Tavis Smiley

Recent Articles

Tell Me More axed by NPR

Yet another program by/for people of color bites the dust on public radio
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

 

Tell Me More, the National Public Radio (NPR) multicultural daily newsmagazine, will leave the air August 1 after seven seasons. It debuted locally earlier this year on KNOW (91.1 FM) and is believed to be the first Black-oriented program that targeted people of color on the station’s regular weekday program lineup. The cancellation decision was announced by NPR officials in late May. In an interview with Richard Prince, whose “Journal-isms” column is regularly featured on The Root.com, he reported that the network claimed the one-hour program “was not financially sustainable in its current form.” A top NPR executive told Prince that the show cost $2.1 million to operate and lost $1.5 million each year. “People donate to foundations and corporations specifically for that show as underwriters,” said Prince in a recent MSR phone interview, explaining in more detail how the funding works . Continue Reading →

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Zimmerman trial watch

 

 

 

 

 

Below is a series of commentaries written by MSR staff writer Charles Hallman exclusively for the MSR Online regarding the George Zimmerman trial. They are being posted several times per week. Charles Hallman welcomes reader responses to challman@spokesman-recorder.com

 

 
Zimmerman update #16 (July 23, 2013)
 

It’s been over a week since the George Zimmerman not-guilty verdict was handed down. Marches, vigils, and other such events have taken place in its aftermath. “There’s going to be a lot of arguments about the legal issues in the case,” admitted President Obama in his unexpected address to the press last week. Continue Reading →

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A post-election mobilization agenda

 

 

 

 

 

By Julianne Malveaux

Guest Commentator

 

Before the president takes the oath of office for a second time, African Americans should mobilize around these issues:

 

Sequestration

Unless the Democrats and Republicans can cut a deal during the lame-duck session of Congress, our budget will be cut automatically. While House Speaker John Boehner has softened his tone just a bit and indicated his willingness to compromise, he still has to herd his Tea Party colleagues into also agreeing on ways to avoid sequestration. The notion of cutting expenditures at a time of slow economic growth makes no sense. Neither does sequestration, a desperate move to avoid a compromise. What do we need to address the deficit? Continue Reading →

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Tavis Smiley film a journey of Black men and cultural crossroads — Stand a soul-music-filled road trip through Civil Rights Movement during 2008 Obama campaign

 

 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

In 2008, broadcaster Tavis Smiley assembled a cross-generational core group — Dick Gregory, Michael Eric Dyson, brothers Cornel and Cliff West, Eddie Glaude, Jr., two college-age young men and others — for “an old-fashioned road trip” across Tennessee that started in Nashville and ended on the balcony outside Room 306 of the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in 1968. America also watched a Black man win his party’s presidential nomination during the same time as Smiley’s trip. “Here you have this young Black man [then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama] making his move toward the White House at the same time we are commemorating the 40th anniversary of King’s assassination; that crossroads was intriguing and interesting to me,” Smiley recalls in a recent phone interview with the MSR about Stand, a documentary he directed. It first premiered on TV One in May 2009, and also has been shown multiple times on the Documentary Channel, a channel primarily available on satellite, during March and April of this year. The historic summer of 2008 prompted him “to bring my boys together, to spend some time together, trying to figure out what we make out of this moment,” continues Smiley. Continue Reading →

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