In recent weeks, KQED News and The Bay Citizen have been doing a series of Open Newsroom events at bars and cafes as a way to connect our audience to reporters and editors. We open the phone lines to get your ideas for news stories and Forum segments. What stories and issues are most important to you?

Raul Ramirez, executive director of News and Public Affairs for KQED Public Radio
Julia McEvoy, senior editor, news for KQED News

  • Bruno

    I’d like discussions on getting a Constitutional amendment that would remove “personhood” from corporations.  

    • Arthur

      Since corporations are creatures of the charters from the states (and the Federal govt), why not modify the charters of corporations to clarify that these charters do not include the right of personhood.

      But we do need to prohibiting large secret donations by individuals to SuperPACs, which is turning out to be more of a problem than corporations.

  • Guest

    I would like to hear a discussion about the transportation infrastructure in California.  We are planning a 70 billion dollar high speed train system between LA and San Francisco while much of the congestion and pollution is within these cities.  LA and San Francisco rank as the top two cities for traffic congestion in continental United States.  Making your way through uncoordinated signals and chocked up freeways is frustrating.  Travelling by public transportation takes even longer, sometimes twice as long. Instead of solving this problem, cities are trying to make money by allowing individuals to drive on HOV lanes for a fee.  Are we even thinking about this problem?

  • Harry

     I think KQED Forum should focus on shedding light on censored news stories.
    You should start with the 911 false flag attacks: Look at all the evidence of controlled demolitions on 9/11 of the Twin Towers and WTC building 7. Interview Dr Steven Jones about the nano-thermite particles found in multiple independent samples of the dust, nano-thermite being a military-grade explosive made exclusively by the US military, and then talk with Kevin Ryan about his research into who perpetrated the attacks.
    You can also bring in San Francisco based Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth to speak about the technical details of the demolitions.

    • NationalPetroleumRadio

      Wait, I thought NPR always told me everything. i thought i was the smug, informed center. Harry are you telling me that those who perpetrated 9/11 did so knowing that they could pressure the mainstream media not to cover their war crimes?? 

      • Harry

        Many topics are off-limits in the mainstream media, not just 9/11. Here are a few more:

        • Chris

          Project censored! Go Sonoma state!

  • Sam

    I would love it if Forum talked to student protesters in California, from the UC, CSU and CC system as well as the k-12. Students have been working hard to fight tuition hikes at the public universities, with the long term goal of reducing or eliminating tuition altogether, but these movements have gotten minimal attention, including from NPR, except when we are the victims of violent police repression.

  • Guest

    Illegal Immigration. Why do politicians on BOTH sides of the aisle constantly ignore this issue, allow these people to work and vote without proper identification, and threaten the states that are simply trying to enforce the federal laws already in place????

    • Arthur

      Many citizens do not have the “proper identification”; and there is very little evidence of illegal immigrants actually casting votes.  There is a lot more evidence of citizens having their right to vote taken away by voting officials purging the voting rolls improperly, as is occurring in Florida now.

      • Friend

        “There is very little evidence”? Have you stationed yourself at every polling station? What a very unfounded statement.

        • Arthur

          No, but I have worked the polls.  And independent studies agree that disenfrancisement of citizens is more of a problem than voting by illegal immigrants. Besides, illegal immigrants want to stay hidden and avoid interactions with the government where they could be caught, so that would indicate they’d be very adverse to voting.  What actual evidence do you have that proves illegal immigrants are casting ballots at the polls?

  • NationalPetroleumRadio

    I would like to hear more news on the many (re)inventors of free energy devices. Those systems that would completely replace fossil fuels, clean up our environment and restore my faith in real journalism. We know you are lying by ommision, as many have asked you to discuss this topic. Lift the shame from your organization. 

    • Realist

       I’ve asked them to cover Thorium, but no response yet. Science Friday did a show on it though.

      • Arthur

         Covering Thorium reactors instead of Uranium would be good.

