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Hitting Left

Mike gets together each week, often with special guests in studio and from around the country, to discuss current topics involving politics, education and social justice "from the Left side of the plate." The topics covered may be local, national or international but always with a Chicago sensibility and perspective.
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Now displaying: 2023
Dec 16, 2023

Joining Mike in the Lupen Radio studio on this editioin of Hitting Left are veteran '60s (and current) activists, Al Haber and Michael James. Al was a co-founder of Students For a Democratic Society (SDS) and its first president. Mike was also an SDS organizer and founder of Rising Up Angry. He has a new book out with the same name.

Dec 1, 2023

Joining Mike on this edition of Hitting Left is Illinois state senator Robert Peters talking about the Gaza protests and more.

Nov 17, 2023

Mike will taking a look back at the 1968 Democratic Convention protests in Chicago and anticipating the upcoming DNC in Chitown next August.

Joining Mike are '68 Movement veterans Mike James and Judy Gumbo plus author Pat Thomas.

Oct 27, 2023
 
Joining Mike Klonsky on this edition of Hitting Left  is Juan Gonzalez. Juan is an author, Co-Host of Democracy Now!, Senior Fellow at Great Cities Institute of UIC, former NY Daily News columnist, and once upon a time, a Young Lord.
Oct 13, 2023
Mike's guest this episode of Hitting Left is poet, novelist, journalist, critic, and columnist, Luis Rodriguez. Luis was the 2014 Los Angeles Poet Laureate. He is recognized as a major figure in contemporary Chicano literature identifying himself as a native Xicanx writer. His best-known work, Always Running: La Vida Loca, Gang Days in L.A., received the Carl Sandburg Literary Award and has been controversial on school reading lists for its depictions of gang life.
 
Joining Luis in the Lumpen Radio studio is Mike's daughter, Amanda Klonsky. Amanda is an educator and prison rights activist who has worked with Luis on prison reform.
Sep 30, 2023

Joining Mike on this episode of Hitting Left is Carlos Martinez. Carlos is co-founder of the No Cold War campaign. He is an activist based in London, He's author of "The East Is Still Red: Chinese Socialism in the 21st Century". He has given presentations and discussions on topics such as "Give Peace a Chance: China and the World Today". His work focuses on socialism, peace, and international relations.

Aug 25, 2023

This week host Mike Klonsky shares some more of his favorite tunes.

Aug 19, 2023
Joining Mike this episode is Pidgeon Pagonis, an American intersex activist, writer, artist, and consultant. They are an advocate for intersex human rights and against nonconsensual intersex medical interventions and author of Nobody Needs to Know. 
It's Pidgeon's second guest appearance on Hitting Left.
Mike's guest for the second half of the show will be former Harlem Globetrotter star, Dr. Curly "Boo" Johnson.  Former Globetrotter (18 years) Owner CBJ Skills For Life Basketball Academy. HALL OF FAME-Peoria High. 

 

Aug 12, 2023

Joining Mike on this edition of Hitting Left is Troy LaRaviere. Troy is head of the Chicago Principal and Adminstrators Association. He has recently been in a battle to defend the careers of some Black CPS principals who’ve been removed from their posts unfairly, according to Troy, as part of a patten of racial discrimination against Black school leaders.

Aug 4, 2023

Joining Mike on this episode of Hitting Left is Bob Zellner. 84 year old Bob Zellner has been a social justice organizer since he first joined the original Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in 1961 at the age of 19. 

Jun 2, 2023
On Hitting Left with Mike Klonsky and Friends, Mike is joined by Corey Stevenson, John Daley & Fred Klonsky.
Today the focus is on Chicago. There's a new mayor in town. Are we really the "sanctuary city" that we claim to be? Memorial Day Weekend gun violence and more.
May 26, 2023

Joining Mike on this show is Carl Davidson, veteran activist and Marxist philosopher.

May 19, 2023

Joining Mike this morning is Jon Melrod, author of Fighting Times: Organizing on the Front Lines of the Class War.

