A fresh alternative in daily news featuring critical conversations, live reports from the field, and listener participation. The Takeaway provides a breadth and depth of world, national, and regional news coverage that is unprecedented in public media.
The Refugee Orchestra Project Will Perform This Memorial Day Weekend
Lidiya Yankovskaya is the conductor and artistic director of the Chicago Opera Theatre; one of the few women to hold that title at a major arts organization. She's also a former refugee. Raised in Russia, with summers in Ukraine, her family fled St. Petersburg in the post-Soviet Reconstruction era due to anti-semitism there and came to the United States. She founded the Refugee Orchestra Project in the wake of the Syrian conflict to raise awareness about the contributions refugees make.
This Memorial Day Weekend, the orchestra will play a special benefit concert in Boston to raise funds for Ukrainian refugees.The performance will feature all refugee soloists, performing music by refugee composers, with an orchestra made up primarily of refugee musicians or recent descendants of refugees. We speak with Yankovskaya and one of composer Milad Yousufi about the project.
Why is the U.S. Sending Troops Back Into Somalia?
The United States has a long history of military presence in Somalia dating back to the early 90s. More recently, as his time in office was ending, President Trump withdrew troops from the country. But last week, President Biden reversed that decision and announced that the U.S. would be sending 500 troops into the country in a security effort against Al-Shabab, an islamic insurgent group active in the country. Meanwhile, the country's struggles with unrest have been compounded by natural disasters and a food crises.
We speak with Omar Mahmood, senior analyst for Somalia for the International Crisis Group, to explore why the U.S. is going back to Somalia, and what it means for the country.
Voting, Primaries and Redistricting in the South
We take a look at the latest primary election results from this past week. We’re joined by Maya King, politics reporter for The New York Times, and Stephen Fowler, state and local politics reporter for Georgia Public Radio.
Remembering Those We Lost in Uvalde
19 children and two teachers were killed at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday. Though their lives were all tragically cut short, all of them were loved by their families and friends in unique ways. We take a moment to remember the victims.
The Importance of Culturally Competent Mental Health Care
In the wake of the tragedies in Uvalde and Buffalo’s East Side, there is a need for mental health care for families, for survivors, and for the community as a whole. Yet tragedies like these also highlight inequities in mental health care access for communities of color, where the data shows that people of color are less likely to access mental health treatment than white folks.
To explore the importance of culturally competent mental healthcare and the need for expanded mental health care access in communities of color, we speak with Luis Zayas, dean of the School of Social Work at The University of Texas at Austin.
Gun Violence is a Public Health Crisis
In 2016, the American Medical Association declared that gun violence in the U.S. is a public health crisis. Not just the mass shootings which make national headlines, but the daily violence that constitute the overwhelming majority of gun deaths- suicide, intimate partner violence, murder, police killings and even accidental shootings. The ripple effects impacts all of us, even if we are not directly experiencing the violence ourselves.
It's compounding another national crisis, that of adolescent mental health. The CDC estimated that in 2020, the proportion of emergency room visits by adolescents seeking mental health care increased by 31 percent. But because of a lack of residential program beds, young patients are left to become “boarders” in emergency departments—kept in small, bare rooms or even in hospital hallways.
We speak with Dr. Megan Ranney, Academic Dean at the School of Public Health and a Professor of Emergency Medicine at Brown University, about how we got here and how a public health perspective on gun violence can help us find solutions.
Melissa Harris-Perry Keeps It Real
I first saw Ms. Perry at The New School in New York where she was a member of a panel with Chris Hayes, Eric Foner, and Katrina Vanden Heuvel. She keeps issues of dire importance to the vast underclass front and center, but she does it with panache, intelligence, and a great reserve of patience for a society that too often is dangerously indifferent to the majority of its members. Without people like her, determined, capable, honest reporters of the growing national crises we face each day we would be in a very sorrowful state indeed. Kudos to her, and her staff, for the good work they do to right ourselves for the common good.
Melissa Harris Perry!
An outstanding commentator and interviewer. So good to hear Melissa Harris Perry’s brilliant voice on NPR. Keep the diversity trend going.
Top Notch Interviewer
Melissa Harris-Perry has brought a huge breath of fresh air to NPR as well as to The Takeaway. Her gifts include the fact that she relies on her academic discipline to always be thoroughly prepared for her interviews. And then, in the most empathetic way I have ever heard on either radio or TV, she is able to connect with her guests and put them so completely at ease. This is especially true with guests who have to relate their own personal tragedies or traumas. Her ability to gently lead such guests to relate these difficult experiences without breaking down on the air
is singular within the broadcast media. This ability, in my estimation, makes a living legend within NPR, and is why I try to listen to her live broadcast everyday. Thank you, Melissa!