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Press Play with Madeleine Brand

KCRW

Host Madeleine Brand looks at news, culture and emerging trends through the lens of Los Angeles.

Host Madeleine Brand looks at news, culture and emerging trends through the lens of Los Angeles.

Location:

Santa Monica, CA

Networks:

KCRW

Description:

Host Madeleine Brand looks at news, culture and emerging trends through the lens of Los Angeles.

Language:

English


Episodes

The great teacher shortage — it’s a national problem

10/18/2021
LAUSD and other school districts nationwide are struggling to fill positions, including teachers and substitutes, crossing guards, and lunchroom attendants. “Our entire profession is in a crisis mode because people just don't respect it and appreciate it the way that it used to be,” says San Pedro High School principal Steve Gebhart. “The continued systemic pressures that are put on the classroom teacher and just all levels of educators on the school site is just something [educators] are...

Duration:00:49:35

Gruelingly long work days on Hollywood sets: Will they be fixed with tentative deal?

10/18/2021
IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) leadership struck a tentative deal with major Hollywood studios just hours before production crews were scheduled to walk offset and strike. Some of the three-year agreement’s highlights include a 10-hour break between shifts, a 54-hour weekend rest period, penalties for not taking meals during work, health and pension benefits, and a living wage. Rank-and-file members of IATSE must ratify the deal. “We're already in a situation...

Duration:00:51:56

‘The Rescue’ exemplifies selflessness in effort to save 2018 Thai soccer team

10/15/2021
“The Rescue” is a new documentary about the international effort to save a young boys’ soccer team and their coach who were stranded inside a Thailand cave during a monsoon in summer 2018. Press Play talks with co-directors E. Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, the team behind Oscar winner “Free Solo.” Critics also review the latest films: “The Last Duel,” “Introducing, Selma Blair,” “Needle in a Timestack,” and “Halloween Kills.”

Duration:00:50:00

Towering figure in LA politics, Mark Ridley-Thomas, faces indictment

10/14/2021
LA City Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas faces 20 federal charges of conspiracy, bribery, mail, and wire fraud — all connected to an alleged scheme with Marilyn Louise Flynn, the former dean of USC’s School of Social Work. This is the latest in a history of scandals for the Trojans. Along the Santa Barbara coastline, the Alisal Fire continues to burn and is a long way from being contained. Photographer Josh Edelson pivoted to covering California's biggest wildfires and breaking news — after...

Duration:00:50:54

National Women’s Soccer League: Abuse allegations, pipeline problem, lack of diversity

10/13/2021
In the National Women’s Soccer League, four coaches have been ousted who were accused of verbal and emotional abuse, creating a toxic work environment for women, and sexually coercing players. The league’s commissioner also stepped down this month. “The big question here is: Who can they find to really take this league and make sure players are safe, make sure the league stays alive?” says Molly Hensley-Clancy, sports investigative reporter for The Washington Post. Following the massive oil...

Duration:00:52:38

‘Squid Game’ shows dehumanizing aspect of capitalism and twisted nostalgia for kids’ games

10/12/2021
Netflix says “Squid Game” is the number one show in 90 countries. The series features 456 contestants who endure violence and risk their lives to win $38 million. “It seems to suggest that chasing money at any cost is dehumanizing. And when your humanity goes into violence, where is your moral compass? It all disappears,” says William Lee Adams, BBC World Service cultural critic. Also, strong winds from Monday night helped fan the Alisal Fire north of Santa Barbara, which has burned...

Duration:00:50:43

LA Mayor Eric Garcetti’s confirmation to be US ambassador to India: What’s taking so long?

10/11/2021
Mayor Eric Garcetti debuted the city’s Indigenous LAnd Initiative today in recognition of Indigenous Peoples’ Day. It includes a formal apology from the City of LA and plans to rename city landmarks. Meanwhile, there’s still no timeline for Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Senate confirmation hearing to be U.S. ambassador to India. Drugmaker Merck asked the FDA today for emergency-use authorization for a pill to treat COVID-19. Early trials show that the medication could cut coronavirus-related deaths...

Duration:00:51:10

We can't ignore race when it comes to gender violence, says Anita Hill

10/8/2021
Anita Hill went from being a relatively unknown law professor to a high-profile and outspoken advocate for victims of workplace harassment and sexual assault — after her 1991 Congressional testimony that President George H.W. Bush’s Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas sexually harassed her. Now Hill is out with a new book about what was — and wasn’t — learned in the last 30 years. It’s called “Believing: Our Thirty-Year Journey to End Gender Violence.” “When it comes to women of color, we...

Duration:00:50:18

COVID vaccines for kids in US could be coming, plus where to eat during DineLA Restaurant Week

10/7/2021
Pfizer and BioNTech have officially asked the FDA to green-light its COVID-19 vaccine use in kids ages 5-11. Meanwhile, the World Health Organization has approved the first-ever vaccine for malaria. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has become a microcosm of the nation’s divisions over COVID vaccines. And Press Play gets recommendations for Italian restaurants and steakhouses that are part of DineLA Restaurant Week.

Duration:00:51:11

MacArthur ‘Genius’ Jacqueline Stewart on collecting evidence of Hollywood’s racism

10/6/2021
One of the newest MacArthur “Geniuses” is Jacqueline Stewart, who uncovers and preserves the lost contributions of Black filmmakers, and aims to make history more inclusive. She’s now the head of programming at LA’s new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. On films that negatively portray African Americans, she says, “If we suppress them because they're painful or problematic, then we also can't call Hollywood to task for these histories. … I think that it's really important to have the...