May 12, 2023

Noted eucator, writer and historian of education Diane Ravitch joins Charles Tocci, professor of education at Chicago's Loyola Univesity with host Michael Klonsky on this episode of Hitting Left.

May 6, 2023

Former Chicago member of Congress Marie Newman joins Mike Klonsky on this edition of Hitting Left.

Mar 24, 2023
Mike is joined by anti-war activist Medea Benjamin, founder of Code Pink in the first hald of this podcast.  Community organizer election Rudy Lozano Jr. is on the second half to talk about the Chicago mayoral election.

 

Mar 17, 2023

On this podcast a conversation about criminal justice reform and prisoner rights with Renaldo Hudson, who spent 37 years incarcerated in IL prisons, including many years on death row. We'll also hear from prison activists Amanda Klonsky and Jennifer Soble.

Mar 10, 2023

Fred and Mike talk about the Chicago mayoral election between Paul Vallas (on the Right) and Brandon Johnson (on the Left). Then they are joined by noted educator Dr. Pedro Noguera, Dean of the Rossier School of Education, who knows more than a few things about Vallas' destructive educational policies.

Feb 18, 2023
Here's the latest in our Hitting Left Music series, Sounds From the Freedom Movements.
We start off with a song from early hip-hop poets, Digable Planets called Femme Fetal. Recorded two decades ago, it anticipated the Supreme Court’s ruling outlawing abortion rights.
 
Thar will be followed by music from the anti-fascist Lula movement in Brazil. Buffy Sainte Marie, Pete Seeger, Stevie Wonder. Steve Earle, and much more.
 
Playlist:
 
 
1. La Femme Fetal by Digable Planets 
 
2. Now that the Buffalo’s Gone by Buffy Sainte Marie 
 
3. Never Had Your Back by Arrested Development 
 
4. The Hammer Song by Pete Seeger 
 
5. Steve’s Hammer by Steve Earle 
 
6. John Henry by Furry Lewis 
 
7. Which Side Are You On? By Natalie Merchant 
 
8. "It's Wrong (Apartheid)" by Stevie Wonder 
 
 9, “Tá na hora do Jair já ir embora” by Maderada and Tiago Doidão’ which translates to “It’s time for Jair to go away already.” 
 
10. Here’s to the State of Mississippi by Phil Ochs 
 
11. 'Inner City Blues (Make Me Holler)' (1971 )by Marvin Gaye 
 
12. All Around the World by Taj Mahal & Keb Mo 
Feb 3, 2023

Joining Mike on this episoide is veteran Illinois political and investigative Tribune reporter, Ray Long. Like Mike, Ray is a long-time Dodger fan, and someone who has documented the state and city's history of poliical corrumption. Author of The House that Madigan Built: The Record Rule of Illinois' Velvet Hammer.

Jan 27, 2023

Joining Mike Klonsky are Northwestern Professor Patty Loew, director of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research at Northwestern University. She is a member of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe. She’ll be talking about the legendary Indian athlete, Jim Thorpe. Also joining us will be and Native American activist/author/educator Nick Estes with more on the case of Leonard Peltier.  

Jan 27, 2023

Mike Klonsky discusses the war in Ukraine and more with "old, new-left) socialist writer, philosopher, and 60's SDS leader, Carl Davidson. 

Jan 20, 2023
Guests this episode are Reuben Jonathan Miller and Amanda Klonsky.
 
Professor Miller is A 2022 MacArthur Fellow, His research at the University of Chicago, examines how racialized and poor people experience law, crime control, and social welfare policy. 
 
Dr. Amanda Klonsky is a teacher, author, and longtime prison activist whose current work focuses on Covid in Prisons
Jan 20, 2023
Guests this episode are Reuben Jonathan Miller and Amanda Klonsky.
 
Professor Miller is A 2022 MacArthur Fellow, His research at the University of Chicago, examines how racialized and poor people experience law, crime control, and social welfare policy. 
 
Dr. Amanda Klonsky is a teacher, author, and longtime prison activist whose current work focuses on Covid in Prisons
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