This Week In Conversation: Domestic Violence In Kentucky Thursday, Oct 8 2020 

Experts say about 40 people a year in Kentucky, mostly women, die as a result of domestic violence. Around one in four of them filed a domestic violence report with authorities before they were killed.

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness month, and no one immune to its impact. The U.S. Department of Justice estimates that 1.3 million women and 835,000 men are victims of physical violence by a partner every year.

This week on “In Conversation” we talk about domestic violence here in Kentucky. Our guests will be Arlene Grullon, director of the Center for Women & Families’ emergency shelter, and Isela Arras, the chief operating officer for the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

We’ll talk about risk factors, how to get help, the challenges faced by specific populations, and how COVID-19 has impacted advocacy work.

If you think you or someone you know may be experiencing domestic violence, help is available on the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-SAFE.




This Week In Conversation: The Breonna Taylor Investigation Is Over. Now What? Thursday, Oct 1 2020 

Last week, the city and the world got the long-awaited answer on what specific criminal consequences, if any, would happen to the police involved in the death of Breonna Taylor. 

The results of last week’s grand jury proceeding led only to the indictment of former Louisville Metro Police detective Brett Hankison on several charges of wanton endangerment, for bullets that traveled into a neighbor’s apartment. Neither of the other two police officers involved in the shooting, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, were indicted. Since Hankison was already fired from the force, that left no one in LMDP criminally indicted in Taylor’s death. 

With the outcome leaving as many questions as before, rather than bringing finality, we talk this week about the issues left to grapple with, like the psychological impact on Louisville’s black community and how this connects to the future of criminal justice reform.

We also check in with NPR’s Brakkton Booker about how the Taylor case compares on a national level to other notable cases involving the police killings in the Black community, and how protests in other places have continued on while we were focused on our own.

And we hear from U.S. Representative for Kentucky John Yarmuth, who has recently criticized the Louisville Metro Police Department, including its handling of the Taylor case. 

Listen to the show:

This Week In Conversation: The Breonna Taylor Decision And Its Aftermath Thursday, Sep 24 2020 

The eyes of the world have been on Louisville for months, following the death of Breonna Taylor. Would the three officers involved be indicted on criminal charges? Would there be protests, and if so, how would they turn out?

This week, the city — and the world — got the answer. The grand jury decided that Brett Hankison would be charged with three counts of wanton endangerment, and with the other two police officers not indicted at all, people began to march.

Because Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, who served as the prosecutor in the grand jury proceeding, hasn’t disclosed what he presented to the grand jury, there are still unanswered questions about the outcome.

We talk about the decision and what it means, this week on “In Conversation.”

Dr. Cicely Cottrell is with us —  she’s the director of Spalding University’s Criminal Justice Program. We’re also be joined by Keturah Herron from the ACLU of Kentucky, and Amina Elahi from the WFPL newsroom.

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This Week In Conversation: What Could The Future Hold For Black Louisville? Wednesday, Sep 16 2020 

The Louisville Urban League and more than 50 community organizations have petitioned the city to address issues in the Black community, including a review of the Louisville Metro Police Department by an independent, non-traditional agency.

The letter also asks for an immediate re-evaluation of the 2020-20201 city budget, so a $50 million Black Community Fund can be added.

“The time has come to give us the necessary resources to begin to do the work for ourselves,” the petition reads, “since our elected leaders are reluctant to do what they have been sworn to do for all of our citizens.”

This week on “In Conversation,” we talk to Louisville Urban League CEO and President Sadiqa Reynolds about the petition, and how our city can continue grappling with its racist history, and current inequity, with an eye toward a better future.

Also on this week’s show, we get a status update from our local Census Bureau office ahead of their impending 2020 deadline.

And while there has been an uptick in drinking alcohol during COVID-19, some bourbon distillery tours have closed, and the tourism arm of the industry has taken a hit from the pandemic. We talk with Eric Greogory, president of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association, about how the future is looking for Kentucky’s native spirit. 

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This Week In Conversation: What We Know About The Breonna Taylor Case Wednesday, Sep 9 2020 

March 13, 2020. 

