Are there some pieces of art that are universally considered great... but you just don't enjoy them? Of course there are. For Evan: most of Picasso's oeuvre. For Megan: The Beatles.

Brian Koppelman, co-creator of the hit series Billions, recently asked on social media for examples of great art that people just don't like very much. The answers sparked some heated debate, so we thought we'd recreate that discussion with our guests:

What are the impacts of gun violence? Writing for Open Mic Rochester, Tianna Manon offered an extensive look at the issue, from family stories to statistical analysis. We asked Tianna to join us and explain what her work uncovered. Our guests:

  • Tianna Manon, editor-in-chief of Open Mic Roc
  • Michele Ashlee, photographer for Open Mic Roc
  • Sirena Cotton, founder of Roc the Peace, who lost her son to gun violence in 2007
  • Melanie Funchess, director of community engagement for the Mental Health Association of Rochester


For decades, LASIK surgery has offered an alternative to eyeglasses for people who have nearsightedness. Now there's a procedure that can correct presbyopia, the condition that has many people over 40 reaching for reading glasses.

"I wear a Fitbit and I used to have to put on my glasses to see my itty bitty step count, and I didn't have to do that this morning, so that was pretty fun," said Mary Griffith of Rochester, one of the first patients to undergo the Raindrop Near Vision Inlay at the University of Rochester's Flaum Eye Institute this week. 

Join WXXI News a for Connections with Evan Dawson from the Little Theatre on Wednesday, May 31 from 12-2 p.m. Evan's guest will be Karen DeWitt, WXXI's Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio. Karen has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990. 


The upcoming few days could end up with the  highest Memorial Day travel weekend in 12 years.

AAA predicts 39.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home between Thursday and Monday.

That's a million more than last year.

AAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Carey says part of the increase is due to moderate gasoline prices.

Open Mic Roc

First hour: Open Mic Rochester's investigation into gun violence

Second hour: When we just can't force ourselves to like great art

The repeal of the Affordable Care Act could have some unintended consequences on the most vulnerable: children with disabilities. On this special Move to Include edition of Need to Know we’ll learn how special education in our public schools may see unbearable funding cuts.

Also on the show, some local disability rights advocates were recently detained outside the White House. We’ll discuss what they’re calling on President Trump to do and if he’s responded.

And a complex journey for a local artist unfolds on canvas. How local talent is awakening our understanding of deaf culture through art.

Move to Include and the Inclusion Desk is a partnership between WXXI and the Golisano Foundation designed to promote inclusion for people with intellectual and physical disabilities.

Alex Crichton / WXXI News

New York State Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle is introducing legislation he says would establish a $105 million grant program for flood recovery along the Lake Ontario shoreline and Saint Lawrence Seaway.

The Irondequoit Democrat says some of the money would help affected property and business owners, another portion would go to local governments and some funds would also be set aside to plan mitigation efforts against possible damage in future years.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says the AIM Photonics project in Rochester is in the final planning stages to begin construction this summer.

Empire State Development’s Board of directors on Friday approved an $81 million dollar grant to equip and operate the Testing, Assembly and Packaging or “TAP “ facility.

That is located on Lake Avenue in Rochester at a former Kodak building at the Eastman Business park.  The building is owned by ON Semiconductor.

The state grant will be used for machinery, tools and other equipment.


The outgoing chancellor of New York’s state university system said President Donald Trump’s budget, if enacted, would seriously hamper the chances for many of New York’s young people to attend college.

SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher said cuts to programs that help disadvantaged high school students gain the opportunity to attend college, as well as reductions to federal college aid and cuts to medical research, including cancer research, would have a huge negative impact on New York’s colleges.

“It would have a devastating effect on access,” Zimpher said.