Stateside with Cynthia Canty

Monday through Thursday @ 3:00 p.m. & 10 p.m.

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Conversations about what matters in Michigan.

Stateside with Cynthia Canty covers a wide range of Michigan news and policy issues — as well as culture and lifestyle stories. In keeping with Michigan Radio’s broad coverage across southern Michigan, Stateside with Cynthia Canty will focus on topics and events that matter to people all across the state.

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Stateside
1:30 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Michigan's War Dog Memorial honors 4-legged heroes

U.S. Marine Raiders and their war dogs in World War II.
Credit Photo by T.Sgt. J. Sarno / Wikimedia Commons

When you think of a war hero, what image comes to your mind?

Most likely, you think of a man or a woman dressed in desert camouflage, or a wounded warrior learning to walk again after being wounded in battle.

But there is another group of war heroes: the four-legged heroes. War dogs. 

Their history in the U.S. military is long and proud. They were used as messenger dogs, scout or patrol dogs, and in the cases of our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, they have been used as explosive detection dogs. 

Unbeknownst to many of the locals, Michigan has one of the few war dog memorials in the nation, located between Milford and South Lyon in Oakland County. 

Phil Weitlauf is a U.S. Army veteran, as well as a champion of the Michigan War Dog Memorial. He joined us on Stateside. 

*Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
12:48 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Most states spend to build new roads; Michigan fixes old ones

Credit Wikimedia Commons

While the debate over transportation funding continues this week in Lansing, a recent report finds most states are spending more to build new roads than they are in repairing the crumbling roads we already have.

A study from the nonpartisan budget watchdog group Taxpayers for Common Sense says that there are exceptions: states that are spending a significant percentage of their road money on repairs. One of those states is Michigan. 

Steve Ellis, Vice President of Taxpayers for Common Sense, joined us. 

*Listen to the full interview above.

Politics & Culture
4:33 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Stateside for Thursday, May 8, 2014

Eleven-thousand rape kits were discovered abandoned in a Detroit Police crime lab five years ago. Since that discovery, only about 2,000 kits have undergone DNA testing.

Why have thousands of rape kits still gone untested? And what's the broader message sent to victims of rape?

Later in the show, a recent Oxford University report warns that robots could replace nearly half of the current U.S. workforce. Can humans keep ahead of the technology that's changing the workforce?

First on the show, a poll released today by the group Business Leaders for Michigan finds that 66% of Michigan voters support Gov. Rick Snyder's pledge to have the state contribute to help settle Detroit's bankruptcy. The survey found 20% of voters oppose a state contribution, and slightly more than 13% don't know if they are for or against.

There have been several ideas floated as to how much the state would give to what's known as the “grand bargain.” Today, folks are getting a look at legislation that could spell that all out.

Detroit News reporter Chad Livengood joined us.

Stateside
4:32 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

The chances you will lose your job to a robot are growing

ASIMO is a humanoid robot designed by Honda. ASIMO could take your conducting job.
Credit user: Vanillase / Wikimedia Commons

A recent Oxford University report estimates that robots could replace nearly half of the current U.S. workforce.

The report found that office administrators, sales personnel, and those in the service industry are among those at risk of losing their jobs to robots.

Robots have become common in many workplaces since General Motors installed the first robot at a plant in New Jersey in 1961 ("Unimate," as it was called, could weld and move parts that weighed up to 500 pounds).

So can humans keep up, or at least keep ahead of the technology that is changing the workforce?

These are especially important questions here in Michigan, with its historic ties to the auto industry that makes up about 40% of the global supply of industrial robots. 

Stephen Spurr, Chair of the Department of Economics and professor at Wayne State University, joined us today to explore the possibilities (You can listen to our interview with Spurr above.)

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Auto
4:31 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Detroit's annual Belle Isle Grand Prix is approaching

Credit David Grant / Flickr

Preparations are well underway as Belle Isle gets primped and polished for the upcoming Grand Prix, officially called the "Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix," from May 30 to June 1. 

Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes talked with the man who revived Detroit's Grand Prix in 2007. 

This is the first time the race has been held since the state took over management of Belle Isle. What has been done to prepare for the race and fix up the island?

*Listen to the interview above. 

Politics & Government
4:29 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

EB-5 will bring investment, immigrants to Michigan

Vermont's government was the first to allow an EB-5 Regional Center.
Credit user: Norsehorse / Flickr

A federal visa program called EB-5 offers a conditional green card to foreign nationals who invest $1 million in a qualified project in the U.S., or invest half a million in a depressed urban or rural area.

EB-5 is the cornerstone of Gov. Rick Snyder's strategy to attract more immigrants to Michigan. In fact, Michigan will be only the second state in the country to open a statewide center to attract immigrant investment and offer a possible path to citizenship.

The first state to open such a center was Vermont. 

Brent Raymond, the director of the Vermont EB-5 Regional Center, joined us. 