The date will live in the memory of Breonna Taylor’s family, friends, and community.

Her death, at the hands of the Louisville Metro Police Department, has been featured in news stories, television specials, social media, magazine covers, even billboards financed by Oprah Winfrey.

Throughout 2020, there have been sustained international protests for several Black people killed by police, the best known being George Floyd. In Louisville, protests have gone on for more than 100 nights, demanding accountability for Taylor’s death.

Now the world knows her name. But rumors and misinformation continue to circulate about the night she died, and the circumstances that led to it.  

This week on “In Conversation,” we speak to journalists who have extensively covered Taylor’s death and the ensuing protests, to help deconstruct the complicated facts and bust a few myths. 

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This Week In Conversation: Amid A Pandemic and Protests, The 146th Kentucky Derby Tuesday, Sep 1 2020 

It’s 2020. Which means that everything is weird or different.  That includes the Kentucky Derby.

Which is why it’s on the first Saturday in September this year, instead of May.

It also means that there will be more jockeys, owners, trainers, staff and media on hand than spectators to watch the famous Run for the Roses because no fans will be allowed in due to COVID-19 concerns.

So, on this week’s In Conversation we’re talking about the Kentucky Derby, just not in the same way. 

We discuss the racial justice protests that are scheduled to take place on Derby Day despite the lack of visitors and spectators, and the history of civil disobedience at big events like the Derby.

And there will be racing, of course, so we discuss the art of handicapping and which horses are predicted to win, place or show, and how the coronavirus pandemic has affected racing.

Listen to the show:

This Week In Conversation: Unexpected Consequences Of COVID-19 Wednesday, Aug 26 2020 


When Charles Dickens wrote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” he wasn’t talking about the tale of one global pandemic.

The one we’re in now has brought obvious changes — like the impact on businesses, education, and the economy — but no one could anticipate the changes to society beyond the obvious. Like the impact on social services, supply chains and the different ways we have to navigate social interaction. 

People have rescheduled medical procedures. Stores are sold out of exercise equipment because gyms were closed. People who read lips can’t do that as easily with so many people wearing masks in public.


This Week In Conversation: Women And Voting Tuesday, Aug 18 2020 


Velveeta cheese, the Panama Canal, button-down Polo shirts and the Kentucky Derby are all older than the American woman’s right to vote.

One hundred years ago this week, the 19th Amendment was ratified, which gave women the right to vote in America.  And even though not all women were given that right, it was a step on the road to equality for women in a country that’s been around for 244 years.

This week on “In Conversation,” we discuss the role of women voters and of elected officials who are women to change and shape the history and growth of the United States.


This Week In Conversation: Appalachia As A Bellwether For The Country Wednesday, Aug 12 2020 


The challenges that the Appalachian region faces aren’t just Appalachian problems; they’re American problems. Those problems include addiction, poor health outcomes and the need for communities to make a transition from fossil fuel extraction, and they will largely determine whether we, as a nation, can meet challenges of inequality, climate change and economic recovery. Far from being a backwater, Appalachia is a bellwether for the country.

The hardcovers have arrived!

— Jeff Young (@JeffYoung8) August 7, 2020


This Week In Conversation: What’s Next For Downtown Louisville? Wednesday, Aug 5 2020 


If you’ve ever looked at historical photos of downtown Louisville, you might have been struck by how busy and bustling it looked. Loads of people were out and about going to work, wearing fancy outfits to the theater, and shopping at department stores. But mid-century “urban renewal” efforts changed downtown, putting parking lots and high rises where multi-use buildings and pedestrian-friendly sidewalks used to be.

These photos show the view looking south from the Glassworks building at 9th St and Market, before and after urban renewal. They’re from the Broken Sidewalk blog, which has a great (but depressing) collection of before and after pictures.

Since then, efforts to revitalize downtown have come and gone (remember the Galleria?), but in the last few years, our city center seemed to gain some momentum. The Yum Center brought people downtown for games and concerts, Whiskey Row reopened with restaurants and shops, and some distilleries opened their doors to teach tourists where the good stuff comes from.


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