Midday

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One out of 15 kids in Maryland–more than 80-thousand young people –has had a parent behind bars at some point during their childhood. Nationwide, it’s more than 5 million children. How does that affect kids and the communities they live in? Research by the Annie E. Casey Foundation finds that the ripple effects for a child can be far-reaching and long-lasting. The emotional distress is on par with abuse, domestic violence, or divorce. And when a parent is put away, family incomes can drop sharply, adding to the stress. Is this collateral damage part of the price those convicted of crimes should pay? Or are there ways to minimize the impact of incarceration on innocent children? We discuss with Ryan Chao, vice-president for civic sites and community change for the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and Joseph Jones, president for the Center for Urban Families.

Author Laura Lippman has built a career as a best-selling crime novelist on the skills of observation and deduction she honed in twenty years as a newspaper reporter, twelve of them at The Baltimore Sun. Lippman has set her 21st novel, to be published Tuesday, in Columbia and named it after the high school Lippman herself attended -- Wilde Lake. We’ll ask Lippman how closely her fictional cases track the news, and how being a mother has changed her plotlines.

Baltimore was once one of the country’s busiest ports for immigration. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, 1.2 million immigrants first set foot on American soil in Baltimore. Yet while Ellis Island draws millions of visitors a year, Baltimore’s immigrant history isn’t widely known. The new Baltimore Immigration Museum aims to remedy that. It tells the stories of the Europeans who landed here at the peak of immigration to the city, as well as the tales of those from other parts of the world who’ve come since. We’ll talk to the museum’s founders - Brigitte and Nick Fessenden - about those forgotten stories and the museum’s role in bringing them to light. Plus, JoAnn Best, a member of Locust Point Community Church, talks about a boarding house run by the church during the heyday of immigration to Baltimore. 

Aaah-choo! It’s allergy season, and as you may have noticed, this one’s a doozy in our region. As of this morning, Weather.com rates Baltimore as the number two pollen hotspot in the country, closely followed by Washington, DC. The season will eventually pass and with it, seasonal allergies. But allergies are on the rise in developed countries. And scientists say climate change is likely to increase pollen counts and extend the growing season for plants like ragweed. What new developments are on the horizon for treating hay fever? How effective are alternative treatments, like acupuncture? And what can those with allergies do to prevent the seasonal sneezes? Our guest: Dr. Sandra Lin, allergy expert and associate professor in the Johns Hopkins Department of Otolaryngology.

Check out this link with treatment advice. Scroll down to the "For Patients" section.

We analyze the results of Maryland's Primary Election. Upsets? Surprises? What’s ahead for November’s general election? Last night, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton won big in Maryland; Catherine Pugh became Baltimore’s presumptive next mayor; and Chris Van Hollen soared past Donna Edwards in the Democratic race to replace Senator Barbara Mikulski. Join our panel of political experts - Andrew Green, opinion editor at The Baltimore Sun, Washington College political scientist Melissa Deckman, and Maryland Public Television correspondent Charles Robinson - and share your thoughts related to the election. We’ll talk turnout - West Baltimore community group No Boundaries reports record turnout in Sandtown - as well as the roles of race, gender, and money in politics. 

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that middle and high schools begin classes no earlier than 8:30 a.m. - but at some Maryland high schools the first bell rings soon after 7 a.m. Should schools push the snooze button? On this primary election day, we’ll start with an update of how things are going at the polls. Then: teenagers and sleep. As kids move through puberty, their biological sleep rhythms change and it is harder for them to wake up.

Baltimore Heritage/Flickr via Creative Commons

From renovating vacant rowhomes to cultivating organic farms, clergy have undertaken a massive effort to improve life in the Sandtown neighborhood. We hear from Rev. Derrick DeWitt and Elder CW Harris about the revival of a long-dormant alliance of a dozen churches, all focused on projects to strengthen their community. There is an expansion planned for a local nursing home and an affordable housing program for those in addiction recovery. Plus, with the help of social workers and the FBI, Sandtown’s religious leaders are reaching out to gang members, as part of Baltimore’s anti-gun violence initiative--Operation Ceasefire--and convincing them to leave that life behind. 

Courtesy of Code in the Schools

After the unrest last spring following the death of Freddie Gray, critics pointed to the lack of opportunities for young people in Baltimore. Under a national spotlight, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake added $4.2 million in funding for after-school programs. The money paid for nearly 2,500 new spots for kids, mostly in underserved areas. Sandtown-Winchester, the neighborhood where Freddie Gray lived, was among them. Now budget season has rolled round once more. The city began the process with a major shortfall, and the mayor wants to cut last year’s bump in afterschool funding to help make up the difference. What would this mean for young people? 

elycefeliz / Flickr via Creative Commons

Free range, cage-free, or pasture-raised? All-natural or organic? The grocery store is awash in labels appealing to our conscience. Some claim the food in question is free of pesticides or antibiotics or genetic modification. Others promise that animals were well cared-for or that workers were well-treated. There are labels touting their power to protect the rainforest and make life easier for birds. How is a consumer to know which are meaningful and which are false advertising? How did our food labeling system get so fractured? Expert label decoder Urvashi Rangan, director of Consumer Safety and Sustainability for Consumer Reports, helps us separate the wheat from the chaff.

Derek Blanks/For The Washington Post

Here’s a hypothetical for you . . . You’re walking down the street and you see a woman standing there, crying. What do you do? Ask her if she’s OK? Try to comfort her? Now, what if that person standing there, crying, is a man? Is your reaction the same? Our guest this hour is a guy who cries. He cries without shame, in public, and when it happens, he’ll look you in the eye, and you’ll look away before he does. Andrew Reiner is a Towson University professor. He teaches a class on masculinity - and he wrote an article for The Washington Post titled, “The Tracks of My Tears: One man’s quest to have male crying be socially acceptable.” It made him a lightning rod for some vitriolic backlash, but he welcomes the debate. A conversation about men and emotional honesty.

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