Up To Date | KCUR

Up To Date

Weekdays at 11 a.m.

Up To Date focuses on pressing issues, both local and national, including politics, economics, planning and design, history and culture — topics that have an impact on the lives of the Greater Kansas City region.

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Coming up the week of February 17, 2019:

  • Monday: Mental Health Equity / Smart Money Experts: Making Career Moves
  • Tuesday: Sports Betting in Missouri / Jazz Vocalist Stacey Kent
  • Wednesday: How Missourians Will Access Medical Marijuana / "The Color of Law"
  • Thursday: Kansas City Mayor Lucas / "Things we Didn't Talk About When I was a Girl" / Weekend To-Do List
  • Friday: Former Shawnee Mission Teacher Calls It Quits / Indie Film Critics

Segment 1: Kansas lawmakers prepare to tackle myriad issues in the upcoming legislative session.

Kansas' Medicaid expansion seems to be the hottest issue going into the 2020 legislative session, but it won't be the only thing keeping senators and representatives busy in Topeka. Possible outcomes and implications for everything from abortion to state debt to prison reforms were previewed.

Segment 1: Test scores for Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools improved last year.

Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools saw last year's test scores jump at least four percentage points from the 2017-18 school year. Today, the superintendent explains his strategies for continued success, and details the work still left to do.

Segment 1: Flooded fields and fallout from trade wars could mean another rocky year for farmers.

Climate change, flooding, and bankruptcies are just a few of farming's biggest issues — a list that spans a country mile. With voices from Kansas and Missouri, representing small farmers and Big Ag, we dug through the biggest obstacles facing farmers going into 2020.

Segment 1: What 2020 could bring for health care

Health care is one of the hottest issues across the country, and Missouri and Kansas are no exception. We previewed what this year might bring for a variety of health-related issues and storylines.

Segment 1: Previewing the next session of the Missouri General Assembly

Today's guests run down some of the issues that lawmakers could tackle during this upcoming legislative session. They also explored how this year's presidential election might influence how this myraid of issues plays out.

Segment 1: Media bias and covering assassination in Iraq

Our Media Critics discussed early coverage of a top Iranian commander's assasination, and how continuing coverage could influence public opinion. The critics also discussed how both journalists and news consumers can manage their own personal biases.

Segment 1: 2019 highlights from the religion beat

From Paris and Christchurch to St. Louis, Missouri, storylines on religion and faith took us around the world over the last year. We reviewed those with the most impact, including the evangelical embrace of President Donald Trump's policies.

Segment 1: Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas reviews the year that was, and discusses his 2020 to-do list.

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas has only been in office for five months, and has been busy for the duration. He defended his record on curbing tax incentives, standing up for tenant's rights, and pushing to make bus service free in Kansas City. Lucas also answered questions on the city's soaring crime rate.

Segment 1: Missouri does not enforce a 2008 federal law on mental health parity.

When President George W. Bush signed the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addictions Equity Act in 2008, it established that health insurers must cover mental health the same as other medical conditions. Missouri remains one of only two states to not enforce that law with a state statute.

Segment 1: A new KC Pet Project facility is set to open next month in Swope Park.

Kansas City's current animal control shelter was never intended to house and care for animals — and it shows. But a new building specifically designed for the purpose will open its doors to humans and animals starting Jan. 1. Learn what the new digs will enable the KC Pet Project to do, that they weren't able to do before.

Segment 1: Royals' new owner knows "Kansas City fans are incredibly engaged."

Kansas City businessman John Sherman is in his third week as owner of  the Kansas City Royals. He's been working on getting to know the staff and to "get a little flavor for the culture." Sherman spoke about what the revenue from a new TV contract will mean for the team and when it comes to construction of a stadium downtown said, "there's a lot of things to think about, relative to whether or not we can make that happen." 

As the old cliché goes, it’s not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game. Yet sometimes, as fans know, sports is about much more than just the game. Commentator Victor Wishna sheds a little light…in this year-end edition of “A Fan’s Notes.”

My friends, we are living in dark times.

I only mean that literally. As we count down to the winter solstice this week, each day is briefer than the last. Darkness arrives early and often.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Holiday traditions sometimes start in unlikely ways.

Case in point: Gerald Dunn and Kansas City's Musicians Appreciation Day, which these days offers live music for the public and free health screenings and fresh produce for musicians of all genres.

It started years ago as a chance encounter between Dunn, director of entertainment at the American Jazz Museum and Blue Room general manager, and tenor saxophonist Eddie Saunders, who died in 2012.

Segment 1: Some institutions of higher education use tracking software to assess prospective applicants.

Segment 1: Annual Kansas City event encourages musicians to eat better and focus on their health.

Segment 1: Reporters unravel the dysfunction that plagues government in one Missouri county.

Clay County, Missouri, residents want answers as to how their commissioners are making decisions. The county is currently embroiled in legal wrangling with the state auditor and the county sheriff, and citizens are complaining their voices are not being heard. Journalists covering the situation say they've "never seen a series of actions quite like this."

Segment 1: Decades after desegregation, there remain students in the Kansas City area who are still not receiving a quality education. 

