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Child Refugees, Chinese Perception, Rabies, Ancient Cold

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Oct 20, 2015
  • 01:43:26
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Child Refugees (1:04) Guest: Elizabeth Jevtic-Somlai, Visiting Professor of Political Science at BYU  The UN says more than 43 million people worldwide are now forcibly displaced as a result of conflict and persecution—that’s the highest number since the mid-1990s. Of those 43 million, almost half are children, many will spend their entire childhoods far from home. The pictures of Syrian toddlers washed up on Turkish beaches caused hearts to break, and intensified calls for international aid. What awaits the young refugees who survive the treacherous journey?  The Chinese Perception (24:37) Guest: Haifeng Huang, PhD, Assistant Political Science Professor at the University of California, Merced  Authoritarian governments, like China’s, go to great lengths to control the information coming into their countries as a way of keeping their citizens content. The idea is people won’t want to organize or rise up in protest if they don’t know what they’re missing. If they don’t know how the rest of the world lives.  Here’s the problem: controlling the message too much, can backfire in a fascinating way. Many Chinese romanticize how great they think we have things, and that makes them less content with their own lives. Exactly the opposite of what the Chinese government is going for with its censorship program.  Rabies (51:06) Guest: Ryan Wallace, DVM, MPH, a Veterinarian who leads the Rabies Epidemiology Unit at the CDC’s Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology in the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases  During the course of today’s show, somewhere in the world, six people will have died from rabies. More than 59,000 people die of the virus every year—that’s 1 person every 9 minutes. And the tragic thing is that we know how to treat rabies. People who get the vaccine shots soon after infection generally survive. As a result, only a few people in the US die from rabies each year. But in parts of Africa and Asia, many, many more die because people either don’t have access to the rabies vaccine or can’t afford the high cost of the shots.  Ancient Cold Period (1:14:20) Guest: Jud Partin, PhD, Research Assistant at the University of Texas Institute for Geophysics  The disaster movie from a couple of years ago called “The Day After Tomorrow,” depicted a scenario in which the ocean current collapses and the entire world enters an ice age with weeks.  The film was all-Hollywood, but the premise of the story came from an actual cooling period some 12,000 years ago. In that case, it happened not in weeks, but in a decade, which is still a really short amount of time for the average temperature in Greenland to drop nearly 20 degrees. And like in the movie, the sudden cooling was tied to ocean currents.  Synthetic Turf and Cancer (1:29:48) Guest: Amy Griffin, Associate Head Coach of the University of Washington’s soccer team  Across North America, some 11,000 artificial turf fields host high school and college athletes playing everything from football to lacrosse. Beneath the plastic grass lies a layer of recycle tire crumbs that give the field its bounce. Athletes call the crumbs “turf bugs:” they work their way into player’s clothes, eyes, nose and mouth during games and practice.  Recently, there have been calls for more research into the health effects those turf bugs might be having on athletes. Show More...

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