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On this week's installment, Tony and Chef Wolf discuss what they're planning to put in their gardens and cellars this spring.

Creative Common

Today marks the end of the third week of the Trump administration, and there was no let-up in the controversies the new president is generating.  A federal Appeals Court ruling last night upheld a lower court’s stay on the president’s executive order temporarily banning refugee admissions and travel from seven Muslim-majority countries. The President attacked the judges involved in that decision; his nominee to the Supreme Court called those attacks “demoralizing.”  Betsy DeVos was confirmed as the new Secretary of Education.  Her confirmation was historic, for all the wrong reasons.  Democrats convened at the Inner Harbor, struggling with a strategy to counter the Republicans’ dominance in DC.  And the city of Baltimore has begun the year more violently than in any year since the 1970s.

Helping us sort out the week's news on today's News Wrap:

White House correspondent Jenna Johnson of the Washington Post.  She joins Tom on the line from the Washington Post studios in DC; on the phone is John Fritze, Washington correspondent for the Baltimore Sun, and with Tom in the studio is A. Adar Ayira, program manager at Associated Black Charities.

 

William Wright talks about coming to America. You can listen to more stories, and learn about Stoop shows and The Stoop podcast here.

Each year Strong City Baltimore’s Adult Learning Center helps 600 students improve their English skills or prep for the GED. For residents who have immigrated to the city, English fluency can open career avenues and help them adjust to their new home. Regina Boyce, who oversees the Center, says peer support creates a sense of community among the students. We hear about the classes offered at the Adult Learning Center from Boyce and from Jiseon Yu, a South Korean immigrant who graduated from the program and now serves as a volunteer.

Strong City Baltimore and The Stoop Storytelling Series will present "Live and Learn: The Immigrant Experience," a fundraiser to benefit the Adult Learning Center. The event is February 17th at the University of Baltimore Student Center. Information here.

SNL

WYPR producers Bridget Armstrong and Jamyla Krempel join Tom for Tube Talk. Shows like Saturday Night Live, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert are tackling President Trump and his administration one episode at a time. We'll talk about how the presidency is informing television. 

And, BET's New Edition biopic, which chronicles the ups and downs of the R&B boy band, is the highest rated program the network has aired in five years. We'll talk about what made the film successful and other shows on the horizon.

Courtney Wilson, director of the B&O Railroad Museum tells us about an exhibit about the jobs available to black Americans during the railway’s heyday. Stable jobs like porter and cook paid relatively well, but demanded long hours and often difficult conditions.

Jesse Owens is all most of us know about black athletes at the 1936 Olympics in Hitler’s Berlin, but a new film tells the stories of all 18 African-Americans who competed for the U.S. and won one-fourth of its medals that year.

Deborah Riley Draper’s documentary is titled, “Olympic Pride, American Prejudice.” It will be shown a week from Sunday, on February 19, at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum in Baltimore. The screening will be followed by a discussion with Draper and the curator of the National Holocaust Museum. Information here.

Philip Brewer/flickr

Recent data indicate that Baby Boomers are now retiring in droves. As reported by Bloomberg, the number of Americans aged 65 or older that aren’t in the labor force rose by 800,000 during the fourth quarter of 2016. The pace of retirement in America has been heading higher for more than five years. There are many implications stemming from this massive pace of retirement, including for the U.S. labor force participation rate, which continues to be suppressed by retirement and remains near a four-decade low.

Photo by Britt Olsen-Ecker

Theater critic J. Wynn Rousuck joins us every Thursday with her reviews of regional stage productions. Today she's here to talk about Samsara, a new play by Lauren Yee now on stage at the Single Carrot Theatre that explores good intentions and unintended consequences, in a story that takes audiences from Northern California to India.  An American couple hoping to have a child engage a surrogate mother in India, whose pregnancy becomes an unexpectedly cathartic experience for her and the American parents. Their lives, and the life of the unborn child, intertwine in a karmic cycle of life, death and rebirth known to Hindus and Buddhists by the Sanskrit word, samsara.

Samsara continues at the Single Carrot Theatre through Sunday, February 12th.

Lloyd Fox The Baltimore Sun

When the Department of Justice issued its report on the findings of their investigation into the Baltimore City Police Department last summer, it stated unequivocally that the Police Department “engages in a pattern or practice of conduct that violates the Constitution or Federal Law.”

What followed after that report was a series of negotiations between the DOJ and Baltimore City Police that resulted in a consent decree that outlined the ways in which the police could address the problems identified in the report.

The consent decree was announced on January 12th, just a week before the Trump Administration assumed power. It called for, among other things, the creation of a Community Oversight Task Force, new procedures for stops, searches and arrests, new directives concerning use of force, and enhanced training for officers. A judge was appointed to approve and oversee the implementation of the consent decree.

Last week, U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar held a hearing at the federal courthouse in Baltimore. Judge Bredar must sign the consent decree in order for it to be in effect. He asked the parties involved, including Mayor Catherine Pugh, about various aspects of the deal, to determine whether or not it is feasible. Signing the consent decree is one thing. Repairing the damage done to the relationship between citizens and the police is quite another. But the consent decree is seen by many to be an important first step in fixing the distrust that exists between the police and in particular, communities of color here in Charm City.

Today, an update on where things stand so far in this lengthy and complex process. Tom's guests today in Studio A are Ganesha Martin,  Chief of the Baltimore Police Department of Justice Compliance and Accountability. Ray Kelly is a community organizer, an advocate, an activist and the Co-director of the No Boundaries Coalition of Central West Baltimore. Kevin Rector covers, among other things, crime and the courts for the Baltimore Sun. We invited the Dept. of Justice to participate in our conversation today and they declined that invitation. We also reached out several times to the Fraternal Order of Police, who did not respond.

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