Education professor John Rury detailed the inequalities as they exist in urban and suburban school districts. As the Kansas City area expanded in the 1950s, wealth moved to the suburbs. The levels of poverty in many urban, black neighborhoods have remained in the 30-40 percentile. "This brings a whole host of issues that makes it very difficult for schools to function," Rury said. 

Segment 1: Why Iowa holds the first caucuses in the country, and what their results mean for each political party.

Advertising guidelines and an agriculture convention landed Iowa in the No. 1 spot in the country's presidential primary process. One political science professor said, for Republicans the caucuses show who will not be president, and, since 2000, the Democrat who won Iowa has gone on to be the presidential nominee.

U.S.S. Missouri Memorial Association

The massive guns on board the U.S.S. Missouri are a sight-to-see, but it wasn't the ship's weaponry garnering all the attention on a late summer night in 1989.

The U.S.S. Missouri Memorial Association is preparing to commemorate 75 years since the end of World War II, which is a good time remember the battleship is famous for more than just its massive, 16" guns and its role in the war. A concert on the ship created its own shock and awe.

On this very special edition of KCUR's Up To Date, one of Kansas City's most renowned chocolatiers discussed responsible sourcing of cacao beans, his approach to the combining of other flavors with his favorite ingredient, and how non-experts can stear clear of junk when shopping for something to satisfy a chocolate craving.

Segment 1: Richard Nixon's impeachment parallels that of President Donald Trump.

President Richard Nixon's impeachment trials were about more than just the Watergate scandal. Biographer John Farrell said Nixon's use of presidential power to advance his personal political ambition mirrors that of the current Oval Office occupant, who is currently being investigated by the U.S. House of Representaives.

A Wine-Tasting Lunch With Doug Frost

Dec 3, 2019

Kansas City-based wine expert attributes his expansive knowledge to his "drinking and reading" habits.

Seated in Room 39, Master sommelier Doug Frost guided a group of KCUR supporters through a tasting of six distinctive wines. A number of his selections underwent unique growth, harvesting or barrelling processes like the sauvignon blanc from Napa Valley which was harvested at night. Chef Ted Habiger also offered insight into how he selects wines for his restaurant's dishes.

Segment 1: Mike Pompeo looks more likely to enter the race for Kansas' U.S. Senate seat.

When it comes to the race for president, The Call's Eric Wesson expects another four years of Trump. However, Mike Mahoney of KMBC sees U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar as the sleeper Democratic candidate while Caroline Sweeney is looking at Andrew Yang to gain ground. They also analyzed the U.S. Senate race in Kansas, the early days of Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas and former city manager Troy Schulte's shift to Jackson County government. 

Bigstock Images

With the impacts of climate change becoming more visible, scientists and teachers across the nation are working out how to teach about the topic in the nation’s classrooms.

Teachers in Missouri are using real-world issues and collaboration to help their students understand the science of climate change and the effect it could have on local communities.

“I think because our current environmental movement is very much led by teenagers, students are very excited about it,” said Jen Lacy, an environmental science teacher at Crossroads Preparatory Academy.

Mention "the hall of fame," and the average fan might think of Cooperstown or Canton. But shrines to our sports legends can be found from coast to coast, including right here in Kansas City. As commentator Victor Wishna contends in this month’s edition of “A Fan’s Notes,” that's a good thing.

Segment 1: Teachers highlight current events and human impact to help students learn about climate change.

Teachers are seeing less resistance to teaching climate change in Missouri schools. The state has adopted the Next Generation Science Standards, and one Raytown High School teacher said, "I've also changed my approach some, in the sense that I really don't indulge argument on the topic at this point."

Google

Kyle Mead got more than he bargained for after he agreed to a one-year contract to temporarily house Kansas City inmates.

Mead is the president and CEO of Heartland Center for Behavioral Change. After ending its contract with the Jackson County jail in June, Kansas City offered Mead a $3.2 million contract to provide 110 bed spaces for what he said he thought would be inmates detained for low level offenses.

Segment 1: Environmentalism and the outdoors have long been seen as safe spaces for white people.

The concerns of climate change action organizations are wide-ranging and well-founded, but membership is largely white and adult. Learn the benefits and challenges of adding young people of color to these groups, apart from just making them more reflective of the communities they serve. The founder of an Atlanta group and the head of a Kansas City organization explained how they are bringing diversity and youth to the environmental ranks.

Segment 1: Heartland Center for Behavioral Change was not equipped to accept the full array of inmates brought in by the Kansas City Police Department.

Accepting prisoners from the Kansas City Municipal Court system was initially seen as a chance for the nonprofit organization to link inmates with resources that could help them reintegrate into the community. In retrospect, Heartland Center's CEO said serving as a temporary jail "is outside of our scope" of ability.

Segment 1: Former U.S. ambassador thinks "the diplomatic corps is having a very good moment."

Allan Katz was appointed as the ambassador to Portugal and held the post from 2010 to 2013.  When it comes to events surrounding Ukraine Katz said, "I think the biggest problem here was is that these were acts that were contrary to the policy of the United States government." The president's conduct toward Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, Katz feels, has made the foreign service less attractive to potential diplomats. 

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