Twice a week millions of newspaper readers across the country seek out Leonard Pitt’s opinion, and recently the award winning writer sat down with the host of a WEHC program to discuss several controversial issues, including the use of the N-word.
Leonard Pitts, whose interview is scheduled for Oct. 13, joined the Miami Herald in 1991 as its pop music critic. Since 1994, he has penned a syndicated column that can be found in the Bristol Herald Courier. In the column he tackles what he calls “the politics of the human condition.” His commentary covers social issues, pop culture and family life. In 2004, Pitts was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for commentary.
He granted the interview to WEHC to promote his new book, “Forward From This Moment,” a composition of columns and selected longer pieces about life after the September 11 attacks, spirituality, American identity, and Britney Spears.
The interview is part of the 30-minute show, “This Conversation,” which airs each Wednesday at 6 p.m. and is replayed on Sundays at 2 p.m. on WEHC, the noncommercial college and community station in Emory, Va. The program is hosted by Dr. Teresa Keller.
In the interview scheduled to debut Oct. 13, Pitts discusses why he is becoming fatigued by discussions of race. He addresses the question that people often ask: Why can black people use the N-word and white people can’t?
Pitts also talks openly about an email message that has bothered him greatly. He states that from all the “nasty and incoherent” messages he gets, one in particular that suggests his winning the Pulitzer Prize has diminished the prestigious award has disturbed him most.
For the remainder of October, “This Conversation” will feature interviews with congressional candidates from Southwest Virginia on the Wednesday, 6 p.m. time slot for Oct. 20, 24 and 27. The 30-minute long interviews will be recorded in advance and will run in a rotation determined at random so that no one makes a decision on which interview runs closest to Election Day on November 2.
The interview with Leonard Pitts can be heard on 90.7 FM or online through the WEHC link at the College’s website, where programming is streamed 24 hours a day. The congressional candidate interviews will all be linked to the WEHC station’s website starting on October 19th for all interested voters.