Commentaries

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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Society
4:25 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Commentary: Preventing Gun Violence with "Magical Thinking"

Credit iStockPhoto

Earlier this month, Georgia lawmakers passed a sweeping gun bill, known as the "guns everywhere bill" allowing licensed owners to carry firearms in many churches, bars, and government buildings. One of the provisions allows school districts to let teachers carry guns. Commentator Celia Brewer draws on a personal experience when living in New Orleans to express her concern over expanding gun rights.

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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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Good Reads
12:37 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

The Uncommon Authors of Mystery Novels

Murray State Professor Emeritus and commentator Michael Cohen surveys uncommon authors of mysteries, whose day jobs have nothing to do with whodunits. He's the author of "Murder Most Fair: The Appeal of Mystery Fiction," published by Fairleigh Dickinson University Press in 2000. See more uncommon mysteries.

Good Reads
2:15 pm
Mon December 30, 2013

Uncommon Mystery: Killings at Badger's Drift

Professor Emeritus Michael Cohen reviews British author Caroline Graham's first mystery, The Killings At Badger's Drift,  published in 1987 and adapted ten years later as the first episode of the British ITV series The Midsomer Murders.

Michael Cohen is Professor Emeritus at Murray State University. He is the author of Murder Most Fair:  The Appeal of Mystery Fiction, published by Fairleigh Dickinson University Press in 2000. 

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Good Reads
1:56 pm
Mon November 11, 2013

Uncommon Mystery: Ask Miss Mott

Mystery enthusiast Michael Cohen reviews an "uncommon mystery" to consider for your reading list. The mystery "Ask Miss Mott" by E. Phillips Oppenheim is a thriller published in 1935, an early adventure spy novel.

E. Phillips Oppenheim, Ask Miss Mott (1935)

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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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Environment
3:33 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

From the Garden Gate: The Garden Museum in London

Roy Helton divides his time between teaching in the English Department at Murray State University and indulging his passion for gardening. In this edition of "From the Garden Gate," Roy talks about his visit to The Garden Museum in London. 

The Garden Museum in London

Whenever I teach in England as I did for a month this summer, I always feel as if I’m in a kind of gardeners’ heaven.  This summer I got a chance to visit a museum devoted entirely to gardening.  Located across the River Thames from the Houses of Parliament, the Garden History Museum is housed in the rescued and restored medieval church of St Mary-at-Lambeth.

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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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