NPR Host Michel Martin on Letting Go of ‘Delusions’ of 1967 Uprising [VIDEO]

“There’s a big difference marking this anniversary… something about the 50th is different from the 40th.”

Jake Neher/WDET

Over the last two-and-a-half decades, few broadcast journalists have done more to give voice to underrepresented communities in America than Michel Martin. 

She launched the one-hour daily news and talk show Tell Me More on NPR in 2006.  As Martin’s NPR biography puts it, the show “dipped into thousands of important conversations taking place in the corridors of power, but also in houses of worship, and barber shops and beauty shops, and PTA meetings, town halls, and at the kitchen table.” 

Martin is now the weekend host of All Things Considered on NPR.

The show is here in Detroit this week and will broadcast live from WDET’s studios Saturday and Sunday at 5 p.m.  The show will take a look at the 50th anniversary of the civil unrest that jolted the city in the summer of 1967.

Michel Martin joins Stephen Henderson on Detroit Today.

“There’s a big difference marking this anniversary,” says Martin. “Something about the 50th is different from the 40th.”

One difference is the national conversation happening around the 50th Anniversary of the Detroit uprising.

“The larger context can’t help but influence how people feel and view things…it is true that people have talked about a lot of things these days that they didn’t used to talk about.”

“Is there something about a 50th anniversary that allows people to release whatever delusions or preconceived ideas that they had about it?” Martin inquires.

Martin discusses how it seems that people are still unable to come to terms with reality.

“It’s fascinating…you can’t find anybody who knew a racist here, you can’t find anybody who grew up in a racist household, you don’t know anybody whose parents ever uttered a racial slur.”

Click on the audio player above to hear the whole conversation.


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    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.