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On Point
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On Point helps listeners understand how the world works, at a time the world is more complex than ever. Its unique, curiosity-driven combination of original reporting, first-person stories, sound design, and in depth live analysis creates an experience that strives to make the world more intelligible and humane.

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  • The COVID pandemic paved the way for widespread use of telehealth doctor’s appointments. They worked. But some states are rolling back access to virtual visits.
  • 20 years after the U.S. invaded Iraq, congress is quietly repealing its authorization of the war. We look back at the past two decades in Iraq, through an Iraqi's eyes. Ghaith Abdul-Ahad joins Meghna Chakrabarti.
  • Mass protest in Israel have delayed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s attempts to transform Israel’s judiciary. But there are signs of deeper troubles for Israeli democracy.
  • Sitting members of Congress are aiding January 6th defendants. Visiting them in jail, releasing raw Capitol footage to Fox news. We hear what it means when members of Congress back the people who tried to tear Congress down.
  • The U.S. is considering banning the hugely popular video-sharing app TikTok, over concerns that its Chinese ownership poses a threat to national security. What’s to fear about TikTok?
  • Why did Jacob Wideman murder Eric Kane? In 1986, the two 16-year-olds were rooming together on a summer camp trip to the Grand Canyon when Jacob fatally — and inexplicably — stabbed Eric. That night, Jacob went on the run, absconding with the camp’s rented Oldsmobile and thousands of dollars in traveler’s checks. Before long, he turned himself in and eventually confessed to the killing — although he couldn’t explain what drove him to do it. It would take years of therapy and medical treatment behind bars before Jacob could begin to understand what was going through his mind that night. It would take even longer to try to explain it to his family, to his victim’s family and to parole board members, who would decide whether he deserved to be free ever again. This debut episode of “Violation,” a podcast from WBUR and The Marshall Project, introduces the story of the crime that has bound two families together for decades. Jacob’s father, John Edgar Wideman, is an acclaimed author of many books on race, violence and criminal justice. He spoke with Violation host Beth Schwartzapfel in a rare, in-depth interview about his son’s case that listeners will hear throughout the series, including this premiere.
  • For the first time in U.S. history, a former president may be charged with a serious crime. We discuss the legal and political fallout of the possible indictment of Donald Trump.
  • In America we have the wealth and the know-how to end poverty, so why don’t we? Sociologist Matthew Desmond seeks answers in his new book “Poverty, By America.”
  • Just three weeks after the catastrophic earthquake in Turkey, reconstruction was already underway. Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has promised to rebuild in one year. But is racing to rebuild the right answer? Evren Aydoğan, Divya Chandrasekhar and Jared Maslin join Meghna Chakrabarti.
  • Teen mental health is declining, particularly among girls. The pressure of social media is often cited as a leading cause. But that’s not the full story behind the mental health of teenage girls in the U.S.
  • The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank marks the second largest bank failure in America’s history. Some say a 2018 rollback on bank regulations helped cause it. What happens when so-called mid-sized banks also get too big to fail?
  • Computer brain interfaces used to be the stuff of science fiction. Now, headphones and earbuds with sensors that can read your brain waves – and sell your data – are hitting the market. Experts say it’s the time to establish rules of the road.