August 11 - A Witness to the Watts Rebellion 50 Years Ago; Ari Berman on His New Book Give Us the Ballot; Trump Keeps Winning in the Polls While Supposedly Losing the Nomination

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Full Program


Part 1

We begin with the 50th anniversary of the Watts rebellion in Los Angeles on August 11, 1965 and speak with Johnie Scott, a professor of Africana Studies at California State University, Northridge who grew up in Watts and witnessed the revolt firsthand. He is the co-founder of the Watts Writers Workshop and served on the board of the Watts branch of the NAACP and was a co-founder of the Studio Watts Workshop with James Woods, Maya Angelou, Jane Cortez and Ornette Coleman. We discuss the familiar pattern that has sparked a series of uprising since Watts; police harassing, beating or killing African Americans after a traffic stop, and assess improvements made since, in light of the fact that unemployment amongst black youth in America stands at 30%.


Part 2

Then we speak with Ari Berman a political correspondent for The Nation and author of the new book, just out “Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America”. We discuss this powerful story of rights won and rights lost in the long struggle to get the Voting Rights Act passed and the counterrevolution against it in which the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Roberts plays a pivotal role, as well as Ari Berman’s article at Politico, “Inside John Robert’s Decades-long Crusade Against the Voting Rights Act”.

Part 3

Then finally we examine the disconnect between Donald Trump continuing to lead in the Republican primary polls while the punditry continues to write off his chance of winning the nomination. Allan Lichtman, an American political historian at American University who has studied both the American Right and the presidency joins us. We discuss Trump’s lead in the latest Iowa polls and Jeb Bush’s plummet from third place to seventh in the RealClearPolitics average of Iowa polls over the last month.