This Week on Between The Lines

Posted Feb. 5, 2014 for week ending Feb. 14, 2014


"Some of our sister groups led by Credo Mobile (and) Rainforest Action, have asked volunteers to commit acts of civil disobedience – and there are over 70,000 people around the country (who) have volunteered when the time comes – if the time comes – to do civil disobedience."

– Interview with Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth, on how environmental groups are preparing to pressure President Obama to reject construction of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

Listen to the entire program using these links, or to individual interviews via the links appearing prior to each segment description below.

  MP3  64 kb/s   podcast  Podcast

Environmentalists Mobilize Pressure on Obama to Reject Keystone XL Pipeline

MP3 Interview with Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth, conducted by Scott Harris


The U.S. State Department released its long-awaited environmental impact statement on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline project that would move tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada to Texas Gulf refineries. The report indicated that approval or denial of the pipeline will make no difference in the rate of extraction of tar sands oil, given that producers can transport the oil via rail tankers if the Keystone project is rejected. However, the report acknowledged that extracting or burning tar sands oil produces about 17 percent more greenhouse gas emissions linked to climate change, than traditional oil.  Story continues

Connecticut Bill Offers Juvenile Offenders Opportunity to Reduce Long Prison Sentences

MP3 Interview with Alexandra Harrington, a third-year law student at Yale, and Leslie Aponte, the mother of a youthful offender, conducted by Melinda Tuhus


When the Connecticut legislature convenes this week, a bill will be introduced to provide a "second look" at lengthy prison sentences imposed on those who were juveniles when they committed crimes. A joint study by the law clinics at Quinnipiac and Yale universities revealed significant racial disparities. The study found that among 275 male inmates, 60 percent of those serving more than ten years are African American, 69 percent of those serving 50 years or more are African American and 100 percent of those serving life without parole sentences – 4 individuals – are also African American. The report reiterates what is now understood in the scientific community – that human brains are not fully developed until the mid-20s, making juvenile offenders less culpable for their actions, and also more capable of rehabilitation.  Story continues

The Late Singer, Songwriter and Activist Pete Seeger Offers "Uncommon Common Sense" in 1994 Interview

MP3 Interview with Pete Seeger, legendary folk singer and activist, conducted by Scott Harris


Pete Seeger, one of the world's best-known and most loved folk singers, songwriters and social activists, died on Jan. 27 at the age of 94. During more than six decades of agitation through music, Seeger struggled for peace and social justice, not as something he pursued in his spare time, but as a full-time vocation. Best known for his songs, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” “If I Had a Hammer,” and “Turn, Turn, Turn,” Pete was actively engaged in the civil rights, pro-union, anti-Vietnam War, environmental and Central American peace movements. For his progressive activism, the singer was blacklisted and brought before the House Un-American Activities Committee during the height of the anti-communist McCarthy era in August 1955.  Story continues

This week’s summary of under-reported news

MP3  MP3

Compiled by Bob Nixon


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