The 21st Show

Policing The Dairy Industry; Fiction Book Recommendations; Women’s World Cup Semi-Final Preview; Whataburger Sold To Chicago


Fair Oaks Farms in Indiana in 2010. Michael Kappel/Flickr(CC BY-NC 2.0)

Earlier this month, activists released video of alleged animal abuse at a farm in Indiana. So, who actually makes sure animals are treated humanely? And, all this week we’re bringing you some reading recommendations for the summer. Today, we’re starting off with fiction. Also, we'll have a preview of the Women's World Cup semi-final match between the U.S. and England. Plus, a Chicago investment firm recently bought Whataburger, one of Texas’ most beloved fast food chains.

Last month, an undercover investigator with the animal welfare group Animal Recovery Mission released disturbing footage of treatment of dairy calves at an Indiana farm called Fair Oaks, about an hour east of Kankakee. 

The graphic video led to public apologies from farm owners, animal cruelty charges being filed against three employees, and many retailers pulling FairLife milk from shelves. 

So who was monitoring the treatment of these animals? That question was originally posed by Chicago Tribune reporter Alexia Elejalde-Ruiz and she joined us to talk about what she found. 

Jamie Jonker is the Vice President of Sustainability and Scientific Affairs for the National Milk Producers Federation. Tim Joseph is the founding farmer of the Maple Hill milk brand. Their corporate headquarters are in Deerfield, Illinois but they work with 160 small, family-owned farms in upstate New York. 


We’re hoping you have some downtime this summer to catch up on reading. This week on the show we’ll be offering some book recommendations, and who better to give us their picks than three writers. Later this week we’ll be talking nonfiction and young adult and children’s books, but today we’re starting with fiction.

Nina Barrett is the author of "The Leopold and Loeb Files" and owner of Bookends and Beginnings, an independent bookstore in Evanston. Amy Hassinger is the author of the three novels. Her most recent is "After The Dam." She teaches creative writing at the University of Illinois. 

Nafissa Thompson Spires joined us in the studio. She’s a professor of creative writing at the University of Illinois and her book "The Heads of Colored People" made the long list for the National Book award last year.


The U.S. Women’s team beat France 2-1 and will move on to the semifinal against England.

The U.S. has made it to at least the semifinal in each of the eight women’s World Cups. They’ve won three of them and are gunning for a fourth. France was considered the biggest threat to Team USA. So what does the rest of the road look like?

Baillie Burmaster is a reporter with WBAY in Green Bay Wisconsin. She’s also a former soccer player herself for Oklahoma State.


If there’s one thing Texans love talking about it’s their state and the pride they have for it. So, it was big news there when Texas’ beloved burger chain Whataburger announced they had sold a majority of their company shares to a Chicago-based investment firm. 

Clearly, Texans are a bit worried about their iconic burger chain’s possible expansion under new ownership with an Illinois company. Dan Solomon, a culture writer for Texas Monthly magazine, joined us to tell us more.

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