Berkeley Talks


America wants gun control. Why doesn't it have it? (revisiting)

Ep. 146

"If having a gun really made you safer, then America would be one of the safest countries in the world. It’s not," said Gary Younge, a professor of sociology at Manchester University and former editor-at-large at the Guardian, in a lecture at UC Berkeley on March 4, 2020.

"Yet while Americans consistently favor more gun control," Younge continued, "gun laws have generally become more lax. That is partly due to the material resources of the gun lobby. But it is also about the central role of the gun, what it represents in the American narrative, and the inability of gun control advocates to develop a counter-narrative. ... When the national narrative is a story of conquering, dominating, force and power, a broad atavistic attachment to the gun can have more pull than narrower rational arguments to contain it."

Listen to the lecture and read a transcript on Berkeley News.

Detail of a mural by Kyle Holbrook and local youth in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Terence Faircloth via Flickr)

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Activist Pua Case on the movement to protect Mauna Kea

Ep. 150
Pua Case, a Native Hawaiian activist and caretaker from the Flores-Case ʻOhana family, discusses the movement to protect Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii and the tallest mountain in the world."We have been standing successfully for 12 years against the building of a huge telescope," Case said at a Berkeley Center of New Media event on Aug. 29, 2022. "Not because it's a telescope, but because it's an 18-story building of any kind that would be built on the northern plateau in a pristine landscape on a sacred mountain, and for so many reasons."For 12 years, we have remained visible, we have remained committed, we have remained engaged and fully activated. But it is as if on a daily basis we have never stood because they are determined to build. And so, any of you who are facing what we're facing today, when a corporation, an institution, a developer, whatever the case may be — for us, five countries are determined to build no matter the consequence — it is almost as if you have to re-establish every day that you are here."This talk was presented as part of the Art, Technology and Culture Colloquium, the History and Theory of New Media Lecture Series, and the Indigenous Technologies Initiative. It was co-sponsored by the American Indian Graduate Program, the Arts Research Center, the Department of Ethnic Studies, Media Studies, the Center for Race and Gender, and Native American Studies.Read a transcript and listen to the episode on Berkeley News.Music by Blue Dot Sessions.Photo by Matt Biddulph via Flickr.