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Does Affirmative Action Divide Us or Unite Us?

Here are some previous Think Tank programs that may be of interest.

Civil Rights, Then and Now, Part Two  (aired 4/6/2006)
America’s Civil Rights Movement was the work of many people, but one name stands out: the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. His bold and courageous action opened the eyes of the nation to racial injustice. Coupled with President Lyndon B. Johnson’s passionate politicking, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 became the law of the land. It added millions of blacks to voter rolls but Dr. King was a controversial man. Did his assassination mark the end of the Civil Rights Movement, or the start of a new era? What is the future of the black vote and will it be decisive in the 2006 and particularly the 2008 elections?

The Blending of America  (aired 1/15/2004)
Author and journalist Richard Rodriguez discusses race in America and his book, "Brown: The Last Discovery of America." Drawing on his own experiences as the son of Mexican immigrants, Richard Rodriguez challenges conventional notions of race and identity. Occasioned by the U.S. Census Bureau prediction that Hispanics were destined to replace African-Americans as the country’s largest minority, his latest book is a reflection on the cultural associations of the color brown.

What’s on the Mind of the "Radical Middle"?  (aired 2/1/2001)
This week, Think Tank with Ben Wattenberg talks to two dyed-in-the-wool policy wonks to find out what's on their agenda. Isabel Sawhill and Rudolph Penner are co-authors of "Updating America¹s Social Contract: Economic Growth and Opportunity in the New Century," Together, they lay out an agenda for the "radical middle," arguing that politicians "seem more interested in a symbolic victory ... than in working to find common ground on substantive issues." Penner and Sawhill stake out that common ground and urge policy reforms to improve the safety net for the poor, shore up Social Security and Medicare, and foster productivity growth in the private sector. Leaving the politicians aside for a day, how would two policy wonks address America's most important domestic issues?

Fukuyama 101  (aired 11/30/2000)
Think Tank hosts celebrated author and social theorist, Francis Fukuyama. Fukuyama, a public policy professor at George Mason University, discusses human nature and social order in his new book, “The Great Disruption.” Have we seen a drastic moral decline over the last 40 years? What caused it? And are we now on the road to recovering from this Great Disruption? Fukuyama explains his latest work and his earlier books, “The End of History and The Last Man” and “Trust,” as we analyze the interplay of the many levels on which modern society is built.

Harvesting Biotechnology  (aired 11/25/1999)
Think Tank inspects genetically modified foods. These foods can be engineered to resist frosts, diseases, insects, and herbicides. Genetically modified crops now cover about a quarter of U.S. cropland. However, acceptance of this relatively new technology is not universal. European critics call GM foods “Frankenstein Foods,” and environmentalists worry that they could upset a delicately balanced ecosystem. Do existing benefits outweigh potential harms?


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