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War on Drugs, Suicide in the Media, Losing Weight

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Aug 22, 2017
  • 01:44:02
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Trump Administration Renews War on Drugs Guest: Dan McConkie, JD, Assistant Professor of Law, Northern Illinois University You could argue that the War on Drugs came to an end during the Obama Administration when many of the 80s-era policies meant to get tough on drug crimes were put on hold. Federal prosecutors were instructed not to pursue the harshest penalties for low-level drug offenses. Judges embraced flexibility to not enforce mandatory minimum sentences. President Obama granted clemency to nearly 2,000 non-violent drug offenders serving lengthy sentences he deemed unfair. The expense of keeping all those drug offenders in prison helped create bipartisan support for reforming the way drug crimes are punished.   But President Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions has signaled he’s not ready to end the War on Drugs and he’s already reversed several of the Obama Administration’s policies for drug crimes. Portraying Suicide in the Media Guest: Jon-Patrick Allem, PhD, Research Scientist, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine Even uttering the word “suicide” in earshot of a teenager is terrifying. It’s the second leading cause of death among young people in the US and that rate has been steadily rising for decades. Parents, teachers and the media agonize over how to talk about the suicide of a friend, family member or famous person. Is there a way to promote awareness and suicide prevention without inadvertently planting a dangerous seed in the mind of a fragile young person? The creators of the controversial Netflix drama “13 Reasons Why” say they hoped their graphic dramatization of a high school girl’s path to suicide would spark conversation. That it has, along with a lot of concern that the show glamorizes suicide and could inspire copycats. New Insight into Losing Weight Guest: Sai Krupa Das, PhD, Assistant Professor of Nutrition Science and policy, Tufts University, Scientist, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging So, the doctor says you need to lose some weight. But how? More exercise, sure. But on the diet side, should you cut out sugar? Go Paleo? Whole 30? Atkins? Every diet has people who swear by its power and others who say it didn’t work for them.     Wouldn’t it be nice if you could take a blood test and find out exactly which diet is best for your body and unique metabolism? Maybe there is. Growing Pains of Incarcerated Youth Guest: Laura Abrams, PhD, Professor of Social Welfare, UCLA For young people who have been incarcerated in the juvenile justice system and then released back into society, the critical years of their late teens and earlier 20s can feel like navigating a mine field. For sure, those years are hard enough for young adults who haven’t gotten into trouble with the law. But for those trying to leave their criminal pasts behind—which social scientists call “desistance”—the way forward is even more fraught and confusing. The German Girl: A Legacy of Cuban-German Relations Guests: Armando Lucas Correa, Author, "The German Girl"; Eva Weiner, Survivor, "SS St. Louis" On May 27, 1939, the “SS St. Louis,” an oceanliner filled with more than 900 people, mostly Jewish refugees fleeing Hitler, arrived in the port of Havana. Though the passengers had authorized travel documents, Cuban officials only allowed 28 passengers to disembark and turned the rest away. The novel “The German Girl” is a fictional account of a Jewish refugee, Hannah Rosenthal, who, along with her mother, Alma, is allowed into Cuba—where they become permanent exiles in a country they refuse to embrace. “The German Girl” is Armonda Lucas Correas’ debut novel. The book is just out in paperback this month. Eva Weiner and her family were refused entry into Cuba and turned away from the United States, but they were taken in by Great Britain. She now lives in New Jersey.  Worlds Awaiting: Science Books for Children Guest: Rachel Wadham of BYUradio's "Worlds Awaiting" Show More...

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