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The History of the Voting Rights Act; "The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin"; Solar Plane; Indoor Air Pollution

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Civil rights marchers walked from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965. (Peter Pettus/Wikipedia Commons)

We’ll look at the history of the Voting Rights Act and what last month’s Supreme Court decision means for its uncertain future. David Morse and Rich Sommer talk about their roles in the new play, “The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin.” Dagmara Daminczyk discusses her new novel, The Lullaby of Polish Girls. We’ll find out about the first solar-powered airplane and about how your kitchen could be a pollution hazard.

The Voting Rights Act and American Democracy

In June, the Supreme Court effectively struck down the Voting Rights Act of 1965, making it legal for nine states, mostly in the South, to change their election laws without seeking federal approval. Gary May tells the history of the Voting Rights Act and the civil rights workers who fought for justice. In Bending Toward Justice: The Voting Rights Act and the Transformation of American Democracy, May describes how black voters overcame centuries of bigotry to secure and preserve their right to register and to vote. He also explains the what Supreme Court ruling means and he discusses renewed efforts to curb voting rights to minorities.

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“The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin”

David Morse and Rich Sommer talk about their roles in the Roundabout Theatre Company’s world premiere of “The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin.” Tom Durnin (played by Morse) did the time for a white-collar crime and is now determined to win back the respect he believes he deserves, no matter the price. Can Tom find a place in a family that has worked so hard to move on without him? It's playing at the Laura Pels Theatre.

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The Lullaby of Polish Girls

Dagmara Dominczyk talks about her new novel, The Lullaby of Polish Girls, about a girl who immigrates with her parents to the United States in the 1980s as political refugees from Poland. She is sent back to Poland to visit her grandmother on summer, and she develops intense friendships with two local girls and their bond is renewed every summer when Anna returns.

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Solar Airplane

Earlier this month Andre Borschberg flew the first 100 percent solar-powered airplane across the United States. He and Bertrand Piccard, founders of Solar Impulse, talk about the plane, the flight, and their plans to fly it around the globe in 2015.

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Cooking Pollution

Brett Singer, Staff Scientist and Principal Investigator in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, talks about indoor air pollution caused by cooking.

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Tips for a Pollution-Free Kitchen

Dr. Brett Singer, Staff Scientist and Principal Investigator in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, was recently on the Leonard Lopate Show to talk about indoor air pollution caused by cooking. According to the Berkeley Lab's study, the long term health effects of indoor pollutants is on par with that of car accidents and infectious disease, and the pollution we create in our kitchens can be a large part of that problem. Dr. Singer shared a few tips about cooking safely.

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Guest Picks: David Morse

Actor David Morse  was recently on the Leonard Lopate Show to talk about his role in “The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin,” along with co-star Rich Sommer. He told us about his pizza allergy, and a few of the things he enjoys.

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Guest Picks: Rich Sommer

Actor Rich Sommer was recently on the Leonard Lopate Show to talk about his role in “The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin,” along with co-star David Morse. He told us about his love of board games and a few more of his favorite things.

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