Skip to main content

You make this possible. Support our independent, nonprofit newsroom today.

Give Now

Senator Warren takes the test

caption: DNA molecules and the secrets they carry.
Enlarge Icon
DNA molecules and the secrets they carry.

DNA testing is becoming increasingly widespread; in this instance, it’s being used to bolster political bona fides and has sparked discussions about whether genes have anything to do with identity. 

On today's show:

Identity politics and Sen. Warren's DNA

Sen. Elizabeth Warren released a video this weekend, asserting that a DNA test affirmed her claim to native ancestry. Warren is running for reelection and her lineage has been a frequent sparring topic with Donald Trump. Joining Bill Radke to talk about the politics of DNA and identity were Rick Smith, postdoc anthropological geneticist at Dartmouth College, and University of Alberta Assoc. Professor of Faculty of Native Studies Kim Tallbear.

Affirmative action in higher ed headed to court

In 2013 and again in 2016, a white undergraduate named Abigail Fisher was unsuccessful in challenging the affirmative action admissions policy of the University of Texas, Austin. Undaunted, one of the lawyers has found a new plaintiff: Asian-Americans who allege Harvard denied them admission based on race. While the focus is on Harvard, the case could have consequences across the country. Adam Liptak, New York Times Supreme Court correspondent, explains.

A feathered muse, a naturalist and Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Seattle naturalist Lyanda Haupt have one life-altering thing in common: They were both ensnared by the charms of a pet starling. Haupt’s book about the composer’s companion, “Mozart’s Starling,” just won a Washington State Book Award. She spoke with Bill about the book in August.

Why you can trust KUOW