State, National and World News

Over the weekend, a rally was held in Salt Lake to draw attention to the renegotiated working agreement between the Salt Lake Tribune and the Deseret News. The rally’s organizers, including Utah State Senator Jim Dabakis, allege the News is trying to “strangle” its longtime partner and competitor. Representatives from the News say they’re devoted to “multiple editorial voices.” Dabakis join us Tuesday as we take another look at the relationship between Utah’s two largest newspapers.

Photo by Ken Piorkowski via CC/Flickr

A recent botched prisoner execution in Oklahoma has poured new fuel on the fiery debate surrounding capital punishment in America. For some people, the pain of the punishment should approach that of the crime. For others, the death penalty is a reprehensible and frequently mishandled State endorsement of killing. Wednesday, we’ll hear from both sides of the debate, and ask this question: If America is going to execute criminals, could we be going about it a better way?

Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hasn't paid his grazing fees in 20 years, and supporters see it as an act of civil disobedience protesting BLM policy and federal ownership of the land where he grazes cattle. But when agents arrived to impound his herd earlier this month, Bundy answered with 1,000 protestors – including armed militia from around the country. Wednesday, we're talking about the standoff: who was there, why they showed up, and what it means for the ongoing debate over public lands in the West.

Friday, we’re examining the recent oral arguments in the ongoing court battle over same-sex marriage in Utah. As the case of Kitchen v. Herbert moves through the judicial process, the legal arguments coming from the plaintiffs and defendants have evolved, and judges on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals had tough questions for both sides. We’ll pick the arguments apart with the help of a panel of legal experts and try to figure out what will happen with the case in the coming weeks and months.

Photo Phiend via CC/Flickr

Wednesday, we’re talking with political commentator Norm Ornstein. He’s in Utah this week to speak at Weber State University, which gives us an excuse to get his thoughts on America’s current political climate. Unfortunately, his forecast isn’t reassuring. We’ll talk with him about the dour prospects for President Obama’s second term, the departure of prominent Congressional problem solvers, and the possible implications of a GOP takeover of the Senate. Political junkies, this show’s for you.

Katherine Hitt via Flickr CC,

Monday, we’re examining Utah’s evolving legal case against gay marriage and the focus on child welfare in the State's latest brief to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Observers note that Utah has dropped the argument that marriage is about creating children and is now focusing on the idea that children fare best in families with a mother and a father. Doug talks to guests about the State's strategy and what research is telling us about the outcomes of children in same-sex families.

Image by Tim Brown, Creative Commons via flickr,

  Every winter when gunk gets trapped in Utah's valleys, residents ask what we can do about our air. In a recent Salt Lake Tribune op-ed, activist Brian Moench pointed to the unlikely environmental example of Mexico City. Once known as "Mexsicko City," radical measures like moving a refinery and imposing driving restrictions have cut the city's pollution in half. Thursday, Doug is joined by Moench and by researchers Kerry Kelly and Randy Martin for a look at cities that could offer solutions for Utah's bad air.

Polygamy Decriminalized

Dec 15, 2013

Friday, federal judge Clark Waddoups delivered a ruling that essentially decriminalizes polygamy in Utah. It's still illegal to have more than one marriage license, but Waddoups overturned the part of the law that made it a 3rd degree felony to cohabit with someone while legally married to another person.  Attorney for the plaintiffs, the polygamist Brown family of Sister Wives fame, called this a victory for privacy in America. Monday, we're talking about the ruling and what it says about what makes a family.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Wednesday, we're talking about the LDS Church's new statement on the policy that banned black men from the priesthood for some 125 years. When it was lifted in 1978, there was little explanation why blacks had been excluded. This statement makes it clear though: it was a policy born of racial prejudice and the Church is clearly disavowing arguments that were used to support it. We'll explore some questions this is raising about the nature of revelation, the fallibility of leaders and the implications for other social issues.

Building Alliances

Oct 19, 2013

Monday, we're live from the Hinckley Institute of Politics with former Utah Governor and former US cabinet secretary Mike Leavitt and his Chief of Staff-turned-business partner Rich McKeown. They've published a book that uses their political experience to explore how problems can be solved through collaboration and alliance building.  And could the timing be better?  With the ongoing tumult in Washington, we'll ask Leavitt and McKeown for their take on the state of American politics and their suggestions for breaking the cycle of discord and deadlock.