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Coming up on Connections: Thursday, December 14, 2023

This stock images shows a honeybee on clover.
Chamois huntress
Adobe Stock
This stock images shows a honeybee on clover.

First hour: An update on the Birds and Bees Protection Act

Second hour: Is "Love Actually" the ultimate romantic comedy or...awful, actually?

Governor Kathy Hochul has less than ten days to act on a piece of legislation that would limit the use of certain pesticides in the state. If passed, the Birds and Bees Protection Act would prohibit the sale of neonic pesticides or the use of seeds coated with those pesticides. Environmental groups are in favor of the bill, saying it would protect the health of humans and wildlife. Agricultural groups that oppose it say it would whittle away at pest protections farmers need every season. This hour, we explore various sides of the issue as the bill sits on the governor’s desk. Our guests:

  • Daniel Raichel, acting director of the Pollinator Initiative in the Wildlife Division at the Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Kathleen Nolan, M.D., pediatrician, president of the New York Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility, member of the Ulster County Legislature, and senior research director at Catskill Mountainkeeper
  • David DeGolyer, executive consultant at WNY Crop Management Association
  • Rick Zimmerman, former deputy commissioner of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, and longtime agricultural policy expert

Then in our second hour, “Love Actually:” love it or hate it? It has been 20 years since the film was first released. Some call it the ultimate romantic comedy and a Christmas classic, others say it’s polarizing and problematic. What do you think? This hour, our guests debate what they say are the merits and the shortcomings of the film. And if you haven’t seen it, you can catch it at the Little Theatre Friday and Saturday. Our guests:

  • Mona Isler, “Love Actually” fan
  • Vanessa Cheeks, “Love Actually” fan, and co-founder of the Anomaly Film Festival
  • Matt Passantino, “Love Actually” fan, and film critic for CITY Magazine
  • Erich Van Dussen, film buff who gave “Love Actually” a “punishing review”
  • Mark Brummitt, Ph.D., Brit who says “Love Actually” infuriates him
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.