community-based, non-corporate, participatory media
On today's show: Welcome to Our Revolution, excerpts from a performance inspired by a U.S. artist's visit to Cairo; Journalist Jordan Flaherty on New Orleans six years after Katrina; The experience of a nuclear meltdown by a university student in Japan; Fifteen hundred gather in Philly to protest shale gas drilling, even as flooding threatens to spread contamination from drilling sites. Reflections on the 10 year anniversary of September 11th; and more in our local and global headlines.
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Rustbelt Radio for September 12, 2011
Welcome to this week's edition of Rustbelt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's bi-weekly review of the news from the grassroots, news overlooked by the corporate media.
On today's show...
Rustbelt Radio is broadcast live from WRCT studios every other Monday at 6 PM on 88.3 FM in Pittsburgh, and the program airs again on WRCT every Tuesday morning at 9AM.
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We're also available on the internet, both on WRCT's live webstream at W-R-C-T dot ORG and for download, stream or podcast from our website at radio dot I-N-D-Y-P-G-H dot org.
We turn now to local stories.
With the recent extreme flooding in eastern and central Pennsylvania, a number of environmental groups have expressed alarm about gas drilling contaminants. A joint statement reads (quote) Given the significant flooding over the past several days, there is much concern over how many well pads, open pits and chemical storage tank fields have been inundated with toxic chemicals washing into our waterways and flooded communities (endquote)
According to Damascus Citizens for Sustainability, (quote) We have verified that there is a spreading oil slick in the Wyalusing area along the flooding Susquehanna River. This is indicative of not just oils, but also all the chemicals being used and released; materials brought to the surface by the drilling that are now being spread everywhere the flood waters travel. This has profound ongoing health implications for everyone living, working, farming or visiting the area. (endquote)
We asked Jeff Schmidt, director of the Sierra Club’s Pennsylvania Chapter, if they had reports of other cases of contamination. However, many people are still struggling with immediate threats to life and property, and have not been able to assess the damage fully:
Furthermore, people living near drilling sites, drilling infrastructure, or containment pits have no way to know what they may be exposed to, even as they react to the emergency flood situation.
The statement questioned the practice of granting permits in floodplains. Beyond the immediate dangers of the flooding, many of the groups that signed the statement of concern also called for a total moratorium on drilling.
Last winter, a group of artists from the United States was led by Pittsburgh artist and curator Tavia La Follette to Cairo for a political performance art workshop. The workshop was hosted by Egyptian painter Mohamud Abla at his Artists Winter Academy and was the second of La Follette’s Firefly Tunnel workshops in Egypt. The Firefly Tunnel project is a collaborative political art exchange and the first tunnel was built to connect Pittsburgh to Cairo. The exhibition of this first tunnel opened this past Friday at The Mattress Factory Museum and runs through January as an evolving exhibit and performance series called Sites of Passage.
On September 11th, the first performance of the series featured theater artist and professor, Larry Bogad with a piece entitled Welcome to Our Revolution. The following are excerpts from his performance inspired by his visit to Cairo in the weeks following the revolution.
For more information and a calendar of events visit fireflytunnels.net
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You are listening to Rustbelt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's bi-weekly review of news overlooked by the corporate media. We turn now to other independent news from around the world.
Japan has been devastated, survived, rebuilt, and devastated again by nuclear catastrophe. August 2011 marked 66 years from the use of nuclear warfare against the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the U.S. in World War II and 5 months since the nuclear reactor meltdown at Fukushima . Radiation poisoning has, since 1945, been affecting the health of the country, leaving the population in fear of progressing and unknown effects.
The Pittsburgh collective, Remembering Hiroshima works as an ally to support article nine of the Japanese constitution to end all warefare and now is also engaged in helping to spread awareness and create safe energy solutions in response to the dangers experienced recently by Japan as a result of nulcear energy.
On August sixth, the anniversary of the bombing, Remembering Hiroshima held a commemorative event at which the participants skyped with a group of students in Kobe, Japan. One of the students, Kasumi, sent Rustbelt Radio her speech from the anniversary event, remembering and relating her experiences of the meltdown with the bombing.
Remembering Hiroshima will be hosting a screening of the film Black Rain at the Shadow Lounge Saturday, September 17th.
Oaxaca Mexico is a place familiar with migration. This state located in southern part of the country is the second poorest in the nation. Thousands of Oaxacans (wa-HAW-kans) have left seeking work opportunities in other parts of Mexico as well as the United States. Oaxaca is also part of the route taken by thousands of Central Americans risking their lives to make it to the U.S. On September 3, a Catholic mass was held in Oaxaca as part of the 97th World Day of Migrants. Rustbelt Radio contributor Carlin Christy was there and brings you voices from the celebration.
Thanks to Carlin Christy and the Witness for Peace Mexico Team for that report.
The Brooklyn-raised Palestinian poet Suheir Hammad brings us this reflection on September 11.
You're listening to Rustbelt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's bi-weekly review of news from the grassroots.
The end of August marked the 6 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the devastation of New Orleans. Jordan Flaherty, a New Olreans-based, award-winning grassroots journalist and author, wrote a piece entitled " Six Years After Katrina, The Battle for New Orleans Continues: Political power has shifted to whites, but blacks have not given up their struggle for a voice -- and justice", which was originally published on The Root on August 29th. Here is Flaherty's piece being read for a Rustbelt Radio re-broadcasting.
That was a piece commemorating the six year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina by Jordan Flaherty, a New Orleans journalist and author of Floodlines: Community and Resistance from Katrina to the Jena Six. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, and more information about Floodlines can be found at Floodlines.org.
And now we present the Indymedia Calendar of Events:
[ Outro Music ]
Thanks for tuning in to Rustbelt Radio here on WRCT Pittsburgh, WIUP Indiana, WNJR Washington, WLRI LanChester, and FRSC Santa Cruz.
Our hosts this week are [Emily Laychek] and [Jessica McPherson] with contributions from [Seth Bearden, Carlin Christy, Emily Laychek, David Meieran, Jessica McPherson, Juliana Stricklen ]. This week's show was produced by Shawn Watson. Special thanks to all of our hosts, producers, and contributors.
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Tune in next week at this time for another edition of Rustbelt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's bi-weekly review of news from the grassroots.