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Coming up on Connections: Friday, February 2


First hour: How will the solar tariff impact the future of solar in the U.S.?

Second hour: How language and grammar change over time

On January 23, the Trump administration imposed a 30 percent tariff on solar cells and modules made abroad. President Trumps says the move will increase U.S. manufacturing of solar equipment and create jobs. Since the tariff was imposed, one Chinese solar company has announced it will build a plant in Florida. While plans for the plant were in the works prior to the Trump administration's announcement, the company said it "continues to closely monitor treatment of imports of solar cells and modules under the U.S. trade laws." Some say this is an early victory under the tariff, but critics say the move will harm the solar industry in the U.S. According to research conducted by Greentech Media, the tariff could result in an 11 percent decrease of installations over the next four years, and lead to tens of thousands of job losses. Our guests weigh in on the issue and answer your questions about solar. In studio:

  • Kevin Schulte, CEO of SunCommon NY
  • Ben Frevert, member of the leadership team for the Rochester People’s Climate Coalition

Then in our second hour, we know that language evolves over time, but recent research shows that grammar actually change more quickly than language. What's acceptable to you when it comes to changes in standards? Does it bother you when you see a text message without punctuation? What about how grammar is used on social media? Maybe you're a member of the Grammar Police, maybe you think all change is good, or maybe you fall somewhere in the middle. Where do we draw the line? Our panel discuss that question, and the evolution of grammar and language. Our guests:

  • Maya Abtahian, assistant professor of linguistics at the University of Rochester
  • Sheila Byrne, Advanced Placement English teacher at Webster Thomas High School 
  • Banke Awopetu, local author and poet  
  • Veronica Volk, reporter and producer for WXXI News who studied media theory at Fordham University, and WXXI News’ resident translator of internet slang
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.