Republican legislatures in several states are finding it difficult to stick to one of their mantras: the government closest to the people governs best. In Tennessee – where the GOP now holds a supermajority – the state is making power plays on issues ranging from charter schools to property rights. Increasingly, the state believes it knows best.
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Governor Bill Haslam laid out a plan in his third state of the state address to cut taxes, pay state employees more and still save money for a rainy day. Hot button policy proposals were mentioned, but far from fully fleshed out.
Before 2012, few knew the first thing about fungal meningitis – even doctors. And compounding pharmacies flew well under most people’s radar. That changed as moldy spinal injections sickened hundreds across the country.
Listen Now: It’s getting tougher to be a Republican in Tennessee while also fully accepting the practice of Islam.
Actor and Comedian Jerry Lewis will be in Nashville for the next month so, but don’t expect to run into him in Five Points or Centennial Park. He’s spending his days and nights, deep in the bowels of the Tennessee Performing Arts Center.
Listen Now: Teach for America is making incremental moves from the classroom to the political arena. The program recruits college grads who studied something other than education to spend two years teaching in underperforming schools. Several are going on to win elected office, and more are right behind them. A school board race in East Nashville pits TFA alums against one another.
Listen Now: The Tennessee Foreign Language Institute recently surveyed dozens of refugees around Nashville and asked if English classes were taught in their apartment complex, would they attend? All of them said yes. Yet free ESL classes are already offered around town, and few were enrolled. The proposed solution is a mobile classroom.
Listen Now: 67-year-old Loney Fred Hutchins grew up dirt poor in the mountains of East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. He was the middle child in a family of eight. Loney Fred talked with his son about what it was like to grow up in a family where neither of his parents could read or write.
Respected folksinger Todd Snider doesn’t mind if people laugh when he voices his opinions. In fact, he’d prefer it.
Recordings of key leaders in the civil rights movement are newly available online. The conversations from the mid-1960s hint at shifts that were coming in the struggle for racial equality.
For people in the fireworks business, this should be their black Friday. Only this year, three-quarters of the country is experiencing some level of drought. More than a dozen cities in Middle Tennessee have banned fireworks for the year. But that’s not keeping committed revelers from the rush of lighting a fuse.
Listen Now: Kate Clarke’s mother died when she was six. After that, she went to live with her aunt and uncle, Chris and Maryanna. The couple wanted to adopt Kate, but they were hesitant because they needed permission from Kate’s estranged father. That’s when Kate says she took matters into her own hands.
Fifty years ago today, the citizens of Nashville and Davidson County voted to merge two governments into one. It’s considered the first full-scale consolidation in the U.S., and the city remains the envy of those who have tried and failed to do the same. But combining city and county also has contributed to keeping Nashville in the back of the pack in terms of breaking some racial barriers.
Listen Now: Jane Baxter says she was always close to her mother, at least in proximity living near by.
The pioneering Nashville businesswomen began in the mailroom of a downtown Nashville building. She ended up president of music royalty company BMI.
A large mosque being built in Murfreesboro is almost done. From the outside, what’s left is capping off the structure with a quintessential dome and two small minarets. While construction nears completion, the fight to finish continues. Two years after the local planning commission approved the project, a judge will consider stopping work at a hearing Wednesday.
Listen Now: Hair loss can be one of the most humiliating side effects of cancer treatment.
Listen Now: Clarksville residents James and Kari Burgess Brown celebrate a milestone of their own this year. It’s been five years since they tied the knot. The Browns are an interracial couple; Kari is white and James is black.
Swimmers around the country are squeezing in their final training ahead of the Olympic trials later this month. For many, the dream of making the U.S. swim team has been what gets them out of bed for a pre-dawn practice. But at least on the men’s side of the pool, the superstars of swimming leave little room for anyone else.
Listen Now: For Tullahoma native Lori Williamson, faith was a big part of her life growing up. She talked about that faith at StoryCorps in Nashville. That’s where people from around Tennessee are talking about their lives and loved ones.