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Bob Edwards Weekend - August 2012

August 4-5


One in three active-duty women have reported being the victim of sexual assault while serving in the U.S. military.  Based on estimates from the Department of Defense, 19,000 servicemen and women were sexually assaulted in 2010 and many never report the violent acts for fear of reprisals from their superiors. Today we present our original documentary on the subject titled “An ‘Occupational Hazard’: Rape in the Military.”


Los Angeles Times columnist Doyle McManus joins Bob to discuss the latest political news.

We revisit a conversation Bob had with Gore Vidal.  Vidal died Tuesday in Los Angeles.  In 2006, Bob visited him there and they had a wide-ranging conversation in Vidal’s Hollywood Hills living room about his life and work, touching on everything from his feelings about “right-wing nut” William F. Buckley to Vidal’s belief the Mafia was responsible for John F. Kennedy’s death.

Then, in this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Vint Cerf.  He works for Google, and Cerf is known as the “Father of the Internet.”  He often travels to attend conferences and give speeches, but Cerf isn’t absorbed with the wonders of the Web.  He makes it a point to strike up conversations with as many strangers as he can.  Cerf says face-to-face communication teaches him something new every day, and he does his best to treat everyone he meets with respect.


August 11-12


Donald Barlett and James Steele have been working together as an investigative reporting team for four decades, first at The Philadelphia Inquirer, then Time Magazine and now at Vanity Fair. They have also collaborated on eight books. The latest titled The Betrayal of the American Dream is the result of three years of research and writing on the plight of the American middle class.

This weekend, Oscar-nominated director and screenwriter Tony Gilroy delivers The Bourne Legacy, the fourth film based on Robert Ludlum’s best-selling Bourne series of books.  This latest installment is a spin-off from Jason Bourne’s story and focuses instead on a different agent, played by Jeremy Renner.  The Bourne Legacy is now in theaters.

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Maria Zapetis.  Compared to the rest of the world, Americans live pretty well.  As a child, her parents provided Zapetis with everything she could have wanted.  She went to expensive private schools, enjoyed ski trips in the winter and cruises in the summer, never giving a thought to her next meal.  A high school summer camp changed her perspective.  For two weeks, Zapetis lived like a villager in Africa, and the experience showed her the day-to-day struggles that billions of people experience every day.  Now, Zapetis is doing her part to help people who are less fortunate.


Steve Prothero is a historian, a professor of religion and author of The American Bible, an examination of the texts that he argues have defined and re-defined what it means to be an American.

Rodriguez is an American folk singer discovered in Detroit in the late 1960s.  His music received praise from critics, but album sales bombed and he dropped off the music scene mysteriously.  Filmmaker Malik Bendjelloul captures that story and documents how the music of Rodriguez became the soundtrack for justice in South Africa throughout the country’s struggle with Apartheid.  Searching for Sugar Man is now in limited release.


August 18-19


Los Angeles Times columnist Doyle McManus joins Bob to talk politics.

Bob talks with documentary filmmaker Anthony Baxter about his new film titled You’ve Been Trumped.  It tells the David and Goliath story of Donald Trump’s quest to build a high-end golf course and resort on protected sand dunes in Scotland, despite strong local opposition from residents.

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Bob Barret.  Each of us has private hopes and desires, thoughts and feelings.  Sometimes, our public personalities are a close match to our private selves.  Other times, they are in conflict.  When he was 48 years old, Barret made the difficult choice to tell his family that he is gay.  He worried about hurting them, but decided that he had to be honest about his true self.


Yellowstone National Park turns 140 years old this year, and thousands of people are wrapping up their summers with a trip to see Old Faithful.  But what those tourists may not realize is that America’s first national park has a very dark past. George Black tells the violent story in his new book Empire of Shadows.

When Anthony Heilbut was growing up in New York City in the 1950s, he’d often go see R&B shows at the Apollo Theater. One day an usher urged him to check out the gospel shows, too. Heilbut did and “became obsessed with proselytizing” for God’s music.  Over the next five decades, Heilbut wrote the definitive history of gospel music, assembled many anthologies, wrote liner notes and produced several albums.  His latest book is a collection of essays titled, The Fan Who Knew Too Much: Aretha Franklin, the Rise of the Soap Opera, Children of the Gospel Church, and Other Meditations


August 25-26


Los Angeles Times columnist Doyle McManus joins Bob to talk about the latest political news.

Many of us stop believing in magic around the same time the Tooth Fairy pulls her last bait-and-switch.  But author, physicist, and magic-aficionado Alex Stone believes that adults should rethink this disbelief, using the power of … physics. Stone has written for Harper’s, Discover, Science, and The Wall Street Journal. He talks with Bob about magic, the mind, and his book Fooling Houdini: Magicians, Mentalists, Math Geeks & the Hidden Powers of the Mind.

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Amanda Joseph-Anderson.  She talks about how the playlists of her youth, stacks of records played loud on the phonograph, brought her closer to her mother.


Electronic technology is becoming ever-more commonplace in modern society, and authors Parag & Ayesha Khanna have written a book which attempts to predict and explain some of the coming changes. Their book is titled Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization.