HOST: Welcome to AMERICAN MOSAIC in VOA Special English. I'm Doug Johnson.
On our show this week:
We hear some music by Shirley Horn ...
Answer two questions about American political parties.
And report about the professional baseball team that recently won the World Series.
Chicago White Sox
The Chicago White Sox major league baseball team won their first World Series since nineteen seventeen last week. Faith Lapidus tells us the story of the White Sox' long road to victory.
FAITH LAPIDUS: The White Sox play baseball in one of the largest cities in America -- Chicago, Illinois. The team is an important part of the city's proud history. A team called the White Sox has played baseball in Chicago since the year nineteen hundred.
The team is called the White Sox because the players wear long white stockings as part of their playing clothes. The team is part of major league baseball's American League. The city has another professional baseball team -- the Chicago Cubs of the National League. Every summer, baseball fans in Chicago look forward to the games when the Cubs play against the White Sox.
Every autumn, the best baseball teams of the American League and National League play championship games called the World Series. The teams compete for the North American baseball championship. The White Sox had not won a World Series championship since nineteen seventeen. Only very old people can remember a time when the White Sox were the best team in baseball.
The White Sox had a chance to win the World Series again in nineteen nineteen. Some men who bet money on baseball games gave money to eight White Sox players. They wanted the players to lose the game on purpose so that the gamblers could win money on their bets. The White Sox lost the World Series that year. The plot was discovered and the eight players who took part were never permitted to play baseball again. That year, the team became known as the Black Sox. Several American movies have been made about this event.
The White Sox played in the World Series again, in nineteen fifty-nine. They lost. Some White Sox fans believed their team would always lose because of the cheating Black Sox players. But last week, the bad luck ended. The dreams of the fans who have loved their team for so many years came true. The Chicago White Sox won the World Series. They became the best team in baseball again.
HOST: Our listener questions this week come from Turkey and China. Raci asks about the differences between the Democratic and Republican political parties. Ma Wei asks about other American political parties. This is a good time to answer these questions because Americans are preparing to vote in state and local elections on Tuesday.
The Republicans and Democrats are the two major political parties. Republicans generally are conservative. Democrats usually hold more liberal or progressive beliefs.
Thomas Jefferson started the Democratic Party in seventeen ninety-two. In eighteen hundred, he was the first member of the party to be elected president. It was first called the Democratic-Republican Party, but became the Democratic party in eighteen forty-four.
The Republican Party began in the early eighteen fifties as a result of efforts by anti-slavery activists and others. Abraham Lincoln became the first Republican Party president in eighteen sixty.
Today, Republicans generally support free trade and open markets, low taxes, a strong military, smaller government and few restrictions on business. They believe people should create their own success and not depend on public aid. Most Republicans support the rights of Americans to own guns. They oppose operations that end pregnancies.
The Democratic Party generally supports the idea that government should provide programs to help people in need. Party members believe men and women should be paid equally for the same work. Democrats support controls on gun ownership. Most Democrats believe a woman should have the right to end her pregnancy.
There are more than thirty other political parties in the United States. They are known as third parties. Some of them support candidates in local, state or presidential elections. Each has its own political policy. For example, the Green Party is linked to the environmental Green movement around the world. It supports environmental protection. And the Libertarian Party wants more freedom, lower taxes and less government.
Jazz performer Shirley Horn died last month at the age of seventy- one. Pat Bodnar tells us about the woman and her music.
PAT BODNAR: Shirley Horn lived all her life in and around Washington, D.C. She was considered one of the great jazz singers of the nineteen fifties and sixties. She was often compared to the famous singers Ella Fitzgerald, Dinah Washington and Sarah Vaughan.
Shirley Horn began learning how to play the piano at age four. She studied classical music as a teenager. She began to sing jazz in clubs and started her own jazz group in nineteen fifty-four. Here she sings the famous Cole Porter song "Love for Sale."
Shirley Horn recorded her first album in nineteen sixty. The famous jazz musician Miles Davis heard the album. He liked it so much that he invited Miz Horn to play music with him in New York City.
Shirley Horn went on to record several successful albums. She won a Grammy Award in nineteen ninety-eight for the album "I Remember Miles." Here she sings and Miles Davis plays the trumpet on the song "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Cryin'."
Experts say Shirley Horn was one of the slowest singers in jazz. She liked to put stress on some words and let others slip away. Critics say that she will be remembered as one of the best singers in a great period of American jazz.
We leave you now with Shirley Horn playing the piano and singing "I Just Found Out About Love."
HOST: I'm Doug Johnson. I hope you enjoyed our program.
This show was written by Katherine Gypson and Jill Moss. Caty Weaver was the producer. Join us again next week for AMERICAN MOSAIC, VOA’s radio magazine in Special English.