Stateside | Michigan Radio
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Stateside

Monday through Friday @ 3:00 & 10 p.m.

Stateside covers what you need (and want) to know about Michigan. You hear stories from people across the state—from policymakers in Lansing, to entrepreneurs in Detroit, to artists in Grand Rapids. Tune in every day for in-depth conversations about what matters in Michigan. Stateside is hosted by April Baer.

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outside of the Detroit Institute of Art
Author Sailko / Wikimedia Commons http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

On today's Stateside, lawmakers in Lansing may be ready to throw clerks a lifeline as they prepare to count an onslaught of absentee ballots this primary season. Plus, we'll talk to the state’s top health official about how Michigan is preparing for a potential outbreak of the coronavirus.

Justin Amash and Fred Upton
U.S. House of Representatives

Today on Stateside, we look at two traditionally Republican congressional districts in West Michigan that are going through political change. Plus, we talk to poet and prose writer Saladin Ahmed, who has made a stellar transition into comic books and written for several iconic Marvel characters. 

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

On Monday, Livingston County became the 28th county in the state to pass a resolution supporting gun rights. These resolutions are not legally binding. Language varies from place to place, but the basic idea is to affirm that counties should uphold constitutional gun rights, no matter what laws state and federal governments may pass.

Linda Brundage, the executive director of the Michigan Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence, told Stateside that she thinks much of the outrage about gun control legislation stems from a misunderstanding about what those laws would do. 

a cover of Ms. Marvel
Penciler: Minkyu Jung, Cover Artist: Eduard Petrovich / Marvel Comics

If writer Saladin Ahmed never typed another word, he'd already have introduced us to so many interesting people. From fantasy novels, to Westerns, to supernatural sleuth stories, Ahmed’s writing spans both genre and form.

Right now, he's the author of two major titles for Marvel Comics: The Magnificent Ms. Marvel, and Miles Morales: Spider-Man. Ahmed took over the character of Miles Morales from creator Brian Bendis, and is putting his own stamp on the story. 

windmill in field
cwwycoff1 / Flickr Creative Commons HTTP://MICHRAD.IO/1LXRDJM

Today on Stateside, we talk with Michigan Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-12th) about the presidential race. It's been four years since she predicted Donald Trump's surprise win in Michigan. We'll ask what she sees ahead in 2020. Plus, Michigan’s two largest energy companies have deeply divergent plans for moving to renewables. What does that mean for our state's energy future? 

An overhead shot of the Oscoda-Wurtsmith airport
United States Geological Survey

Cape Canaveral might have a bit of competition up here in the north. The Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport near Lake Huron is being considered as a spot for a horizontal rocket launch site. Stateside spoke to Justin Kasper, a professor with the Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering at the University of Michigan, about how the site might be used and Michigan’s past and future place in the space industry. 

Debbie Dingell wearing a pink blazer and standing against a brick wall
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

After a decisive victory at the Nevada caucuses over the weekend, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has emerged as the frontrunner in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. That’s after tying for the most votes in the Iowa caucus and winning the New Hampshire primary.

These kinds of early wins are often key to generating the momentum a candidate needs to clinch the nomination. Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Dingell thinks that’s a problem.

Photo of a cell phone with online comment section.
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, Michigan is under the microscope this election year. We talk to a POLITICO reporter about why the state could play a key role in the rift among labor unions over Medicare for All. Plus, we talk to the hosts of Michigan Radio’s new political podcast. It focuses on a competitive congressional district where Republicans are hoping to hold onto the gains of 2016.

doctor holding red stethoscope
Unsplash

Medicare for All took second place to the dust-ups Wednesday at the Democratic debate, but it's still a prominent issue for a lot of voters. Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren discuss it frequently on the campaign trail. But concerns are developing within some labor unions over the plan for a single-payer health care system. As primary momentum shifts toward Michigan, eyes are now on union leaders in the state.

An absentee ballot in an envelope.
Nadya Peek / Flickr

Today on Stateside, a bill to give local clerks a head start on absentee ballot counting has hit a wall in the Legislature. We'll hear from one clerk who's going back to the drawing board. Plus, a conversation with the owner of an Ann Arbor record store owner about the albums he's listening to and loving right now. 

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. 

Joe Pera in a still from his show
Courtesy of Joe Pera

Comedian Joe Pera is not from Marquette. But the version of himself he plays in the television series Joe Pera Talks With You is recognizable to anyone familiar with the Upper Peninsula.

The show has become a runaway hit on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim nighttime block. Pera's oddball observations on subjects like beans and grocery stores are weirdly hilarious. But what really makes the series is that Pera is not just being funny. 

Jed Jaworski

Large waves and Lake Michigan’s record high water level are breaking down the barrier that protects the historic Point Betsie Lighthouse in Frankfort.

Key parts of the structure are fractured and falling apart. Supporters of the lighthouse are trying to get repairs done. 

But Interlochen Public Radio's Taylor Wizner reports that a lengthy process may stand in the way.

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.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

When you walk into Buffalo Traders Lounge in Grand Rapids, it’s the kind of space that just begs you to get comfortable, relax, and sip a drink.

“I have to say this is a gorgeous space, kind of mid-century modern decor. And I love it,” Tammy Coxen of Tammy’s Tastings said as she looked around.

We were there to visit with the lead bartender, Tony Jones and to sample one of his craft cocktails.

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.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Environmentalists, the Michigan Attorney General, and many others are keeping an eye on every step of the process of replacing Line 5 at the Straits of Mackinac. Enbridge’s Line 5 is the pipeline that crosses the Upper and Lower peninsulas of Michigan to transport oil and liquid natural gases to Canada.

But there’s another place where Line 5 is going under a body of water that’s part of the Great Lakes. Enbridge is replacing that pipeline under the St. Clair River just south of Lake Huron.

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. 

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