News & Public Affairs


Tampa neighborhood and police department walk side-by-side in peace march listen

04/21/15 Samuel Johnson
MidPoint with WMNF News Monday

Tags: Tampa, police, Sulphur Springs, violence, Jane Caster, Bob Buckhorn, neighborhood


Escalating violence in some Tampa neighborhoods unite the Tampa police and residents in raising awareness. Saturday afternoon in the Sulphur Springs area roughly 200 plus residents, community leaders, the police chief and even the mayor all gathered to march in solidarity to stop the violence. The community as well as elected officials recognize the importance of bringing attention to the uptick in violent crime as the first part of the remedy.

People who participated in the 6 block trek...

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Florida history professor recounts black migration from Florida in early 20th century listen

04/20/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Monday)
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Tags: Gary Mormino, black history, Florida history, Great Migration, USF st.petersburg, Marco Rubio, Medicaid, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Today on Radioactivity our guest is Gary Mormino, the Frank Duckwall history professor emeritus at USF St. Petersburg and author of several books on Florida History. He talks to us about the Great Migration in Florida, a period starting right before World War I until the early 1920's when over a million African American workers fled the state for the Northeast and Midwest states. This is was part of a larger exodus of millions of southern blacks seeking to escape low wages and racial discrimi...

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More problems with standardized tests; discussion of education issues in Florida listen

04/20/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Monday
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Tags: education, Florida, Florida Legislature, Susan Smith, schools, charter schools, standardized tests, vouchers, Alan Grayson


There was a new round of problems around the state Monday with Florida's standardized tests; we spoke about this and several other state education issues with Susan Smith, the president of the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida.

We also spoke about the state's class size amendment, education funding, charter schools and private school vouchers.

Here's The Associated Press story on Monday's testing problems:

Florida school districts are suspending testing amid a new round of ...

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Former senator Bob Graham and independent journalists claim Saudi ties to Sept.11 attacks listen

04/17/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Friday)
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Tags: September 11, Saudi Arabia, Bob Graham, terrorism, Russ Baker, investigative journalism, wmnf, Rob Lorei


This week the New York times reported on former Florida Senator Bob Graham's pursuit to reveal Saudi Arabia's link to the 9/11 hijackers. Graham has called for the federal government to make public 28 classified pages of the 9/11 commission report, which he claims conceals a tie between the hijackers and a Saudi family that hastily left their Sarasota home days before ...

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freeFall Theatre's Harvey & Kirk Ke Wang on Why Art?

04/17/15 JoEllen Schilke
Art In Your Ear
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Tags: freeFall Theater, Kirk Ke Wang, Art, theater, China


The classic play Harvey explores, in a silly and funny way, how we treat people who are odd. freeFall theatre's production refreshes the classic.

Kirk Ke Wang travels frequently between his birth country, China, and his home, Tampa. His work reflects the multiple strands of our multicultural lives. He will be doing a talk Saturday night (4/18/15) at the St.Pete Opera Company in conjunction with his art show, Yes & No.

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5 years later, effects from the BP oil spill still felt in the Gulf today

04/17/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)

Tags: BP oil spill, pollution, Gulf of Mexico, Raleigh Hoke, Gulf Restoration Network, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Monday is the 5th anniversary of the BP oil spill that devastated The Gulf of Mexico's ecosystems and the coastal economies that depended on them. Raleigh Hoke of the Gulf Restoration Network, an environmental coalition focused on the continued clean-up of the Gulf, says that despite what BP would like the public to think, there are still lingering effects of the oil spill on the Gulf waters today. The Network will be organizing a series of protests and events over the weekend leading up to t...

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Should law enforcement departments keep the spoils from seized money and property? listen

04/16/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Thursday
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Tags: police, Florida, Florida Legislature, Jeff Brandes, Arthenia Joyner, Joe Negron


A Florida Senate committee is considering a bill by St. Petersburg Republican Senator Jeff Brandes to direct money and property seized by police to charities instead of to the law enforcement agency itself.

Thursday morning in the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Republican Senator Joe Negron supported Brandes’ bill.

An amendment by Tampa Democratic Senator Arthenia Joyner attempted to keep seized assets in the hands of law enforcement.


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New pesticides pose risks to environment and farmworkers

04/15/15 Rob Lorei
MidPoint with WMNF News Wednesday
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Tags: Jeannie Economos, Farmworker Association of Florida, Round-up, Paladin, Methyl Bromide, National Pesticide Forum, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Jeannie Economos, pesticide safety coordinator for the Farmworker Association of Florida, discusses the environmental and health effects of heavy pesticides in agriculture and residential use. Economos names herbicide glyphosate, commercially known as Roundup, as a particularly toxic offender that has been linked to groundwater contamination and health problems in humans. She also points out new fumigant Paladin, which contains ozone-depleting chemical Methyl Bromide, that has led to [numerou...

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Florida Senate committee advances abortion waiting period bill listen

04/15/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Wednesday
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Tags: abortion, Florida Legislature, choice, women's issues, NOW


A Florida Senate committee advanced a bill Wednesday that would require women seeking an abortion to wait 24-hours; the Senate Judiciary Committee rejected an amendment by Tampa Senator Arthenia Joyner (D) that would have waived the waiting period in cases like rape or incest. Democratic Senator Darren Soto questioned the bill’s sponsor, Republican Anitere Flores, about the constitutionality of the waiting period.

Like in a previous committee stop, time constraints led to many members of t...

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Workers strike and rally in St. Petersburg demanding higher minimum wage listen

04/15/15 Samuel Johnson
MidPoint with WMNF News Wednesday
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Tags: wages, fight for $15, Saint Petersburg, Darden Rice, Burger King, wage theft, City Council, workers, fast food


Food food workers, home health care workers, adjunct professors and many other types of workers walked off the job today in St. Petersburg and around the country. The Fight for $15 movement, advocating a $15 an hour minimum wage, took their grievance to the steps of Saint Pete City Hall.

Fast food workers at Burger King started the day long events in South Saint Petersburg by walking out at 6 this morning. The grassroots organization, Fight for $15, four hours late...

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