*Listen to the full interview above. 

Stateside
4:26 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Survey shows that over half of Michigan voters want Michigan to help Detroit's bankruptcy

Over half of Michigan voters support Governor Rick Snyder's pledge to have the state contribute to help settle Detroit's bankruptcy.

A recent survey done by the group Business Leaders for Michigan finds that 66 percent of Michigan voters support Gov. Rick Snyder's pledge to have the state contribute to help settle Detroit's bankruptcy. 

The survey found that 20 percent of voters oppose a state contribution, and more than 13 percent don't know if they are for or against.

There have been several ideas floated as to how much the state would give to what's known as the grand bargain – whether it would be a lump sum or spread out over a number of years, and where the money would come from. 

Today, the State house unveiled legislation that spells out its idea for the best way to help Detroit out of bankruptcy. 

Detroit News capitol reporter Chad Livengood joined us to discuss. 

*Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
4:45 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Medical schools are turning out too many specialists, too few primary care physicians

Credit getoverit.org

A basic tenet of the Affordable Care Act is preventive care: Get people into the health care system before disease or disability set in.

But that's highlighting a problem with our medical education system. Medical schools are turning out too many specialists and not enough primary care physicians. Cynthia Canty spoke with Dr. William Strampel, dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State University. 

Stateside
4:42 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Michigan could be the first state to test for driving while under the influence of marijuana

Credit User Eljoja / Flickr

A package of bills before state lawmakers could make Michigan the very first state to adopt a roadside test that would tell police whether a driver is under the influence of marijuana.

Current law allows police to test the blood, breath and urine of drivers pulled over for erratic driving. The proposed legislation now being debated would add a roadside saliva test that could tell police if a driver is impaired by pot.

Cynthia Canty spoke with State Representative Dan Lauwers, R-Brockway Twp., who sponsored the legislation. 

Stateside
4:11 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Frogs used to rule the menus in Detroit

Frog legs on the grill.
Credit Tomas Castelazo / Wikimedia Commons

Treating yourself to a good restaurant meal in Detroit these days might mean biting into some great Coney Islands, or a plate of flaming souvlaki in Greektown, or barbeque, or soul food.

Now roll the clock back about 90 or 100 years.

How about frog leg salad? Frog ravioli? Frog leg pie? Pickled or poached frog leg?

It seems early 20th century foodies just loved frog legs, and Detroit was happy to provide them.

As one New York columnist gushed in 1905: "If you have never eaten frog legs in Detroit, you have something to live for, something for which to strive."

Food historian Bill Loomis wrote about this often-overlooked period in Detroit's culinary history for the May issue of Hour:Detroit magazine.

The piece is called "When Frogs Were King."

Loomis joined us today on the program.

*Listen to our interview above.

Stateside
4:11 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

New film explores the life of Holocaust survivor Irene Butter

Irene Butter speaks to 400 students in Laupheim, Germany about her life in Germany and the Netherlands when the Nazis where in power.
Credit http://www.ggg-laupheim.de/

She was born in Germany, but as life for Jews in Germany became more dangerous through the 1930s, she and her family moved to the Netherlands – to Amsterdam, in the same neighborhood as a young girl named Anne Frank.

And like Anne Frank, she was captured by the Nazis and taken to the notorious Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.

But unlike Anne, young Irene Butter survived the camp.

Today, Dr. Irene Butter is a professor emeritus at the University of Michigan's School of Public Health.

Her life has been a remarkable journey, knit together by Irene's decision that she was going to live as a Holocaust survivor, not as a victim.

Irene Butter is the subject of the  film "Never a Bystander," by Ann Arbor filmmaker Evelyn Neuhaus.”

Irene Butter and Evelyn Neuhaus joined us today on the show.

*Listen to our interview above.

Stateside
4:10 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

This year's primary ballot will ask you about taxes

The state used to collect taxes on things like the machinery in manufacturing plants. When that away, some cities lost revenue.
Credit automotiveauto.info

The upcoming August primary ballot will feature something not usually seen on August primary ballots: a statewide ballot proposal, something we haven't seen in August since 2002.

This ballot proposal will ask you to decide the fate of a reform of Michigan's industrial personal property tax, but there is a pretty significant hurdle that backers have to face: that icky little three-letter word – tax.

Chris Gautz, reporter for Crain's Detroit Business, joined us to talk about all this.

*Listen to our interview above.

Politics & Culture
4:10 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Stateside for Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Michigan could become the first state to adopt a roadside saliva test for marijuana impairment if lawmakers pass a package of bills introduced in both the state House and Senate.

Critics dispute the accuracy of the tests – expressing concern for medical marijuana users. State Rep. Dan Lauwers, R-St. Clair County, sponsored the legislation.

Then we talk about what needs to happen in the education process to correct the imbalance between specialists and primary care physicians.

