Where We Live | Connecticut Public Radio
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Where We Live

WEEKDAYS AT 9:00 AM AND 8:00 PM

Every weekday, Lucy Nalpathanchil puts Connecticut in context, Where We Live.

Join the conversation live at 9 a.m., hear the rebroadcast at 8 p.m., or download the podcast to learn more about Connecticut: its people, its unique history, its beauty and its challenges.

On Where We Live, you hear top politicians as well as people from all over our state who are tackling issues, creating community, and sharing ideas, history, and expertise. And we take your calls, too.

Where We Live is a place to hear fascinating, informed and in-depth conversations and stories that go beyond news headlines. We start local but we take time to explore domestic and international issues and consider how they impact us here at home. 

If you're curious about state politics, Wednesdays on Where We Live devotes time for in-depth interviews with elected officials and the reporters who cover them closely. Tune in on Wednesdays for interviews with state and municipal leaders, the Governor, and Connecticut’s Congressional delegation.

Contact Where We Live:

Reach us when we're live at 888-720-9677. 

Theme music by Hannis Brown.

A memorial takes shape on a telephone pole near the site where 26-year-old Yale forestry graduate student Kevin Jiang was shot and killed in the Goatville section of New Haven’s East Rock neighborhood.
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Earlier this month a Yale graduate student was murdered in New Haven’s East Rock neighborhood, leading to widespread media coverage.

This hour, we ask: why do some shootings get media attention while others do not? We take a look at the way race and privilege shape gun violence coverage.

And we talk with journalists and community members. What trends have you noticed in news coverage of violent crime?

Katherine May / Penguin Random House

Here in Connecticut, surviving long winters means getting plenty of sleep, extra vitamin D supplements and leaning into our favorite winter activities.

This hour, we talk with author Katherine May about her book Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times and the act of wintering. 

Portrait of Federal Communications Commission (F.C.C.) Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel
Federal Communications Commission

Telehealth, Google Classrooms, and Zoom have become essential for daily life in the pandemic.

This hour, we learn about the role of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to make sure all Americans have access to broadband internet.

We talk with the FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, a West Hartford native.

Joseph Lemieux, CT Senate Republicans Office

It was a long night for members of the General Assembly’s Public Health Committee, who conducted a public hearing on vaccine bills that was scheduled to go as long as 24-hours. Republican State Senate Minority Leader Kevin Kelly joins us to talk about the proposals, which would prevent residents from claiming religious objections to school vaccine requirements.

Petar Milošević / Wikimedia Commons

Navigating pregnancy should be an exciting time, but new parents don’t have the same support system right now. This hour, we talk about pregnancy and birth during a pandemic.

Creative Commons Zero - CC0

Happy Valentine’s Day Weekend! 

All you need is love, but navigating romantic relationships during the pandemic can be pretty tough. This hour, a look at pandemic love!

Quarantining means that we are all spending more time at home, and more time with our partners. Maintaining a healthy relationship during a high stress situation like this, can be difficult. 

5317367 / Pixabay

Plumbers and electricians are essential workers with well-paying jobs.  And yet skilled trades face worker shortages and struggle to recruit young people.

This hour, we take a look at vocational education. We talk with a teacher and a student from one of Connecticut’s technical high schools.

And we ask a national expert: what can the Biden administration do to build up a new generation of tradespeople?

MATT DWYER / CONNECTICUT PUBLIC RADIO

In the first half of the show, Connecticut Mirror budget reporter (and budget guru) Keith Phaneuf previews Governor Ned Lamont's 2-year state taxing and spending plan. The proposal is being released later today. In the short term, things are better than they appeared back in the spring. But the state still faces a fiscal slog in the long term.

In the second half of the show, UConn Professor Christopher Vials considers lessons learned from four years with Donald Trump in the oval office. American democracy survived, but is it in worse shape than it was four years ago? Is a second impeachment the right path for the country?

Desks are spaced 6 feet apart in a classroom at the CREC Academy of Science and Innovation in August, 2020.
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

As COVID-19 cases rise, teachers, parents, and students worry--is school safe? At the same time, as many students engage in education remotely, many students are falling farther and farther behind, and the impact of that learning loss is disproportionately falling on nonwhite students.

