediate action. But while a majority of Americans believe climate change is happening, most don’t think it will have an impact during their lifetime, and some think that’s why belief hasn’t necessarily translated into political will. The scientific community continues to push for action.
Back in August, we brought you the story of an online fundraising effort aimed at bringing in enough money to pay for the demolition of a single burned-out house in Flint. Gordon Young is a Flint expat and author of “Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City”. His idea was simple: while Flint has hundreds of abandoned homes, and some neighborhoods suffer mightily from such blight, he wanted to find a house that needed tearing down in an otherwise well maintained neighborhood, one where the demolition would improve the neighborhood’s chances of thriving into the future.
In about eight weeks, a crop of new Michigan legislators will be sworn in. One of them, Democrat Curtis Hertel Jr., cruised to victory in Michigan's 23rd Senate district, which is nearly coniguous with Ingham County. Hertel currently serves as the County Register of Deeds. He will succeed Gretchen Whitmer, who is term limited.
In middle of the 20th century, America’s rivers were in rough shape. Decades of urban growth and industrial pollution had turned many of them into dumping grounds for everything from hazardous chemicals to human waste. A burgeoning environmental movement and high profile events like the 1969 fire on the Cuyahoga River finally pushed Congress to take action. In 1972, it passed the Clean Water Act, giving the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency the authority to regulate water pollution. But which waterways the agency can regulate has been a source of conflict and confusion. In March, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed a rule it says clarifies its jurisdiction.
Ninety-six years ago today, the guns fell silent across Europe, marking the armistice that ended the First World War. Veterans Day has been officially observed as a federal holiday in the United States since 1954. Here in mid-Michigan, local veterans are having their stories preserved for the future.
Today on Current State: changes at the Lansing State Journal; a profile of Karl Gude of the MSU School of Journalism; a study of organisms that live on dead bodies; and a recap of the MSU football loss to Ohio State.
Technological change is continually reshaping the media landscape. It’s been forcing those of us in the media to adopt new ways of communicating news and information. That evolution has been especially challenging in the newspaper world. While publishers are hopeful that modest rises in online advertising and revenue will continue, a multi-year trend of overall declining ad revenue continues. According to the Pew Research Journalism Project, it dropped another 2.6-percent in 2013 compared to the previous year.
Karl Gude is the former Director of Information Graphics at Newsweek magazine and The Associated Press. Gude left Newsweek after a decade to spearhead the first information-graphics program at Michigan State University’s School of Journalism.
Dead bodies are not completely dead. Bacteria and insects live on and near corpses, and what kind of organisms are there can tell scientists lots of useful things, including how long a body has been dead. To learn from what’s called the “microbiome,” though, researchers need access, unfortunately, to dead bodies, and the more recent, the better. Bodies that are donated to research institutions are kept in cold storage for long periods of time which means the results are different.
The Michigan State football team lost to Ohio State Saturday night, and with the 49-37 defeat, the Spartans have now lost twice and will not make it into the NCAA’s four-team playoff at the end of the season. MSU has fallen to #12 in the AP college football poll.
Supporters of same sex marriage in Michigan were handed a major setback late yesterday. After about an eight month wait, the 6th Circuit federal appeals court reaffirmed the state’s ban on same sex marriage.
When you think about surfing, your imagination probably takes you to places like Hawaii or California. You think palm trees, lots of sunshine, and bright blue water. Lake Michigan in November probably doesn’t cross your mind. But while the rest of us are raking leaves and breaking out our winter coats, Michigan surfers are making their way to the beach.
The number of jobs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics or STEM fields has been steadily increasing over the past decade. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects that growth to accelerate in the next decade, with an additional 9-million STEM related jobs opening up by 2022, and the shifting realities of the job market are shaping the nation’s education policy.
There’s always a lot of good music to consider in Lansing and elsewhere around the state. Some of the big names coming through Michigan in November are Tony Bennett and Stevie Wonder, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg for music lovers.
Today on Current State: Congressman-elect Mike Bishop; the Episcopal Church's stance on gun control; how Facebook impacts people emotionally; Lansing Symphony Jazz Band director Ron Newman; and Lansing Community College actor Michael Boxleitner.
Tuesday evening, Lansing and East Lansing residents learned who their next U.S. Congressman would be. Former Republican State Senator Mike Bishop will become part of a GOP majority Congress in January.
Over the past decade, social media has transformed the way we communicate. Walk into any restaurant or coffee shop and you’ll probably see more people with their eyes glued to their smartphones than talking to the person sitting next to them. The latest Nielsen report says Americans spend an average of 12 hours using Facebook alone every month. But how does the time we spend in the digital world impact how we feel about our actual lives?
Some mid-Michigan members of the Episcopal Church are disagreeing with each other over a recent resolution on guns. At a late October convention in Lansing, The Episcopal Diocese of Michigan passed a resolution supporting stricter gun control. It includes calls for background checks on all gun sales and a ban on certain military style, semi-automatic weapons.
Ron Newman leads the Lansing Symphony Jazz Band Sunday night at 7 p.m. at the Wharton Center’s Pasant Theatre, in classic tunes by Horace Silver, Thad Jones and Sy Oliver, his own composition entitled Homage, and more.
A young actor with deep theatrical roots is starting to get noticed in Lansing. Michael Boxleitner has only been a student at Lansing Community College for a few months, but he’s already had one lead role at LCC, and he has another this weekend and next in "A Room With A View".
Today on Current State: A recap of Tuesday's election results; violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg; Neighbors in Action with the bicycle repair operation Kids Repair Program; and Charlotte's new Andromeda Community Theatre.
With some exceptions, Michigan Republicans have reason to celebrate the 2014 mid-term election. Several major statewide offices, as polls ususally suggested, went to GOP incumbents including Governor Rick Snyder, Attorney General Bill Schuette and Secretary of State Ruth Johnson. But Democrats are celebrating the election of Congressman Gary Peters to the U.S. Senate and a victory on Michigan’s conservative leaning Supreme Court.