Duration:00:50:48

Pushing for Facebook regulation, helping in Afghanistan, showcasing legacy of ‘Star Trek’

10/5/2021
Today Frances Haugen, a former product manager for Facebook, testified before a Senate committee, arguing that the social media company needs to be regulated. “As long as Facebook is operating in the shadows, hiding its research from public scrutiny, it is unaccountable. Until the incentives change, Facebook will not change. Left alone, Facebook will continue to make choices that go against the common good,” she said. Press Play also looks at the feasibility of ending offshore drilling in...

Duration:00:49:55

Treating animals hurt by OC oil spill, resuming LA Opera with focus on diversity

10/4/2021
More than 126,000 gallons of crude oil spilled into the Pacific Ocean this weekend. Orange County officials blamed a damaged pipeline off the coast of Newport Beach and Huntington Beach. It could take weeks to months to respond to the fallout on animals, according to the Oiled Wildlife Care Network. The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) has authorized a nationwide strike. They represent about 60,000 “below the line” workers who’ve complained of long hours, few...

Duration:00:51:17

‘The Big Hurt’: A woman’s search for intimacy and acknowledgment

10/1/2021
Erika Schickel’s new memoir, “The Big Hurt,” is about how she blew up her marriage and family for an affair with a famous LA crime novelist, and how that echoed an experience she had in high school, when she was kicked out of her East Coast boarding school for sleeping with a music teacher. “My whole life, I had been looking for the connection I had been denied by my mother. … I was just trying to find home. And I was in a loveless marriage. … I was starved for intimacy, and by that, I...

Duration:00:48:56

Traveling OB/GYN from CA wants country to see abortion as simply part of medical care

9/30/2021
Rebecca Taub, an OB/GYN from California’s East Bay, has been traveling to Oklahoma City once a month to perform abortions at a clinic there. She sees dozens of patients a day, and some are coming from Texas. “It is activism. For me, it is frustrating. I was just talking with a colleague today about how abortion is a part of medical care. And I wish that we could provide this care and just have it be seen in that way. But obviously, that's not the system that we live in,” Taub says. Also,...

Duration:00:49:15

Adding diversity to kids’ books, and banning anti-vax info on YouTube

9/29/2021
The Conscious Kid is a nonprofit that helps families and educators foster anti-racist conversations through books that feature characters from underrepresented communities. Its executive director Ramon Stephens shares his favorite books. Also, did former President Donald Trump forever damage American democracy? YouTube has barred anti-vaccine content from its platform. And the annual contest has begun to find the fattest bear in Alaska's Katmai National Park and Preserve.

Duration:00:51:04

Why your flu immunity might be weaker this year, plus immersive Van Gogh exhibits are taking over

9/28/2021
Dr. Anthony Fauci is urging everyone to get vaccinated against influenza and coronavirus as soon as possible. Last year, thanks in part to masks, social distancing, and quarantine measures, there was hardly a flu season. “Because most of us were not infected by flu viruses last year … that means we didn’t get the typical population-level immunity boost that we all normally get,” says Katherine Wu, Atlantic staff writer covering science. Also, only about a quarter of soon-to-be moms are...

Duration:00:51:15

Karen Bass wants to leave Congress to be LA’s mayor. Which Angelenos support her?

9/27/2021
U.S. Representative Karen Bass officially announced plans to leave Washington D.C. and run for mayor of LA. This makes her the de facto frontrunner in a field that already contains five other Democrats. Meanwhile this week, Democrats are trying to pass a roughly $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill — plus a $3.5 trillion spending bill that would fund major Democratic priorities on health care, education and climate. The 9th Circuit has overturned a federal judge’s ruling that...

Duration:00:51:57

Ronald Reagan’s journey with Alzheimer’s and advice for caregivers

9/24/2021
Former president Ronald Reagan disclosed his Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis in 1994. He died a decade later. His daughter, Patti Davis, chronicles her family’s experiences with the diseases in her latest book, “Floating in the Deep End: How Caregivers can See Beyond Alzheimer's.” Critics also review the latest movie releases, including “Dear Evan Hansen” and “The Guilty.”

Duration:00:51:54

Fallout of deporting Haitian migrants, plus CA’s potential ban on ‘stealthing’ during sex

9/23/2021
Following the deportation of thousands of Haitian migrants from the U.S.-Mexico, the U.S. special envoy to Haiti has resigned. Some migrants have been admitted into the U.S., but others are still waiting in a squalid encampment outside Del Rio, Texas. One Sacramento-area school district is preparing for an influx of new Afghan refugee students. And Gov. Gavin Newsom has a state bill on his desk that would outlaw “stealthing” — the non-consensual removal of a condom during sex.

Duration:00:49:50

What Facebook knows about IG’s harm on teens, and how 30-year-olds are buying $1 million LA homes

9/22/2021
New information is out about how Trump wanted to seize a second presidential term. The new book “Peril” reveals that Trump’s lawyers gave Mike Pence a strategy for overturning the election results. More renters became first-time homeowners during the pandemic, and the average home price in LA is $1 million. Who can afford it? Press Play also looks at internal research of Instagram’s harmful effects on girls — and the lack of effort to resolve body image and mental stress issues. Finally,...

Duration:00:50:54