By Amherst2005 (www.creativecommons.org)

Over 40 million Americans have student loan debt owing an average of $36,520 alone, for federal loans. Connecticut Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona, and President Joe Biden's nominee to lead the Department of Education, says student debt relief would be a priority. 

Official Ballot Boxes outside West Hartford Town Hall.
Ali Oshinskie / Connecticut Public Radio

More than a third of Connecticut votes cast in the November 2020 election were by absentee ballot.  Will ballot drop boxes and mail-in options become permanent? Today, we talk with Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill about the future of voting in Connecticut.

And later: President Biden has been in office for less than a month. But he’s already setting records with his use of executive orders. We hear from a law professor about what this use of executive power means for the country.

Black and white image of Mary and Luther with their first born, Roy, on Easter Sunday 1941 in New Haven
Courtesy of Jill Snyder

Jill Snyder’s parents carried on a long-distance courtship through letters.

After her mother’s death, Snyder found these letters, and compiled them into a book, called Dear Mary, Dear Luther: A Courtship in Letters.

This hour, Snyder joins us to talk about her family’s story. It’s a lens into the lives of African Americans in the Northeast before the start of World War II.

Snyder tells us why it’s especially important for Black families to document their own family history.

Infrared photo of Venus at night, from the Japanese robotic spacecraft Akatsuki, which orbits the planet
JAXA / ISAS / DARTS / Damia Bouic

Extreme heat, crushing air pressure, and toxic clouds. Venus may not seem like a hospitable place.

But the discovery of a certain chemical, phosphine, in that planet’s atmosphere has raised new questions about the possibility of extraterrestrial life. Scientists wonder if a living organism could possibly be creating this unexpected chemical.

This hour, we sit down Martha Gilmore, a Wesleyan professor. She’s a planetary geologist and Venus expert.

What questions do you have about Venus or our solar system?

Gov. Ned Lamont holds a press briefing at the Community Health Center in New Britain to highlight CHC’s walk-up COVID-19 testing site and to encourage continued testing, June 18, 2020.
Cloe Poisson / CTMirror.org

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont addresses issues related to COVID-19 and vaccinations. Are the people most at risk getting the shots? What should the state do to ensure that people of color and people without much money have a fair chance of getting vaccinated?

The Governor unveils his budget February 10. Can fellow Democrats make good on calls to shift some of the tax burden off lower-income and middle class working people, if the governor opposes tax increases on the wealthy to make up for lost revenue?

Pixabay

Broadband access is not just a convenience, it’s essential for life under COVID-19. 

This hour, we take a look at Connecticut’s digital divide. We talk with a researcher whose report highlights the stark racial and economic disparities in internet access in our state.

Governor Lamont has proposed universal broadband by September 2022. But is the state taking strong enough steps to put all residents on an equal footing when it comes to internet access?

Jason Howie / Wikimedia Commons

Before extremists stormed the US Capitol, groups had been organizing and inciting violence on our most common social media apps. 

This hour, how much of a role did social media play in that riot? Extremists had a home on the web long before the existence of Parler, an alternative social media network.

Elizabeth Norman

Venture Smith was enslaved when he was just a boy. He was eventually able to buy his freedom and the freedom of his family. His iconic story of will, perseverance and strength, is central to Connecticut’s history.

This hour, we dive into to the biography of Venture Smith and the history of slavery here in Connecticut.  

Image of the Wikipedia logo on white background
Eukaryogurt / Wikimedia Commons

When you want to learn about an obscure topic, where do you turn? For many, it’s a free, online encyclopedia which now contains more than 55 million user-created articles. This hour, we talk about 20 years of Wikipedia.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The General Assembly session is getting interesting, as lawmakers trot out their proposals. But this year does not resemble a normal session.  COVID-19 rules keep lawmakers at arms length from each other, and from lobbyists and the public. 

Today we talk to House Speaker Matt Ritter about how much lawmakers will be able to get done.  Are they doing the right thing by extending the governor’s emergency powers?  And is now the time to start phasing out a religious exemption to school vaccination requirements?

