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Thursday, October 21, 2010

David Sedaris discusses his latest collection of short stories, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk. Then, on Underreported, an investigation onto what life is like for gay people in Iraq, and how the gay population has been targeted since the fall of Saddam. Plus, we’ll look at the impact that campaign donations can have on judicial elections long after the polls have closed.

David Sedaris on Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk

David Sedaris talks about his latest collection of short stories, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary. While the characters in this book may not be human, the situations of their lives bear an uncanny resemblance to the insanity of our everyday lives. The book includes original illustrations by Ian Falconer, author of the bestselling Olivia series of children's books.

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Backstory: Judicial Elections

State judicial elections, once relatively low interest affairs, recently have been flooded with money, often from outside groups seeking to influence judicial decisions—particularly for state Supreme Court justices. On today’s Backstory segment Adam Skaggs, counsel with the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice, traces the history of judicial elections and examines what the political landscape looks like today.

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Underreported: Gays & Lesbians in Iraq

There are no exact figures on the number of gays and lesbians who have been killed in Iraq since the 2003 invasion, though a 2009 Human Rights Watch report puts the number “in the hundreds.” On today’s Underreported segment, freelance journalist Michael Luongo discusses what life is like for gays and lesbians there, from underground clubs in Baghdad and hiding in safe houses, to the constant threat of violent attacks from militia members. His four-part series on gay life in Iraq appears in the Gay City News.

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Guest Picks: David Sedaris

David Sedaris stopped by The Leonard Lopate Show to share some of his favorite books, movies, and more!

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