As the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, last month, in many ways, the gay rights movement seems to be pushing forward faster than many had anticipated. Some are already turning toward other complex issues, like gender. This month’s Western Skies brings a variety of community perspectives on an [...]

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Summertime means fun in the sun, and in Colorado, that fun is often year-round. So is the need to protect ourselves from harmful effects of sun exposure. For this month’s Healthy Conversation, KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin is joined by Major James Twede, Chief of Dermatology at Fort Carson. The conversation begins by talking about why [...]

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In 2012, the U.S. military’s suicide rate surpassed combat deaths. Clinical Psychologist Craig Bryan has made suicide prevention his mission. This January, Dr. Bryan’s research brought him to Colorado Springs’ Fort Carson, where he was conducting his second study on mental health treatments. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin sat down then to talk about his research–and how [...]

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As the temperatures stay consistently warm, summer activities abound. This month’s Healthy Conversation features a few topics on summer safety. Lt. Col. Steven Tobler is Chief of Preventative Medicine at Evans Army Community Hospital at Fort Carson. We start by talking about some of the most common safety issues when it comes to summertime.

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Colorado is no stranger to the military. From active bases to a large veteran population, many residents of the state have some kind of association with the armed services. This month for Western Skies, we’re exploring some of those relationships.

You can listen to the entire episode here, or download it by right-clicking [...]

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and traumatic brain injuries are the signature wounds of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But another problem is starting to emerge after these soldiers come home and seek treatment. In a three-part series that started yesterday in the Colorado Springs Gazette, investigative reporter Dave Philipps examines the growing number [...]

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May is Mental Health Awareness month, and it’s an issue that affects one in four Americans. For this month’s Healthy Conversation, KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin is joined by Lieutenant Colonel Chuck Weber, Chief of Behavioral Health at Evans Army Community Hospital at Fort Carson, to talk about some of the programs and strategies they use [...]

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Eating disorders are most often associated with young women, but the issues affect all ages, men and women. For this month’s Healthy Conversation, KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin is joined by Captain Kayla Ramotar, Assistant Chief of the Nutrition Care Division at Evans Army Community Hospital to talk about eating disorders.

Additional Resources:

Academy [...]

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The peak of the gun debate at the state capitol may be over, but the political ramifications are still unfolding. As part of our Capitol Conversation seres, Bente Birkeland discusses that dynamic, and President Barack Obama’s recent visit to Colorado.

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State lawmakers are in the middle of debating the annual budget. And even though there’s more money than last year, Republicans are not happy with the bill. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland discusses the politics behind the budget and what’s driving the discussion.

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A major re-write of how Colorado funds K through 12 schools is now making its way through the state legislature. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland analyzes how it would change school funding and its prospects for passage.

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State lawmakers are a little more than halfway through the legislative session, and there’s been no shortage of drama and divisive issues. Bente Birkeland takes stock of what’s happened so far and what’s ahead as part of our capitol conversation series.

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The Colorado Supreme Court heard arguments on an historic education funding case Thursday. Parents and several school districts have sued the state for failing to offer a uniform and thorough education system and not putting enough money into schools. A lower court agreed with the plaintiffs and now a final decision rests with the [...]

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Lawmakers are nearing the midpoint of the state’s legislative session. So far, a discussion on gun violence has dominated much of the debate under the gold dome. As part of our weekly Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland has this look at other big issues facing lawmakers.

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One of the more common cancers is colon cancer, and March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Colon Cancer is also largely preventable. This month for our Healthy Conversation, KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin is joined by Dr. Peter McNally, Chief of Gastroenterology at Evans Army Community Hospital at Fort Carson.

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Colorado’s gun control debate is making national news because of remarks from one Democratic lawmaker about rape. The comments came during a debate on banning concealed carry weapons on college campuses. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland takes a look at the political ramifications and what’s driving the story.

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Governor John Hickenlooper is getting pushback for recently telling members of Congress that he once drank frack fluid while touting Colorado as a national model for balanced energy rules. The state’s oil and gas commission has increased the statewide buffer zone between drilling sites and homes and buildings, but many Democratic state lawmakers say [...]

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State Democrats recently unveiled their much-anticipated package of bills aimed at curbing gun violence. As part of our capitol conversation series, Bente Birkeland takes a look at the chances of the bills passing, and the internal debate among state Democrats.

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The gun debate will be one of the central issues during the state’s legislative session, and lawmakers have already heard the first Republican proposals. They both failed along party lines and highlight the wide difference between Democrats and the GOP when it comes to tackling gun violence. Bente Birkeland discusses the dynamic as part [...]

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One of the biggest topics right now across the state is oil and gas development, specifically, hydraulic fracturing. Communities, industry, and the state are all working to ensure their interests are protected. But it’s a complicated issue, and often contentious. This month for Western Skies, we’re holding a magnifying glass up to fracking, the rules, regulations, and community concerns. (This month’s image by artist and rig-worker, Streeter Wright.)

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More than 900,000 people across the country suffer heart attacks each year according to the Centers for Disease Control, and heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women. For this month’s Healthy Conversation, we’re talking heart health. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin is joined by Lieutenant Colonel Karl Brewer, an internist at [...]

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Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) spoke on Marketplace Morning Report from American Public Media on immigration reform this morning. Find out here where you can listen to the segment.

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A measure to allow civil unions in Colorado is expected to easily pass the state legislature this year, and as Bente Birkeland examines, the tenor of the debate is much different than in previous attempts. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, she talks to fellow statehouse reporters about the new dynamic, and whether [...]

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News

Reuters/Landov
December 18, 2014 | NPR · The decision to normalize relations is driving all kinds of speculation about American food companies opening up shop in Cuba. But analysts say: Don’t expect to see McDonald’s there anytime soon.
 

December 18, 2014 | NPR · In independent review panel calls for changes ranging from a better fence at the White House to a new approach to training and leadership within the Secret Service.
 

December 18, 2014 | NPR · The Justice Department’s move is a reversal from how the Bush administration interpreted Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
 

Arts & Life

Film Movement
December 18, 2014 | NPR · The film If You Don’t, I Will has some strong dialogue and performances, but its tale of a marriage in peril sags too often in its recounting of the journey.
 

Courtesy of Serial
December 18, 2014 | NPR · Serial, the hugely popular (and sometimes controversial) podcast spun off from This American Life, wraps up its first season today. Audie Cornish speaks with Serial creator Sarah Koenig.
 

Getty Images
December 18, 2014 | NPR · Ahead of The Colbert Report‘s last episode, Fresh Air listens back to interviews with Colbert. “I didn’t realize quite how liberal I was until I was asked to make passionate comedic choices,” he said.
 

Music

December 18, 2014 | NPR · Cuban rhythms and melodies have been part of what’s been called the most American of art forms — jazz — ever since Jelly Roll Morton first heard them in the port of New Orleans and used them in his music. Josephine Baker performed in Cuba and Nat King Cole recorded there. But the revolution made cultural exchange all but impossible and even supposedly open-minded artists and musicians took sides.
 

December 18, 2014 | NPR · In contrast to many of her peers, Portland-based musician Lori Henriques’ music for kids is rooted in jazz. Her latest album is How Great Can This Day Be.
 

Courtesy of the artist
December 18, 2014 | NPR · When she’s at her most vulnerable as a woman, she’s at her best creatively. The same way Mary J. Blige’s pain drove My Life, Nicki’s believable heartache steals the show on The Pinkprint.
 

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