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Gov. Henry McMaster Tweeted this photo Thursday afternoon with the caption "Lives depend on it. Wear it."

  As South Carolina enters the July 4th weekend, public health officials are bracing for what they term as a possible unimaginable number of new cases of the coronavirus.  Gov. McMaster said this week the state is facing a test.

The authors of "We Are Charleston" (left to right) historian Dr. Bernard Powers, State Poet Laureate Marjory Wentworth and former journalist Herb Frazier
Jack Alterman

In the months following the unimaginable church massacre at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, a poet, a journalist and an historian came together to write a book.  They wanted to explain to a nation not only what happened, but why.

Why were nine Black parishioners gunned down by a white stranger?

Five years later, the authors of "We Are Charleston" find themselves trying to explain again why more African Americans continue to be killed across the country, repeatedly and publicly, this time by white police officers.

Mika Baumeister / Unsplash

On Thursday morning, the Spartanburg County Council held a special meeting to vote on whether to ask residents and visitors to wear face coverings – not just masks – at grocery stores and pharmacies in the county. The resolution adopted 3-1 was largely symbolic, as most measures by county and local governments have been amid a stunning spike in confirmed COVID-19 cases and escalating death totals.

There will be no enforcement, in other words, if someone walks into a supermarket without a mask on.

Gov. Henry McMaster/Twitter

On this episode of the South Carolina Lede for July 2, 2020, host Gavin Jackson brings you the latest data on the Palmetto State's growing number of COVID-19 cases, what the second half of the year may look like economically, thoughts from Gov. Henry McMaster concerning masks, and more.

Views from Sumter and Senate streets in Downtown Columbia
Thelisha Eaddy/ SC Public Radio

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, South Carolina Public Radio and South Carolina ETV are broadcasting the series Sisterhood: South Carolina Suffragists. The series looks at how local women played  roles in a national movement that eventually guaranteed more than 26 million women the right to vote.

On this episode of the South Carolina Lede for June 30, 2020, host Gavin Jackson is joined by the Atlanta Journal Constitution's Maya T. Prabhu to take an in-depth look at Georgia’s new hate crimes law. We also hear from South Carolina public health officials about increasing COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, listen to your voicemails, and more.


On this episode of the South Carolina Lede for June 27, 2020, host Gavin Jackson brings you a look at the cities that are and aren’t issuing face mask requirements along with the Gov. Henry McMaster's thoughts on a statewide ordinance. Plus, we catch you up on the latest broadband expansion efforts including what internet maps in your area look like, hear from an MUSC doctor about when you should go to the hospital for COVID-19 symptoms, and more.

South Carolina Public Radio

This episode of Spoleto Backstage showcases a 2012 chamber series program bookended by late Romantic American works. Opening with Arthur Foote’s A Night Piece, the concert also features Joseph Haydn’s Symphony No. 101 in D Major, “The Clock” (arr. Salomon) before concluding with Amy Beach’s Piano Quintet in F-sharp minor, Op. 67. Geoff Nuttall and Bradley Fuller talk about the selections and the backgrounds of those who wrote them ahead of the music itself.

Following the concert, Bradley speaks with countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo about his recent engagements, from performing in the lead role of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2019-20 production of Philip Glass’s opera Akhnaten to keeping busy with a variety of projects which don’t involve performing before a live, in-person audience. Anthony also shares about his beginnings as a singer and how he envisions the future of the countertenor repertoire.  

Capital City Columbia Passes Face Covering Ordinance

Jun 26, 2020

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike, more cities are passing their own rules requiring masks. Clemson and Charleston are joining Greenville and Columbia in requiring everyone to wear masks in grocery stores and pharmacies. 
South Carolina Public Radio's Vince Kolb-Lugo spoke with Columbia mayor Steve Benjamin about the city's new rules, which go into effect Friday, June 26, 2020. 

Statue of John C. Calhoun is lifted from its more than 100 foot tall base at Marion Square on June 24, 2020.
Victoria Hansen/ SC Public Radio

It’s been nearly impossible to see the face of John C. Calhoun perched atop a more than 100- foot pedestal over the Charleston city skyline for 124 years, but now the likeness of the South Carolina statesman is gone.

It took time to take down.

Calhoun was a former State Senator and Vice President of the United States. But he was also a well-known advocate of racist policies, especially slavery.

The Debate

His stature in one of the city’s most prominent parks, Marion Square, has been debated for years.

After a 17-hour process, the statue of John C. Calhoun in Marion Square in Charleston, SC, was removed on June 24, 2020.
Gavin Jackson/SCETV

On this episode of the South Carolina Lede for June 25, 2020, host Gavin Jackson brings you an account of the removal of the John C. Calhoun statue from Charleston's Marion Square, a look at moves by two of the state’s biggest cities to mandate mask usage in certain places, a breakdown of Gov. Henry McMaster's new restaurant COVID-19 safety plan, and more.

Statue of John C. Calhoun Comes Down in Charleston

Jun 24, 2020
Crews prepare the statue of John C. Calhoun to be removed from a 100 foot pedestal in Charleston's Marion Square
Victoria Hansen/ SC Public Radio

A statue of John C. Calhoun has stood atop a perch of more than one hundred feet over Marion Square for 124 years and it was no easy task taking the likeness down.

Calhoun was a former State Senator and Vice President of the United States.  But he was also well known as an advocate of racist policies and slavery. 

His stature in one of the city's most prominent parks has been debated for years. 

On this episode of the South Carolina Lede for June 23, 2020, we look at Sen. Tim Scott’s (R-SC) JUSTICE Act and related issues at the state level, hear from a lawyer about worker’s compensation issues during these COVID-19 times, and get more info from one of DHEC’s top officials handling the pandemic.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Back in January, South Carolina Public Radio spoke to Dr. Alecia Watt, the director of Greenville Technical College’s Educational Opportunity Program, about the school’s initiative to identify and retain African-American male students who were at risk of dropping out.

The original feature is here.

SC Gov. Henry McMaster (right) at Fibertex Nonwoven facility in Laurens County, June 5, 2020
SC Governor's Office

New cases of the coronavirus are soaring in the state causing a new set of challenges for state and local officials.

For the first three months of the COVID-19 pandemic, South Carolina saw relatively low numbers of cases attributed to a series of state mandates ordering schools and many businesses closed, and for people to stay home.