Quinton Chandler / StateImpact Oklahoma

Why Oklahoma Has No Misdemeanor Drug Courts, Even Though The Law Allows Them

Twenty years is a long time to live with a drug addiction, but Rachel Wachel has done it. She tends bar, has a house and a car — and calls herself a functioning addict. “I’m very open and honest about it because what do you do besides try to work with it the best way you can,” she says, exiting an an Oklahoma County courtroom. Wachel’s lawyer is working to get her a suspended sentence for a misdemeanor drug possession charge. She’s addicted to opiate painkillers and says she takes half a pill...

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Folk singer John Fullbright got his start at the age of 16, playing at small venues in his native Oklahoma for tips and the occasional free meal. "I'd stand up there and play until my voice was gone, which sometimes would take three hours. Sometimes it'd take longer," Fullbright says. "But that's where I really learned to scream."

A Real-Life School Of Rock

Dec 12, 2012

Do you really need to go to school to learn about rocking out? Many musicians might say no: Lock yourself in your room with a bunch of records and a guitar, put in your days on the road playing in scummy clubs, and you'll master the craft eventually.

The pretrial hearing for WikiLeaks suspect Pfc. Bradley Manning ended Tuesday, but as The Associated Press reports, the massive amount of documents he is accused of leaking were hardly mentioned.

Instead, the hearing focused more on "a bedsheet noose, confiscated clothes and whether Manning seriously contemplated killing himself with flip-flops or the elastic waistband of his underwear."

Bradley Manning, the Army private accused in the biggest leak of classified information in U.S. history, took the stand for a second day in a row, today.

Politico reports that in one more dramatic moments of the Article 13 hearing, Army Capt. Ashden Fein, the military prosecutor, pulled out a noose from a paper bag.

Bradley Manning, the Army private accused of leaking a massive cache of classified information to WikiLeaks, testified for the first time since he was arrested in May 2010.

According to CNN, Manning said at one point during his military custody, he considered suicide. CNN adds:

"He first discussed his arrest in Iraq and his transfer to Kuwait where he was held for a nearly two months before being transferred to the brig at Marine Base Quantico in Virginia in July 2010.

KOSU's Morning Edition host Ben Allen is profiled in a new short documentary from OSU student Michael Molholt.

From across the pond comes Boo Ritson. The City Arts Center in northeast Oklahoma City is hosting an exhibition from the British artist. And the subject is something Oklahomans, and most here in the middle of the country, are especially familiar with – Americana. On opening night, the art wasn’t the only thing with a decidedly American flavor.

An international art exhibition should not have burgers out on the grill.

Or should it?

"I was absolutely fine with that. It’s unusual, but it’s perfect. And very well chosen."

Quinton Chandler

Yesterday Quinton Chandler took you to the front lines of Woodward Oklahoma’s housing market. And we heard from Woodward’s residents how floods of oil boomers are building new RV Parks and tying local hotels up for weeks at a time. Today, we look at the upside to Woodward’s new growth. And we’ll see what is being done to meet the challenge of housing so many people.


Quinton Chandler

Before Oklahoma was a state dozens of makeshift towns sprung from its red dirt to make room for hungry settlers drawn by a fantastic oil boom and promises of a new start. Today Black gold is proving to have the same seductive power, but in this case oil isn’t the only commodity people will pull up stakes for. Crowds are pouring into a town in Northwest Oklahoma, looking for jobs created by the oil, natural gas, and wind industries. But just like 100 years ago there may not be enough room for all of them…

Woodward, Oklahoma has a cycle. Monday through Thursday its busting at the seams and over the weekend the town deflates like a tire losing air. It’s Friday and people are on the way out. Lines of cars and trucks pile up at every stoplight. One of the local gas stations can have a car at every pump any time of day. And anywhere you go there’s trucks from Chesapeake energy, so and so’s pipeline, and such and such drilling.

Comedian Bill Hader is adept onstage and doing live performances. But he's scared to death of standup.

He says he remembers watching Chris Rock's 1996 HBO special, Bring the Pain, and thinking, "I don't know how people do that."

"I need a character," Hader tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "I need people out there with me."

So Hader has stuck with sketch comedy — where he has been wildly successful.

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KOSU's Michael Cross talks about political news in Oklahoma with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican political consultant Neva Hill.

Education News

OKLAHOMA STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

The State Department of Education surveyed thousands of former teachers about why they left the profession, and what it would take to get them back. The survey results, released Monday, suggest most quit because of low pay.

When asked the open-ended question, “Why did you quit teaching in Oklahoma Public Schools?” 34 percent of respondents cited pay or a better opportunity.

Emily Wendler / StateImpact Oklahoma

Kids are scattered around the preschool classroom at Zarrow International School in Tulsa. It’s loud and chaotic, but it’s organized. Some students paint pictures; others write out the letters of the alphabet. The small group sitting around teacher Irene Castell is learning to count and compare numbers.

Castell says many kids would not learn these skills if they stayed home, or went to daycare.

“We always hear back from teachers of kindergartners, ‘We can always tell who’s been to pre-K,’” she says.

Emily Wendler / StateImpact Oklahoma

A group of about 20 parents asked Oklahoma City Public School Board members on Monday to kick former OKC Mayor Kirk Humphreys off the board of a local charter school.

Humphreys recently equated homosexuality to pedophilia while on a Sunday morning talk show, and many John Rex Charter School parents feel his comments were homophobic, and disqualify him from serving on the charter’s board of directors.

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The Spy plays independent, local, and alternative music and features more than 20 unique specialty shows.
A weekly two-hour show of Oklahoma music, from across the state. The show opens a window of Oklahoma music to the rest of the world.