Civil Rights

Airs Monday, February 2 at 1 p.m. Martin Luther King, Jr. grew up listening to and singing church songs, and saw gospel and folk music as natural tools to further the civil rights movement. In this hour-long special from WQXR and WNYC, host Terrance McKnight interweaves musical examples with Dr. King's own speeches and sermons to illustrate the powerful place that music held in his work--and examines how the musical community responded to and participated in Dr. King's cause.

Airs Sunday, January 18 at 6 p.m. Martin Luther King Jr.'s journey to a philosophy of nonviolence and his lasting legacy as a peace proponent is recalled in interviews with his daughter, the late Yolanda King, and one of King's top colleagues in the civil rights movement, Dr. Dorothy Cotton. These two women with very close ties to Martin Luther King Jr. reflect on how King developed into one of the great moral and political philosophers of the 20th century and how his philosophies might still guide the world through troubled times today. Dr. Dorothy Cotton was the highest ranking female in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, founded by Dr. King. From 1960 to 1972 Dr. Cotton was the educational director for SCLC and worked very closely with Dr. King. The late Yolanda King was the eldest daughter of Dr. King. She was an internationally known motivational speaker and actress whose personal mission in life was to inspire positive social change and world peace. Ms. King died in May of 2007 at the age of 51. Ms. King and Dr. Cotton were interviewed separately in 2004 by phone by show host Carol Boss. The entire program includes about 15 minutes of excerpts from talks by Dr. King, along with music by U2 ("Pride in The Name of Love") and 1960's recordings by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee Freedom Singers.

"This program features an interview with Yolanda King, the daughter of the late Martin Luther King Jr., was recorded in 2004. Yolanda King died, at the age of 51, May 15, 2007." 

Airs Sunday, January 4 at 6 p.m. Some say that indiscriminate collection of U.S. phone records is a gross invasion of privacy.  Others say that it is necessary to keep us safe.  But what does the U.S Constitution say?  Is collection of phone records a “search” or “seizure?"  If so, is it “unreasonable?"  Does it require a particularized warrant and probable cause?  These are among the most consequential — and controversial — constitutional questions of our time.  Arguing for the motion are Alex Abdo, Staff Attorney for the ACLU's Speech, Privacy and Technology Project; and Elizabeth Wydra, Chief Counsel for the Constitutional Accountability Center. Arguing against the motion are: Stewart Baker, Former Assistant Secretary for Homeland Security & Former General Counsel for the NSA; and John Yoo, a Professor of Law at UC Berkeley & Former Justice Department Lawyer.

Airs Monday, February 24 at 11 p.m. Nina Simone was as powerful and complex a person as the music she played. She called it “Black Classical Music,” and it resists all definitions. Its jazz, rhythm and blues, folk, and gospel.  It’s a combination as Rich as the culture. Like any legend, Nina Simone became a symbol for People and movements through the years, but she was first and foremost a performer. She acted out the story of each song as if it happened to her just yesterday. This hour we’ll hear about the music and life of Nina Simone from colleagues and friends including Odetta, Camille Yarbrough, Guitarist Al Schackman, Patti Smith journalist David Nathan and more.

Airs Monday, February 24 at 9 p.m. So Many musical artists weighed in during the decades of the Civil Rights and Black Consciousness Movements... Nina Simone, Max Roach, Gil Scott-Heron, Archie Shepp, James Brown, John Coltrane, Bob Dylan, Sly Stone, Art Blakey, Curtis Mayfield... The list goes on!  The Music of the Civil Rights and Black Consciousness Movements Radio Special takes us back to a time when the social revolution taking place in America was reflected in the popular music that was all around us.