The Takeaway

News & Information: Mon-Fri • 10am-11am
  • Hosted by John Hockenberry

A daily newsmagazine featuring unique conversations with both news makers and diverse voices.

Happy Curiosity Day, Curious George

Sep 17, 2016
Courtesy of Ema Ryan Yamazaki

Today is Curiosity Day — the 75th anniversary of the creation of Curious George.

That seems like a good time to talk about the backstory of the mischievous monkey and his illustrious career of curiosity.

Curious George was born of the imaginations of Hans and Margret Rey, a husband and wife duo originally from Hamburg, Germany. Hans drew George, and Margret brought him to life with her narratives.

Law enforcement DNA databases draw scrutiny, controversy

Sep 16, 2016
Michaela Rehle/Reuters

Imagine you are the victim of a crime: a burglary or a sexual assault.

DNA is taken from the crime scene and compared against a federally regulated FBI-run database used to process DNA evidence, called CODIS. The process can take as long as 18 months before a match is identified. In the meantime, the perpetrator has committed a string of other crimes.

But some local police departments claim they can get faster results — as little as 30 days — by using private labs and local DNA databases.

How #BankBlack could help narrow the wealth gap

Sep 15, 2016
Jim Young/Reuters

Another hashtag revolution is drawing attention to the wealth gap experienced by the African American population: #BankBlack.

#BankBlack encourages those protesting police brutality to move their money to black-owned banks. After trending over the summer, black-owned banks have reported that thousands of new accounts have been opened and that their assets have grown by about $6 million.

The new music you should listen to this fall

Sep 15, 2016

Labor Day is behind us, and with the kids back in school, the days at the beach seem long gone. Luckily, Takeaway culture reporter Melissa Locker is here to lift your spirits with some new music coming out this fall. 

Here, she reviews the latest music from Against Me!, Warpaint, How To Dress Well, M.I.A., Dwight Yoakam, Wilco, Jack White and Angel Olsen. 

Against Me!
Album: "Shape Shift With Me "
Song: “333”

Mike Segar/Reuters

There’s been much scrutiny of the Clinton Foundation after reports indicated donors may have been given special treatment from the government while Hillary Clinton was secretary of state.

Handwriting is dying a slow death

Sep 14, 2016

Nuns and school teachers everywhere are cringing at the grave state of handwriting. Are perfectly looped Gs and right-slanted sentences becoming obsolete?

Anne Trubek, author of “The History and Uncertain Future of Handwriting,” seems to think our culture is heading in that direction.

Do presidential candidates have a right to keep their health private?

Sep 13, 2016

After Hillary Clinton left a 9/11 memorial ceremony this past Sunday — appearing, on video, to stumble as she did so — it was announced that the Democratic presidential nominee is being treated for pneumonia.

Maine governor, a Trump supporter, draws flack for his racist rhetoric

Aug 31, 2016
Brian Snyder/Reuters

This campaign season, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has been a lightning rod for controversial and offensive statements that have dumbfounded journalists, voters, and politicians, including those from his own party.


I want to take a moment and recall a moment in US Congressional history by thinking of it in a slightly unorthodox way. Filibusters come and go in Congress. Long ago they were retired in the House, but they still make news in the Senate.

Our closest galactic neighbor may also have a habitable planet

Aug 26, 2016
M. Kornmesser/European Southern Observatory

Earth has a new intergalactic neighbor.

On Wednesday, astronomers announced they have detected an Earth-like planet in a neighboring solar system in the so-called "Goldilocks zone” — areas of space that are neither too hot nor too cold for water to exist, something that would allow for the possibility of life.

West Coast tests how it would respond to a big quake

Aug 24, 2016
Eric Baetscher/<a href="">Wikimedia Commons</a>

The West Coast is due for a massive earthquake. Experts say it’s not a matter of if, but when. When preparing for a natural disaster, training matters. But can you train an entire city?

This summer, officials across the Pacific Northwest simulated their disaster responses. Dozens of municipal, state, and federal agencies all mobilized their emergency teams in the largest event of its kind.

The US Forest Service is being overwhelmed by all the fires it must fight

Aug 23, 2016
Gene Blevins/Reuters

Wildfires are scorching tens of thousands of acres out west — there are currently six fires in Yellowstone National Park, and nearly a dozen fires are actively burning in the state of California. The Blue Cut Fire outside of Los Angeles is now more than 80 percent contained, and the 82,000 people who were displaced by the blaze can now return home.

Music is holding Louisiana together in tough times

Aug 20, 2016

The Red Cross has called it “the worst storm since Superstorm Sandy.”

After Louisiana faced catastrophic flooding this past week, 13 are dead, 40,000 homes are damaged and over 86,000 are seeking aid. And now, Louisiana is expecting more rain.

Female inmate population skyrockets in the US

Aug 19, 2016
Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

Women represent a small portion of the overall population of incarcerated Americans, but they also have become the fastest growing segment of inmates in a system that often fails to meet their needs.

The Ocean Cleanup

Plastics, litter and all sorts of debris have polluted our waters for years. While prevention is key, ocean cleanup also presents a daunting task.

One young ocean lover is confronting this challenge head on.

How the threat of nuclear winter changed the Cold War

Aug 16, 2016

It’s hard to imagine life after a nuclear holocaust. Fires from nuclear blasts would create enough clouds to cover the Earth, something that would block out the sun and push the planet into a deep freeze.   

As the United States and the Soviet Union amassed terrifying collections of nuclear weapons during the height of the Cold War, Carl Sagan tried to warn the world about the dangers of a “nuclear winter.”

Oceanographer Sylvia Earle is on a mission to save our seas

Aug 16, 2016
Kip Evans/Mission Blue

Ever since Sylvia Earle was knocked over by a wave years ago on the Jersey shore, she has felt a deep connection to the ocean and dedicated her life to saving it.

Now, a renowned oceanographer and National Geographic explorer-in-residence, Earle is on a mission to create “blue parks,” designated safe areas in the ocean similar to national parks on land. 

Mark Kauzlarich/Reuters

Michelle Obama’s speech at the Democratic Convention showed why she’s an unusual first lady.

Kate Andersen Brower, a journalist and author of "First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies," says it’s because she’s not afraid to take a strong stance.

Trump: The president Russia wants?

Jul 26, 2016

Russia involved in the US presidential race?

It's a pattern that Anne Applebaum has seen before. Russia has been successful before with hacks like the break-in of the Democratic National Committee's email system or in interfering in myriad other ways with foreign elections, says Applebaum, a foreign affairs columnist for the Washington Post.

Luc Gnago/Reuters

With 4.4 million food insecure individuals in northeastern Nigeria, the region is on the brink of famine. Boko Haram, the militant group who has overrun the area, is clearly a major cause of this crisis, which has taken international aid agencies by surprise.