  • Guest

    I think this is a great idea! I’m curious to know how you chose the locations for the meet ups. Thanks!

  • Realist

    I really feel that KQED should reduce or eliminate the “identity politics” ethnic stories. These are clearly used by the 1% for two purposes: To divide and conquer the masses, and to shove other stories off the airwaves that are frankly much more important. Whenever I hear “community” I cringe because I know that topics like election rigging, military cover-ups will not be covered because XYZ group wants attention this week. Communities are the political equivalent of the Kardashians.

    • I wouldn’t go so far as to say ethnic politics are the  equivalent of the Kardashians, but the larger point Realist makes is true and important, and   Labor history is replete with examples of the power structure playing off immigrant groups against one another to suppress wages and keep the working class from uniting across ethnic lines. The same  strategy has been applied, for the same purpose, since the 70s to promote ethnic identity politics and supplant (largely through foundation funding)  the “poor people’s movement” that Dr. King was building before he was cut down. The resulting balkanized, ethnic special-interest approach to social problems has neatly diverted  attention and resources away from the larger structural issues of wealth and class that dictate and distort social policy to the general detriment of all but the 1% ruling elite.

      • Realist

        In other words, keep the dogs squabbling over scraps of meat, while the king remains above them feasting. And every dog wants to be his master’s favorite pet.

        NPR is totally set up to keep the dogs down & under the king’s control.

  • Washingtonirving

    I would prefer if Forum focused less on silly pop-culture news. I remember Forum did like 3 shows around the best films of 2011, one at the end of the year, the next when the Oscars were announced, the third after the Oscars. Similarly a bunch of shows around the Barry Bonds trial. Not saying you shouldn’t cover it, but less of the frivolity please. We don’t come to Forum for coverage of the frivolous…

    • Friend

       You can ask, but don’t expect much.
      I personally don’t find the two guests pass the sniff test. They behave more like CIA lackeys than journalists.

  • Alanhopkins

    I would like a program that asks listeners/citizens what questions they
    would like to ask candidates. Too often the press asks more or less the same
    questions and the candidates give the same rehearsed answers. Nothing new is


    Recently Romney stated something to the effect that citizens were
    “costumers” of the government, what was he talking about? I personally would
    like to ask:


    How old is the universe?

    Do you believe in evolution?

    Should the government support the arts and sciences?

    Do you believe in the death penalty?


    You get the idea


  • shelley

    I would like to hear more continuing coverage of the situation at Fukishima and the spreading radiation.  The main stream news sources are just starting to report about the irradiated fish caught off shore of San Diego, as well as Senator Wyden’s trip to the reactors and his concerns.  As a bay area parent, I’d like to think that our local NPR station will keep me informed on the actual danger.  Thank you.

  • Bruincardinal

    I would like to hear Forum discuss the impacts of the budget cuts and the Student Success Task Force on the Community Colleges. Most of the coverage in higher education has been on the CSUs and the UCs, while actions in Sacramento will have a proportionately larger impact on students who need the basic skills, transfer, and career tech options in the state’s largest higher ed system.

  • I’d like to hear a program on the San Francisco Ethics Commission and Sunshine Taskforce–two important government watchdog groups that are often ignored and often dysfunctional. 

    And the best resource to address these issues–and many other City Hall issues–is Larry Bush, the publisher of the new He’s brought a new level of depth to reporting on San Francisco government that goes far beyond what we get from traditional print, TV, and radio news.

    – Jeremy

  • Valtermini

    Perhaps a show about the rising rates of babies born prematurely in the US. The US has one of the highest rates in the developed world, perhaps more awareness could help prevent some of these births.

