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DNA testing: is it worth it?20190828

PART ONE
There are lots of reasons you may want to take a DNA test. Perhaps you want to find out where in the world your DNA comes from or connect to relatives. But people don’t always know what they’re getting themselves into and some make shocking discoveries about their families. We speak to Rebekah Drumsta from the NPE Friends Fellowship, a charity which helps people come to terms with finding out that one of their parents isn’t a biological relative. DNA tests also raise questions about healthcare. We hear from Nick in Kentucky, who thinks his life was saved after a DNA test spotted a hard to diagnose condition. So should they be used alongside traditional healthcare services such as the NHS? Kathy Hibbs from 23andMe tells us how the company would like to work with the NHS. And Adam Rutherford, who is a geneticist and author of ‘The Book of Humans: A Brief History of Culture, Sex, War and the Evolution of Us’, tells us why he’s sceptical about the idea.

PART TWO
Almost half of young women in the UK are considering freezing their eggs, according to a recent survey. It involves harvesting eggs from a woman’s ovaries and keeping them in storage so she might be able to still have a baby even if her fertility declines. But it costs thousands of pounds and currently the success rates are low. Many women either can’t afford it, or don’t want to spend so much on something that might not work. Should the state or employers shoulder the cost? And should we all talk more openly about fertility? The BBC’s Global Health Correspondent Smitha Mundasad and Ali, Molly and Monty join us.

The Beyond Today podcast team investigate genetics and fertility.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

How dangerous are far right hipsters?20190822

A far right youtuber in Austria, Martin Sellner, had his house raided by the authorities after revealing he’d received a $1500 donation to his movement Generation Identity. The money was from the suspect in the Christchurch mosque shooting in New Zealand. This story takes us from the world of YouTubers back to the Crusades and tells us how extreme ideas spread around the world.

The Beyond Today podcast team ask how far right ideas are spreading in Europe and online.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Is it still ok to listen to Michael Jackson's music?20190819

PART ONE: Is it still ok to listen to Michael Jackson?

Michael Jackson is perhaps the biggest pop star there’s ever been. He’s still thought of as a legend, despite years of allegations regarding his relationships with young boys. Jackson was found not guilty at a court case in 2005, but now one of the men who testified in Jackson’s defence in that case has appeared in a documentary to say, alongside another man, that the singer did regularly sexually abuse him. Michael Jackson’s family has rejected the claims and say there is "not one piece of evidence" to back up the allegations. But at a time when we tend to more easily believe victims, might Michael Jackson’s music now be off-limits? Dan Reed, the director of “Leaving Neverland” talks to us alongside the BBC’s Peter Bowes, and Scott Bryan from the Must Watch podcast.

PART TWO: Should the James Bulger story win an Oscar?

When toddler James Bulger was abducted from a shopping centre in Merseyside in 1993 and murdered by two ten-year-old boys the country was appalled. Now a new short film has been made and nominated for an Oscar. ‘Detainment’ uses the original police interviews with the boys as a basis for the drama. It’s causing a lot of controversy as the family weren’t consulted and now want people to boycott it. We hear about the original trial from Winfred Robinson, who covered the story for the BBC, and Entertainment Correspondent Colin Paterson, who has seen the Oscar-nominated film.

Stories of abuse that raise questions about what makes entertainment.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Thai Cave Rescue: What really happened?20190821

It’s almost a year since a Thai football team of 12 boys and their coach found themselves trapped for more than two weeks in the Tham Luang caves in northern Thailand. In a story that gripped the entire world, the rescue became a race against time to save the Wild Boars before heavy monsoon rains flooded the caves. The task was so complex and dangerous that it led to the death of one of the rescuers - Saman Gunan.

British caver Vernon Unsworth knows the Tham Luang caves better than anyone and played a crucial role in the rescue. In an exclusive interview he tells Beyond Today how difficult it was to get the operation off the ground, and the BBC’s South East Asia correspondent, Jonathan Head, remembers how it all happened.

How amateur cavers pulled off the rescue of the century.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

What happens to Shamima Begum now?20190820

PART ONE: What happens to Shamima Begum now?

