Conversation

No longer on air.

The Conversation covers current events in politics, public affairs, culture and science. Host Ross Reynolds opens the phone for listeners to participate in spirited discussions on the issues of the day. 

Twitter: KUOWRoss | Facebook: KUOWRoss

To find stories by The Conversation older than October 15, 2012, go to www2.kuow.org and select "The Conversation" from the show dropdown menu in the search function.

Composer ID: 
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The Science Of Marijuana
4:31 pm
Wed April 24, 2013

The Marijuana Lab

Marijuana sample at Northwest Botanical Analysis.
Courtesy Northwest Botanical Analysis

The Washington State Liquor Control Board is working to figure out how to create and regulate a legalized marijuana market. It’s not clear whether regulations will include limits on things like potency or pesticide use, but right now, there are only a couple of places in the state equipped to measure marijuana purity and potency.

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Longevity
11:58 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Living To 100

Futurist Sonia Arrison speaking at the Singularity Summit, October 2011.
Flickr Photo/singularitysummit

Futurist Sonia Arrison believes the first person to live to 150 years has already been born. What will the rapidly evolving improvements in medicine and life extension mean for us, our society and the earth? What will living longer mean for careers, family and faith?

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Comics
11:48 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Ben Katchor: Hand Drying In America

New York comic-strip artist Ben Katchor was the first cartoonist to be awarded a MacArthur Foundation “genuis” grant. Ben Katchor's new book, "Hand-Drying In America," examines urban design with a wryly whimsical sensibility. Ross Reynolds talks New York, life and art with Ben Katchor.

Financial Advice
12:40 pm
Tue April 23, 2013

How To Make Sure Your Kids Are Good With Money

Stackin' cheddar.
Flickr Photo/Shana

In Washington state there are no requirements to include financial education in school curriculum. As a result, most kids graduate high school financially illiterate.

While parents often give their children an allowance to teach financial responsibility, there is little emphasis on what to do with that allowance. Should it be school’s responsibility to teach financial education? What should parents be doing?

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Advertising
12:38 pm
Tue April 23, 2013

Advergaming: The Unregulated World Of Marketing To Kids

Do you know the content of the games your kids play?
Flickr Photo/Seth Werkheiser

Regulation exits for television marketing aimed at children that mixes entertainment with advertising. That regulation does not exist for advergaming, a form of online entertainment that integrates advertising into a video game format.

These advergames are often targeted to children who at their age, have difficulty differentiating between advertising and other content.

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Altruism
12:33 pm
Tue April 23, 2013

Feeling Weighed Down By That Extra Kidney? Donate It!

Flickr Photo/Mika Marttila

The Mayo Clinic reports that around 45 percent of Americans say they are either very or somewhat likely to donate a kidney to someone they’ve never met. In 2001, that number was only 24 percent.

There are about 90,000 people in the US currently waiting for a kidney, and many others waiting for a different organ. Living donors are limited by what they can donate, either a kidney or small portion of a liver. Would you donate an organ?

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Social Media
11:37 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Boston Marathon Bombings: The Social Media Manhunt

Boston police corrected media reports on Twitter during the marathon bomber manhunt.
Twitter Image/Boston Police Department

Professional and citizen journalists turned to social media last week to report and gather information on the bombings in Boston. But in the rush to get the latest news out, rumors and misinformation ran rampant. KUOW’s Ross Reynolds spoke with Seattle Times technology columnist Mónica Guzmán about how to avoid making social media mistakes when breaking news happens.

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Ethics
11:28 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Should Companies Be Allowed To Not Consider Candidates Who Smoke?

Do smokers have protection under labor law?
Fetmano Flickr

In Washington state, it’s perfectly legal for employers to refuse to hire people who smoke. In 2006, state lawmakers tried but failed to join 29 other US states that made it illegal for employers to discriminate against smokers. 

According to the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, it’s legal for companies to ban smokers from their workforce because smokers are not protected by any wrongful termination laws.

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Drunken Driving Laws
2:26 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Governor Inslee Pushes For Tougher DUI Penalties

Don't drink and drive.
Flickr Photo/Renee Silverman

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the average drunken driver has driven drunk 80 times before their first arrest. Here in Washington after a rather horrific spree of drunk driving related deaths, the governor is getting tough on drunken drivers by proposing tougher penalties for first-, second- and third-time offenders. One of the governor's more strident proposals would ban third-time offenders from purchasing alcohol. In this segment of the conversation listeners share their thoughts on these new and tougher proposed penalties.

Preventing Sexual Assault
2:25 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Sexual Assault Awareness: Going Beyond 'No Means No'

Approximately every two minutes, one woman will be raped in the United States. That means about 10 women will be raped by the end of this short 20 minute segment. Of those rapes over half will be committed by someone the victim knows, and the majority will go unreported. April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and on the show today Ross spoke with Mary Ellen Stone, the executive director of King County Sexual Assault Resource Center about sexual assault. 

Drug Enforcement
12:18 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

More Medical Marijuana Regulations Proposed

Do you agree with stricter medical marijuana regulations?
Flickr Photo/Dominic Simpson

With all the talk about the legalization of marijuana perhaps you’ve been caught in a haze and haven’t been paying attention to what is going on with Washington’s long legal medical marijuana. Well changes are being proposed there too. Washington Senator Ann Rivers has proposed legislation that would task the Liquor Control Board with licensing and regulating medical marijuana dispensaries, processors and growers. Ann Rivers talks to Ross Reynolds about why she thinks further regulation is necessary.

Sports News
12:17 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Why Are The Mariners Getting Into The Television Business?

What will change now that the Mariners own a cable network?
Flickr Photo/Ed and Eddie

The Seattle Mariners are likely to see an increase in future revenue now that they’ve purchased a controlling interest in ROOT Sports Northwest — the cable network that broadcasts their games. Up until now, the Mariners have been required to share their TV revenue with other major league baseball teams. By controlling their TV rights the Mariners will be able to keep much of that revenue for themselves.

So how will this impact their success on the field? How has this worked out for other teams? Ross Reynolds talks with sports editor for The Nation, Dave Zirin.

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High School Education
12:15 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Pass A Citizenship Test To Graduate?

It’s not just math anymore, students are falling behind in history and civics too. A new report by independent, non-partisan research organization — the Pioneer Institute — says the state of US history and civics education is so abysmal that it makes “reading, mathematics and science achievement seem robust by comparison.” Washington state’s record isn’t any better. The state received a D grade from educational excellence organization, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, for its quote “meager” US history standards.

To reverse this trend the Pioneer Institute report recommends a simple policy: require high school graduates to pass the US citizenship test. Ross Reynolds talks with Sandra Stotsky, professor of education reform and one of the authors of this report.

Behind The Scenes
10:28 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Overheard In The Green Room: Mel Sheldon Jr. And The Bug Chef

Eel roll.
Credit Flickr Photo/Manoj Vimalassery

We decided to catch up with Tulalip Tribe Chairman Mel Sheldon Jr. and The Bug Chef, David George Gordon, in the KUOW Green Room while they were awaiting their interviews on The Conversation.

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Calling For Help
12:11 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

If Calling 911 Is So Easy, Why Are People Doing It Wrong?

When calling 911, know your location.
Flickr Photo/nadbasher

A new public service announcement by the state’s Emergency Management Division urges you to always “know your location” just in case you have to call 911. Emergency dispatchers say they often get calls from people who can’t describe where they are or even how to get there. With 70 percent of 911 calls coming from cell phones, it’s much harder for operators to pinpoint a specific location.

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