Also,  the upcoming August primary ballot will feature something not usually seen on August primary ballots: a statewide ballot proposal, something we haven't seen in August since 2002.

This ballot proposal will ask you to decide the fate of a reform of Michigan's industrial personal property tax, but there is a pretty significant hurdle that backers have to face – that icky little three-letter word: tax.

Chris Gautz, reporter for Crain's Detroit Business, joined us to talk about all this.

*Listen to the show above.

Politics & Culture
4:02 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Stateside for Tuesday, May 6, 2014

State lawmakers are waist-deep in the big budget process. The mission is to iron out differences in what the governor wants, and what the House and Senate are willing to give. 

Then, John U. Bacon discussed the debate over whether college athletes should be recognized as school employees, and be allowed to unionize. 

Next, the Detroit Red Wings are getting a new home in 2016, and Joe Louis Arena may be no more. What will happen to the riverfront property the arena stands on now? 

The Center for Michigan has been listening to what voters are saying, and has compiled a citizen's agenda for the 2014 elections. 

The CDC has said that there is a high rate of heart attack and heart disease in the Upper Peninsula. We looked at what these rates say about health care and health habits in the UP. 

Politics & Government
4:02 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Center for Michigan creates citizen's agenda for 2014 elections

As 2014 elections approach, the Center for Michigan is trying to get the voice of the people heard.
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

There are plenty of issues on the minds of Michigan voters as we look to the November elections: education, college, poverty, how to spend public dollars, our economy, our quality of life. 

The Center for Michigan has been listening to what voters are saying. The result is Michigan Speaks: The Citizen's Agenda for the 2014 election. 

It's being released today.

Here to tell us what the voters are thinking about and hoping for is Phil Power, founder of the Center for Michigan. 

Listen to the full interview above. 

Health
4:01 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Michigan's Upper Peninsula has high heart attack rates, CDC says

Michigan's Upper Peninsula has been cited as having high heart attack rates.
Credit user striatic / Flickr

There's some pretty unsettling data that has come out about the health of the people who call the Upper Peninsula home. 

The Centers for Disease Control numbers say heart attack rates for the entire western and eastern UP for 2008-2010 are right up there at the highest level for the top five categories the CDC tracks.

What does the high rate of heart attack and heart disease say about health care and health habits in the UP? And what can bring those high rates down?

Dr. Teresa Frankovich, medical director for the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department, joined us. 

Listen to the full interview above. 

Offbeat
3:37 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Riverfront site of Joe Louis Arena may see an overhaul

Joe Louis Arena will no longer be the home of the Detroit Red Wings.
Credit user: jacdupree / Flickr

Now that the Detroit Red Wings are going to get a new home in 2016, Joe Louis Arena seems destined for the wrecking ball. 

And that is focusing fresh attention on Detroit's riverfront, as the city searches for a new use for that riverfront site. 

There could be some valuable lessons Detroit could learn from Buffalo, which is doing more than just about any Great Lakes City to reconnect with its waterfront after generations of industrial abuse and neglect. 

Writer Edward McClelland spelled out the story of the ongoing process of reclaiming Buffalo's waterfront in a story for Belt Magazine. He joined us to discuss what Buffalo is doing, and what Detroit could do. 

Listen to the interview above. 

Sports
3:28 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Should college athletes be considered school employees?

Northwestern's Kain Colter is tackled during a game with Army in 2011. Colter has argued the players should be allowed to form a union.
Credit West Point / Flickr

Earlier this spring, the National Labor Relations Board made big headlines when it granted Northwestern University football players permission to unionize if they chose to. 

That decision has opened up a big national discussion and debate over whether college athletes should be recognized as school employees. 

So we wanted to bring in sports commentator and coach, John U. Bacon. His most recent book is Fourth and Long: the Fight for the Soul of College Football

Listen to the full interview above. 

Politics & Government
3:27 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Big budget process predicted to be a "pain"

Capitol Building, Lansing, MI
Credit Matthileo / Flickr

State lawmakers are waist-deep in the big budget process. The mission is to iron out the differences in what the governor wants and what the House and Senate are willing to give.

It's looking like many differing views add up to lots of haggling, lots of need for compromise, and it has one State Senator talking like Mr. T as Clubber Lang in Rocky 3. 

Kathy Gray of the Detroit Free Press joined us to explain why Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Roger Kahn is predicting "pain". 

Listen to the story above.

Stateside
4:59 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Looking at the results of Michigan's wolf hunt

Credit endangeredspecieslawandpolicy.com

The 45-day wolf hunting season that began November 15 inflamed passions, both pro and con.

Now that the first-ever wolf hunt is wrapped up, what were the results?

John Barnes explored the impact of the hunt in a recent piece for MLive, which breaks down the ages of the 22 wolves killed over the course of the hunt. He joined us on Stateside today (you can listen to the audio above).

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