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Voices from the Edge

About the program …

Community dialogue is important. At 8am every Thursday Voices from the Edge lends a KBOO microphone to informed guests you might not hear anywhere else. With an hour to invest, the call-in format engages listeners in meaningful conversations about crucial issues like racial disparity, government accountability, environmental justice and politics on local, state and national levels. Join lively discussions about concerns that are important to you and our community. Together we’ll make Oregon and our nation a better place for a larger number of those living here.

About the host

Jo Ann Hardesty is Principal Partner at Consult Hardesty. She serves as a subject matter expert on a myriad of issues and is available as a speaker, facilitator and campaign planner. A long-time voice for Portland's under-represented communities and a leader in the struggle against racial and economic injustice, Jo Ann was three times elected to the Oregon legislature and for many years Executive Director of Oregon Action. She’s been called on by the City of Portland to help re-write the City Charter and organizes those on the downside of power to pursue their interests from the local to the federal level. She is particularly committed to leadership development and in holding those in power accountable.

Join the conversation …

Join the conversation every Thursday morning from 8-9 a.m. by calling 503-231-8187. Keep the conversation going after the program at our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge.

Engineering: Steve Nassar 

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Investigative Reporter Greg Palast Returns
 

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Episode Archive

Voices from the Edge on 05/23/13

Air date: 
Thu, 05/23/2013 - 8:00am - 9:00am
Short Description: 
Are progressives too intent on winning? A look at the fluoridation campaign.

A strong win by opponents of a ballot measure to fluoridate Portland's water supply demonstrated that a grassroots movement could turn back a well-financed political campaign. But the fluoridation issue's splite of the city's progressive community revealed something else: the speed with which that community could be polarized and each side demonize the other. This week, Dqve Mazza looks at these disturbing aspects of the fluoridation campaign, whether they reflect deeper problems with how progressives advance their beliefs, and if progressives are too intent on winning.  

Voices from the Edge on 05/16/13

Air date: 
Thu, 05/16/2013 - 8:00am - 8:30am
Short Description: 
Interview with Walter Mosley & latest book Little Green

Join me in a delightful conversation with Walter Mosley on Thursday May 16, 2013 from 800AM-8: 30AM to discuss his latest book Little Green and the return of Easy Rollins! Walter Mosley is a New York City-based author, whose 37+ book literary career goes back to 1990′s Devil in a Blue Dress. That novel kicked off a series revolving around detective Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins — a Black resident of the Watts section of Los Angeles, whose continuing story begins in 1948, and (with the May 2013 release of his 12th story, Little Green) has progressed to 1967. Mosley also created the character of ex-convict Socrates Fortlow, the modern-day protagonist of Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned, and two other novels. Both Rawlins and Fortlow were adapted for the screen in the 1990s.

Voices from the Edge on 05/02/13

Air date: 
Thu, 05/02/2013 - 8:30am - 9:00am
Short Description: 
No on 26-151 interview with Kellie Barnes

Voters have received the Voters pamphlet and will get their ballots in the next few days. One of the biggest issues facing voters on May 21, 2013 is the issue of fluoridating water. Measure 26-151-ask voters ”Shall Portlanders fluoridate its drinking water supply”. Both sides of this debate were invited to participate in this conversation, unfortunately the pro-side didn’t respond. I will talk with Kellie Barnes, a local small business owner and a volunteer with Clean Water Portland on the No on 26-151 campaign. Have you decided? What questions do you have about fluoridation? Is it safe for food and pets? What questions do you have for the pro side? Let us know your thoughts! Join Kellie and I tomorrow morning from 8:30AM-9:00AM and join the conversation on Voices from the Edge.

Voices from the Edge on 05/02/13

Air date: 
Thu, 05/02/2013 - 8:00am - 8:30am
Short Description: 
Democracy >Convergence in Portland May 3-5 at Portland Community College

The Move To Amend coalition is hosting a Democracy Convergence in Portland May 3-5 at Portland Community College.  Join David Cobbs and I in this conversation tomorrow from the Move To Amend Coalition and learn about the coalition and their Convergence this weekend.

 

As you may remember on January 21, 2010, with its ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are persons, entitled by the U.S. Constitution to buy elections and run our government. Human beings are people; corporations are legal fictions.

Voices from the Edge on 04/25/13

Air date: 
Thu, 04/25/2013 - 8:00am - 9:00am
Short Description: 
The Passage to Higher Education Program at PCC Cascade

School systems from across the United States have increasingly come under public scrutiny. Frustration with schools, especially the inner city districts, not adequately preparing youth to cross the bridge to the 21st century, has lead to debates about funding practices, teacher accountability, parental involvement and paradigm shifts. Also, concerns about the level of violence in schools, teen pregnancy, drugs, and other distractions have been apart of the public discussion on How do we better educate our youth? An innovative program at PCC Cascade “The Passage” to Higher Education is an organized network of professionals and students committed to providing a foundational framework for African American Women earning their degrees.

