Inner Compass SEASON 10 (2009-2010 West Michigan)
#1001 When Groups Play: Flash Mobs & Urban Experiments


What does it take to get thousands of people to show up downtown for a pillow fight? Rob Bliss, creator of The Rob Bliss Urban Experiments, tells how technology and social dynamics help him gather crowds for memorable happenings. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1002 Forsaking the Fast Track


John Rodden, a scholar and writer who no longer specializes in one area of study, describes his motivations and adventures after walking away from a promising career as a professor in order to pursue his dreams. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1003 Religion & Reporters: Oil & Water?

As religion becomes a central theme in the headlines of the day, many journalists find themselves to be under-informed. Michael Cromartie of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. describes how he brings religion experts and reporters together for some revealing conversations.

#1004 Enfolding Ex-Prisoners

Forever defined by their worst choices, former prisoners re-enter a society that locked them up and tried to throw away the key. Harold Dean Trulear of the Howard University School of Divinity and The Center for Public Justice shows how churches across the nation work to provide a warmer return for these citizens. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1005 Ethics of Young Adult Literature


Scowling cheerleaders and thirsty vampires beckon from the Young Adult bookshelves. How can concerned parents evaluate what their kids are reading? Newbery Honor-winning author Gary Schmidt of the Calvin College English department suggests ways to judge a book other than by its cover. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1006 Passing the Plate: Tithing Practices


If American Christians gave away just ten percent of their income, the resulting eighty-five billion dollars could fund—and solve—many of the world's most pressing needs. Patricia Snell of Notre Dame's Center for the Study of Religion and Society, and co-author of Passing the Plate: Why American Christians Don’t Give Away More Money, describes the motives, practices, and myths of charitable giving. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1007 Accommodating the Autism Spectrum


With the definition of autism now encompassing a wide range of behaviors, more people find themselves daily encountering those diagnosed with some version of this disorder. How can we make more room for differing styles of relating? Laurel Falvo of The Gray Center for Social Learning and Understanding provides ideas for improving communication on all sides. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1008 Pornography’s Destructive Path


Although viewing pornography is often dismissed as a rite of passage into adulthood, Michael Leahy,author of Porn Nation and Porn University, hears a different message from thousands of college students. Many are not prepared for the guilt, altered perspective, and addiction that often follow in pornography's wake. Leahy describes the destruction from first-hand experience, and suggests ways to begin rebuilding. Karen Saupe hosts. 

#1009 Ethics of Hostage Negotiation  

An angry criminal takes a hostage and demands to speak with authorities. Who’s most qualified to take the phone? What strategy might have worked with David Koresh? Jim Botting, author of Bullets, Bombs and Fast Talk: 25 Years of FBI War Stories, describes the adventures and dilemmas of his seventeen years as hostage negotiator for the FBI. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1010 The New Face of Evangelicalism


By 2050, the majority of the U.S. population will be nonwhite. The American church will make this transition even sooner, and if successful, will position itself as a model to the rest of society. Soong-Chan Rah, of North Park Theological Seminary and author of The Next Evangelicalism: Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity, suggests ways we can make room for a richness that will benefit us all. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1011 Healthcare Around the World

Fans of U.S. health care reform point out that many other countries provide coverage for all their citizens, and no one files for bankruptcy due to medical bills. But how exactly do these countries do it? January Series guest & journalist T.R. Reid, author of The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care, tells of his travels comparing systems around the world. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1012 Wikipedia: Internet Democracy

Wikipedia began with the goal of distributing a free, high-quality encyclopedia to every person on the planet. This internet project, written collaboratively by volunteers in over 260 languages, is now over 10 times larger than Encyclopedia Britannica. Founder Jimmy Wales considers how the project is meeting its many ideals. Karen Saupe hosts

#1013 Relating with North Korea

When there’s a country on the other side of the planet developing nuclear capabilities plus long-range missiles, what should the U.S. do? We're suspicious of North Korea, while North Korea is suspicious of us. January Series guest Tony Namkung--an independent consultant and expert on North Korea, US/Asian relations, and nuclear arms for 20 plus years--shares his observations about what both sides need to understand and do. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1014 Making the Holy Land Holy

We call it the Holy Land, and it’s an extremely important region to followers of several religions. But the relationships within it are anything but holy. Archbishop Elias Chacour of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church in Galilee has spent his life building bridges between the groups with amazing success. His landmark school for Jewish, Christian, and Muslim children reveals a story of unwavering vision for peace. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1015 Do We Need Free Enterprise?

The US Constitution guarantees a host of freedoms.  But as we watch the economic freedom of some people come at the expense of other people, many Americans are wondering if capitalism can exist more fairly. Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, suggests who deserves the blame that the free enterprise system gets these days. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1016 Should Reporters Embed?

Journalists have been embedded in military units since the early stages of the Iraq War. While this positions them to show the complexities of war, it also exposes them to more danger. CBS News correspondent Kimberly Dozier, author ofBreathing the Fire: Fighting to Report—and Survive—the War in Iraq, shares her perspective on the benefits and costs, including the day she and her colleagues became the top news story. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1017 African Solutions for African Problems

People across Africa were actually living well until European colonialists took control of the natural resources to enhance their own wealth. Now that the occupiers are gone, new governments are still sending wealth offshore--into personal foreign bank accounts! Economist George Ayittey, President of the Free Africa Foundation and author of Africa Unchained: the Blueprint for Africa’s Future, shares his ideas for how Africa can take control of its own riches, starting in the village square. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1018 Bringing Hope to Prisoners

Imagine being asked to take charge of one of the bloodiest prisons in America, where cell-mates chose to sleep in shifts in order to protect each other.  Burl Cain, Prison Warden of the Louisiana State Penitentiary (also known as Angola) was given this charge, and became committed to changing the reputation of the prison. He describes his winning mixture of devotion and discipline. Shirley Hoogstra hosts.

#1019 Feasting at a Food Pantry

Out of curiosity, a woman walks into a church. She’s offered communion, and it changes her life. She ends up turning the feast into a food pantry, which nurtures others (as well as herself) beyond what she ever imagined. Sara Miles, director of  St. Gregory's Food Pantry in San Francisco, shares thoughts from her memoirs Take This Bread and Jesus Freak: Feeding Healing Raising the Dead. Karen Saupe hosts.

#1020 The Power of Writing

We hear about prisoners, but not so often from prisoners. When bestselling novelist Wally Lamb (She’s Come Undone, I Know This Much is True) tried his hand at teaching prisoners to write, he had no idea how many lives would be impacted. Hear how their compelling personal stories were published after considerable opposition from the prison. Karen Saupe hosts.

[end of season 10]