Right now Shamima Begum is in a sprawling internment camp in the Syrian desert, stripped of her British citizenship and unable to leave. Buried there is her son Jarrah, who died of pneumonia. He was less than three weeks old. The BBC’s Middle East Correspondent Quentin Sommerville interviewed her twice and spoke to us about what happens to her now.

PART TWO: What do we get wrong about female terrorists?

Four years ago, at the age of 15, Shamima Begum ran away from home in East London to marry an Islamic State fighter in Syria. Now she’s 19, has just given birth in a refugee camp - and wants to come home. There has been huge interest in the story, but are we missing out on a bigger and more complex picture when it comes to understanding the role of women in IS? We hear from the BBC’s Daniel De Simone about other foiled terrorist plots and the role women played in hatching them. And academics Joana Cooke and Gina Vale tell us what people get wrong about radicalised women.

A 15-year-old leaving home to join IS sparks questions about young women and terrorism.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

What's it like to be attacked at a Trump rally?20190823

PART ONE
BBC cameraman Ron Skeans was attacked at a rally for President Donald Trump in Texas. A man in a Make America Great Again hat pushed him over and shouted “F*** the media”. It was a shocking incident for Ron and his colleagues but, given the frequency and ferocity of the President’s criticisms of the mainstream media, perhaps not unexpected. Correspondent Gary O’Donoghue and producer Eleanor Montague were with Ron in El Paso and explain what happened and why it matters.

PART TWO
Michael Barbaro is the host of The New York Times’ podcast The Daily. It has provided a blueprint for a new type of journalism, a revolution in how news is reported and covered. And The Daily started around about the same time as another revolution was taking place - the election of President Donald Trump. Michael Barbaro helps us look back the Trump presidency - what we’ve learnt, what we’ve got wrong, how the world is different – and how journalists have responded.

Two stories about how journalism has had to adapt to the presidency of Donald Trump.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Where should we learn about sex?20190826

PART ONE
In April cricketer Alex Hepburn was jailed for raping a sleeping woman. The assault happened after Hepburn had set up a sexual conquest game on a WhatsApp group. The BBC’s Phil Mackie tells us about the trial, and we speak to lawyer Eleanor Law about the legal difficulties that arise when this kind of misogynistic behaviour goes to court. Plus self-confessed “reformed lad” Chris Hemmings explains why this culture exists and how best to tackle it.

PART TWO
Earlier this year the government announced updates to the 20-year-old sex education curriculum in England. It will now include lessons on sharing private photos and explicit content. We hear from a group of female students on their experiences of sex education and the influence of porn. The discussion is graphic.

Lad culture on trial and the things you never learn about sex from school and porn.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Why are lesbian couples not taken seriously?20190829

PART ONE
Pride has been more visible than ever before this year, with rainbows everywhere and even LGBT sandwiches on the shelves. But while it’s a measure of progress that communities are able to publicly celebrate their identity, is a party enough? Certainly not for gay women in one area of Chile, where three butch lesbians, known locally as “camionas”, have been murdered in the past decade. Megha Mohan, the BBC’s Gender and Identity Correspondent, shares the story of one of them - Nicole Saavedra. And Tabitha Benjamin, a British musician who runs the “Butch, Please” club night, tells us how she is targeted because of the way she looks.

PART TWO
After Melania Geymonat and her girlfriend Chris were attacked on a London bus last week they chose to share the photo of the aftermath of the attack, and their story, with the world. They wanted people to understand something about what they and other lesbian couples face, not just violence but also the subtle ways in which their relationships are undermined and laughed about by men. Melania explains why she chose to go public about the horrific incident. And couple Bex Wilson and Becky Priest talk about what it’s like for their relationship to be fetishised and misunderstood.

The particular struggles faced by gay women.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Why are teenagers paid to stab each other?20190827

PART ONE
Young people in Liverpool are being offered hundreds of pounds by older gang leaders to stab each other. An investigation by Layla Wright for Beyond Today found that bounties are being used in knife attacks. We speak to Alan Walsh, an experienced youth worker in Merseyside who spoke to and recorded the teenagers. He says he was shocked by what he heard. Merseyside Police say they have no evidence that this is happening, but have urged anyone who knows about it to come forward. We also hear from Layla about how difficult it was to get the teenagers to speak.