Voices from the Edge on 04/18/13

Air date: 
Thu, 04/18/2013 - 8:00am - 9:00am
Short Description: 
Oregon taxes and innovative legislation that will bring fairness to our tax structure

Join host Jo Ann Hardesty on Thursday April 18th 2013 from 8-9AM as she speaks with Common Ground‘s two Jeff’s regarding Oregon taxes and innovative legislation that will bring fairness to our tax structure.

Jeff Strang is the President of the local chapter of Common Ground and Jeff Smith is the Outreach Coordinator (and Website Manager).

Voices from the Edge on 04/04/13

Air date: 
Thu, 04/04/2013 - 8:00am - 9:00am
Short Description: 
Interview with F. Michael Higginbotham, author, Ghost of Jim Crow

When America inaugurated its first African American president, in 2009, many wondered if the country had finally become a "post-racial" society. Was this the dawning of a new era, in which America, a nation nearly severed in half by slavery, and whose racial fault lines are arguably among its most enduring traits, would at last move beyond race with the election of Barack Hussein Obama? In Ghosts of Jim Crow, F. Michael Higginbotham convincingly argues that America remains far away from that imagined utopia. Indeed, the shadows of Jim Crow era laws and attitudes continue to perpetuate insidious, systemic prejudice and racism in the 21st century.

Audio

A call to fill Oregon's black leadership void

program date: 
Thu, 08/27/2009

Black leadership is on the rise - from the White House to corporate giants like Xerox Corp. In progressive Oregon, however, blacks currently hold no elected positions in the city, county or regional governments within the metropolitan area where most of their community resides. These political disparities are more than matched by economic, social, health and education disparities that have left black Oregonians impoverished.

Charles McGee and Johnell Bell, co-founders of the Black Parent Initiative, believe the time has come for this to change. In a recent essay in the Oregonian, McGee and Bell called "for Oregon to have a different conversation, followed by bold policy changes and courageous action...being well-meaning or well intentioned is no longer enough." Jo Ann and Dave talk with McGee and Bell about their call to action and the role of all Oregonians in ending racial disparities within our state.

Coming up in September! On September 3, Jo Ann and Dave talk with organizers of the effort to recall Mayor Sam Adams. On September 10, Dave and Jo Ann will talk with exonerated death row inmate Curtis McCarty about his experiences and Exonerated, the documentary about his ordeal.

The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

Clearing the air in Portland schools

program date: 
Wed, 08/19/2009

Portland may be a green city, but some of its school children are breathing air more like the polluted skies of Cleveland. A  USA Today study found six of our city's schools in northwest and north/northeast Portland among the worst in the nation for exposing children to airborn toxins. Benzine, a carcinogen found in gasoline, exceeds DEQ safety standards by 26 percent. Frustrated with lack of action by state regulators, parents of children in some of the mot impacted schools are organizing the community. Neighbor for Clean Air wants industrial users in the area like ESCO to install better air filtration systems and DEQ to provide more extensive monitoring (DEQ is currently monitoring only one school - Harriet Tubman Leadership Academy for the next 60 days).

Jo Ann and Dave talk with Mary Peveto of Neighbors for Clean Air about their petition drive and other efforts to clear the air in Portland's schools. Also joining the conversation is Geri Williams, founder of the Environmental Justice Action group and longtime community activist working on air quality issues in North and Northeast Portland.

The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

Ending racial profiling in Portland: A discussion with Dave Hardesty

program date: 
Thu, 08/13/2009

The Portland Police Bureau agreed to develop a plan for ending racial profiling within their organization. But despite promises from Police Chief Rosie Sizer, little progress seems to have been made. Community oganizations, meanwhile, are turning up the heat on city hall to implement an action plan now. Jo Ann talks with local activist Dave Hardesty about recent developments in the effort to end racial profiling in the police bureau.

The State of Black Oregon

program date: 
Wed, 08/05/2009

 

 

The State of Black Oregon was published earlier this month by the Urban League of Portland. The report contains a stark inventory of statistics that show a persistent gap in living standards between black and white Oregonians – a gap that is growing wider as a result of the current economic downturn. "During the last eight years, the poverty gap in America and in this state has continued to grow," says Marcus C. Mundy, president and CEO of the Urban League of Portland. Jo Ann and Dave talk with the League's Marcus Mundy and Midge Purcell about the report and how Oregon can close this gap.

Can talking about race make a difference?

program date: 
Wed, 08/05/2009

Last month, President Obama sat down over beers with a Cambridge cop and a Harvard professor to talk about an ugly incident that brought home how deep racial tensions still run in our nation. The president saw the arrest of Henry Louis Gates, Jr. by Sgt. James Crowly as a "teachable moment" that could help Americans in their struggle to understand race and its impacts. But can talking about race make a difference?

In Portland, where gentrification has fueled racial tensions, John Canda and Judith Mowry think talking is essential to get people to confront issues they ignore or pretend don't exist within our community and the nation. For the last two years, the city's Office of Neighborhood Involvement and the Restorative Listening Project has been holding their own versions of President Obama's "beer summit" in North and Northeast Portland, bringing together through the Uniting to Understand Racism program. Can talk reduce racial strife? Does bringing people together to confront difficult issues that go to the heart of how power is or isn't shared make our democracy stronger?