  • Karen Ivy

    I’d like to see more detailed coverage of Oakland city affairs.  I get most of my news from the Chronicle and KQED, and neither one covers Oakland city government unless it does something egregious.  We recently lost a local citizen volunteer, Sanjiv Handa, who attended every meeting, every week, and posted what the city was up to on the local Yahoo groups; since he’s gone, nobody is keeping that sharp eye on Oakland.  I’m sure other cities have the same issue – you guys don’t cover what, say, the Hayward or Fremont city council does. But the locals care.

  • Eric

    My # 1 wish: I would like to see the same level of scrutiny applied to local government and non-profit organizations that news organizations devote to private, for-profit organizations.  The SF Chronicle has devoted an incredible amount of ink to coverage of the 2010 PG&E San Bruno natural gas explosion, which is appropriate given that several people died in that tragedy.  I just wish the same scrutiny would be applied to organizations like SF Muni or Calpers.  The Bay Citizen already does this, I’d like to see KQED do the same.

  • Helen J

    I would love it if Forum could talk more about the arts. San Francisco/Bay Area is a huge art hub and but many people outside the community is unaware of the opportunities to be exposed to the arts. The amount of news coverage on the arts are scarse.

  • TellTheTruth

    Please cover the latest news on whistleblower Sibel Edmonds. She has defied the draconian government anti-whistleblower laws and released a book that exposes a lot.

  • Kendall

    You were in my neighborhood recently and I thank you for that tho I was not able to attend. I live in the golden gate neighborhood in oakland. The chronicle use to have a segment called chronicle watch in which they published ongoing problems that were not seeing results usually by local agencies. What if this idea was extended to private individuals who own blighted properties in neighborhoods? Many of them are prominent business people who are skirting blight ordnances in our cash strapped city where they know they will not be held responsible. This has a terrible effect on crime and blight in our neighborhood. Thank you.

  • Priya

    I would like to hear about health and wellness policies across San Francisco Bay Area schools—public schools and especially Private Independent Schools. This pertains to curbing childhood obesity. 

  • Maria

    I would love to see more thorough information on the structures of the individual city governments (i.e. who has the most power the Mayor or the City Council; how is legislation introduced and passed; etc).  I know that this varies from city to city and I feel many people don’t have a good understanding of how things work in their cities.  If they understand the structure, they may feel more empowered to participate.

  • TellTheTruth

    It’s very ironic that KQED people are claiming they want to cover elections better,  when they have categorically failed to talk about election rigging… in 2000 and 2004. I have to go to Brad Blog for information about this very important issue because KQED will not mention it.

    • 9/11 and election theft are equally forbidden subjects in mainstream American journalism. It’s not that the facts won’t sustain investigation — it’s that the “respectable” institutional journalists won’t go there.

      All kinds of hidden pressures are exerted to keep the news media from exposing these explosive truths, which threaten to blow apart the illusions that the corrupt elite depend on to maintain a corrupt system.
      (That system includes strategic management of “the truth” via the news media).
      But, the truth is out there, thanks to citizen activists and investigators  who are doing the reporting that institutional journalism censors. Anyone who wants to find out can start by Googling terms such as “9/11 Truth” and “Election theft”.

      • TellTheTruth

        The irony is extreme: The gatekeepers in the media who obstruct bringing to justice people who commit treason (9/11) or massive felonies and racketeering (election rigging) are deemed “respectable” by themselves and the public buy into that nonsense half of the time.

  • George

    The Bay Area is producing some of the best men’s foil fencers in the country. A few from Halberstadt Fencing Club are vying for he 2012 Olympics. You should have a discussion with them and their coaches.

  • Walter

    I would like a discussion regarding what it is that committed gays really want.  Is it simply a question of rights and privileges, or must it result in a redefinition of the word “marriage.” Is it not legally possible, with the stroke of the legislative pen, to bestow on committed gay couples all they desire — short of co-opting the word “marriage?” I’m very supportive of gay “rights” but will fight forever to preserve the meaning of the word “married.”  Is our English Language so limited that gays can’t construct a new word to clearly define their relationship and their commitment to it? Why must this contest result in a victor and a vanquished?

