Civil Discord

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Civil Discord-Episode 40

July 4th, 2020

In this extended July 4th episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee is joined by three special guests who have in common a commitment to bringing poetry, literature, and writing programs and workshops to incarcerated inmate populations in various prisons.

Elizabeth Straight is an English Language Arts and Meditation teacher in West Palm Beach, FL and the founder of the now defunct Poetry Is... Annual Prison Tour that brought poets, musicians and "kick ass" inspiration into state and federal prisons; Kathie Klarreich, the founder and executive director of Exchange for Change, a nonprofit organization that facilitates writing classes in South Florida prisons and runs letter writing exchanges between incarcerated students and local academic institutions; and Dr Adam Henze, a Research Associate at the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community and director of Power of a Sentence, a reading and creative writing program in Indiana prisons. The lively conversation focuses on the various prison education programs the guests have developed, the impact on the prison population, challenges working in a prison environment, how Covid-19 has affected these programs and the conditions in the prisons, and the extent to which the current Black Lives Matter movement may raise awareness about the criminal justice system as well as how the movement has already been co-opted by corporate interests.

Civil Discord - Episode 39

June 27th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips kick off the episode considering the wisdom of Phillips’ planned trip to Utah for a family wedding. That leads naturally into conversation on the rising number of coronavirus cases across the nation, research on some of the differential geographic economic impacts of the Covid-19 crisis, and how weak workers’ rights in the US, as measured by the International Trade Union Confederation, contribute to the severity of the crisis. In the second half, the discussion turns to gender disparities in Covid-19 infection and mortality rates as well as gender disparities in the acquisition of a college degree, and potential explanations. The episode concludes with a consideration of the current state of the Biden-Trump race for President given recent events.

Civil Discord - Episode 38

June 20th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips welcome back their colleague Michael Hallett, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at University of North Florida. The episode starts, once again, with a discussion about the wisdom of opening the university for classes in the Fall. Hallett thinks it’s a bad idea; Phillips supports the decision. After that, the remainder of the episode is dedicated to a discussion of the criminal injustice system in the United States and the role of policing. Hallett provides some valuable insights on how to assess the current call for defunding the police and the social conditions that might enhance public safety without relying on punitive forms of social control.

Civil Discord - Episode 37

June 13th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, the first half is devoted to a conversation about the uprising over police violence and what it means to “defund the police”. Jaffee provides his definition and Phillips highlights the importance of decriminalizing various activities as a critical component of the process. In the second half, the conversation turns to the removal of confederate statues in Jacksonville and beyond, the decision by the Republican party to bring their convention to Jacksonville, and the issues emerging as universities open up to students and faculty in the Fall.  

Civil Discord - Episode 36

June 6th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips discuss the protests ignited by the George Floyd murder at the hands of police.  In the first half they consider the significance of this nationwide movement, how it differs from previous protests/riots, the composition of the participants, the actions of the police, and the prospects for social change. After a Bob Marley interlude, the second half of the episode turns to Trump’s response, militarism and creeping neo-fascism, and how this might impact the November election.

Civil Discord - Episode 35

May 30th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips welcome back JR Woodward, Professor of Sociology at Florida State College in Jacksonville (FSCJ). In the first half of the episode, Woodward discusses the motivation and intended message of his blog Our Social Landscape.  In addition to promoting the Sociological Imagination, the conversation turns to how that would be applied as a mode of analysis for various social issues including the current string of deaths of blacks males at the hands of white police and former police, and the social construction of “looting”. In the second half, the conversation moves to the Covid-19 crisis, opening the economy, and how we will manage teaching in the Fall. The session concludes with a discussion of the relationship between religion and political action.

Civil Discord - Episode 34

May 23rd, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord in the time of Covid-19, Jaffee and Phillips are joined by their regular guest Daniel Cronrath, Professor of Political Science at Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ). The conversation in the first half focuses on the now proposed opening of universities and colleges in the Fall, the pros and cons of this decision, and how this will impact both faculty and students. The second half of the episode shifts to the larger move to open state economies and whether this is being done correctly and for the right reasons. The episode concludes with Phillips sharing his firsthand experience getting tested for Covid-19.

Civil Discord-Episode 33

May 16th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips welcome their guest Michael Sampson, co-founder and head organizer of the Jacksonville Community Action Committee (JCAC).  The JCAC is a prominent and active community organization devoted to addressing and improving relations between law enforcement, the criminal justice system, and the larger Jacksonville community.  The conversation with  Sampson focuses on the effort to establish a Jacksonville Police Accountability Council, police-community-relations in Jacksonville generally, approaches to addressing crime that extend beyond funding more police officers, both the opportunities and threats for organized labor during the Covid-19 crisis, and various strategies for change. As always, the episode ends with some commentary on national political affairs and the upcoming presidential election.

Civil Discord - Episode 32

May 11th, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord, Jaffee and Phillips discuss the pros and cons of “reopening” state economies, a silver lining of the lockdown for Phillips, the current situation in Sweden and comments from the architect of Sweden’s strategy, and Blue Angel flyovers as recognition of first responders and the practice of military rituals in the US. The episode concludes with conversation on various items in the news, the need for a New New Deal, and the associated prospects for Biden’s candidacy.

Civil Discord - Episode 31

May 2nd, 2020

In this episode of Civil Discord in the time of Covid-19, Jaffee and Phillips discuss their department’s virtual commencement ceremony, inevitable changes facing higher education, motives driving the rush to re-open the economy, and the potential power and leverage of the working class.  The episode closes with Phillip’s assessment of the sexual assault allegations against Biden.