Father’s Day is next Sunday and all this week on Now I’ve Heard Everything we’re featuring interviews about fathers.
Few men are as widely praised as Sargent Shriver was. after his death in early 2011. Thousands of tributes hailed Shriver not only for his great public accomplishments — including founding the Peace Corps, building President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty — but also his personal virtues.
He was, in nearly everyone’s words, a “good man.”
I met his son Mark Shriver about a year-and-a-half after his father’s death, in 2012, when he wrote a book about his father, and what he had learned from him in life and in death.
So here now, from 2012, Mark Shriver.
Mark Shriver, who’s 56 noe, is President of the Save the Children Action Network. He and his family live in Maryland.
Few poets ever rise to the kind of prominence enjoyed by Maya Angelou. But of course, she was much more than a poet — essayist, memoirist, and civil rights activist. And not a bad singer, as you’ll hear in a few minutes.
She worked with both Martin Luther King and Malcolm X.
In 1993, Angelou recited her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at the first inauguration of President Bill Clinton. I met her a few months later.
Here now, from October 1993, Maya Angelou.
In 2013, Maya Angelou published the seventh volume of her autobiography.
This is an episode of Now I’ve Heard Everything that made me think very carefully about. Given the tensions the entire nation — the world — is enduring right now, I did not want to further inflame things.
But ultimately, I think this interview, from 1992, with former Sgt. Stacey Koon, may provide some relevance and context.
Let’s go back to March 1991. An LA cop makes a late-night traffic stop, pulling over a car driven by a man named Rodney King.
Things quickly escalated, as King resisted attempts to arrest him for drunk driving. Four LAPD officers arrived, to offer assistance — and were caught on video, shot by a nearby resident, repeatedly hitting King with their nightsticks. They Tased him twice.
The ranking officer at the scene: Sgt. Stacey Koon.
After portions of the video were broadcast, all the officers were charged with excessive use of force, and after a high-profile trial in April 1992 in state court, all were acquitted.
The now-famous LA riots followed.
About six months later is when I met Stacey Koon, who had just written a book called “Presumed Guilty.” And as you\’re about to hear, Koon was still angry.
Here now, from October 1992, Sgt. Stacey Koon.
Six months after this interview, Stacey Koon and Officer Lawrence Powell were convicted in federal court of violating Rodney King’s civil rights, and were sentenced to 20 months in prison.
Stacey Koon is 69 now and stays largely out of the public eye.