This week on “Sunday Morning” (September 27)

Host: Jane Pauley       

HEADLINES: Trump introduces his Supreme Court pick (Video)On Saturday President Donald Trump officially announced federal judge Amy Coney Barrett to be his nominee for the nation’s highest court, to fill the seat left open by the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Correspondent Rita Braver reports.

In some cases police who are the target of civil lawsuits over their actions may be protected from liability due to the doctrine of qualified immunity. / Credit: CBS News
In some cases police who are the target of civil lawsuits over their actions may be protected from liability due to the doctrine of qualified immunity. / Credit: CBS News

COVER STORY: The controversy behind qualified immunity | Watch VideoThe doctrine of qualified immunity, whereby police officers are protected from civil lawsuits in certain cases, has come under question. Would eliminating qualified immunity improve relations between police and the greater community? Senior contributor Ted Koppel talks with law experts, and with citizens who have become mired in lawsuits for years owing to police actions that they say violated their Constitutional rights.

For more info:

Joanna Schwartz, professor, USLA School of LawRobert McNamara, senior attorney, Institute for JusticeJack Collins, International Association of Chiefs of Police


SPORTS: Jackie Robinson, George Shuba, and the “handshake of the century” | Watch VideoIn 1946, when the trailblazing player hit his first homer for a Dodgers farm team in an otherwise all-White league, one player shook his hand – an act that was by turns normal and groundbreaking. Correspondent Susan Spencer talks with sculptor Marc Mellon about his statue honoring that momentous exchange.

For more info:

The Robinson-Shuba Commemorative Statue CommitteeMarc MellonGeorge “Shotgun” Shuba (MLB stats)

      PULSE: News consumption

Actor Jim Belushi, who has added
Actor Jim Belushi, who has added

IN CONVERSATION: Jim Belushi, cannabis farmer | Watch VideoComic actor Jim Belushi, who became famous for his TV, film and stage appearances, is cultivating a new role. Correspondent Luke Burbank talks with Belushi about pursuing his agricultural passion on his Oregon cannabis farm, and about the western wildfires that came close to burning it to the ground.

For more info:

Belushi’s Farm, Eagle Point, Ore.“Growing Belushi” (Discovery Go)

       PASSAGE: In memoriam (Video)“Sunday Morning” remembers some of the notable figures who left us this week, including NFL great Gale Sayers.

        TECHNOLOGY: Family-made Rube Goldberg contraptions: Do try this at home! (Video)This year the annual Rube Goldberg Machine Contest offered families under coronavirus lockdown a way to make good use of their time, by building contraptions that are utterly useless, except to accomplish mundane tasks in the time-honored fashion of the legendary cartoonist. Correspondent Mo Rocca witnesses some of the craziest devices.

For more info:

rubegoldberg.comRube Goldberg Machine Contest“The Art of Rube Goldberg” by Jennifer George, foreword by Adam Gopnik (Abrams), in Hardcover and eBook formats, available via AmazonJoseph’s Machines by Joseph Herscher (YouTube channel)Artwork copyright © TM ® All Rights Reserved. RUBE GOLDBERG® is a registered trademark of Rube Goldberg Inc. All materials used with permission.

       COMMENTARY: Josh Seftel and his mother on quarantine (Video)Contributor Josh Seftel – whose conversations with his mother have been featured on “Sunday Morning” from time to time – catches up with his mom, who shares her feelings on the world today, from social distancing to a visit (finally) to the hair salon.

For more info:      

seftel.comMore from Josh and Pat in “My Mom on Movies” (Facebook)

Singer and songwriter Mariah Carey. / Credit: CBS News
Singer and songwriter Mariah Carey. / Credit: CBS News

MUSIC: Mariah Carey on the darkest chapters of her life | Watch VideoWith a record 19 chart-topping hits, singer and songwriter Mariah Carey spun a bleak and scary childhood into gold and platinum. Now 50 and the devoted mother to nine-year-old twins, she talks with Jane Pauley about her new memoir, “The Meaning of Mariah Carey,” and about escaping the darkest chapters of her life.

