Michael Fagin

Metro Driver Safety
Yesterday morning in downtown Seattle, a Metro bus driver was shot and wounded by a passenger. While assaults on Metro drivers have decreased overall since 2006, there were still 107 incidents last year. What is Metro doing to keep drivers safe? And what affect has ending the ride-free-zone downtown had on driver safety? Dow Constantine is the King County Executive. He joins us from the Ryerson Base in SODO.

Gay Rights In Russia
According to a recent survey by the Pew Research Center, only 16 percent of Russians say homosexuality should be accepted by society. In another survey conducted a nonprofit Russian research center this spring, nearly 35 percent of Russians believe that homosexuality is a disease.

Recently, the Russian government has been legislating against gay rights. In June, the government passed a law that prohibits the distribution of so-called “homosexual propaganda” to minors. Protests are gaining momentum in the United States to dump Russian vodka and even boycott the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. What are the historical and cultural factors that have influenced Russian attitudes toward homosexuality?

Interfaith Amigos
Death is something we all need to grapple with. The Three Interfaith Amigos join us with a look at what religion has to say about mortality and the afterlife. They’ll also respond to the common accusation from the non-religious: That God is just a story to make people feel better about life and death.   

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

The M’s Mid-Season Report
Halfway through the major league baseball season, the Seattle Mariners have taken their fans on quite the wild ride. Long losing streaks, winning streaks and a whole bunch of injuries. But recently, there have been some glimmers of hope. Young players like Nick Franklin and Brad Miller have ignited the M’s offense. And Raul Ibanez is on the verge of breaking the record of hitting the most home runs by a 41-year-old. So what’s in store for the M’s the rest of this season? Larry Stone, who covers major league baseball for the Seattle Times, is here to discuss the rest of the season.

Living Well With Parkinson's
Medicine is making great advancements in the fight against Parkinson’s disease, even though there is still no cure. Advancements in gene therapy and a unique brain surgery are extending lives. But, it’s not just technology that’s helping patients, holistic medicine is also playing a role. A leading neurological researcher and one of her patients join us to share their story.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

Sakara Remmu On Zimmerman's Acquittal
The verdict in the George Zimmerman trial sparked protests, copious editorials and even riots across the country this week with many voices calling for more dialogue around racism in the US. To that end, we speak with local activist, writer and self-described “mother of black children” Sakara Remmu.

Mayoral Candidate Kate Martin
Seattle Mayoral candidate Kate Martin joins Weekday to discuss the issues she feels are important to the city ahead of the August primary.

Chuck Klosterman On Grappling With Villains
What is is about the bad guy, or girl, that’s so alluring?  From Robert Redford and Paul Newman as con men in “The Sting” to the murderous drug dealer Omar Little of HBO’s “The Wire,” we have an increasing fascination with the villains in our culture.  At least, that’s what writer Chuck Klosterman thinks.  He expands on his ideas in a new book called “I Wear The Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined)."

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

  SPD Interim Chief Jim Pugel
Thirty-year SPD veteran Jim Pugel was appointed interim police chief in April. He took over a department facing major reforms to address federal claims of biased policing and excessive use of force. What progress is being made to comply with Department of Justice reforms? Is the SPD making progress on Mayor Mike McGinn’s 2020 police reform plan? What questions do you have for Seattle police chief Jim Pugel? Send a message to Weekday.  
 
A Visit To Stunt School
Summer movies are full of stunts performed by professionals. Ever wonder how they’re trained? Often, they go to stunt school. Katy Sewall stopped by while students were learning how to safely kick someone in the groin.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

New Music Picks
Are you stuck in a music listening rut? Music writer Jonathan Zwickel is here to help you branch out. He recommends two Seattle electronic music artists with an aeronautical theme.

In Memoriam: Dr. Foltz On Brain Cancer
Dr. Greg Foltz dedicated over 25 years of his life to brain cancer research and treatment.  He was the director of the Ivy Brain Tumor Center and he founded Seattle’s annual Seattle Brain Cancer Walk.  Dr. Foltz died last Thursday, a short time after receiving a pancreatic cancer diagnosis.  

