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Friday Rundown: A More Just Approach to Prison and American History in 101 Objects

Smithsonian Institution

These topics air Friday March 21, 2014 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. To leave a question or comment before or after the show dial 412-256-8783. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002. More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be heard here.A More Just Approach to Prison
When former Pittsburgh Police Chief Nate Harper was indicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison last month, we received a number of comments from listeners regarding the ways to punish crime. What types of crimes justify a state prison sentence? What are the alternatives? We’ll explore this topic with John Wetzel, Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections. He’s responsible for the state prison system and part of a sentencing commission which is developing tools to help trial judges better assess the risks and needs of offenders.

History of America in 101 Objects
The Smithsonian Institution has been called "America's attic." It is home to many iconic objects from industry to culture  that have shaped our nation. In his book History of America in 101 Objects, our guest Smithsonian curator Dr. Richard Kurin chronicles these national treasures.

PIX - Indy Comics Expo
Pix, the Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo take place this weekend. The event is a way to nurture and encourage the city’s booming comic scene. Joining us with a preview of this weekend’s festivities are Jim Rugg a local indy cartoonist and Bill Boichel who owns The Copacetic Comics Company in Polish Hill.  

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