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In Conversation

There’s a lot going on in Louisville, and WFPL’s In Conversation with Rick Howlett gives people a platform to talk — both to each other, and with the larger community — about the biggest issues facing our city, state and region. Live at 11 a.m. every Friday on 89.3 WFPL. Miss the show? Listen here as a weekly podcast.

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  • This week ‘In Conversation’: Teaching civics
    Reading, writing, and arithmetic are the basics of a good education. So is basic civics, like the three pillars of government: legislative, executive, and judicial. But are students still taught civics? And how do teachers approach it in the wake of the Jan. 6th insurrection, continued 2020 election denial, and the protracted vote to make Kevin McCarthy speaker of the House of Representatives? On this week’s “In Conversation,” we talked to education experts about how threats to democracy influence the way today’s students are being taught civics, and the impact on society when many don’t know how their local, state, and federal governments work.
  • Preparing for emergencies
    Between natural disasters, and unexpected emergencies like gas leaks or lengthy blackouts, life can change in an instant. How do you best prepare for disruptions out of your control, yet not live in a state of fear or paranoia? On this week’s “In Conversation,” we spoke to experts about how to prepare for the worst, at home and elsewhere. How much food should you store? What items should you keep on hand in case there are community-wide outages? What should you keep in your car in case weather leaves you stranded?
  • Checking in on the Ky. General Assembly
    The Kentucky General Assembly is covering a lot this session, including a possible tax rate cut, medical marijuana, and flood recovery funds to Eastern Kentucky. On this week’s “In Conversation,” we speak to journalists about what this year’s legislative session in Frankfort looks like, and how it could affect you.
  • Winter chills and winter ills
    This is the time of the year when we all worry about catching a cold, as the weather stays colder and the gatherings increase. But this winter, we’re worrying not just about avoiding common cold sniffles, but also what public health experts have dubbed a tridemic or tripledemic: a surge of the flu, COVID-19, and respiratory syncytial virus (“RSV”) at roughly the same time. On this week’s “In Conversation,” we spoke to doctors about how the tripledemic is affecting our community and what we can do to avoid it. We also talk about other health risks that increase this time of the year.
  • Avoiding Holiday Scams
    Emails. Calls. Texts. Social media. All are easy entry points for scammers to try to get your money this time of the year. Or maybe you’re doing some holiday shopping online, you pay, and your items never show up. The FBI says that’s one of the biggest scams to look out for this time of year. This week on “In Conversation,” experts told us how scams work, how to spot one, and how to protect yourself from getting a bite in the wallet as you try to shop and celebrate the Winter holidays.
  • The consequences of hate speech
    Recently in Kentucky, we’ve seen how hate speech can lead to real consequences. In Louisville, some called for a boycott against restaurants co-owned by Fernando Martinez, after he shared homophobic Facebook posts making fun of the attack on Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s husband, Paul Pelosi. And at the University of Kentucky, a student was expelled and banned from campus after attacking a Black student while repeatedly calling her the n-word. This week, on “In Conversation,” we talked to experts to unpack the legal and business ramifications of engaging in hate speech, and the psychological toll it takes to be on the receiving end of it.
  • Stay out of the red this holiday season
    Whether you’re talking turkey or planning for a plant-based feast, putting a holiday meal on the table costs more than it used to. How do you save cash and spend wisely during the holiday season as creeping inflation and higher prices strain budgets? Host Rick Howlett spoke to financial experts to for an overview of how the economic forecast looks, and get tips and advice on how to financially navigate the start of the winter holidays.
  • Election 2022
    Between yard signs, television commercials, texts, calls, and emails, y’all know what time it is: election season. And with a number of school elections, local elections, and state seats up for grabs, this week’s “In Conversation” has you covered. Host Rick Howlett talked to the Louisville Public Media journalists who have been covering the elections: Kentucky Public Radio Capitol Reporter Divya Karthikeyan WFPL Education and Learning Reporter Jess Clark WFPL City Politics and Government Reporter Roberto Roldan WFPL Managing Editor for Collaboratives Ryland Barton Justin Hicks, Data Reporter for WFPL and the Ohio Valley ReSource They are among the team who put together the 2022 Voter Guide from LPM.
  • Black farmers in Kentucky
    Of the more than 76,000 agricultural operations in Kentucky, fewer than one percent are owned by Black farmers. But it wasn’t always like this. Nationwide, Black farmers have seen a 98% reduction in ownership in the last century — and efforts to help them maintain their farms have been watered down, leading to a class action suit against the federal government. On this week’s “In Conversation” we talked with Black Kentucky farmers about their experiences and insights. But first we checked in with WFPL health reporter Aprile Rickert and education reporter Jess Clark, who have been analyzing school immunization data across the city. Turns out, the vast majority of schools fall far below the state's target vaccination rates, leaving many classrooms at risk.
  • Sadiqa Reynolds and her Louisville Urban League legacy
    Sadiqa Reynolds. You may know her as president of the Urban League’s Louisville chapter for the past seven years. Maybe you heard her calming civic leadership during the protests over the killing of Breonna Taylor by police and David McAtee by a National Guard bullet. Or maybe you’ve seen stories about the Norton Healthcare Sports & Learning Center, the $53 million athletic facility that opened in the West End in 2021 with Reynolds at the fundraising helm. On issues of justice and equity in Louisville, you probably know of Reynolds’ impact. This week on “In Conversation,” host Rick Howlett sat down to talk with Sadiqa Reynolds, who exits her Urban League presidency this month. We’ll reflect on her accomplishments, her challenges, her legacy, and her next chapter.