Commentaries

If you're a regular listener to NPR news programs, you're probably familiar with the occasional brief commentary during the morning or evening news programs by experts in various fields; people providing insight into public affairs, observations on the arts, and thoughts on how we live. This page contains transcripts and/or audio recordings of local commentaries that have aired on WYSU.


Blackbirds

Published: Dec 21, 2010
Commentator: Carole Babyak
Transcript:
There is no transcript available.
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Lou Holtz

Published: Nov 24, 2010
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

In his autobiography, entitled Wins, Losses, and Lessons, (1) Coach Lou Holtz recounts two incidents in his senior year of high school which were a turning point in his life. In the first incident, Lou's high school coach visited his parents and urged them to send him to college to earn a degree so that he could become a football coach. The coach explained to them that Lou had a special gift for learning and teaching football and that he would excel in that profession. This came as a shock to Lou's parents.

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Ayaan Hirsi Ali's Jeremiad

Published: Oct 27, 2010
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

Born in 1969, she lived in Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia, and Kenya. A devout Muslim, she attended a madrassa, wore a hijab, supported the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, (1) underwent a cliterodectomy at age six, (2) and dutifully endured beatings by family members for alleged moral lapses. (3) Fast forward to 2010. Soon to turn forty-one, having lived in the West since 1992, Ayaan Hirsi Ali is today a secular and a stern critic of Islam.

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Chris Hedges and Literacy

Published: Sep 21, 2010
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

Thomas Jefferson affirmed that a democratic republic can survive and prosper only if the citizens are literate and well-informed. This is why he proposed tax-supported schools in every community and founded the University of Virginia. So, how is the America of 2010 faring by Jefferson's standard? We don't have Jefferson to ask but we do have Chris Hedges.

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Tiger Woods

Published: Aug 26, 2010
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

Recently Tiger Woods posted an 18-over 268 at Firestone, a course where he has won seven times. He did worse than all eighty golfers save one. The world's undisputed top golfer for years, Woods enjoyed an image as a mature, responsible father and husband. He was a hero to millions of young people and corporations paid millions of dollars a year for his endorsement. Suddenly, as revelations about his private life hit the news, Woods's world imploded. A loving, faithful husband turned out to be a playboy.

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Leave Only Footprints

Published: Dec 15, 2009
Commentator: Carole Babyak
Transcript:

There is an old saying that the outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man. Wonder and exhilaration in looking at a pulsing, muscular animal eager to take you away. And that means taking you away physically as well as mentally. In art and literature horses have represented many things such as life and they are still the stuff of dreams and wishing.

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Religion in the Public Schools

Published: Oct 15, 2009
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

Millions of dollars are spent on litigation annually over disputes about religion in the public schools. A great many of these lawsuits could be avoided if school officials and parents had a better understanding of the key laws and court decisions governing this area. Fortunately, a book has just been published which can promote such an understanding and help all parties comply with the law and minimize litigation. It is entitled Religion in the Public Schools: A Road Map for Avoiding Lawsuits and Respecting Parents' Legal Rights.

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Is Socialism Coming?

Published: Sep 24, 2009
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

In the United States today health care reform is front and center. President Obama has stumped for reform in dozens of appearances across the nation, an address to the Congress, and no fewer than five televised news shows last Sunday. On a daily basis the media report the latest wrinkles in a spate of health care proposals under discussion in the Congress and speculate on the political prospects of the President's preferred "public option."

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John Stuart Mill on Women's Rights

Published: Sep 3, 2009
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

The 19th century British philosopher John Stuart Mill is recognized in modern philosophy chiefly for two reasons. He refined the Utilitarian tradition of philosophy established by Jeremy Bentham and he reemphasized the primacy of individual liberty and self-determination against the inroads of the majority in democratic societies. One part of Mill's contribution has been largely overlooked, however. It is his call for legal and social equality for women in an 1861 volume entitled The Subjection of Women. (1)

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Cellphones - A Moral Challenge

Published: Aug 20, 2009
Commentator: Tom Shipka
Transcript:

I submit a simple moral principle for your consideration. A person who poses an avoidable and unnecessary threat of harm to innocent people should take steps promptly to end the threat.

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