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Current State #154 | September 9, 2013

Sep 9, 2013

Today on Current State: a discussion on civility versus academic freedom in the wake of the removal of MSU professor William Penn; the impact of the sequester on academic research funding; "Welcome to Flint" shows the beauty and tragedy of Flint in photos and Current Sports host Al Martin talks about the MSU Spartans' dull offense.

WKAR File Photo

Highly controversial comments made recently by a Michigan State University professor continue to be a topic of discussion both locally and beyond.  

Last week, creative writing professor William Penn sparked an intense backlash after a video surfaced of him suggesting Republicans had “raped the country” and included many closet racists.  A student attending the lecture told MLive.com that Penn also denigrated Christians and athletes.

Juan Madrid

Flint: the most violent city in the nation, a failed city, an urban wasteland.  These are the headlines that have defined Flint, but they don’t tell the whole story.

“Welcome to Flint,” is a collaborative project by photographers Juan Madrid and Brett Carlsen.

The two New York-based artists travel on and off to Michigan, trying to capture the city of Flint. Current State’s Emanuele Berry spoke to the pair about their project.

WKAR File Photo

Last March, the federal government enacted an $85 billion spending cut known as the "sequester."  It's taken some time to assess the effects of these cuts, but as the federal fiscal year comes to a close on September 30, new budgets are reflecting spending decreases.

The cuts are having an effect on scientific research.  Reports have documented laboratory closings and layoffs, and one significant study showed one-fifth of U.S. scientists have contemplated moving overseas because of the decline in funding.

WKAR File Photo

The Michigan State University Spartans clinched a 21 to 6 victory over the University of South Florida in East Lansing Saturday.  The MSU offense scored only one drive in the game; the rest of the scoring was handled by the defensive squad.  Mark Bashore talks with Current Sports host Al Martin about the game, which saw three different MSU quarterbacks turn in lackluster performances.