Jo Ann and Dave talk with the Restorative Listening Project's John Canda and the Office of Neighborhood Involvement's Judith Mowry about what we have to gain by talking to each other.

The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

How do we change the national conversation about war and peace? Also: Update on health care reform legislation

program date: 
Wed, 07/22/2009

Seven months into a new administration and the nation still finds itself embroiled in two Asian wars. Many Americans would have difficulty explaining how the Obama administration's conduct of these wars differs from the last administration's. They're certainly not being helped by policymakers and pundits who are working overtime to marginalize arguments for American withdrawal from the region. With the economy now people's foremost concern, how does the peace movement change the national conversation about war and peace?

Jo Ann and Dave talk with Tom Hastings, Director of the Oregon Peace Institute's Peace Voice Program. On August 1, the program will host the Peace Voice Conference, bringing together activists, academics and others to explore new ways to bring together diverse communities in order to refocus the public discourse on the possibilities of peace and the inadvisibility of war.

Also this Thursday: Jo Ann and Dave talk with Betsy Dillard, Director of Health Care for America Now, about the current status of health care reform bills currently making their way through Congress.

The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program?

What's the future of community media?

program date: 
Wed, 07/15/2009

As recent events in Iran have shown, technology has given ordinary people the power to inform neighbors down the street and strangers halfway around the world about important events regardless of government censorship or corporate media indifference. "Community media" - citizen-operated print, broadcast and digital technologies - is filling the information needs of a growing number of Americans. The Alliance for Community Media's 2009 international conference recently took place in Portland, where hundreds of media activists discussed new concepts in community media and challenge old ones. Is community media reaching and reflecting the community? Are there lessons to be learned from the professional media? What is the future of community media?

Jo Ann and Dave talk with Erik Mollberg , chair of the Indiana Chapter of the Alliance for Community Media, and director of Ft Wayne's Public, Educational and Governmental television services. Mollberg, one of the organizers of the conference, lobbies and writes extensively for greater realization of public access to media. Also joining the conversation is Phil Busse, founder of the Northwest Institute for Social Change, and two participants in the institutes's summer media camp, a program for learning how to use art and media to create social change.

 The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

Is health care reform in critical condition?

program date: 
Wed, 07/08/2009

Over 75 percent of Americans want health care reform according to a new Pew Research poll. President Obama remains committed to reforming our health care system this year. But as Congress struggles to craft legislation, the voice of concerned voters is getting drowned out by a vocal minority working from the same play book. Will serious health care reform die on the operating table at the hands of congressional Republicans, conservative pundits, and industry spin doctors?

Dave speaks with local health care reform advocates about what progress is being made to overhaul the nation's health care system. How will budget concerns be addressed? Will a public option survive Republican opposition? Is single-payer dead? How will federal reforms fit with recent actions by the Oregon legislature? Joining in the conversation will be Oregon Center for Public Policy's health care advocate, Janet Bauer, and Oregon Health Action Campaign's Director of Community Engagement, Onofre Contreras.

The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

Does reorganizing Portland's high schools make sense?

program date: 
Wed, 07/01/2009

Portland's high school dropout rate is the highest in the metropolitan area. While the statewide rate declined last year, Portland high school students are dropping out at twice the rate - 8.2 percent - of students in other Oregon communities. The city's high schools are also grappling with other issues: a growing number of students opting for GED credentials, budget shortfalls, and demands from parents for greater accountability to the community.

Portland Public School Superintendent Carole Smith has launched a major reorganization of the high school system to address these and other issues. The plan calls for closing some high schools, restructuring others, creating more magnet schools and restricting the ability of students to attend schools outside the district in which they reside. Can the reorganization address the problems facing Portland's high schools? Is it still viable in today's economic environment? How will it affect communities that feel they've been short-changed by the school system in the past?

 Jo Ann and Dave talk with Sarah Singer, project manager of the Portland Public School District's high school redesign team and Sarah Carlin Ames, communications coordinator with the team about their plan, its goals and whether it will meet the needs of all Portland students in the coming years.

Jo Ann and Dave also talk with David Fidanque, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon about the recent Supreme Court rulings on affirmative action and on strip searches of school students.

 The conversation doesn't end when the program does. You can join in additional discussion of the week's issue on our blog at kboo.fm/voicesfromtheedge (click on the "blog" tab). You'll find additional information, important links, comments from other listeners and commentary from Jo Ann and Dave. Have a question for our guests, but can't call in during the program? Post your questions on line so we can make them a part of the Voices discussion.

 

Voices from the Edge 06/25/2009

program date: 
Wed, 06/24/2009
Hosted by: Dave Mazza, joannb
Closing Portland's affordable housing gap: a talk with Portland Community Land Trust

The real estate bubble may have burst but many Portlanders still find homeownership beyond their reach. Even with today's lower housing costs, affordable housing for a family earning the median family income ($66,900) would be priced at $200,000 - a price limited to very few homes currently available, and even fewer at that price with the space available for a family of four. For low income families earning less than 60 percent of the median family income, the opportunities are nearly non-existent. Is it important to make home ownership available? How do we close the affordable housing gap in Portland?

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