Credit Jeng_Niamwhan/iStock / Thinkstock

Recovering from addiction is difficult in normal times, but managing recovery during a pandemic can be incredibly challenging. This hour, we talk about the challenges of navigating recovery during the pandemic. 

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public

Dr. Miguel Cardona’s journey as an educator started in an elementary school classroom in Meriden, Connecticut. Now, Connecticut’s education commissioner is heading to Washington D.C. as President Biden’s pick for nation’s Secretary of Education.  This hour, we sit down down with Dr. Cardona.

If confirmed by the Senate, Cardona will take the helm of the U.S. Department of Education during a pandemic that has profoundly disrupted the country’s education system.  As Education Commissioner, Cardona advocated strongly for an in-person return to the classroom in Connecticut. How will he navigate education during COVID-19 at a national scale?

John Kees / Wikimedia Commons

During this pandemic, most of the day our eyes are glued to our screens as we continue to work from home. This hour, we challenge you to look outside as we talk about bird watching in our state! 

Sales of bird feeders and bird seed have skyrocketed this year. If you are one of the many people that have picked up birding, look out for cardinals and woodpeckers!

A high school boy studies with a volunteer teacher at his home, in an iron lung provided by the New Haven Hospital (c. 1943)
courtesy of the Yale New Haven Hospital Archives

It was a plague that came every summer and left thousands of American children paralyzed -- or dead -- in its wake. This hour we take a look at the legacy of polio.

How did the development of the polio vaccine change the course of history?

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public

Hosted by Lucy Nalpathanchil and John Henry Smith

Today Joe Biden became the forty-sixth president of the United States.  Will America heed President  Biden’s calls to end an 'uncivil war' in political debate that spilled over into violence at the capitol two weeks ago?

A vice presidential swearing-in also makes history. 

Now that Donald Trump has left Washington and been kicked off Twitter, what has changed and what remains the same?  

And how will Connecticut’s political parties be impacted by the change at the White House?

David Maiolo / Creative Commons

Inauguration Day is here. This hour, Connecticut’s 3rd District Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro joins us to talk about what this Inauguration Day is looking like, and how it has looked in years past. 

A Hartford HealthCare worker prepares a COVID-19 vaccine
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Bridgeport has lost its top health official as the state battles COVID-19’s second wave. This hour, we talk with Connecticut Post reporter Brian Lockhart about the vacancy in the health department of the state’s largest city.

And later, some Connecticut residents over the age of 75 will receive their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine this week. Does Connecticut have the right tools in place to reach seniors?

We talk with Department of Public Health Acting Commissioner Deidre Gifford, and we hear from AARP Connecticut.

Seth Sawyers / Creative Commons

We’re one semester into the 2020-2021 academic year. This hour, how are faculty at our Connecticut colleges and universities holding up? 

Coming up, we'll talk about faculty burnout, the impending end of tenure, and what universities will invest in, in the future. 

Image of the U.S. Capitol Building
Scazon / Creative Commons

President Trump has been impeached by the House of Representatives again, making him the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice. With just days before President-Elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, what happens next?

We check in with impeachment legal expert Ross Garber.

We also talk with The New York Times Interpreter columnist Amanda Taub. What lessons can we take from attacks on democracies globally to better understand our current moment?

AP Photo / Susan Walsh

After President Trump egged on a crowd of supporters who later smashed their way into the US Capitol, Democrats are once again on the verge of impeaching the president. This time, they may have some Republican support.  To be successful, any such effort would have to pass both the House and the Senate. 

On the Wednesday politics episode of Where We Live, we speak with Connecticut US Senator Chris Murphy about whether the president should be removed, the upcoming new administration, and what needs to be done to protect the US Capitol from further violence during the inauguration and beyond?

While still just a law student, Brittany K. Barnett met Sharanda Jones, a single mother, business owner and a woman serving a life sentence without parole for a first time drug offense.

This hour, Brittany K. Barnett, author of A Knock at Midnight: A Story of Hope, Justice, and Freedom joins us to discuss her fight for Sharanda’s freedom and our country’s continued struggle with a racially challenged criminal justice system.

Coming up, we talk about the War on Drugs and the policies that resulted in the disproportionate mass incarceration of people of color.

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