For more info:“The Meaning of Mariah Carey” by Mariah Carey with Michaela Angela Davis (Andy Cohen Books), in Hardcover, eBook and Audio formats, available September 29 via Amazon“Mariah Carey: The Rarities” (Sony Legacy), available October 2 on CD (Amazon, Barnes & Noble), Digital Download (iTunes) and Streaming (Spotify)Follow Maria Carey on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube

         ELECTION 2020: Presidential debates: When the whole world is watching | Watch VideoJohn Dickerson of “60 Minutes” on what televised debates tell us about the weight of the job – and about the candidates themselves.

CBS News’ coverage of the presidential debate begins Tuesday, Sept. 29 at 8:30 p.m. on CBSN.

How to watch Tuesday’s presidential debateLearn more about voting in your state at

       For more info:

First 2020 Presidential Debate, at Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, September 29 (Commission on Presidential Debates)

 / Credit: CBS News
/ Credit: CBS News

PLAY: The renaissance of roller skating | Watch VideoA craze from the past is hot again. Correspondent Nancy Giles reports on the history of roller skating, and why this fad is once more on a roll.

For more info:

National Museum of Roller Skating, Lincoln, Neb.Follow Sarah Haywood on InstagramGuptill’s Arena, Cohoes, N.Y.Tanya Dean’s Skaterobics

       COMMENTARY: Jimmy Carter and a lifetime’s response to raceBestselling historian Jonathan Alter, author of a new biography about the 39th president, explains how Jimmy Carter spent the second half of his life making up for what he did not do when he was younger. 

READ AN EXCERPT: “His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, A Life”

For more info:

“His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, A Life” by Jonathan Alter (Simon & Schuster), in Hardcover, eBook and Audio formats, available September 29 via

        NATURE:  Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

For more info:

Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, Manteo, N.C.WEB EXCLUSIVES: 

Live theater hasn't returned to Broadway just yet, but performers were on stage in Massachusetts, at the Berkshire Theater Group. / Credit: CBS News
Live theater hasn’t returned to Broadway just yet, but performers were on stage in Massachusetts, at the Berkshire Theater Group. / Credit: CBS News

STAGE: The New Season in theater: The show will go on, some day | Watch VideoWith the “Great White Way” dark since March, audiences are awaiting the time when live theater, on Broadway and off, will be back. Jane Pauley looks at when theatrical productions will once again tread the boards.

BOOKS: The New Season: Fall fiction titlesWashington Post book reviewer Ron Charles previews a few of the most hotly-anticipated novels and short story collections coming to bookstores this fall.

BOOK EXCERPT: “Magic Lessons” by Alice HoffmanThe author returns with a prequel to “Practical Magic” and “The Rules of Magic,” which tells the origins of the Owens family’s history of curses and intimations of witchcraft.

BOOK EXCERPT: “Jack” by Marilynne RobinsonThe Pulitzer Prize-winning author returns to the setting of her acclaimed novels “Gilead,” “Home” and “Lila.”

BOOK EXCERPT: “Missionaries” by Phil KlayThe author of the National Book Award-winning short story collection “Redeployment” is back with an epic novel about the moral complexities of geopolitics and modern warfare.

BOOK EXCERPT: “Memorial” by Bryan WashingtonThe author’s new novel tells of two men whose relationship is tested by family estrangements and separation.

BOOK EXCERPT: “The Office of Historical Corrections” by Danielle EvansA new collection of stories in which characters grapple with issues of race and culture.

BOOK EXCERPT: “The Silence” by Don DeLilloThe award-winning author’s latest work is a novel keenly appropriate for a time of calamity and social dislocation.

Frances McDormand in
Frances McDormand in

MOVIES: Dispatches from the virtual New York Film FestivalOnline screenings, drive-in venues and streaming conversations with filmmakers characterize this pandemic year’s edition of New York’s premier celebration of cinema.

            “SUNDAY MORNING” MATINEE: “Balm in Gilead” (Video) Performing in isolation, members of the Pasadena, Calif.-based arts organization MUSE/IQUE join virtually to present “Balm in Gilead,” a poignant spiritual fitting for these troubled times. Performers include vocalists Ben Harper and Maiya Sykes, drummer Jimmy Paxson, bassist Michael Valerio, violinist Charles Yang, and keyboardist Deron Johnson, joined by Herman Cornejo, principal dancer with American Ballet Theater.     

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Renewable energy industry booming despite struggling economy

Far-right group Proud Boys rally in Portland, Oregon

Breonna Taylor’s family demands to see evidence from grand jury