CivicMedia/Minnesota Archive

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Monday, January 26, 2015

Join Siobhan Kierans and Tom O’Connell on TruthToTell Monday at 9 a.m. when they discuss Minnesota’s reprise role in the movie-making business.  Our guests include Lucinda Winter, executive director of the Minnesota Film Board; award-winning documentary filmmaker J.T. Haines of Northland Films; writer/director/actor Ralph Matthews of Family Film Productions; and former Maple Lake mayor and Twin Cities actor Mike O’Loughlin, author of the Shamrock Grant movie rebate. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Only the civically comatose could have missed the massive demonstration of outrage at the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and Eric Garner in New York City.  Here in Minnesota, the demonstrations have been large, creative, interracial, often youth-led,  and non-violent.   Some observers say we are seeing the birth of a new civil rights movement.

The demonstrations, organized by groups like Black Lives Matter, will continue.  But what else will it take to really address the problem?  Better police training?  New systems of police accountability?  Changes in the “rules of engagement” governing police interaction in potentially violent situations?  A more diverse police force?  A renewed focus on building healthy police-community relationships?

Tune in as Truth to Tell explores what can be done—and in some cases is being done—with two guests who have been working hard on these issues: Jason Sole, author of From Prison to PhD, and Dua Saleh, president of the St. Paul chapter of the Youth and Collegiate Branch of the NAACP.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Remember when thousands of children from Central America were showing up at the border to seek asylum?   Whatever happened to them?  Or what about that great organizing campaign that won a raise in the minimum wage here in Minnesota?  Been there, done that?  Or the momentous march on New York where hundreds of thousands of folks came together in the largest climate-change demonstration in history.  Good headlines for a few days, but now what?

And let’s not forget the continued organizing of low wage workers and the persistent demands for reform of our criminal justice system — from the Black Lives Matter campaign to the Second Chance Coalition’s Ban the Box campaign.

On this cusp of the New Year, we will revisit stories like these and then take a quick look at what’s ahead for 2015.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Join Truth to Tell host Tom  O'Connell as he discusses the leadership challenges in current social justice movements with Artika Tyner,  assistant professor of public leadership at the University of St.Thomas and author of The Lawyer as Leader: How to Plant People and Grow Justice (ABA Books, 2014).

Monday, December 8, 2014

Another mid-term election and more dismal news about the state of our democracy.  Voting participation, always low during mid-term elections, was lower than ever.  Even here in civic-minded Minnesota, participation, while higher than the national average, fell below turnout in 2010.  Meanwhile, campaign spending reached record proportions.  So called “dark money”—campaign contributions that are made anonymously—played a key role in both local and statewide races around the nation.  Here in Minnesota, outside money flowed into rural legislative races—and according to many experts, were a critical factor in the DFL loss of control of the Minnesota House of Representatives.

And what did all that money buy?  In too many cases, misdirection and triviality: the political equivalent of empty calories.  Meanwhile turnout declines as voters tuned out—and who can blame them?  There is a direct relationship between the decline of political participation and the increase in economic inequality.  And while members of today’s oligarchy don’t wear black hats and smoke long cigars, the result is the same. More power for the few—less for the rest of us.

Friday, November 28, 2014

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Institute for Local Self Reliance. Since its founding, ILSR has championed local approaches to economics, community, and democratic participation. Through research, education and advocacy, the Institute has promoted independent locally owned businesses, renewable energy, community banking, community broadband and much more. Linking all of its work is a stubborn insistence on another old and too often overlooked principle: the common good.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Have we forgotten the importance of making memories?  Or are we too busy boosting the economy with retail and online shopping to spend quality time with those who matter most?  The Holiday Season is upon us!  The National Federation of Retailers estimate that the November and December retail spending will tally up to around $620 billion this year.  Online sales will be going up also, by an estimated 10 percent.  So, while we’re all buying items to show our affection for each other, maybe we should be getting back to basics and spending more quality time in each other's company?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Throughout history, people with mental illness have been misunderstood. Just 100 years ago, these people would have been sent to an asylum, never to return to regular society. We are moving toward education, but we are not there yet.  This has caused people to avoid treatment and continue to wrestle with their problems.  When actor Robin Williams died as a result of suicide, it brought the subject back to regular conversation.  Most of us were shocked when he died, but those who knew him well, admitted that he had struggled with depression for years and this was not his first attempt at suicide. 

The Holidays are an especially hard time for those who experience depression.  Our guests offer some valuable insight into the subject of mental illness and they also offer resources and places to turn for those looking for help.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Community is defined as a group of people living together in the same place and having particular characteristics in common. There’s a feeling of fellowship with others, sharing common attitudes, interests and goals.  But the idea of community is changing — shifting from  Main Street to social media, almost a virtual reality based on reality. How has your community changed over the years? Is it all for the better?Join co-hosts Siobhan Kierans and Tom O’Connell when they discuss how communities have evolved since the beginning of the 21st century. 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

 Help us continue the work of our founder, the late Andy Driscoll, with a generous donation on Give to the Max Day.

For more information, please click on the "read more" link below.

Thank you.

Civic Media Minnesota