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Weekend Connections is a collection of some of the most noteworthy moments from the week on Connections with Evan Dawson. This episode includes conversations about:

  • The power of news photography;
  • David Cay Johnston's new book, The Making of Donald Trump;
  • Career changes, with a Buffalo man who left a partnership in a New York City hedge fund to go into the seminary;
  • Carbon fee and dividend and its impact on climate change and the economy.

Swimmer Ryan Lochte lied about being robbed in Brazil. There are questions that remain about what truly happened that night, but Lochte admits he made up the story of having a gun cocked and pressed to his forehead; he lied about resisting the gunman's demand that he get on the ground with his fellow swimmers. But why? Why is lying so common, on both large and small scales? Why do we accept lies in our lives, and why do we tell so many lies ourselves? We discuss lying and its consequences. In studio:

  • Dr. Eric Caine, chair of the department of psychiatry at the University of Rochester
  • Jodi Aman, psychotherapist 

What does it take to start a school from scratch... when you don't have a big pot of money? Joel Helfrich has a vision for the Rochester River School, based on humane education. But he's found some roadblocks, and has had to go a route he didn't expect at the outset: charter school. We'll discuss the process, his vision for the school, and how he's trying to build support. Our guests:

  • Joel Helfrich, Rochester River School
  • David Hursh, professor in the Warner School of Education, University of Rochester

First hour: Creating the Rochester River School

Second hour: Ryan Lochte and the culture of lying

Our Summer of Food series continues with a conversation with the owners of Fiorella, an Italian restaurant in the Rochester Public Market. It is operated by a husband-and-wife team with Italian roots. They have particular views on where ingredients come from, and how to source for the restaurant. We talk to them about what “Italian food” really mean in the United States. Our guests:

  • Gino Ruggiero, chef and co-owner of Fiorella
  • Alison Ruggiero, co-owner of Fiorella

We talk to Buffalo native David Ryder about his experience changing careers. It's not your average career change story: he left a partnership at a New York City hedge fund to go into the seminary. He says after years of working his way up the ladder in the finance industry, something felt wrong in his soul. We talk to him about the Flour City Church, his hopes for its future, and what makes his work fulfilling.


First hour: From finance to the seminary

Second hour: Summer of Food - What does "Italian food" really mean?

Honda makes Accords in Ohio, which raises an interesting question: at what point does a Honda Accord become "North American," and eligible for free export into Canada or Mexico under NAFTA? How many parts need to be domestic for this consideration?

In the world of global supply chains, it's easy to get confused about what is and is not an American product. And when trade deals are coming together, someone has to draw that line, and then police it. 

We sit down with Rob Shum, a professor of political science and international studies at SUNY Brockport (who also happens to have been a Canadian representative on the NAFTA Committee on Trade in Goods), and Jeongho Choi, an assistant professor in the School of Business at St. John Fisher College, to discuss how these deals come together, and what questions they would have for how the mysterious TPP is constructed.

The image of Omran Daqneesh, a five-year-old Syrian boy who was covered in dust and blood after aerial bombardment, has captured the world's attention. Why, some have wondered, did it require a stunning photo to finally force the world to consider the plight of the Syrian people?

There's not an easy answer, but we're reminded of the power of photography. In particular, we're reminded of the value of professional photojournalists at a time when many news staffs are making cuts.

Our panel discusses the power of photography to make change, and the value of trained professionals. Our guests:

  • Max Schulte, Democrat & Chronicle lead photographer
  • William Snyder, four-time Pulitzer Prize winning photographer and chair of the photojournalism program at the Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Jenn Poggi, former deputy director of the White House Photo Office and RIT visiting professor
NPR / Getty

First hour: The power of news photography

Second hour: Understanding how trade deals work, or, "Is that Honda Accord an American car?"