9.14.16: Bikinis to Burkinis, Postable, & White Collar Criminals

Sep 14, 2016

Fashion week is on in New York and the Burkini ban is off in one French town - with more likely to follow. A high court found no proof that the full-cover swimsuit favored by some Muslim women does not pose a security threat. Today, the long history of women's bodies - and fashion - as political battleground.

Plus, getting locked up is no picnic, especially for crooked executives arrogant enough to think they live by different rules. We'll talk to a consultant who prepares high-rollers for life behind bars. 

Listen to the full show. 

Bikinis to Burkinis

Spring 2017 is tromping down the runways at New York's Fashion Week. So far, not a Burkini in sight. Late last month, France's highest court struck down a prohibition against Burkinis in one of the 30 seaside towns which forbade the full-body covering favored by some Muslim women. Proponents argue the ban increases security and defend secularism in light of the attack in nearby nice. Opponents claim it's straight-up islamophobia.

Deirdre Clemente from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, studies American culture, fashion, and clothing. She says it is not the first time the law has stepped in to regulate how women dress on the beach.  

Automating Greeting Cards

Who doesn't love finding personal notes in the slush pile of daily mail, especially around a birthday, or the holidays? When family newsletters and cards get tacked up or perched on shelves? It's quaint, comforting, and a little old fashioned to receive a physical greeting in your mailbox instead of a text, Facebook post, or graphic in your email inbox. Would it still feel as the same if the note was outsourced to a company and addressed by a robot?  

June Thomas is a Slate culture critic and editor of Slate's LGBTQ section who wrote about Postable - a snail mail service.

Related: This Website Mails Out Physical Greeting Cards for You

White Collar Criminals

There's a world of entitlement that seems as distant to most of us as living in a penthouse, or owning a private jet. Where personal bank accounts can surpass the GDP of entire countries and even crime has a fancier name: white collar.

Marc Dreier is a former New York attorney who orchestrated one of the largest fraud schemes in US history is now serving a 20-year prison sentence. He’s interviewed in Marc Simon's documentary Unraveled, which reveals a perceived impunity among criminals who never thought they'd land in prison. It also inspired Andrew Snyder to start counseling white-collar clients to prepare for a reality that is a world apart from their own.    

San Quentin Prison Report: Lockdown

A prison lockdown is called when correctional officers decide there is a threat to safety or security. It could be a fight, an assault, or in extreme cases, a riot. And it’s pretty much what it sounds like. During lockdown, inmates have to stay in their cells until the disturbance is contained. They can't go anywhere unless strip-searched, handcuffed, and escorted by correctional officers.

Throughout a lockdown, inmates spend 24 hours a day with at least one other cell mate in a space the size of your average bathroom. And the confinement can last months. So what becomes of a man’s daily routine? How does he overcome boredom? And if he knows it might be coming, how does he prepare? Adnan Khan brings us this report from San Quentin prison.

You can listen to this story again at PRX.org.