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Underserved Veterans, Gun Control, Babies

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Apr 12, 2016
  • 01:41:20

Underserved Veterans (1:02) Guest: Bart Stichman, Joint Executive Director of the National Veterans Legal Services Program  A new report by two veterans’ advocacy groups and Harvard Law School finds roughly 125,000 men and women who have served in the military since 2001 are being wrongfully excluded from basic veteran benefits. That’s a much higher rate than veterans of previous wars, including Vietnam and World War II.  The trouble stems from something called “bad paper” and the consequence is that veterans who served in combat, and may have suffered traumatic injuries, are being denied housing, health care and disability benefits. Which puts them at greater risk for homelessness and suicide.  The Department of Veterans Affairs has praised the report and says it’s working with the advocacy groups to remedy the problem.  Gun Control Misconceptions (16:55) Guest: Benjamin Miller, PhD Student in Political Science at Yale  America has a conflicted relationship with guns. The right to own them is enshrined in our Constitution and vigorously defended by politicians. Efforts to pass stricter gun laws over the last several years have failed repeatedly, even amid public outcry over mass shootings like the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy. There is a mysterious disconnect in public opinion: Numerous national polls conducted last year by Quinnipiac University, Gallup and the Pew Research Center found 90 percent of Americans – that’s virtually all of us – support a law that requires universal background checks on all gun buyers – including private sales between people, online buyers and at gun shows, which are currently exempt from background checks. But only about half of Americans say they favor stricter gun laws. So which is it? Do we want stricter laws or not? That’s the question political science researchers at Yale University have been puzzling over. They conducted their own national survey to try and figure it out.  Microchimerism (32:09) Guest: J. Lee Nelson, MD, Member of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington  Any woman who’s borne a child will tell you the experience changed her deeply – physically, emotionally, psychically. The changes go much deeper than you might expect, though. Scientists have discovered a biological phenomenon called microchimerism in which mothers retain some of their children’s cells long after birth – they’re present in her brain and other parts of the body. The question is why? What purpose, if any, does these left-over fetal cells have?  Baby Speech (50:55) Guest: Alison Bruderer, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Audiology and Speech Sciences at the University of British Columbia  It’s tempting to rely heavily on a pacifier to keep your baby happy. But new research suggests that babies who use a pacifier too much might be missing out on language acquisition.  According to new research out of the University of British Columbia, parents should keep forgo the pacifier at least some of the time, because babies need free tongue movement in order to understand and learn new sounds.  Bilingual Babies (1:00:19) Guest: Naja Ramirez, PhD, Neuroscientist at the Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences at the University of Washington  Sticking with the subject of babies learning to speak, there’s also evidence to suggest an infant exposed to multiple languages from birth has a leg-up on babies that only hear one language at home when it comes to the all-important “executive function” of the brain. That’s the set of skills that help us manage time, solve problems and decide what to focus our attention on.  Open Source Trailer for Adults with Disabilities (1:21:50) Guests: Devin Adams, Grant Getts, Seniors in Engineering at BYU; Allison Mitton, Mother of Mckay  Too often people with physical disabilities are limited in how much of the outdoors they can experience and enjoy, which is too bad, since we all know how therapeutic the smell of a canyon trail after a light rain can be - or the feel of wind on your face as you run or cycle down a park path. A team of six BYU engineering students took on the task of creating a vehicle that could help an adult with physical disabilities enjoy the outdoors. They developed a lightweight jogging stroller that converts to a trailer behind a bicycle. And they did it with one young man in mind – 18 year old McKay Mitton. Show More...

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