PART TWO
A look into the mindset that leads people to stab each other. We hear from a former gang member who tells our Home Affairs correspondent Danny Shaw why he’d never leave the house without carrying a knife.

Merseyside teenagers say gang leaders are handing out bounties.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

Why is South Korean spy cam porn everyone's problem?20190830

PART ONE
South Korea is considered one of the more progressive countries in Asia, with its champions of tech and dominance in pop music. But the recent introduction of 5G has led to a rise in secret recordings in public areas, including women’s changing rooms and toilets. The BBC’s Seoul correspondent Laura Bicker takes us through the rise of spy cams and how it’s fuelling the global porn industry.

PART TWO
Charlie Brooker started his career writing video game reviews before he went on to become a TV critic. But he’s best known as being the creator and writer of the hugely successful Black Mirror series, which looks at our unease with technology and has attracted some huge names. Series 5 is no different: Miley Cyrus is part of the cast. Charlie Brooker came into the Beyond Today studio to talk about his new series.

Hidden cameras, toilets and 5G in South Korea, plus the creator of Black Mirror.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

01Is It Still Ok To Listen To Michael Jackson's Music?20190819

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

PART ONE: Is it still ok to listen to Michael Jackson?

Michael Jackson is perhaps the biggest pop star there’s ever been. He’s still thought of as a legend, despite years of allegations regarding his relationships with young boys. Jackson was found not guilty at a court case in 2005, but now one of the men who testified in Jackson’s defence in that case has appeared in a documentary to say, alongside another man, that the singer did regularly sexually abuse him. Michael Jackson’s family has rejected the claims and say there is "not one piece of evidence" to back up the allegations. But at a time when we tend to more easily believe victims, might Michael Jackson’s music now be off-limits? Dan Reed, the director of “Leaving Neverland” talks to us alongside the BBC’s Peter Bowes, and Scott Bryan from the Must Watch podcast.

PART TWO: Should the James Bulger story win an Oscar?

When toddler James Bulger was abducted from a shopping centre in Merseyside in 1993 and murdered by two ten-year-old boys the country was appalled. Now a new short film has been made and nominated for an Oscar. ‘Detainment’ uses the original police interviews with the boys as a basis for the drama. It’s causing a lot of controversy as the family weren’t consulted and now want people to boycott it. We hear about the original trial from Winfred Robinson, who covered the story for the BBC, and Entertainment Correspondent Colin Paterson, who has seen the Oscar-nominated film.

Stories of abuse that raise questions about what makes entertainment.

02What Happens To Shamima Begum Now?20190820

PART ONE: What happens to Shamima Begum now?

Right now Shamima Begum is in a sprawling internment camp in the Syrian desert, stripped of her British citizenship and unable to leave. Buried there is her son Jarrah, who died of pneumonia. He was less than three weeks old. The BBC’s Middle East Correspondent Quentin Sommerville interviewed her twice and spoke to us about what happens to her now.

PART TWO: What do we get wrong about female terrorists?

Four years ago, at the age of 15, Shamima Begum ran away from home in East London to marry an Islamic State fighter in Syria. Now she’s 19, has just given birth in a refugee camp - and wants to come home. There has been huge interest in the story, but are we missing out on a bigger and more complex picture when it comes to understanding the role of women in IS? We hear from the BBC’s Daniel De Simone about other foiled terrorist plots and the role women played in hatching them. And academics Joana Cooke and Gina Vale tell us what people get wrong about radicalised women.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

03Thai Cave Rescue: What Really Happened?20190821

It’s almost a year since a Thai football team of 12 boys and their coach found themselves trapped for more than two weeks in the Tham Luang caves in northern Thailand. In a story that gripped the entire world, the rescue became a race against time to save the Wild Boars before heavy monsoon rains flooded the caves. The task was so complex and dangerous that it led to the death of one of the rescuers - Saman Gunan.

British caver Vernon Unsworth knows the Tham Luang caves better than anyone and played a crucial role in the rescue. In an exclusive interview he tells Beyond Today how difficult it was to get the operation off the ground, and the BBC’s South East Asia correspondent, Jonathan Head, remembers how it all happened.

