Rob Rogers was a political cartoonist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for 25 years.
Sylvia Rohr

Rob Rogers is an award-winning political cartoonist who was fired after 25 years at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. WPSU's Anne Danahy talked with Rogers about why he lost his job, how he decides who to satirize and his new book.

This I Believe: I Believe In Storytelling

May 23, 2019

I believe in storytelling and bringing attention to those who live outside the limelight.

In the summer of 2017, I collaborated with my great-aunt and godmother, Marie-Edith Douillard, who has lived in Paris for 40 years and works for a human rights organization called Amnesty International. She introduced me to two refugees and helped me create a short documentary that has since been successful at various international film festivals.

A voter feeding election ballot into the voting machine.
Min Xian / WPSU

Centre County voters who cast a ballot Tuesday were using one of the new systems approved by the state. The county was one of nine in Pennsylvania to to use a new system in the primary, and the switch appeared to go smoothly.

“They’ll just feed it straight in to here, and then it will say: Thank you. Your vote has been cast,” explained Hayden Davidson, judge of elections in Harris Township East, Centre County. 

Chairman of the Board of Commissioners Michael Pipe said the transition from the old system to the new one appeared to be “seamless.”

Fred Keller and Marc Friedenberg shake hands after their debate.
Ed Mahon / PA Post

 

Last year, Pennsylvania Democrats had big wins in congressional races.

In a southwestern Pennsylvania special election, Conor Lamb flipped a House seat in a district that Trump had won handily. Then, in the fall, Democrats picked up two seats in the Philly suburbs and another in the Lehigh Valley.

A Roundup Of Some Key Races In The Pennsylvania Primary

May 22, 2019
Matt Rourke / Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Here's a look at the winners in key races in Pennsylvania's primary:

John Zesiger, superintendent at the Moshannon Vally School District, says he makes drills more realistic by getting rid of the orderly lines and having some students not where they're supposed to be.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

This story originally aired on March 18, 2019.  

Moshannon Vally School District Superintendent John Zesiger said to make intruder drills more realistic they’ve added some complications. 

“We block exits,” Zesiger said. “We have some students who are not where they're supposed to be. So that the staff and the students have to kind of think on their feet and say, ‘Geez, here’s where I'm supposed to go out, but I can't get out that way.’ And they look for the next best option.”

Supporters of President Trump after a rally for Republican Fred Keller, a candidate for U.S. House, in Montoursville on May 20, 2019.
Anne Danahy / WPSU

Pennsylvania is holding a special election today to fill a seat in the U.S. House. The Republican nominee Fred Keller is the favorite to win in the district and he got a campaign stop by President Trump Monday evening. 

“Raise your right hand. Do you all promise you’re going to go out and vote?” Trump said to the crowd at a rally for Republican nominee Fred Keller. Trump flew into Montoursville, Pennsylvania. He said the election was a “little bit of a referendum.”

State College Borough Manager Tom Fountaine gave a presentation on creating best practices for collaboration between universities and local communities at Penn State on Monday, May 20.
Min Xian / WPSU

In college towns, the large student population can complicate relations between universities and local communities. This week, the 2019 International Town and Gown Association Conference is at Penn State talking about how the two can coexist.

The conference is hosted by Penn State and the Borough of State College and features topics like Greek life reform, public safety and diversity.

When you think of the word "demagogue," what comes to mind? Probably someone like Hitler or another bombastic leader, right? Patricia Roberts-Miller is a rhetoric scholar and has spent years tracing the term and its uses. She joins us this week to explain a new way of thinking about demagoguery and how that view relates to democracy. She also explains what she's learned from what she describes as years of "crawling around the Internet with extremists."

Phil Wight / Creative Commons

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues show as aired on May 18, 2019 and hosted by Max Spiegel. 

In the first hour, hear The Yardbirds, Rev. Gary Davis, Ry Cooder, Taj Mahall, Dan Auerbach, The Black Keys, Nina Simone, Blind Blake, John Hammond, Jmaes Brown, The Blind Boys of Alabama, and more.

In the second hour, hear Memphis Jug Band, Gillian Welsh, Townes Van Zandt, Muddy Waters, Sly & The Family Stone, Jimmy Rogers, The White Stripes, Roosevelt Sykes, Snooky Pryor, B.B. King, Beans Hambone, Lead Belly, and more.

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NPR Stories

NPR's Michel Martin speaks with Kevin Lowry, former Chief U.S. Probation Officer, about a program he's involved with to deradicalize convicted terrorists.

