Rundown 8/31

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California Prison Release

The California State Assembly is scheduled to vote today on a bill that would release 37,000 people from state prisons over the next two years. The vote comes in the wake of the recent case of Jaycee Lee Dugard, who was kidnapped in 1991 by California parolee Phillip Garrido, and might make some lawmakers wary of passing any laws that would let convicts out of prison. Our guest is Michael Rothfeld who is covering the story from Sacramento for the Los Angeles Times.

Modern-day Slavery

Anti-slavery advocate Kevin Bales is co-author of the new book "The Slave Next Door: Human Trafficking and Slavery in America Today," which argues that slaves are all around us, hidden in plain sight in the U.S.  Bales is also president and co-founder of the advocacy group, "Free the Slaves." We also speak with Given Kachepa, a 23-year-old Zambian who was brought to this country by a missionary who enslaved him and other young boys in a choir in Texas.

Libyan Leader Protested in NJ Town

Hundreds gathered Sunday in Englewood, NJ to tell Moammar Gadhafi he's not welcome in their community during his first visit to the US next month.  Those protesting included several who lost relatives in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland. Gadhafi had been expected to pitch a ceremonial Bedouin-style tent on the grounds of a Libyan-owned estate when he comes to the US to address the United Nations in September, but he canceled those plans after rumors of his visit to New Jersey sparked an uproar last week. The BBC's Matthew Wells reports on yesterday's protest.

Pentagon Cancels Reporter Review Program

The Pentagon is canceling a controversial contract with a public relations firm that provides profiles on reporters, who ask to embed with U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Stars & Stripes newspaper first reported last week that the Rendon Group agency rates reporters' work as either negative, positive or neutral towards the military. The Pentagon denies that a rating system exists, and says it only uses the information to get familiarized with reporters. Kevin Baron, Pentagon reporter for Stars & Stripes, is our guest.

Rwandan Children Born of Rape

On a trip to Rwanda in 2006, photo-journalist Jonathan Torgovnik met a woman who had been raped during the Rwandan Genocide, and gave birth to a boy as a result. The woman's story led him to photograph and document the stories of dozens of rape victims during the genocide, who now have children from those rapes. His new book is "Intended Consequences: Rwandan Children Born of Rape."  Torgovnik also started a non profit organization, Foundation Rwanda.

Music from the show

  • Air, "Mike Mills"
  • Ahmad Jamal, "Patterns"
  • Moby, "Inside"
  • Peter Dixon, "Nagog Woods"
  • The Wee Trio, "About a Girl"
  • Jeff Beck, "Suspension"

This program aired on August 31, 2009.


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