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Native American Mascots, NMGOP on COVID-19 Response, “Herd Immunity” and Masks

This week on New Mexico in Focus, senior producer Matt Grubs talks to former U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce, who now chairs the New Mexico Republican Party. The GOP has accused Governor Lujan Grisham of being too restrictive in her efforts to slow the growth of COVID-19. 

Correspondent Megan Kamerick interviews Dr. Steven Bradfute, research assistant professor of UNM’s Center for Global Health and Department of Internal Medicine, on the long-term impacts of COVID-19 for survivors and the idea of “herd immunity.”

After decades of Native American advocates fighting the racial slur in the name of the Washington, DC, football team, the NFL team announced it will retire the name and logo and end its use of the R-word. The Black Lives Matter movement is credited for raising awareness of Indian mascots in the wake of racial justice rallies brought on by the police killing of George Floyd. Correspondent Antonia Gonzales hears from Native writers and advocates who say work on the issue is not over.

Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel look at new restrictions put into place this week as a result of the rise in COVID-19 cases, including a return to shutting down indoor dining in restaurants throughout New Mexico. And what will public schooling really look like this fall?  

The Line also looks at District Attorney Raul Torrez’ recent decision to refile charges against Steven Baca, the man accused of shooting protester Scott Williams at a protest over an Oñate statue near downtown Albuquerque last month.

Host: Gene Grant

In Focus Interviews:

The New Mexico GOP on COVID-19
Correspondent: Matt Grubs
Guest: Steve Pearce, chairman, Republican Party of New Mexico

COVID-19 Impacts and Herd Immunity
Correspondent: Megan Kamerick
Guest: Steven Bradfute, Ph.D., research assistant professor, UNM Center for Global Health and Department of Internal Medicine

Native American Mascots
Correspondent: Antonia Gonzales
Suzan Shown Harjo, DC area Native rights advocate
Rhonda LeValdo, journalist and instructor at Haskell Indian Nations University, Kansas
Sunnie Clahchischiligi, UNM doctoral student and sports writer

Line Panelists:  
Tom Garrity, The Garrity Group PR
Inez Russell Gomez, editorial page editor, Santa Fe New Mexican
Laura Sanchez, attorney