Veterans Day Program - Oscar Nominated Film: Hell And Back Again

Tuesday November 13, 2012: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: 4th Floor Meeting Room

This Oscar-nominated documentary Hell and Back Again (not rated) expertly captures both the extraordinary drama of war and, for a generation of soldiers, the no-less-difficult experience of returning home to loved ones as a veteran.

The film covers a traumatic attack upon Sergeant Nathan Harris' unit and then follows his challenging return home. His agony deepens as he attempts to reconcile the gulf between his experience of war and the terrifying normalcy of life at home.

Veterans Day 2012: Vietnam Vets Discuss The 50th Anniversary Of The Vietnam War

Thursday November 8, 2012: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

The Vietnam War was the longest war in US history and 2012 is the year of the United States National Commemoration of the 50th anniversary of America's first involvement in this conflict.

Join a team of Vietnam vets as they reflect on this war and their experiences. The moderator for this panel will be Dale Throneberry, who heads up the Veterans Radio Network and completed his tour in Vietnam as a CW2 pilot. The panel includes Vietnam Vets who served as a radiologist, aircraft commander and a dog handler during the war.

Arlington Cemetery's Gravesites Now Searchable

Arlington National Cemetery recently launched a searchable database that will help people "find gravesites and explore Arlington's rich history" with apps for Apple products, Android, Blackberrys, as well as a desktop version.

Arlington's website says, "The Army photographed 259,978 gravesites, niches and markers using a custom-built smart phone application and instituted a rigorous process to review each headstone photo with existing cemetery records and other historical documents. The end result was the creation of a single, verifiable and authoritative database of all those laid to rest at Arlington that is linked to the Arlington's digital mapping system."

Russell Means, activist/advocate for Indian rights, has died

Russell Means, the Oglala Lakota Indian (Means said the designation "Sioux" was derogatory) whose controversial political activism on behalf of America's Indian tribes first became headlines in the 1973 siege of Wounded Knee, South Dakota, died today on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.

Born on Pine Ridge in 1939, Means' transfer to a nearly all-white California high school resulted in daily relentless bullying. First Means fought back, then he fell into alcohol and substance abuse for several years before getting his footing in 1969 at the American Indian Center in Cleveland, OH. It was in Ohio that Means met Dennis Banks, co-founder of the new American Indian Movement.

In 1972, Means and other prominent Indian activists organized a mass demonstration on Washington, D.C. to coincide with the election. The housing they were promised by the Department of Interior was rat-iinfested and overcrowded so the demonstrators took over the Bureau of Indian Affairs and renamed it the Native American Embassy.They were evicted four days later when they were promised that investigations of programs that were supposed to help Indians would take place.

Three months later, Means and 200 armed supporters began a 71-day occupation of Wounded Knee where, in 1890, the U.S. military massacred more than 300 men, women, and children of the Sioux/Lakota tribe.Several weeks later, Means went to Washington, D.C. to try to broker an end to the siege. He was arrested and jailed when he rejected the unconditional surrender offer. The remaining protesters surrendered on May 8th, 1973. Means and other principles talked about this action in the 2005 documentary Wounded Heart: Pine Ridge and the Sioux.

His 1974 trial for his role in Wounded Knee ended after seven months when the Judge dismissed all charges after it was revealed that a member of Means' own defense team was an FBI informant who supplied information to the prosecution.

In 1994, Means sought the limelight on the silver screen. He played Chingachgook in the 1992 move, The Last of the Mohicans. Means' autobiography, Where White Men Fear to Tread: The Autobiography of Russell Means, was published in 1995. He used this venue to rail against the term 'Native Americans' and the whole notion of Native American Heritage Month.

Means was just a few weeks shy of his 73rd when he died of esophegeal cancer.

Senator George McGovern has died

Sen.George McGovern, decorated WW II pilot in the Army, a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, of the U.S. Senate, and a two-time Democratic candidate for President of the United States, and a United Nations ambassador, died October 21st in Sioux Falls, SD.

McGovern, born in S. Dakota in 1922, had an illustrious political career marked by his unwavering commitment to progressive principles. He was an early and unwavering voice opposing the Vietnam war, an advocate for the eradication of hunger in the U.S. and worldwide , and always a champion for civil rights.

He joined the Army when Pearl Harbor was attacked and became a fighter pilot of great courage. When his plane was severely crippled by flak in December of 1944, McGovern managed to land the plane safely, saving the lives of his crew. A grateful nation awarded him the Distinguished Flying Cross.

He served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1957 to 1961 and in the U.S. Senate from 1963 to 1981.

