Scott Morgan

Producer, Reporter

Scott Morgan is the Upstate multimedia journalist for South Carolina Public Radio, based in Rock Hill. He cut his teeth as a newspaper reporter and editor in New Jersey before finding a home in public radio in Texas. Scott joined South Carolina Public Radio in March of 2019. His work has appeared in numerous national and regional publications as well as on NPR and MSNBC. He's won numerous awards for his work including two regional and one national Edward R. Murrow. He prefers to do crossword puzzles in ink, but is frequently wrong.

Ways to Connect

Pixabay

The African-American community’s best and most trusted resource is often itself.

When it comes to the COVID-19 vaccine, that can actually be a problem.

Daniel Schludi / Unsplash

The COVID-19 vaccine is here. But you might be confused about when you can get it or how.

So let’s break it down.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

In a chilly December sunset at Wild Hope Farm, the chickens are nice and warm, bobbing around inside an enclosed pen while a pair of China geese float in a small pond just outside. Stretching out to their right are long strips of green cover cops and similarly long strips of garlic.

It might not look it to the casual eye, but these birds and plants are all here to do a job, and an elegantly coordinated one at that. The geese chase away the hawks that prey on the chickens that eat the cover crops that draw greenhouse gases from the air. The garlic does that too, except it will end up in people bellies later this year, and not chicken bellies.

SCDHEC

Death is not the end of things when it comes to COVID. Not for coroners, anyway.

“People hear ‘death’ and it carries the connotation that it’s over,” says Lancaster County Coroner Karla Deese. “There’s so much more that occurs.”

Most people likely haven’t thought about how COVID deaths have changed things for coroners. In Lancaster County, where the morgue’s capacity for storage is 12, deceased people are adding up.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Opioid pain killers were sold to doctors as little raindrops of happiness that would end a patient’s agony without being addictive.

In reality, addiction to opium-based prescription drugs triggered what Dr. Greg Colbath, an orthopedic surgeon at Spartanburg Regional Medical Center, calls “the largest manmade scourge we’ve ever unleashed.”

Meghan Barp / United Way of Greenville County

On a given day, the United Way of Greenville County used to field 50, maybe 60 calls from residents needing help. When the pandemic and its economic haymaker struck, call volume increased to 500 a day.
And it’s stayed there.


The calls come from wave after wave of Greenville residents who’ve fallen behind on utilities and rent bills. Meghan Barp, UWGC’s CEO, estimates that around 8,500 households in the county are in arrears for close to $8 million.

Campaign photos

Lindsey Graham won the most watched (and expensive) U.S. Senate race of the year. By a lot. He wasn’t supposed to. Not by a lot, anyway. Not if you paid attention to public opinion polls leading up to the election. Most polls gave him the odds, but not big odds.

Some polls even gave his challenger, Democrat Jamie Harrison, a slight chance to unseat him.

When Gov. Henry McMaster suspended Chester County Sheriff Alex Underwood due to federal corruption charges last year, he appointed Max Dorsey in his place. That touched off a long and complicated story that involved, among other things, Underwood vying to keep his seat on the 2020 ballot.

Eighteen months after assuming the office by appointment, Dorsey got his election victory. He won the sheriff's race by a nearly two-to-one margin and in the process became the county's first elected Republican sheriff since about the time Abraham Lincoln was the party's main face.

Provided by Veronica Morris

In the middle of an interview on Zoom, nature called on Hestia Morris to be let into the yard. Veronica Morris took her, trilling a sing-song hellooo to a neighbor under a perfect, cobalt Rock Hill sky.

How ordinary it all would be for anyone who isn’t Veronica Morris. But for this particular service-dog mom, stepping out into the yard without thinking anything of it is not always a guarantee. Morris is an agoraphobe whose condition is so severe, she is considered disabled.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Until about 10 minutes before noon on March 30 of this year, the Chester County sheriff’s race was set to be a one-man affair.

Max Dorsey, a Republican, was running unopposed. For almost a year, he’d been serving as the interim sheriff in Chester – an appointee to the position when Gov. Henry McMaster named him to take the place of Alex Underwood who, after serving as sheriff since 2012, was brought up on a host of federal and state corruption charges in May of 2019.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Deepfake (noun): Synthetic media in which a person in an existing image or video is replaced with someone else's likeness.

You stumble across a video of Nicholas Cage as Superman. You think, “Wait a minute – Nic never played Superman!”

And you’d be right.

Zoom still

I’m sitting in my office in Rock Hill, talking on Zoom with John Sohrawardi in Rochester, N.Y. Sohrawardi, a research student at the Rochester Institute of Technology, is running me through a game – it turns out I’m the first reporter to do so – to test how well I would vet something that, if true, would be a bombshell.

This is research for the DeFake project – a joint RIT/University of South Carolina project to develop an advanced, for-journalists-only deepfake detection software program.

Michaela J. Baker / University of South Carolina

Deepfake technology is getting better and better. And things are moving so fast, journalism is going to require some young blood to keep up with it.

Andrea Betancourt and Shelby Beckler are senior journalism students at the University of South Carolina. They share some surprisingly seasoned perspectives on this dangerous, emerging technology, the opportunity for journalists to step up, and the weight of public trust.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Isn’t it interesting how differently the following two phrases sound:

  • A little house in the country.
  • Affordable rural housing.

They’re the same thing, really. But perceptions about life in the country depend almost entirely on whether someone with choices opts to buy a house there or someone without choices tries to buy in.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

The mental health crisis among healthcare workers in the pandemic is, in large part, one of moral crisis.  

We’ve reported on the emotional toll COVID-19 can take on frontline healthcare workers. But what about the toll it’s taking on professionals at the further reaches of the healthcare continuum?

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