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Voting Rights Act
The U.S. Supreme Court issued another of its long-awaited decisions, this one on the landmark 1964 Voting Rights Act. The Court ruled 5-4 to strike down a provision of the law that involves federal oversight for states with a history of racial discrimination in voter registration. How might the ruling affect current charges of voter suppression? We talk with attorney and voting rights advocate Brenda Wright.

New Music Recommendation
Are you stuck in a music listening rut?  We are surrounded by new music and innovative artists.  Branch out! Paul De Barros, critic for the Seattle Times, recommends jazz violinist Zach Brock.

What’s In Your Food?
Take a look at a food label. Under the list of ingredients there are sure to be items you recognize, but what about polyglycerol? Aspartame? Or phosphoric acid? The Food Additives Amendment of 1958 was enacted to make sure chemical ingredients were safe for consumption, but how does the FDA monitor all of the chemicals and ingredients food producers use? Professor Marion Nestle, from the department of nutrition food studies and public health, explains what goes into the food we consume and how to be a more informed consumer.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

"Alive And Well," And The Purpose Of Life

Jun 11, 2013

“Alive and Well” At SIFF
The documentary “Alive and Well” takes viewers inside the lives of seven people who have been affected by Huntington’s disease. From those who carry the gene to family members turned caregivers, the film tells the story of what it’s like to live with a genetic, neurological disorder. Huntington’s disease is degenerative, slowly breaking down the nerve cells of the brain. A person with a parent with Huntington’s has a 50/50 chance of inheriting the gene mutation. Director Josh Taft and executive producer Liz Weber  explain their motivation for making the film.

Islam’s “Spiritual Gems”
Nearly a quarter of the world’s population looks to the Qur’an for spiritual guidance. What does the Islamic holy book have to say about life? Katy Sewall talks with Jamal Rahman, author of “Spiritual Gems of Islam.”

Weather and Hike of the Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

 Snohomish County's New Executive
Former Snohomish County Sheriff John Lovick has been sworn in as the new Snohomish County Executive. He replaces former executive Aaron Reardon who left the office amid a series of scandals. Lovick said he hopes to “change the tone and tenor of county government” in his term. He talks about the challenges and opportunity awaiting him as Snohomish County Executive.

New Music Recommendation
Are you stuck in a music listening rut?  We are surrounded by new music and innovative artists.  Branch out! Ma'Chell Duma LaVassar shares thoughts on the women of Northwest music, past and present. 
     
Elwha: River Reborn, A Conversation With Lynda Mapes
After decades of debate, the two dams on the Elwha River are down.  Scientists are watching to see if the traditional salmon runs return and how that will impact the ecosystem near this river on the Olympic Peninsula.  Seattle Times reporter Lynda Mapes has followed this story.  Her new book, “Elwha: River Reborn,” chronicles the history, the controversy and the aftermath of the dam removal.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

This Week In Olympia
State lawmakers begin week three of the special legislative session today. Everett Herald reporter Jerry Cornfield joins us with a look at what to expect.

Comic Actress Kate Hess Parodies Masterpiece Theater
Everyone loves “Downton Abbey” these days and Hollywood is paying attention by hiring British actors for American roles. Are American actors hired in Britain?  Not really. Katy Sewall talks with writer and actress Kate Hess about the British invasion in her costume-drama parody, “Murder Abbey.”

How Should Doctors Navigate The Various Beliefs Of Dying Patients?
Doctors treat a wide variety of patients. How well versed in world cultures and religion should doctors be?  And how do encounters with dying patients change doctors' views of death? Katy Sewall talks with retired pulmonary/critical care doctor Jim deMaine.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

New Music And Writing Nonfiction

May 14, 2013

New Music Recommendation
Are you stuck in a music listening rut? We are surrounded by new music and innovative artists. Branch out with new music recommendations every Tuesday at 9:20 a.m. KUOW’s Dave Beck focuses on William Henry Fry, a Philadelphia-born journalist, composer and outspoken advocate for American music.

