Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Michelangelo Signorile Show on SiriusXM PROGRESS ch.127

A few years ago, writer-director Jill Soloway received a phone call from her father who told her that he was coming out as a transgender woman.  That experience became the basis for her hit television show Transparent, which is all about the life and family of a man named Mort, played by Jeffrey Tambor who transitions into a woman, later named Maura.  The show quickly won critics and audiences over, and its Trans protagonist has been called a major breakthrough in television.  The shows second season debuts on Amazon on December 4th and Jill joins me in studio to talk all about the show and the fight for civil rights for all Transgender people.

We all remember hearing the ominous threat from our childhoods, “This will go down on your permanent record”.  Well, that threat has taken on a whole new meaning in today’s technologically driven world.  For children today, permanent records are a whole lot bigger than they used to be and they may, unlike those old manila folders stored in some rusty file cabinet in the basement of your old high school, actually be permanent.  Last year, the extent to which information about students was being tracked, profiled and potentially shared came to light and caused a fair amount of controversy when the $100 million student data collection project funded by the Gates Foundation and operated by a specially created nonprofit organization called inBloom was forced to shut down because of these concerns.  However, this episode, which served as a warning to parents about just how much information about their children is being collected and shared without their knowledge did not stop the growing use by schools, school districts and states of technology to collect mountains of detailed information on students.  Joining me today to talk all about the issue of student data collection is Leonie Haimson the co-chair of the Parent Coalition for Student Privacy & Cheri Kiesecker a researcher for the organization which has been a leading advocate against the inBloom project and recently wrote an article all about it for the Washington Post.

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