Photographer Matt Bracken toured Philadelphia’s infamous Eastern State Penitentiary with former inmates. Slideshow here.
"A friend of mine, Richard Lewis, said, "You have monopolized the obvious" … and I thought that was a good way of describing my comedy. And I just got up there and did what I did on the street corner at 60th and Osage Street [in Philadelphia]: I just got up in front of Moe’s Candy Store with my friends … a car would go by, I’d make fun of the car, person, boom. …That all came from the street corner."
The Philadelphia native died Saturday at 78. He was best known for appearing on The Tonight Show over 150 times.
Spend an afternoon with Fresh Air!
Join WHYY and Terry Gross, the Peabody Award-winning host of WHYY’s Fresh Air for Off Air with Fresh Air on Saturday, November 16th at West Chester University’s Asplundh Concert Hall in West Chester, PA.
During Off Air with Fresh Air, Terry will share some of her adventures hosting Fresh Air, and will play clips of interviews in which things didn’t go as she expected, and/or had surprising consequences. After her talk you can put Terry in the hot seat with a Q and A session.
13 people were shot last night in a South Side Chicago park. There are no fatalities, but the youngest victim, a 3 year old boy, remains in critical condition. The event appears to be gang-related.
It’s no secret that Chicago is the deadliest city in America in terms of gun crimes. The question becomes, how can we prevent these kinds of horrific events? Beyond gun control laws, what kinds of measures are being taken? What can communities do?
In Chicago there is CeaseFire, a group that has former gang members intervene before violence breaks out by establishing relationships with people affected by violence. Their violent past gives “The Interrupters” credibility in the community. Fresh Air interviewed the director of the documentary on their work (Steve James) and “interrupter” Ameena Matthews.
North Philadelphia struggles with very similar violence issues. A few weeks ago we interviewed Dr. Amy Goldberg and Scott Charles who started the Cradle to Grave program. Cradle to Grave gives at-risk teens an up-close look at a trauma center in an effort to take away the “bravado” of gun violence and demonstrate its real consequences.
In 1974 Elton John wrote “Philadelphia Freedom” for Billie Jean King. The song is named for her co-ed tennis team, the Philadelphia Freedoms. King still owns the team and the song remains an anthem of the city.
In an effort to combat the widespread gun violence in North Philadelphia Dr. Amy Goldberg (trauma surgeon) and youth counselor Scott Charles began the Cradle to Grave Program.
An exercise in the Cradle to Grave Program has kids write on toe tags all of the people that would miss them if they died. (above)
Dr. Amy Goldberg and Scott Charles lead at-risk youth through an interactive visit in the trauma unit where shooting victims undergo extensive procedures. Their goal is to demonstrate that gun violence has serious life-threatening consequences, contrary to the “bravado” on the street.
In addition to the preventative aspects of the program, Scott Charles explains his role as an advocate for victims of gun violence:
The very first thing I want to do is to let them know that there’s somebody there serving as an advocate for them and that they can tell me anything, ask me anything. It’s really to have a conversation with them at every turn, to let them know that we don’t have to continue this cycle of violence, that it can end here. … When the two of us can have a conversation we’re going to spend a lot of time talking about what retaliation ultimately means, how this will carry on much further down the line.
photo credit: Jessica Kourkounis
Tomorrow on Fresh Air: Trauma surgeon Dr. Amy Goldberg and Scott Charles talk with Terry about Cradle to Grave, their gun violence prevention program in Philadelphia.
Cradle to Grave takes young people from the notoriously dangerous neighborhoods of North Philadelphia and walks them through the clinical and emotional aspects of gun violence in a hospital setting.
They retell the story of 16-year-old Lamont Adams, from cradle to grave. Lamont was shot more than a dozen times after another kid believed he called the police about a street game of dice. He died 15 minutes after arriving at the Temple University Hospital. The program includes interactive demonstrations of trauma surgery, videos of loved ones mourning, and morgue terminology.
Goldberg and Charles join us tomorrow to discuss their program and its influence on the community.
photo via wikimedia commons
Ballet dancers dancing randomly
Philadelphia is a good city in which to write American history.
- Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1936
We couldn’t agree more. Happy Constitution Day!