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Stateside Staff

arms in striped shirt going through a record crate
Annie Theby / Unsplash

In 2020, we want to remind you—and ourselves—of the importance of taking a break. And what better way to do that than to take an old (or new) record off the shelf and spin a few tunes? We’re inviting folks from some Michigan record stores we love to talk about what they're listening to right now.

Former Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick
Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, as President Trump pardons a slew of white-collar criminals, some Detroiters are asking for consideration for Kwame Kilpatrick. The former Detroit mayor is serving a lengthy sentence on corruption charges. What would a commutation do for Trump's standing in metro Detroit? Also, a new documentary tells the story of how a lakeside town in West Michigan became contaminated with PFAS.

Independence Square, Accra, Ghana.
Author: Rjruiziii / Wikimedia Commons http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

The government of Ghana spent 2019 inviting African Americans to visit the country. The national tourism campaign was called the “Year of Return.” Last year marked the 400th anniversary of the arrival of enslaved Africans in North America, and the campaign focused on bringing members of the African diaspora back to the land from which their ancestors were taken.

Stateside spoke with two Detroiters about their own experiences in Ghana during the Year of Return.

the Renaissance Center at night
Author BriYYZ / Wikimedia Commons bit.ly/2uVI57b

Today on Stateside, General Motors backs further into its comfort zone as it exits some markets around the Pacific Rim. We'll talk about how the company's effort to focus on strengths is playing out. Plus, we talk to comedian Joe Pera about his series that follows a mild-mannered oddball living in Marquette. 

a headshot of Dan Gilbert
Quicken Loans

Today on Stateside, a super PAC funded by the DeVos family has raised $800,000 to unseat Democratic U.S. Senator Gary Peters. We talk about how spending by outside groups could impact the state's most competitive 2020 races. Plus, an update on the Michigan family caught in a coronavirus scare on a cruise ship.

George N'Namdi, Davida Artis, and Anthony Artis smile in front of a brick wall
April Van Buren / Michigan Radio

For a long time, the work of African American artists didn't get much recognition in the world of fine art. That hasn't stopped art lovers from building impressive collections of pieces by black artists. We talked to two collectors about their approach to buying, and how the business of African American art has changed over the years.

Money
User 401(K) 2012 / Flickr http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

If you’ve been online recently, chances are you’ve seen a few political ads popping up in your social media feeds. Behind the scenes, big money is flowing to some of Michigan’s contested races. Detroit News reporter Craig Mauger has been tracking where that money ends up. 

Darryl DeAngelo Terrell sits in a wicker peacock chair with two men on either side of them
Courtesy of Darryl DeAngelo Terrell

We all have a version of ourselves that lives in our head. Your favorite self, your strongest self, the self this worldㅡ for whatever reasonㅡ doesn't want to let you be. For queer and gender non-binary artists, that self isn't just a daydream. It's someone who might get you through years of being made to feel like an outsider. It might also be a canvas for important ideas.

Supporters of the Michigan Green Party visit the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department.
Michigan Green Party / Facebook

Today on Stateside, one Michigan family got an extended vacation after their cruise ship was turned away from port after port because of fears about the coronavirus. Also, we round up the week's news, including the coverage of black voters ahead of election 2020 and Detroit's ongoing water shutoffs.

Picture of Michigan State University marker on campus
Michigan State University

Today on Stateside, we're digging deeper into the hiring of Mel Tucker, his around $30 million compensation package, and the process governing sports hiring at Michigan's Big 3 schools. Plus, two African American artists in Detroit talk about finding a canvas big enough to tell real stories.

Sydney James stands in front of a mural she painted
Courtesy of Sydney James

The fine art world has not always been friendly to African American artists. But that’s starting to change, and black artists are now more visible than they’ve ever been. That includes prominent artists of the past, like Harlem Renaissance painters Jacob Lawrence and Norman Lewis, as well as more contemporary figures.

a group of children in front of a large portrait of a black woman lounging on a couch
Courtesy of the Detroit Institute of Arts

When you walk into the African American art wing of the Detroit Institute of Arts, you see a large portrait of a woman on a couch. The portrait is covered in rhinestones, and the glittering woman has a regal air.

The painting, titled "Something You Can Feel," is by artist Mickalene Thomas. The woman is her mother, who was a runway model in the 1970’s. The portrait is filled with color and joy. Its celebration of black womanhood is an example of how African-American artists have reshaped the portrayal of black bodies in fine art. 

guns in holsters on two people
Lucio Eastman - Free State Project - PorcFest 2009 / Wikimedia Commons http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Today on Stateside, the trial of Kathie Klages has begun. The longtime coach for the Michigan State University women’s gymnastics team is accused of lying to police during an investigation into Larry Nassar. Plus, the national debate over new gun control measures has led to some Michigan municipalities to adopt “sanctuary county” resolutions for gun rights.

a screen that says mega millions and 173
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, what the worsening erosion of Great Lakes shorelines looks like from a bird’s eye view. Plus, an expected flood of absentee ballots this November has some of Michigan's clerks nervous about timely reporting. We talk to a state senator who says accuracy is more important than speed when it comes to counting votes. 

A white house sinks down a sand dune into Lake Michigan
Dustin Dwyer / Michigan Radio

Record high water levels in the Great Lakes are wreaking havoc on Michigan’s shorelines. Dramatic erosion along the shore has put both private homes and public infrastructure at risk. Randy Claypool, aerial videographer and owner of Truly Michigan Aerial, captured footage that shows just how severe erosion is along Lake Michigan.

A photo from 1860 of a man and woman
Anna Lisa Cox

America’s Great Migration between World War I and II brought millions of Southerners, both black and white, to places like Michigan to escape the economic entrenchment of the former Confederate States. But this influx of black Michiganders was not the first group to settle in The Mitten. 

A worker handles finished auto parts on an assembly line
ADAC Automotive Muskegon operations

Today on Stateside, the coronavirus outbreak in China is beginning to have an effect on Michigan manufacturers. We hear from an executive at a west Michigan auto parts supplier about how the virus is affecting their business. Plus, we'll learn about Michigan's first African American settlers, as well as Enbridge's plan to replace a section of Line 5 under the St. Clair River.

Mark Dantonio at a podium
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Today on Stateside, it's the end of an era for Michigan State fooball under head coach Mark Dantonio. Plus, the city of Detroit's new chief storyteller talks about his plan for making sure the city's narrative reflects its residents.  

oscar like statues
Walt Disney Television / Flickr / http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

It's almost impossible to be ready for Oscars weekend without taking a major chunk out of your December to watch the barrage of last-minute releases. But we'll try to get you up to speed with help from a couple of Detroit film critics. Corey Hall is a writer and comedian whose work can be found in the Metro Times and on WDET. Michelle Kisner writes reviews for the Spoiler Free Movie Sleuth site. We dug into the films nominated for this year's Academy Awards, plus the ones they think should have made the cut.

profile shot of Gretchen Whitmer
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Today on Stateside, we talk about Governor Gretchen Whitmer's budget priorities, including a boost in school funding. Plus, parents from Saline and Lansing discuss what it's like to raise kids of color who go to majority-white schools. 

A blackboard sign that says "we thank the community for all the support and business #why didn't you stay in mexico"
Courtesy of Adrian Iraola

Normally, a video of a school board meeting would not be viral content. But a short exchange from a meeting in Saline this week has captured the world’s attention and sparked a conversation about the racism students of colors face in school.

Whitmer at podium
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Twitter

Today on Stateside, we recap Governor Whitmer's response to President Trump's State of the Union address. Plus, with the impeachment trial wrapping up, we hear from former federal prosecutor and University of Michigan law professor Barbara McQuade about why this could be a big moment for the future of executive power. 

A stringed orchestra with a choir behind them
Kevin Kennedy / Sphinx

This weekend, you may notice a surprising number of people toting violin cases around Detroit.

It’s time for the Sphinx Competition. Musician, composer, and educator Aaron Dworkin founded the organization in 1997.

absentee ballot
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, we spoke to two Michigan clerks about how the state can avoid an Iowa caucuses style castastrophe in November. Plus, a new play at Plowshares Theatre in Detroit tells the story of Broadway's first black megastar Charles S. Gilpin.

Charles Gilpin sits shirtless on the stage in a performance of the emperor jones
New York Public Library Digital Collections

Charles S. Gilpin was one of Broadway’s first breakout stars. In the 1920s, the African-American actor received critical acclaim from both white and black audiences. His performance as the lead in Eugene O’Neill’s play The Emperor Jones cemented his reputation as one of the best actors of the era. But after a falling out with the playwright, Gilpin faded into obscurity. So, what happened?

It was a long night for tabulators in Iowa after Monday's Democratic primary caucuses. Malfunctions in a new app being used to report results led to major delays. Michigan's voting system is very different than the Iowa caucuses, but there's a lot changing this year. One big change is the expected influx of mail-in votes now that any voter can request an absentee ballot. 

Students sitting at desks in a classroom with a teacher at the front of the room
NeONBRAND / Pixabay

Today on Stateside, Gretchen Whitmer will deliver the Democratic response to President Trump’s State of the Union speech Tuesday. We talk to two communications experts about what notes Whitmer needs to hit while she's in the national spotlight. Plus, a Detroit-born art curator talks about how contemporary work by African Americans confronts society's indifference to black people's experiences.

Kelli Morgan stands in front of a painting
April Baer / Michigan Radio

The Flint Institute of Art's exhibit Community draws attention to black spaces and black lives, in both quiet and dramatic ways. The pieces in the exhibition vary in medium and message, but the story they tell broadens our understanding of black history.

Gretchen whitmer at a microphone
Jake Neher / WDET

Today on Stateside, Governor Gretchen Whitmer is set to deliver the Democratic rebuttal to President Trump’s State of the Union next week. Why was she chosen and what can we expect to hear? Plus, the head of a Dearborn seminary talks about educating the next generation of Muslim faith leaders.

As Senate impeachment proceedings wind down, focus turns to President Trump's State of the State speech next week. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer will deliver the Democratic rebuttal. We talk to our Friday political commentators about how she might position Michigan as a key player in a contentious election year. John Sellek is the CEO of Harbor Strategic Public Relations. Matt Friedman is co-founder of the Tanner Friedman public relations firm.

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