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Word of Mouth

7.06.16: History of Gun Control, Sleep With Me, & The Bookshelf

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Calls for gun control follow a familiar path: a horrific shooting shakes the public's sense of security.  Concerned citizens mobilize and demand action from their elected leaders, then, the president calling for action. The pattern was set long before Sandy Hook or San Bernadino...try 1934. Today, we'll learn about the year when fear of gangsters drove gun control legislation.

Plus, the movie critic once reigned over the arts pages of newspapers and magazines...with the power to make or break a film. Today, the once lowly TV critics have all the juice.

Listen to the full show. 

How Gun Control Saved Us From the Mob

Although the tactics may have changed for this round, we've seen the cycle of citizen concern over access to military-style weapons leading to calls for tighter control leading to president calling for restrictions before. And we're not talking about after Sandy Hook or San Bernadino or Aurora, Colorado... we're talking about 1934, when gangster movies were huge and fear of the real-life mobsters and their tommy guns helped change the law of the land.  

In an article for National Geographic, digital news deputy director Gabe Bullard draws reviews a moment in American history when mob violence inspired gun control in America.

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How Gun Control Saved Us From the Mob

TV Critics Are the New Movie Critics

The movie critic once reigned over the arts pages of newspapers and magazines. Their reviews could make or break a film. In some cases, their praise elevated careers helped influence the way films were made. The rise of online and crowd-sourced reviews changed the game - and several newspapers laid off or reassigned film critics in the late aughts. Now, in the so-called golden age of television, TV reviewers have all the juice.

Bryan Curtis thinks so.  Bryan is Editor-at-Large for The Ringer, host of the “Press Box” for the Channel 33 podcast and he joined us to make the case that TV critics are the new tastemakers.

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TV Critics Are the New Movie Critics

The Ancient Cosmos

Where do we come from? How was the universe created? Those are questions humans have been trying to answer since they first gazed up at the cosmos.  In this piece, Shuka Kalantari explores a number of ancient creation myths with some young philosophers to find out what kids think about how the universe came to be.

You can listen to this story again at PRX.org

Sleep With Me: A Podcast

When suffering from insomnia, you could pop an Ambien. If that doesn’t do it for you, you could plug in a white noise machine, listen to a guided meditation, or cycle through the chattering of your own brain. Or, you could listen to Drew Ackerman, who performs under the name "Scooter" as host of Sleep With Me, the podcast with the goal of putting listeners to sleep. 

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Sleep With Me: A Podcast

The Bookshelf: Imagining the Lost Colony of Roanoke

The Bookshelf is a chance to hear NHPR's All Things Considered host Peter Biello talk with regional authors. Today, author Ed Gray - his novel, Left in the Wind, takes the form of a fictional diary - one woman's account of the failed colony of Roanoke Island. 

You can listen to the full episode again: The Bookshelf: Imagining the Lost Colony of Roanoke

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