    • guest

      Walter, you support discrimination! Wow, in this age, you want to redefine the word “marriage.” That word is defined and a union between two people is all that it means.
      Work harder at understanding diversity.

  • Chrisco

    I really love Forum and Michael Krasny’s presentation of it. With programs like City Arts & Lectures and Commonwealth Club, we get some long form here. And it is very refreshing.

    After listening to KPFA for awhile, I find it very hard to listen to NPR’s major news programs.

    • Woody

       NPR’s news is the very expensive propaganda. They pay a lot to craft their lies and decide what to censor.

  • Tony

    With the immense increase in autism over the past 20 years, I would love to hear a discussion about what will happen and what is happening to to that population when they no longer qualify for services once they are adults.  They receive many services as children, but to what end? The unemployment rate for adults w/ autism is in the ballpark of 90%.  Are there work programs that have been successful employing these individuals?  Are there any working business models out there? If so, what are some specific skill sets they would like to see being targeted in the earlier years of treatment that would allow these individuals to be more successful in the work force.

  • San Jose Mayer, How much $ is being held back for a stadium
    that has no team, when vital services are being cut

  • Karey

    I would like more coverage of
    the south bay. I listen all day, and generally I feel as though
    nothing of interest is going on down here, which is patently not true! A
    few ideas are: a dedicated day per week or month on Forum, or a regular
    Silicon Valley Edition of Quest. Why not have a closer relationship
    with the Mercury News.

  • Shirley R

    I would like to hear stories on issues and resources for families/friends with regards to caregiving, particularly for adult children (and their children) of aging parents. I often see facebook friends sharing about family/friends health issues, and I am currently learning (more and more) about caregiving because of my mom’s recent surgery. Discussion topics might include not only the conventional long-term care options, communities and organizations that help with caregiving but also resources to help the emotional, psychological, and spiritual challenges. 

  • Will

    Let’s talk about how White the Occupy movement is and why democratic movements typically leave out people of color, English language learners and other underrepresented groups.

    • Woody

       People of color have more to lose when arrested. Think about it. If you were white and living in Zimbabwe, would you rather go to a protest or just keep your head down?

    • This is not a fair or objective assessment of Occupy, which makes a concerted effort to include and reach out to people of color. I would encourage Will and others to attend General Assemblies and join the Working Groups, and see for themselves.  African Americans are prominently represented among the core Occupy facilitators. A series of community barbeques were hosted by Occupy in Oakland’s ethnic neighborhoods. A mass “Marcha for Dignidad y Resistencia” was a major feature of the May Day General Strike, fully supported and promoted by Occupy Oakland.

  • Arthur

    Cover the impacts of budget cuts. “Your tax cuts at work.”

    Cover the impacts of climate change and what cities are doing to reduce it and mitigate its effects.

  • Privatesupporter-ata

    The recent Open Newsroom in San Jose (May 30) was not very convenient for the majority of the working professionals in the Valley. First, the time was too early. Second the location has little public parking. Finally, ONE meeting in the Valley is insufficient for the Valley’s size: our community goes from Palo Alto to Gilroy. Even the immediate Valley is large in scope: Cupertino to East San Jose. There is an immense diversity here that KQED is ignoring.
    Finally, your Radio signal has degraded in the Valley. Can’t help but thinking that this is intentional, or at least negligent.

