Brian Clardy

Host of Café Jazz

Dr. Brian Clardy is an assistant professor of history and Coordinator of Religious Studies at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky. His academic research hs been published in "The Tennessee Historical Quarterly," The Journal of Church and State," and "The Journal of Business and Economic Perspectives."

His academic interests are primarily in 20th Century Diplomatic History, American politics, and the social and political protest movements of the 1960s. While living in Chicago, Clardy was a regular columnist for “Newtopia Magazine.” He was a member of the Jazz Institute of Chicago, and an auxiliary volunteer for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

He is also a regular contributor to the WKMS 91.3FM weekly radio program, “The Eisenhower Hour,” and he is a frequent commentator to the station on such issues as U.S. foreign policy and the development of American jazz. Clardy is also a licensed preacher in the Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky. Living in Murray, Kentucky, Brian enjoys golf, cooking, jazz and classical music (especially Mozart).

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Politics
12:18 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Commentary: 50 Years Later - Freedom Summer 1964

Students protesting in Mississippi
Credit crmvet.org

"All my life I've been sick and tired. Now I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired." - Fannie Lou Hamer

This summer marks the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, a campaign to open the polls to African-American voters in Mississippi, which became a pivotal moment in the Civil Rights era. The summer marked a turning point in ending white supremacy in the state and decades of isolation in the Deep South for black voters ahead of the 1964 elections. Commentator and Murray State history professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects back on Freedom Summer and its legacy 50 years later.

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Commentary
1:47 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

The Voice of Reason: Remembering Senator Howard Baker

Portrait of Senator Howard Baker
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Former Senate Majority Leader and White House Chief of Staff Howard Baker died last Thursday at age 88. Baker was one of the key players in Ronald Reagan's historic tax and spending cuts and was an influential member of the Senate committee that investigated the Watergate scandal. He served as US Senator from Tennessee from 1967 to 1985 and Commentator and History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy remembers the Republican Senator as a voice of reason in the later half of the 20th Century.

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Culture
3:50 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

50 Years Later: The Sunday Night that Forever Changed Music

The Beatles arrive at JFK Airport
Credit Library of Congress, Wikimedia Commons

Fifty years ago this Sunday (February 9, 2014), four mop-topped lads from Liverpool took to a television stage and changed the world. The Beatles made their stateside debut on The Ed Sullivan Show in three consecutive headlining performances to great anticipation and fanfare, drawing over 73 million viewers and launching the 'British Invasion.' Commentator and Murray State history professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on their first performance and its cultural impact over 50 years.

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Culture
10:41 am
Fri November 22, 2013

50 Years Later: Remembering the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy

On this day 50 years ago, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated while riding in a presidential motorcade through a plaza of onlookers in Dallas, Texas. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on his parents' memories of the day.

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Politics
4:45 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Commentary: Lessons from Recent Political History and the Matt Bevin Candidacy

Credit mattbevin.com

Late last week, the Senate Conservatives Fund announced an endorsement for Kentucky businessman Matt Bevin, who is challenging Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for his seat in the 2014 Primary. Bevin has already gained attention and support from Tea Party leaders and has, as commentator and History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy says, the advantage of recent political upsets on his side. 

The views expressed in this commentary are solely those of the commentator and do not necesarily reflect the views of WKMS.

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Government
3:59 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Commentary: Obama's Foreign Policy Gamble

Credit bbc.co.uk

In the same week Congress decides on whether or not to defund the Affordable Care Act and/or prevent a government shutdown, President Barack Obama made his remarks to the United Nations General Assembly, outlining the role of the United States in the Middle East and Worldwide. Commentator, Murray State History Professor and Foreign Policy Analyst, Dr. Brian Clardy examines the underlying message of the Presidents' speech and its potential challenges. Please note that the views expressed in this commentator are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of WKMS.

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Society
11:18 am
Fri September 13, 2013

50 Years Later: September Mourn, The Sixteenth Street Baptist Church Bombing

50 years ago this Sunday, an explosion at an African-American church in Birmingham, Alabama killed four little girls in an act of racially motivated terrorism, marking a turning point in the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on this tragic moment, and its historical significance in contributing to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

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Society
12:20 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

50 Years Later: The Cultural Significance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have A Dream Speech"

On this day 50 years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech to a crowd of over 200,000 civil rights supporters from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on this defining moment of the Civil Rights Movement, and it's cultural significance then and 50 years later. 

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Society
12:30 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

50 Years Later: Reflections on President Kennedy's Berlin Speech

On this day 50 years ago, President John F. Kennedy gave his famous "ich bin ein Berliner" speech to West Berlin, underlying support for the West 22 months after Soviet-supported East Germany erected the Berlin Wall. Commentator and Murray State History Professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on this statement of US policy and its impact on the Cold War.

A few days ago in my American History class, I lectured on the early years of the Cold War of the late 1940s and early 1950s. With rapt attention, young Racer Nation listened to me drone on and on about the Berlin Airlift and the fact that the city would become what I called a “pregnant symbol” of the U.S.-Soviet conflict. 

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Society
6:35 am
Wed June 12, 2013

50 Years Later: The Assassination of Medgar Evers

Medgar Evers
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Today marks 50 years since civil rights activist Medgar Evers was gunned down in his driveway in Jackson, Mississippi by white supremacist Byron De La Beckwith. His murder and the subsequent trial sparked a cultural uproar and inspired national protests. A week later, President Kennedy submitted his Civil Rights bill to Congress, and the March on Washington would follow that summer. Commentator and Murray State history professor Dr. Brian Clardy reflects on how he came to learn about Medgar Evers - his sacrifices, and his legacy. 

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