At 6:30 am, four of five Gordon family members are roaming around their suburban Sacramento house — if you only count the humans. There's also four dogs, a bunny, a tortoise, chickens, ducks, goats, and a not-so-miniature miniature pig named Squiggy.

Hilary Gordon is discussing the day's schedule with her husband in the middle of wrapping a breakfast sandwich for their 14-year-old, checking on cereal for their 17-year-old, and staring down their 11-year-old who just realized he forgot to finish today's math homework.

Ohio's growing female prison population can be tied to drugs and addiction. Officials want to stop the cycle. One program helps women get at the root of their problems to help them change.

NPR's Michel Martin speaks with Democratic strategist Jess McIntosh, Christian Science Monitor reporter Christa Case Bryant, and journalist Christine Rosen.

Mavis Staples Talks New 'We Get By' Album

5 hours ago

NPR's Michel Martin speaks with singer Mavis Staples about her latest album We Get By.

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What's Your Purpose? Finding A Sense Of Meaning In Life Is Linked To Health

Having a purpose in life may decrease your risk of dying early, according to a study published Friday. Researchers analyzed data from nearly 7,000 American adults between the ages of 51 and 61 who filled out psychological questionnaires on the relationship between mortality and life purpose. What they found shocked them, according to Celeste Leigh Pearce, one of the authors of the study published in JAMA Current Open . People who didn't have a strong life purpose — which was defined as "a...

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Theresa Burroughs, Voting Rights Activist, Dies At 89 In Alabama

Theresa Burroughs, who proudly called herself a foot soldier for the right to vote, has died in Greensboro, Ala. She was 89. Greensboro is part of Alabama's Black Belt, a region named for its rich black soil, and known for its oppression of black citizens during the Jim Crow era, including erecting obstacles to the vote. She said no one around her talked about it then out of fear. "When I was a child," she recalled in a 2016 interview with NPR , "I would see white people getting dressed and...

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'A Bigger Issue Than Some Might Think': Texas 8th-Grader Raises $10,000 To Cover School Lunch Debt

When students who aren’t enrolled in a free school meal program lack the money to pay for their food, what results is an accumulating lunch debt. It’s a problem facing many schools across the country. About 75% of districts reported having unpaid student meal debt at the end of the 2016-17 school year, according to the School Nutrition Association . In Texas, one 14-year-old boy recognized the issue in his community and crowdfunded more than $10,000 to pay off the Austin Independent School...

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In Rural West Texas, Illegal Border Crossings Are Routine For U.S. Citizens

Along one rugged stretch of the Rio Grande, U.S. citizens routinely cross the border into the United States illegally. A shortage of basic services in rural Texas, such as health care, means U.S. citizens rely on Mexican services and rarely pass through an official port of entry on return. Informal, unregulated crossings have been a fixture of life for generations in rural communities along the U.S.-Mexico border. Today, however, with the unrelenting focus on border security, this kind of...

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On The Campaign Trail, These Are Hot Spots Candidates Can't Resist

January 2016. The New Hampshire primary was just weeks away. Donald Trump slid into a booth at the Red Arrow Diner in downtown Manchester and ordered a deep-fried concoction featuring a cheeseburger topped with mac 'n' cheese and smothered with cheesy sauce. The neon sign of the Red Arrow Diner has been attracting presidential hopefuls for decades. Don Gonyea / NPR In that moment, he joined a long, long list of candidates who've dined at the Red Arrow, including Barack Obama, Bill Clinton,...

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How Disney Princesses Influence Girls Around The World

Many academics and parents have said that Disney princesses are "bad for girls" because they are defined by their appearance – and they often must be rescued by men rather than act on their own (see: Sleeping Beauty and Snow White). Sociologist Charu Uppal in Sweden has another concern – the fact that many classic Disney princesses are white and Western. Uppal has been studying the effects of Disney princesses on girls internationally since 2009. In a world where Disney's TV channels are...

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'Booksmart' Director Olivia Wilde: Teen Movies 'Made Me Excited To Be Young'

Right after Olivia Wilde saw Lady Bird — the 2017 film about the loving, infuriating, infinitely complicated relationship between a teen daughter and her mother — her first impulse was to pick up the phone to call her mom. Now, when the credits roll on Wilde's new film Booksmart , audiences are dialing their old high school best friends. These are the friends who got you through adolescence, Wilde says — the ones who knew you best, allowed you to be vulnerable, and saw you in a way that was ...

