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Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

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Host: Scott LaMar

Smart Talk: Gorillas; PA dairy

Written by Scott LaMar, Smart Talk Host/Executive Producer | Jun 6, 2016 2:06 PM
silverback gorilla 600 x 340.jpg

A silverback gorilla

What to look for on Smart Talk Monday, June 6, 2016:

National conversation has recently been focused on Cincinnati where a 3-year-old boy fell into the Silverback gorilla exhibit. While unharmed from the fall, the child was picked up by a gorilla named Harambe. Fearing for the child's life and doubting the effectiveness of tranquilizers in the situation, zoo officials made the decision to shoot and kill the endangered gorilla.

By now, the situation is widely known. However, most of the current discussion and argument surrounds the capability of the parent for letting their child fall into the enclosure and whether killing Harambe was the only recourse for officials. Speaking with us on Monday about the other half of this incident's members, the gorilla, is Dr. Bob Wheelersburg, a professor of Anthropology at Elizabethtown College. Dr. Wheelersburg studied primatology in graduate school. He has taught courses on the subject at Elizabethtown for more than 20 years, focusing on the behaviors, social structure, anatomy, aggression, and infant care of primates.

UPDATE: The Hamilton County (Ohio) Prosecutor announced Monday that no charges will be filed against the mother of the child that fell into the exhibit.

Bob Wheelersburg 600x340.jpg

Bob Wheelersburg

Also, June is National Dairy Month. How does dairy get a whole month all to itself? By being big. In Pennsylvania specifically, more than 530,000 milk cows, and their 10.8 billion pounds of produced milk, generates more than $2.7 billion in revenue annually for the commonwealth.  Our official beverage also happens to have been milk since the early 80s.

Joining us on Monday's program to discuss some of the month's planned events are Dave Smith, Executive Director of the PA Dairymen's Association, Jennifer Powell, Director of Development, Central PA Food Bank and Jane Clements-Smith, Executive Director of Feeding PA. The Pennsylvania Dairymen's Association is the oldest dairy group in PA. They also supply the popular milkshakes at each year's Farm Show. Feeding Pennsylvania is a partnership among the member food banks of Feeding America in PA. They work to secure food and resources to reduce hunger across the commonwealth. Together, PDA and Feeding PA, along with the Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association and Pennsylvania Dairy Promotion Program, are collaborating this June to raise money for the "Fill a Glass with Hope" campaign, a project which seeks to provide fresh milk to the hungry.


Dave Smith, Jennifer Powell, Jane Clements-Smith

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