  • Chemist150

    How about show on the morality of some sting operations conducted by the police?  For example, is good policing simply preventing opportunity for crime?
    Example scenarios:
      Subject: Car thieves
     Tactic 1:
      It’s one thing to put a bait car out among 100s of other cars and catching the guy that steals a car.  There was plenty of opportunity, the bait car was one of many, and they catch the real thief.
      Tactic 2:
      Police set up a fake chop shop and invite people to work possibly targeting certain individuals.  Upon entry, they’re informed that they’ll be transporting stolen cars but the cars are not stolen because they’re supplied by the police.  The people that accept the job to be paid under the table are then convicted of a crime that really didn’t happen.  Rather it’s a thought crime.  There were no stolen cars, the person may have or may NOT have had the same opportunity outside of the sting and probably would take legitimate opportunity if offered in place of the fake crime.
    Example 2: 
      Find someone who smokes meth or has no issue with those that do and provide them with the ways and means (supplies and access to method) to manufacture meth.  Upon making the drug the addict is arrested.  Is it right to use someone’s addiction against them?  Is this a responsible use of law enforcement?  Instead of doing this, they could have focused on where the addict gets their meth instead of trying to create a criminal in place of the
    Basically, is thought put into the difference between creating criminals by taking advantage of those who “might” instead of finding those who “seek” opportunity?
    Law enforcement and attorneys are good for interviewing on this subject.

    • Chemist150

      I have no idea how this posted twice.

      • Chemist150

        Other than my network is buggy and full of virus scanners that gum up the works.  I only clicked the button once.

  • Andrew Whelan

    I think it would help if Forum covered graduates from higher education that do not qualify for any of the debt-reduction that the Obama Administration is generating. What can these people do about their massive education debt when they can’t find work adequate enough to pay for their monthly bills? Is there any help available to them?

  • guest

    I listen to the radio via the Internet, so when KQED is doing their local items instead of National News, then I switch to WBUR, for example. There are many sites that one can access via the Internet. 

  • Kylie

    There is growing movement towards sustainable and livable urbanism, although it also seems to break down largely generational lines.  But local politics in communities like Berkeley are dominated by a small group of Babyboomers, at the expense of involvement of younger generations.

    Babyboomers and older often eschew the more urban experience, focusing on the noise, traffic, and crowds as negative.  Younger (Generation X and younger) people, who weren’t as actively involved in White Flight and the emptying of inner cities, seem to have a new found interest in revitalizing and celebrating the community, diversity, and environmental sustainability of urbanism, as is seen in public events such as Sunday Streets and the spread of local farmers markets as local gatherings. The Boomer and older crowd are also often more concerned with driving and parking convenience at the expense of increased and improved public transportation.

    What’s more, at least in Berkeley, City meetings have become dominated by an older crowd who borrow from the protest spirit of the 60’s.  This has discouraged involvement of the growing number of younger families, who don’t have the time to attend City meetings late into the evening.  This leaves City policy and politics to be largely driven by a small group of people who don’t hear from a significant portion of the community.

    • Pontifikate

      I suggest that you go to meetings. If you don’t have time to attend meetings late into the evening, go to meetings and suggest a time schedule that would work. Baby Boomers went to meetings when they were young; they still go to meetings. If you want a government to be responsive, you need to make your needs known and dialogue with people who might have different needs. Please don’t buy into generational divide politics.

  • Organic Beekeeper

    Mr. Krasny,
    As a new Beekeeper concerned about colony collapse disorder and all the potential fallout of Monsanto pesticides, I would love to hear more about beekeeping and farming that heal, not hurt the environment.



  • Sarah

    I’d like to hear more about the local/regional economy, particularly about sustainable businesses and businesses focused on creating resilience in the economy.

  • AutoRock

    The Marin Headlands landscape is being changed in a negative way in the name of restoration. Trees which have been along the hills which I remember from my childhood and dating back to the world war are being torn down and replaced with nets to prevent landslides to save A native butterfly. At least that is what is clammed. I have hiked these hills since I was a child, and have loved these trees. Unfortunately they are gone forever, but I am very upset and wish to understand why the folks in charge of preserving our nature are the same ones destroying it. 🙁

  • Jenn in Berkeley

    What about a discussion of Town vs. Gown in the Bay Area?  Berkeley, in particular, has faced a growing wave of students, who have limited awareness of the local, preexisting community.  The University also owns a large amount of property, especially around the core of the city, which is exempt from city zoning requirements and tax base.  But, the University also provides amenitites and opportunities that make the town a dynamic and interesting place to live.  

