tom.arthur/Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

April 01, 2019 - The 21st Show

Local Elections In Central Illinois; ‘I Am ALS’ Founder Brian Wallach

Tomorrow is Election Day for many of Illinois’ cities and towns. Voters across the state will choose their local leaders with mayoral and city council races in some of our biggest cities. Including Chicago, Champaign and Springfield. Plus, we’ll revisit our conversation with Brian Wallach. He was diagnosed with ALS a little more than a year ago. Since that time, he’s been trying to raise $100 million to help find a cure for future generations.

Man on Fire Film

March 28, 2019 - The 21st Show

‘Man on Fire’ Documentary; End of UIC Gymnastics Programs; Shawnee National Forest Turns 80

Charles Moore was a minister in Texas who set himself on fire to protest racism in his community. Today, we’ll hear about a new film exploring how his death affected his town. Plus, the UIC women’s gymnastics team won a conference championship but their program is still getting cut. In this March Madness season we discuss how colleges prioritize certain sports. And, southern Illinois is home to the state’s only national forest. This year, Shawnee National Forest turns 80 years old.

Seth Perlman/AP

March 27, 2019 - The 21st Show

Cannabis And Business; Bill Would Ban Private Immigrant Detention Centers; Spring Gardening Tips

What would doing business with cannabis look like in Illinois? We'll talk with State Treasurer Michael Frerichs and the Mayor of Delevan, which is already home to a medical marijuana facility. Plus, the controversy over a proposed immigration facility in Dwight is not over yet. A group of Democratic House members want to ban private immigration detention centers in the whole state. And we’re finally getting our first glimpse of Spring. If you have concerns about your garden- don't worry. We talk to experts who can answer your questions. 

The interior of Holy Trinity Catholic church.

AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki

March 26, 2019 - The 21st Show

Catholic Clergy Abuse In Illinois; ‘Crime-Free Housing’ Ordinances

Lawyers representing victims of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy have released a public list of accused clergy in Illinois. We hear from one of those attorneys and the archdiocese of Chicago. Plus, ‘crime-free’ housing rules are meant to reduce crime in rental properties, but landlords, tenants, and police are divided over whether these rules are too broad. 

Eric Gay/AP

March 24, 2019 - The 21st Show

Electronic Monitoring; World’s Fastest Supercomputer; Pulitzer Prize-Winning Play ‘Sweat’ at Goodman

About 2,400 Illinoisans are on electronic monitoring as a condition of their release from prison. But some people say these ankle monitors actually make it harder to re-enter society. And, we’ll learn about the world’s fastest supercomputer. It’s going to be built at Argonne National Labs with help from the Department of Energy. Plus, a new play at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago takes on the decline of manufacturing jobs and tells a very personal story of its consequences. 

Photo by Kathy Richland

March 21, 2019 - The 21st Show

‘An American Summer: Love And Death In Chicago’; The Last Video Stores In Illinois

Alex Kotlowitz has been writing about violence in Chicago for decades - in film, in print, and for This American Life. His latest book is called “An American Summer: Love And Death In Chicago,” and it follows people for whom gun violence has become a part of daily life. Plus, Oregon may have America’s last Blockbuster store, but there are still thriving video stores here in Illinois. 

Seth Wenig/AP

March 20, 2019 - The 21st Show

Even More Students Leaving IL; Farm Income And Bankruptcy; Midwest Flooding; March Madness

On The 21st: Why are so many high school grads here in Illinois leaving the state for college? Plus, with farm income down and more farmers filing for bankruptcy, comparisons are being drawn to the crisis of the 1980s. But economists are hesitant to call it that. And, recovery efforts continue across the Midwest after massive flooding forced thousands of people out of their homes. Also, we're talking March Madness. 

401(K) 2012/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

March 19, 2019 - The 21st Show

Our Pension ‘Crisis’ Mentality; ‘Never Sentenced, Never Released’; Student Debt And Buying A House

On The 21st: Why is using the word 'crisis' detrimental when we're talking about Illinois' pension situation? Plus, Terry Allen has been in an Illinois prison for 36 years, even though he was never sentenced for the crime that got him there in the first place. And, we'll talk about how difficult it can be for those with student debt to become homeowners. 


March 14, 2019 - The 21st Show

‘We Are Proud To Present…’; New Standardized Test; The Roots Of Our Trade War With China; Pi Day

On The 21st: Who gets to talk about history, especially when that history is brutal and hard to talk about in the first place? That’s the subject of a new play from Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theater. Plus, after years of criticism, Illinois has scraped the controversial PARCC standardized test in schools. But will the new one be different enough to quell concerns from teachers and parents? And, we explore the messy backstory of the US trade war with China, including its roots in the Cold War and intellectual property theft. Also, what better way to celebrate Pi Day today than with some lemon meringue?

Peter Kaminski/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

March 13, 2019 - The 21st Show

Recycling in Northern IL; Reproductive Health Legislation; IN Dunes National Park; Springfield Food

On The 21st: The recycling market has changed in a big way ever since China stopped importing recycled plastic from the US. In Northern Illinois, one recycling group has several tons piled up because there’s no good place for it to go. Plus, it can be hard to have an abortion in the Midwest but Illinois stands out as the state with the fewest barriers in the region. And now, some House Democrats say it’s time to continue expanding access through new legislation. And, we don’t have a national park here in Illinois. But, our neighbors to the east now officially do as of last month. Also, Amanda Vinicky joins us to share her favorite Springfield culinary classics. 

Ted S. Warren/AP

March 12, 2019 - The 21st Show

Boeing And Flight Safety; Dwight Update; Media Literacy And Kids; High Speed Rail In Illinois

On The 21st: Boeing shares on Monday were at its lowest in almost five months after the second fatal crash involving its 737 Max plane. What’s next for the Chicago-based company? Also in travel, how inaction on building high-speed rail between Chicago and St. Louis is symbolic of the problem of train investment in America. Plus, if you’ve ever tried to get your kids off the internet, chances are YouTube is part of the equation. Now one state representative says it’s time to let teachers include media literacy in their high school classes. And, we get an update on the possibility of a Dwight Immigration Detention Center. 

Brian Kersey/AP

March 11, 2019 - The 21st Show

Immigrant Detention Center In Dwight?; Walgreens; Harold Washington’s Legacy; Progressive Income Tax

On the 21st: For years, Dwight depended on a federal prison that is now closed. Now, community leaders believe they may have found a solution in the form of another kind of facility: an immigration detention center. Plus, the FDA says one in five Walgreens stores that were inspected illegally sold tobacco products to minors. Some lawmakers are also saying it’s time for the company to stop selling tobacco altogether. Also, it’s been more than 30 years since Harold Washington became Chicago’s first African-American mayor. We'll examine his legacy and how black politics has changed since. And, we'll unpack Gov. Pritzker's new tax rates that he's released that would be part of a new, statewide progressive income tax.

Ashlee Rezin/Chicago Sun-Times via AP

March 07, 2019 - The 21st Show

All Charges Against Former Rep. Aaron Schock Dropped; Tornado Season; U of I’s Black Chorus

On The 21st: Federal prosecutors have dropped all charges against former Illinois Congressman Aaron Schock. As long as he pays back the IRS and stays out of trouble for six months, he’ll walk free with a clean record. Plus, tornado season is on the way although really, they can hit any time of year. We’ll check in with the town of Taylorville to see how they’ve recovered after a tornado hit their community last winter. And the U of I’s Black Chorus joins us. They’ve been on campus since 1968 and they’re singing at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts this Sunday. 

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