All posts by host

Scholars’ Circle – We examine post Roe world of Women’s health care – July 10, 2022

Women have lost their constitutional right of bodily autonomy and the right to an abortion in the United States. We discuss the impact of the overturning of Roe v Wade with an emphasis on the future legal struggles, as well as, the social challenge of ensuring reproductive health and equality. How has the discourse around abortion shifted? What has altered about the way we think and talk about abortions and the right to abortions? We look at Crisis Pregnancy Centers and their impact. Also, we explore the role of the federal government. [ dur: 58mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Mihika Chechi, Melissa Chiprin, and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – States’ Rights to Legislate Gun Violence restricted by SCOTUS – July 3, 2022

The US Supreme Court, in New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v Bruen, ruled that state laws must reflect a Second Amendment protection that allows for individuals to carry guns for personal protection outside of their homes. We examine the future of gun control legislation in light of the Court’s rejection of state power to restrict gun ownership to private homes and gun clubs, thus, restricting the legislator’s ability to address gun violence. Historically, how have courts and legislators viewed the second amendment to the constitution?

Who are the victims of gun violence? Most victims are from intimate partner violence, suicide and homicide? We explore the impact of the proliferation of weapons in the United States. [ dur: 58mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Mihika Chechi, Melissa Chiprin, and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – US Supreme Court decisions and American Law ; Insights on the Pink wave in Latin America – June 26, 2022

What are the US Supreme Court’s decisions from this year’s docket? We will explore some of these decisions and what it means for the future of American law. [ dur: 25mins. ]

What does the leftist turn in Latin American elections mean for the politics of the region? Is it a response to neoliberalism? Is it a response to the endemic corruption in the region? We explore the so-called “pink wave” in the region. [ dur: 33mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Mihika Chechi, Melissa Chiprin, and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Historic context of January 6, 2021 insurrection event ; Tracking the rise of Christian Nationalism and their effect on American Politics – June 19, 2022

January 6 insurrection has begun televised hearings of their findings. We examine the initial findings of this Committee and the role of former President Trump in the attempted coup. [ dur: 22mins. ]

The rise of the religious right or Christian Nationalism aided in the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980, and has been a significant voting bloc ever since. How much is this movement driving American politics? How organized are the groups that comprise the movement? And what exactly is its political agenda? [ dur: 35mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Casualties from Russian invasion of Ukraine and evaluating Russian influence in post Soviet space – June 12, 2022

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February, a vicious war of aggression and occupation has devastated the nation. Determined resistance to the invasion has denied Russia many of its intended targets, but Ukrainians have suffered tremendous losses. What are the human and other costs of the Russian invasion of Ukraine? [ due: 28mins. ]

The impact of the February Russian invasion of Ukraine extends beyond just those two nations. Russia has dominated the post-Soviet space—the independent nations that were once a part of the Soviet Union. A Russian foreign policy has attempted to ensure that the nation is the indispensable partner of these nations. But the invasion has fractured this image and poses significant challenges to Russian influence over its former Soviet Union partners.

How has this invasion damaged the legitimacy of Russia’s interventions in other conflicts across the post Soviet space? What does this mean to these conflicts? And how has this war called into question Russia’s influence in this area? [ dur: 30mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Trauma on Children from School Shootings – June 5, 2022

Mass shootings in the Unites States are unprecedented in advanced industrial democracies. We explore the psychological impact of these shootings on the survivors and witnesses, with a particular attention to the children who experience this trauma. What are effective actions to confront the traumas experienced by the children who survive school shootings? Overwhelming the response of mass shootings is to “do something.” But what should we as a society and as an electorate do in response to these mass shootings? [ dur: 58mins. ]

More resources are available at:

https://www.newpaltz.edu/idmh/

https://www.nctsn.org/resources/talking-children-about-shooting

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Sri Lankans Protest as they experience Economic Crisis – May 29, 2022

On May 9 of this year, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa was forced to resign his position. This is despite the fact this his brother, Gotabaya, is the President of the nation. He is part of a quasi-dynastic Rajapaksa family, which has dominated Sri Lankan politics for 20 years. The nation is in economic turmoil and that day was one of the most violent of its history. Sri Lanka has less than $1 million in foreign reserves, dwindling medical supplies and almost no fuel. President Gotobaya Rajapaksa is attempting to hold onto power as the nation continues to deteriorate. And the protests continue.

We will explore the political and economic crisis that roils the island nation. What role do outside powers and lenders play at exacerbating Sri Lanka’s economic crisis? [ dur: 58 mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Philippines Presidential Election – May 22, 2022

On May 9, the Philippines held their Presidential elections. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. won the election, bringing back the infamous family toppled in 1986 in a popular revolution. What does this say about the memory and the political climate of the nation? How will Marcos govern the country? What policies do we expect of this new Marcos regime and how might they differ from the current policies of Rodrigo Duterte? We explore the historical significance of the return of Marcos to power in the nation. [ dur: 58mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle – Women’s Reproductive Health post-Roe – May 15, 2022

As the US Supreme Court indicates its likelihood of overturning the landmark decision enshrining women’s reproductive control on abortion, Roe v. Wade, women throughout the country are wrestling with strategies to ensure continued abilities to terminate unwanted pregnancies. This legal development has been anticipated. The drastic shift to the right of the Court has, for years, compelled abortion advocates to develop alternative strategies for women. If Roe v. Wade is in fact overturned, what will women do to maintain sovereignty over their own bodies? What will a post-Roe world mean for women’s reproductive health?

Can reframing reproductive rights influence how people understand the issues related to abortion? Would the phrase “reproductive justice” offer a more accurate view than previous frames such as “reproductive rights” or “rights to privacy?”. [ dur: 58mins. ]

Community of Womens’ Health advocates:

  • Repro Legal Defense fund – https://reprolegaldefensefund.org
  • If/When/How – https://www.ifwhenhow.org/ ,  lawyers for reproductive justice

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.

Scholars’ Circle -German History of Gay rights during the period of Cold War; LGBTQ rights struggle in US – May 8, 2022

What was the experience of gay people in East and West Germany during the Cold War? We speak with Samuel Clowes Huneke author of States of Liberation: Gay Men between Dictatorship and Democracy in Cold War Germany [ dur: 32mins. ].

Since the 2020 election, anti-transgender campaigns have been growing in the United States. What are these efforts? We look at the campaigns to curtail and reverse gay and transgender rights, in particular we explore campaigns such as Florida’s Parental Rights in Education act (dubbed by critics as “Don’t Say Gay” bill) and attempts to ban trans athletes in all levels of competition. [ dur: 25 mins. ]

This program is produced by Ankine Aghassian, Doug Becker, Melissa Chiprin and Sudd Dongre.