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He Led A Platoon Of Artists Who Fooled The Germans: 'Imagination Is Unbelievable'

After World War II broke out, 26-year-old Gilbert Seltzer enlisted into the Army. Soon after, he was told he was being put on a secret mission — and an unconventional one at that. Seltzer, then an architectural draftsman, was selected to lead a platoon of men within a unit dubbed the "Ghost Army." Made up mostly of artists, creatives and engineers, the unit would go on to play an instrumental role in securing victory in Europe for the U.S. and its allies. Their mission was deception. From...

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OPINION: Why Ditching Processed Foods Won't Be Easy — The Barriers To Cooking From Scratch

This opinion piece is written by sociologists Sarah Bowen of North Carolina State University, Sinikka Elliott of the University of British Columbia and Joslyn Brenton of Ithaca College. They are the co-authors of Pressure Cooker: Why Home Cooking Won't Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It . "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants," Michael Pollan, one of America's most influential food writers, famously advised more than a decade ago. This pithy advice is perhaps the clearest...

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Barr Is Investigating The Investigators: Will He Find Wrongdoing Or Political Fuel?

Updated at 4:30 p.m. ET President Trump has handed Attorney General William Barr the keys to the vault. Trump has authorized Barr to "declassify, downgrade, or direct the declassification or downgrading of information or intelligence" related to the origins of the investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential campaign, according to an official order. The White House says that will mean he can be freer to reveal wrongdoing if he finds it. Democrats call it a bid to scare up...

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Why Corned Beef Sandwiches — And The Rest Of The Universe — Exist

It's easy to take corned beef sandwiches for granted. There's no mystery about them. They simply exist. But corned beef sandwiches, along with everything else in the universe, raise a critical question in the minds of physicists: Why do they exist? In the earliest moments of the universe, energy turned into matter. But matter comes in two forms, matter and antimatter. And when a particle of matter encounters a particle of antimatter, they annihilate each other — and all you're left with is...

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$19.1 Billion Disaster Aid Bill Stalled After Republican Blocks House Vote

Texas House Republican Rep. Chip Roy blocked an attempt to pass the $19.1 billion disaster aid bill by unanimous consent, likely stalling passage of the legislation until Congress returns in June. The Senate approved the measure Thursday 85-8 and House Democrats had hoped to rush the legislation through in a special session on Friday, skipping the regular voting process because lawmakers had already left town to begin a weeklong Memorial Day recess. The procedural vote required the consent of...

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European Elections Will Be A Test For Nationalist Parties Hoping To Remake The EU

Some 400 million people in 28 countries are eligible to vote in this week's elections for new representatives for the European Parliament — the only popularly elected European Union institution. It's normally a low-turnout affair, but this year, the Europe-wide result will be a crucial test of strength for nationalist and populist parties that want to remake the EU — and for those who oppose them. "If we screw this up, none of us in this room can look our children in the eye anymore. If we...

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'What/If' You Were In Just The Right Mood For Some Good Bad Television?

Let us begin with a story. A story of revenge (sort of). At the 2011 summer press tour of the Television Critics Association, ABC presented a new drama series called Revenge that would premiere in the fall. It followed a woman played by Emily Van Camp who went around the Hamptons trying to seek ... well, revenge, on a lot of people who had somehow wronged her. If memory serves, she actually crossed them off! On a chart! Once she had gotten some of that delicious revenge! Anyway, when the...

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NPR's Summer Movie Guide: 27 Films Coming Soon To Theaters

Is it weird to keep asserting that Summer Movie Season starts Memorial Day weekend, when Avengers: Endgame , the ultimate summer movie, and also the year's (the decade's! the century's!) biggest blockbuster, opened last month? Maybe. Sure. Who cares? "Summer movie" is a term, after all, that has taken on a negative connotation, as it tends to be deployed by those looking to sniffily dismiss the whole crop of films that come out in the months without an R. See also: "popcorn movies," "comic...

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Folk season is here!

Hear the Saturday afternoon Folk Show, live & locally hosted, Saturdays, 1-5pm, now through the end of November on WPSU-FM.

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Listen to the latest from NPR News this weekend on Weekend Edition, Saturday & Sunday mornings, 8:00-10:00am; and All Things Considered, Saturday & Sunday evenings, 5:00-6:00pm on WPSU-FM.

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Saturdays at 7:00am: “Planet Money” and “How I Built This” are two half-hour shows that together make a one-hour weekly program on business and entrepreneurship from NPR.

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Keystone Crossroads: Rust or Revival? explores the urgent challenges pressing upon Pennsylvania's cities. WPSU is a contributing station.