How amateur cavers pulled off the rescue of the century.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

04How Dangerous Are Far Right Hipsters?20190822

Last week a story surfaced that seemed, on the face of it, a little bit odd. A far right youtuber in Austria, Martin Sellner, had his house raided by the authorities after revealing he’d received a $1500 donation to his movement Generation Identity. The money was from the suspect in the Christchurch shooting in New Zealand. This story takes us from the world of YouTubers back to the Crusades and tells us how extreme ideas spread around the world.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

05What's It Like To Be Attacked At A Trump Rally?20190823

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

06Where Should We Learn About Sex?20190826

Yesterday the government announced updates to the 20 year-old sex education curriculum in England. It will now include lessons on sharing private photos and explicit content. We hear from a group of female students on their experiences of sex education and the influence of porn. The discussion is very graphic. We also speak to Sadie Lune and Poppy Sanchez from the Sex School Hub in Berlin, which makes explicit educational videos.

Producers: Duncan Barber and Lucy Hancock
Mixed by Weidong Lin
Editor: John Shields

A group of housemates discuss the bits that school and porn missed.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

07Why Are Teenagers Paid To Stab Each Other?20190827

Young people in Liverpool are being offered hundreds of pounds by older gang leaders to stab each other. An investigation by Layla Wright for Beyond Today found that bounties are being used in knife attacks. We speak to Alan Walsh, an experienced youth worker in Merseyside who spoke to and recorded the teenagers. He says he was shocked by what he heard. Merseyside Police say they have no evidence that this is happening, but have urged anyone who knows about it to come forward. We also hear from Layla about how difficult it was to get the teenagers to speak.

Producers: Layla Wright, Philly Beaumont
Mixed by Nicolas Raufast
Editor: John Shields

Merseyside teenagers say gang leaders are handing out bounties.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

08Dna Testing: Is It Worth It?20190828

There are lots of reasons you may want to take a DNA test. Perhaps you want to find out where in the world your DNA comes from or connect to relatives. But people don’t always know what they’re getting themselves into and some make shocking discoveries about their families.

We speak to Rebekah Drumsta from the NPE Friends Fellowship, a charity which helps people come to terms with finding out that one of their parents isn’t a biological relative. DNA tests also raise questions about healthcare. We hear from Nick in Kentucky, who thinks his life was saved after a DNA test spotted a hard to diagnose condition. So should they be used alongside traditional healthcare services such as the NHS? Kathy Hibbs from 23andMe tells us how the company would like to work with the NHS. And Adam Rutherford, who is a geneticist and author of ‘The Book of Humans: A Brief History of Culture, Sex, War and the Evolution of Us’, tells us why he’s sceptical about the idea.

Producers: Duncan Barber and Harriet Noble.
Mixed by Nicolas Raufast.
Editor: John Shields

The risks and rewards of finding out your genetic makeup.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

09Why Aren't Lesbian Couples Taken Seriously?20190829

After Melania Geymonat and her girlfriend Chris were attacked on a London bus last week they chose to share the photo of the aftermath of the attack, and their story, with the world. They wanted people to understand something about what they and other lesbian couples face, not just violence but also the subtle ways in which their relationships are undermined and laughed about by men. On today’s episode Melania explains why she chose to go public about the horrific incident. And couple Bex Wilson and Becky Priest talk about what it’s like for their relationship to be fetishised and misunderstood.

Producers: Duncan Barber and Harriet Noble
Mixed by Nicolas Raufast
Editor: John Shields

The particular struggles faced by gay women.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4

10Why Is Korean Spy Cam Porn Everyone's Problem?20190830

South Korea is thought to be one of the more progressive countries in Asia, with its technological advancements and dominance in pop music. But the recent introduction of 5G has led to a rise in secret recordings in public areas, including women’s changing rooms and toilets. The BBC’s Seoul correspondent Laura Bicker takes us through the rise of spy cams and how it’s fuelling the global porn industry.

Hidden cameras, toilets and 5G \u2013 the epidemic that started in Korea and is spreading.

News and current affairs programme from BBC Radio 4