He ran for President twice; once, briefly in 1968. Four years later, he won the nomination of his party, but suffered an insurmountable blow with his choice of Thomas Eagleton as his Vice Presidential pick and with his unpopular opposition to the war in Vietnam. He lost to Richard Nixon in an epic landslide. He won just 17 electoral votes (Massachusetts and Washington, D.C.) to Nixon’s 520.

Sen. McGovern remained an active citizen of the world and a tireless force to push the Democratic party to strongly embrace principles of idealism and concern for the common citizen. He wrote several books; the last one, What It Means to Be a Democrat, was released last year.

Earlier this month, his family released a statement that Sen. McGovern had been admitted to a Sioux Falls, South Dakota hospice. He was 90 years old.

Arlen Specter, longtime U.S. Senator, has died

Arlen Specter, a tough-as-nails Senator from Pennsylvania for almost 30 years, died yesterday at his home in Philadelphia.

Specter was a sandwich Republican (he began and ended his long political career as a Democrat) from 1965 to 2009 who was known for being a moderate in an increasingly hard right Party. He thrived on using his Yale law degree as a member and Chair of the Judiciary Committee where he infuriated the GOP by sinking the nomination of Judge Robert H. Bork and by enraging the Democrats with his unbridled interrogation of Anita Hill during the successful confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas.

In 2009, Specter returned to his Democratic roots in his run in the primary for his Senate seat which he lost to Joe Sestak who, in turn, lost the Senate race to Republican Pat Toomey.

Earlier this year, Sen. Specter published a book with Charles Robbins about the struggle within the GOP for its future direction. Life among the Cannibals: A Political Career, a Tea Party Uprising, and the End of Governing as We Know It. He describes his role in creating the Tea Party and his two deciding votes which helped pass the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 a.k.a. the stimulus, and the Affordable Care Act of 2010, a.k.a. Obamacare.

Senator Specter, who had battled several bouts of cancer and heart trouble, died from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was 82.

US Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center

Wednesday, September 19, 2012: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center will discuss their research that takes place on the Great Lakes, including deep-water science, invasive species, coastal ecosystems, restoration ecology, and environmental health.

Headquartered in Ann Arbor, The Great Lakes Science Center exists to meet the Nation's need for scientific information for restoring, enhancing, managing, and protecting living resources and their habitats in the Great Lakes basin ecosystem.

This event is for adults and teens (grade 9 and up).

C-SPAN Challenges Students to Compete in National Documentary Contest

Are you a policy wonk? Then you should enter this contest!!

This Year's Theme: Message to the President

C-SPAN is asking students to consider what issue the president should address in 2013, and create a video documentary explaining why it's important.

This Year's Theme is : Message to the President

What do you think is important and should be addressed by the president? Make a short film and enter it in this contest for a chance to win some cash!!. It will be fun to do and a great item to put on your resume (some day!).

Now in its ninth year, C-SPAN's national competition invites all middle school students (grades 6-8) and high school students (grade 9-12) to produce a five- to eight-minute video documentary using C-SPAN programming.

This year, students will have the opportunity to produce a documentary focusing on "A Message to the President: What's the most important issue the president should consider in 2013?"

The C-SPAN Education Foundation supports the contest by awarding 75 student and 11 teacher prizes, totaling $50,000 in cash.

Entries must represent varying points of view, and incluide C-SPAN video that supports the documentary's topic. Students, working alone or in groups up to three, must upload their videos by January 18, 2013, and winners will be announced in March. A full list of guidelines, FAQ's and past winning videos can be found at studentcam.org.

If enough students enter from Ann Arbor we can reserve a night to run the documentaries and you can invite all your friends!!

Community Forum: The Federal Role In Public Education: Pre-K Through Grade 12

Thursday October 6, 2011: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Do you have opinions on the topic of what you are taught in school and how the federal government impacts the curriculum? The League of Women Voters of the U.S. has undertaken a new study on the federal role in public education, pre-K through grade 12.

Issues of equity, funding, and standards/assessment will be the focus of the discussions, as well as how the new standards called Common Core State Standards will be used by the federal government. A panel discussion with area specialists in these fields of education will get you more information and a chance to express your thoughts.

AADL Productions Podcast: Helen Thomas

Helen ThomasHelen Thomas

When she was in town last week speaking at the Michigan Theater to promote her newest book, Amy and I had the intimidating yet thrilling chance to interview Helen Thomas. We talked with her about her experiences in the White House Press Corps, where she sat for decades asking presidents and press secretaries alike the questions they were hoping she wouldn't. While Amy and I didn't ask of her quite the sort of tough questions Ms. Thomas is famous for, we did get her reflections on presidents past and present, her thoughts on the state of journalism, and her feelings about how America has changed in her nearly 75 years of reporting.

Attachment Size
AADL_Productions_Podcast-Helen_Thomas.mp3 31.71 MB
Syndicate content