Courtesy photo | Shannon LaNier

WSW: Paradox of American racism is some unaware they're mixed, says Thomas Jefferson kin

When Shannon LaNier was a boy, he told his classmates that President Thomas Jefferson was his great grandfather. His teacher didn't see how that was possible--LaNier looks black. She instructed him to stop lying. Today, he says, DNA and other evidence supports the story that had been passed down in his family of its connection to Jefferson and enslaved woman Sally Hemings. LaNier speaks in Kalamazoo on Feb. 27.

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Ben Doyle

The Shanghai Quartet: Crossing Borders For 35 Years

Weigang Li , the founding first violinist of the Shanghai Quartet , previews their concert with famous pipa virtuoso Wu Man , in an interview with Cara Lieurance. He says although they've received notice for their East-West crossover programs, he considers himself a specialist in Germanic music - the core classical repertory of Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven. Li says that even though it's a cliché, music really does allow people from different countries to share a language together. The concert is Saturday at 7:30 pm in the Dalton Center Recital Hall, presented by Fontana .

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Wind turbines stand tall above a farm field
courtesy of Consumers Energy

Consumers Energy says it will stop using coal by 2040 and get 40 percent of its energy from renewable sources. The company’s remaining five coal plants employ about 500 people. It shuttered seven of its facilities two years ago.

Mike Lanka / WMU University Relations

Western Michigan University's medical school has won full accreditation. The decision by the national Liaison Committee on Medical Education certifies the Homer Stryker MD School of Medicine for five years.

The program got preliminary accreditation in 2012 and a provisional certificate four years later. The school's first class will graduate later this year.

WMUK

On WestSouthwest, a broadcast journalist comes to Kalamazoo this month to discuss what it means to be a descendent of Thomas Jefferson and slave Sally Hemmings. And we get the latest report on campaign fundraising and spending in Michigan.


Courtesy photo | Shannon LaNier

When Shannon LaNier was a boy, he told his classmates that President Thomas Jefferson was his great grandfather. His teacher didn't see how that was possible--LaNier looks black. She instructed him to stop lying. Today, he says, DNA and other evidence supports the story that had been passed down in his family of its connection to Jefferson and enslaved woman Sally Hemings. LaNier speaks in Kalamazoo on Feb. 27.


File photo of Recount of Kalamazoo County State Senate Race in 2014
WMUK

Two state Senate races in Southwest Michigan are among those attracting large amounts of campaign contributions. One for a Republican primary and one for a general election rematch of the closest and most expensive state Senate race four years ago.


Kalamazoo Central High School students launch a petition calling for "sensible gun control policy."   Another Republican gets in the race for state Senate in St. Joseph, Cass and Berrien Counties. WMU wraps up the first weekend of the baseball season. The K-Wings lose in overtime, but get a point in the standings.

MPRN

(MPRN-Lansing) The state is warning prospective patients they should not go through marijuana suppliers to apply for medical marijuana cards. 

Ben Doyle

Weigang Li, the founding first violinist of the Shanghai Quartet, previews their concert with famous pipa virtuoso Wu Man, in an interview with Cara Lieurance. He says although they've received notice for their East-West crossover programs, he considers himself a specialist in Germanic music - the core classical repertory of Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven. Li says that even though it's a cliché, music really does allow people from different countries to share a language together.

The concert is Saturday at 7:30 pm in the Dalton Center Recital Hall, presented by Fontana.


Wikimedia Commons

In 1805 and 1806, former vice-president Aaron Burr traveled through the Trans-Appalachian West, gathering support for a mysterious enterprise. It led to his arrest and trial for treason in 1807. Was he guilty? Or was it simply a conspiracy theory? Kalamazoo College history professor James E. Lewis, Jr. introduces readers to Aaron Burr in his new book, The Burr Conspiracy: Uncovering the Story of an Early American Crisis (Princeton University Press, 2017).


Gretchen Whitmer says the manager of her campaign for governor has resigned over past inappropriate behavior in the workplace. The former director of the Calhoun County Conservation District faces federal embezzlement charges.  WMU football coach Tim Lester announces changes to the Bronco staff.

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