Writing Nonfiction With Susan Orlean
Susan Orlean spends a lot of time working on her nonfiction. She spent 10 years researching her most recent book “Rin Tin Tin,” for example. Susan Orlean talks about her process and her passions and what it means to devote yourself to a subject for so long.

Understanding Cyber Security
A rise in the amount of cyber attacks has drawn concern over the safety of private information. Hackers will target anything from The Onion’s Twitter page to the processing systems of energy corporations. Their motivations range from political to criminal, be it stealing confidential information or debilitating essential operations.

In a world that relies more and more on technologies to run and store our lives, cyber security is a paramount concern. UW Professor Tadayoshi Kohno studies technological security and the methods of hackers. He joins us to discuss cyber security.     

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

A Win For Sacramento, The Special Session, And "The Night Detectives"

Apr 30, 2013

NBA Says No To Seattle
The NBA has thrown cold water on Chris Hansen’s plans to bring the Sonics back to Seattle. The league’s relocation committee voted unanimously to keep the Kings in Sacramento. Art Thiel writes that Seattle can be to the NBA what Los Angeles is to NFL. Seattle still waits at the altar for an expansion team.

Jon Talton: Not Just An Economics Columnist
Jon Talton frequently analyzes business in the Pacific Northwest on Weekday, but he’s not just an economics columnist. He’s also a mystery writer. "The Night Detectives" is his 10th novel. It takes us from the familiar haunts of Phoenix to the seedy side of San Diego with his main character, David Mapstone.

Jay Inlsee’s Bottom Line
Governor Jay Inlsee says his bottom line is ending tax breaks and adding new tax revenue to the state budget. He will get that chance to draw that line in the special legislative session he has called for in two weeks.

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

National Teacher Of The Year, Vali Nasr, And Being Bipolar

Apr 23, 2013

2013 Teacher Of The Year
Jeff Charbonneau, a science teacher from Zillah, Washington, has been selected as 2013 National Teacher of the Year. He’ll share his wisdom and teaching style with us while en route to the White House for his award ceremony.

The Dispensable Nation
President Obama’s foreign policy emphasizes China and Asia instead of the Middle East and Europe. The administration is shifting military resources and diplomatic energy as China expands its global footprint. Former State Department Policy Advisor Vali Nasr says President Obama’s foreign policy is too cautious and a danger to the future peace and security of the planet.

What Is It Like To Be Bipolar? Part 2
What does it feel like to be bipolar? How does the mental illness affect family and relationships? What misunderstandings are held by the general public? Does a person who is bipolar consider themselves “crazy?” Author Janine Crowley Haynes considers these questions in her memoir "My Kind of Crazy: Living in a Bipolar World."

The Weather And Hike Of The Week
Michael Fagin suggests a hike that matches the week’s weather forecast.

Food Fight Breaks Out Over Seattle Compost

Mar 26, 2013

The Seattle City Council has delayed a vote on a contract to send the city's food and yard waste to Kittitas County after residents in Cle Elum made it known they were less than thrilled about the plan. With the pushback against taking in Seattle’s compostable waste, what's a garbage planner to do? Seattle Public Utilities Solid Waste Director Tim Croll joins us.

Congress Readies For The Next "Cliff"

Jan 8, 2013
US Congress
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

The next cliff looms in Washington, DC, as the US Treasury runs out of borrowing authority at the end of February. There may be a decision about across-the-board spending cuts known as "sequestration," as well as a debate over the social safety net.

Will Democrats agree to cuts to Social Security and Medicare? We talk with economics writer James Kwak about the political support for smaller government and less revenue.

Jon Meacham On Thomas Jefferson

Nov 27, 2012
Courtesy/Gasper Tringale

Many books have been written about Thomas Jefferson. The latest, by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jon Meacham, seeks in part to rehabilitate Jefferson’s legacy, reinstating him as a consummate politician and an idealist for human liberty, even as he fell short in ending one of America's greatest injustices. How did Jefferson see his role in the evolving American idea? Jon Meacham joins us to talk about "Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power."