A couple of days after the Las Vegas massacre, the worst act of gun carnage in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave since Wounded Knee, I visited the website of the US Department of Homeland Security. “At this time,” Homeland Security reported reassuringly on October 2 – the blood of over five hundred country music fans barely dry – “We have no information to indicate a specific credible threat involving other public venues in the country.”
Interesting, I thought. Aren’t people getting shot, injured and killed pretty much every day down in the U.S., brutally and without reason? According to Gun ViolenceArchive Dot Org, an astonishing 46,928 acts of gun violence have occurred across the US since the start of this year, in which some 24,000 have been injured, and 12,000 killed. Among these — 550 children under the age of eleven.
There have been 273 mass shootings – in towns and cities across America this year — in which hundreds have been killed or injured.
Still, the US Department of Homeland Security has “no information to indicate a specific credible threat involving other public venues in the country.” Notwithstanding, America’s guardians advise, increased security in and around public places and events may be experienced as officials take … additional precautions.
Across North America, low-wage workers in the fast food and retail industries are demanding a minimum wage hike to $15. Bridget Hughes is one of them. This 26-year-old mother of four is fighting for better wages in Kansas City, Missouri. Bridget is an organizer with StandUpKC. She spoke with me from Kansas City.
The pros and cons of genetic engineering have been fiercely debated since the mid-1970s, when the first transgenic animal — a mouse — was created. Since then, tomatoes, fish, insects and sheep have had their genomes tweaked, as have global staples like canola, corn and soybeans.
Now, as if it couldn’t have been predicted, a brand-new technology raises the stakes. Gene Drives, they’re called, and Pat Mooney is worried. No one has examined the impacts of new technologies on agriculture, the environment, and economic democracy – through a more critical lens – than Pat Roy Mooney. Here’s Pat speaking at the World Social Forum, in Montreal, in August 2016. Pat Mooney is the founder of the ETC Group, formerly RAFI – Rural Advancement Foundation International. He received The Right Livelihood Award in 1985 and Canada’s Pearson Peace Prize in 1998.
If Earth-warming greenhouse gases continue to be released at business-as-usual rates, life in some of South Asia’s most crowded cities and farm fields may no longer be survivable. So says a recent study conducted by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Their worrisome findings come down to the distinction between dry and wet bulb temperatures. Professor Elfatih Eltahir was the study’s lead author. Elfatih Eltahir is Breene M. Kerr Professor of Hydrology and Climate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Music in this edition from Robert Johnson, St. Louis Jimmy, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, and Lonnie Johnson.