  • Walterhannibal

    I understand all these issues are valid and important but OMG enough. Is it all doom and gloom how about something uplifting and maybe humourous.
    It is such a downer and after awhile I have to turn off the radio.  How about about a program that focuses on some positive, funny, uplifting stories. Isn’t there anything good out there…Or maybe just inject  a humour minute a few times a day.
    I remember Readers digest wrote laughter is the best medicine.
    come on KQED put a smile on the bay area

  • I’d like to second the on-air comment by Sawyer from Oakland about giving more sustained and thoughtful coverage to the Occupy movement. Occupy activists are constantly doing innovative and productive grassroots work on a host of issues (foreclosures, prison reform, education cutbacks, and food/farming policy, to cite just a few) that the general public knows nothing about because the newsmedia only comes out for the mass demonstrations that predictably result in police repression and therefore juicy footage of clashes. The Gill Tract Occupy farmers were up against UC in Hayward Municipal Court Dept. 520 this morning at 9:30 a.m.   Was KQED, CIR, or the Bay Citizen there?  

  • Bryan

    When commuting I often switch back and forth between KQED and KALW, which are carrying essentially simultaneous Morning Edition or All Things Considered feeds. KQED reception is better, but in my experience the KQED News and “California Report” (and can you brand that a little less often, please?) pieces are usually of less interest that the content they preempt.

  • Bovey43

    There simply must be an end to the endless underwriting announcements which, contrary to KQED’s assertions, take up more than 7 minutes per half hour. I timed them and indeed they are inserted at the beginning, middle and end of each program. Why not talk about the new options for deriving funding support to make KQED financially sustainable.

  • Christina

    I wanted to register the opposite opinion of the listener on this morning’s first hour who asked for less local news. I am well aware of the pre-empting of small portions of NPR programming for local coverage, and while all of that content is surely worthy, I find that KQED’s coverage of local news is the only local coverage that doesn’t fall into the fluff pit. I personally was very interested in the story on Bayview restaurants – a neighorhood that I, too, ignored for many years until several of my friends recently started buying their first homes out there. With the advent of the T-line to the neighborhood, the upcoming university expansion, and close friends now at the heart of gentrification controversies, the Bayview has my interest and rightly deserves the attention of the media, and not exclusively in stories of crime and urban blight. Thank you for the careful balance that you obviously work so hard to achieve.

  • Youaresoneighborly

    I have three news story ideas:

    1)  The growing population of the child-free in America and chasm that is being created between those with children and those without

    2)  A very important organization The Fear of Flying Clinic is at risk of closing.  They have done incredible work with folks that have a fear of flying.  The economy has taken a toll on this institution.  More discussion about fear and anxiety and it’s effects on our community.

    3)  The senior population is growing….what’s everyone going to do?  Who is going to take care of our aging population?  Why can’t anyone see this tsunami off shore?

  • K_Rohrbach

    In response to a caller’s criticism of a recent show highlighting new restaurants in the Bayview, Julia McEvoy stated that the story had been prompted, in part, by complaints about KQED’s lack of coverage of the Bayview.

    My jaw dropped.

    I have to ask McEvoy: Does she honestly think that THIS type of coverage is WANTED by long-time Bayview residents?

    To me, the show appeared calculated to appeal to the those who are displacing the Bayview’s historically Black population (e.g., reverse-commuting dot-commers).

    Why not do a story about environmental racism in BVHP and the non-existence of Superfund moneys to de-toxify the Shipyard? The current status of Lennar’s land-grab? The SFPD’s practices of racial profiling and harassment? The discriminatory practices of government and private contractors, insurance companies, and lenders? The on-going attack on, and diminishment of funds for, government-subsidized housing?

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