96 episodes

Conversations on news and culture with Kerri Miller. Weekdays from MPR News.

MPR News with Kerri Miller MPR

    • Arts
    • 4.3 • 157 Ratings

Conversations on news and culture with Kerri Miller. Weekdays from MPR News.

    Why is it so hard to find workers right now?

    Why is it so hard to find workers right now?

    Many businesses across the country, from resorts to restaurants, say they are struggling to hire enough employees.

    Some conservatives and businesses blame the enhanced unemployment benefits, saying they’re incentivizing and paying workers to stay home rather than return to the workplace. So far, 26 states have voted to end participation in the federal unemployment programs before the Sept. 6 cutoff. 

    But many labor economists say it’s not that simple and that placing the blame on extra unemployment support ignores the bigger picture. They say a dearth of child care, poor transportation, lingering fears of workplace safety and poor wages are also factors.

    Thursday, host Kerri Miller spoke with two experts who watch the job market about the complicated labor picture. 

    Guests:


    Erica Groshen is senior economics adviser at the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations and research fellow at the Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.

    Indivar Dutta-Gupta is the co-executive director of the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Georgetown University.




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS

    • 49 min
    How critical race theory became the latest battle in the culture war

    How critical race theory became the latest battle in the culture war

    The never-ending culture wars have a new battle, and this time, it’s playing out in America’s classrooms.

    It focuses on critical race theory, an academic pursuit developed in the 1960s that examines how race and racism function in law and society. In recent weeks, Republican legislatures in more than a dozen states have either passed or advanced bills that ban or limit the teaching of critical race theory, calling it divisive and unpatriotic to force students to consider the influence of racism on history.

    Educators are worried about the chilling effect it could have on their ability to teach a robust view of history — especially since in some towns, conservative activists and parents are inflaming the issue with local school boards.

    Why is critical race theory the latest rallying cry? Is there really a threat? And what are the implications? Host Kerri Miller spoke with two experts on Wednesday to get the context.

    Guests:


    Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic and the author of “How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America.”

    Leslie Fenwick is dean emeritus and a professor in the School of Education at Howard University.




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS

    • 48 min
    America’s drinking problem and what to do about it

    America’s drinking problem and what to do about it

    The Journal of the American Medical Association reported a 41 percent increase in the frequency of heavy drinking among women, compared to 2019.

    Is the pandemic to blame? 

    Tuesday, two experts join host Kerri Miller to talk about the history and evolution of drinking in the US, its role as a social and cultural tool, and its use as a coping mechanism.  

    Guests:

    Christine Sismondo is a writer, drinks expert and author of “America Walks Into a Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops.”

    Mallory O’Meara is a filmmaker, author, and cohost of the literary podcast Reading Glasses. Her upcoming book is titled, “Girly Drinks: A World History of Women and Alcohol.” 

    • 47 min
    A fresh look at the intent of the Second Amendment

    A fresh look at the intent of the Second Amendment

    What if the Second Amendment isn’t really about guns at all?  

    Historian Carol Anderson believes the right to bear arms was designed to keep Black people enslaved and powerless. Her new book, “The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America,” lays out the historical context for the Second Amendment’s passage. She builds the case that militias at the time of our country’s founding were primarily about protecting slavery, and that white supremacy is embedded into the bedrock of the right to bear arms.

    Last week, host Kerri Miller talked about soaring gun sales and gun violence. This Monday, she added to the conversation by talking with Anderson about the racial threads woven through gun rights in America.

    Guest:


    Carol Anderson is a professor of African American studies at Emory University and the author of many books. Her latest is “The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS.

    • 49 min
    Author Lionel Shriver on her new book, ‘Should We Stay or Should We Go’

    Author Lionel Shriver on her new book, ‘Should We Stay or Should We Go’

    After Kay Wilkinson watches her father devolve from a kind and intelligent man into a paranoid stranger due to Alzheimer’s disease, she and her husband make a pact. Once they both turn 80, they will take their own lives together — the better to spare themselves and their loved ones a humiliating and protracted decline.

    But what really happens when they turn 80?

    That’s the premise of Lionel Shriver’s new novel “Should We Stay or Should We Go.” The Wilkinsons are in their early ‘50s when they firmly decide 80 is their drop-dead date. But when they actually cross that threshold, the novel spins out a dozen alternative scenarios. One spouse goes through with it, while the other doesn’t. Maybe they enter a luxurious retirement village or their children stuff them into a grim, state-run institution called, paradoxically, Close of Day Cottages. 

    Friday, host Kerri Miller talked with Shriver about her intensely personal book. How does one cope with the complexities of longevity? Is there a way to live a long, vibrant life and still go out in style?

    Guest:


    Lionel Shriver is an award-winning author. Her latest book is “Should We Stay or Should We Go.”




    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS.

    • 48 min
    Gardening tips for June in Minnesota

    Gardening tips for June in Minnesota

    Thursday, two experienced gardeners will join MPR News host Kerri Miller to talk all things gardening, give advice about how to grow and manage a garden in this kind of weather, and answer questions from listeners.

    Guests:

    Catherine Grant is the biology department greenhouse manager at the University of St. Thomas.

    Julie Weisenhorn is an extension educator and an extension associate professor at the University of Minnesota’s Department of Horticultural Science.

    • 46 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
157 Ratings

157 Ratings

Thunderforge ,

Informative and a joy to listen to

The topics are varied, the guests are wonderful, and the callers provide new perspectives that expand the discussion. A wonderful podcast for anyone who wants to expand their understanding on complex ideas.

Trace off ,

Too biased!

I know it’s harder than ever to find unbiased reporting and conversation, I guess I just have high expectation for a “public” funded organization. One star is far more generous than this public personality deserves. I vote to defund biased reporting and Leftist leaning conversations that our tax dollars fund. What a joke Kerri Miller, maybe it’s time to take a look inward and make some much needed reflections!! I will never support this biased nonsense again! I truly hope this show goes in the trash where it belongs!

Muslim vvvvvvv vvvvvvv vv ,

Extraordinary journalism

Kerri & her team are amazing at providing unbiased journalism about critical issues facing the world today.
Wish we had another 1000 like them.

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