show episodes
 
The United States of Anxiety is a show about the unfinished business of our history, and its grip on our future. Each week, host Kai Wright invites listeners to gather for intimate conversations and deeply reported stories about the choices we’ve made as a society -- and the new choices we can imagine now. We’re learning from our past, meeting our neighbors, and sharing the joy (and the work!) of living in a plural society. Our inbox is also open for your voice memos—send them to anxiety@wny ...
 
10 Things That Scare Me is a tiny podcast about our biggest fears. In each episode, one person talks. Alone in a room. It could be anyone. It could be you. It’s someone driven by fears that keep them up at night, that define their lives, and inform their choices. This is a podcast about them, about you, about us, and the world we inhabit together. New episodes every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
 
When the rapper Prodigy suffered a sickle cell crisis after a Las Vegas concert in 2017, his friends didn’t think much of it at first: they were used to him getting sick. But a few days later, he died. The Realness goes behind Prodigy’s music to reveal his lifelong struggle against his own body, and how that struggle informed his lyrics and fueled his success. The Realness by Only Human is produced by WNYC Studios, a listener-supported producer of leading podcasts including Radiolab, Snap Ju ...
 
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show series
 
In just two weeks, New Yorkers could elect Eric Adams, making him the city’s second-ever Black mayor. What does his rise through civil service tell us about the ways race and power have evolved in the nation’s largest city? Hear from Errol Louis, one of New York's longest-serving political journalists, about how Adams's story is part of a much broa…
 
Is racism a permanent fixture of society? Host Kai Wright is joined by Jelani Cobb, staff writer for The New Yorker, to unravel the history of Derrick Bell’s quest to answer that question and how it led to our present debate over critical race theory. Companion listening for this episode: The Method to Tucker Carlson’s Madness (5/3/2021) History su…
 
Displaced Haitians are still seeking safe harbor. But the U.S. long ago abandoned the ideal that all migrants should at least be allowed to tell their stories. Host Kai Wright is joined by globally recognized immigrant rights advocate and professor at Columbia Law School, Elora Mukherjee, to break down asylum. When refugees arrive, how do we respon…
 
The fall season is here. A season of new shows on television, art in museums, and musicals on Broadway. Can the creative work that’s been made during the pandemic, and that’s going to be made now, help us move forward together? Host Kai Wright takes calls from listeners with bestselling author and senior culture editor at ESPN's The Undefeated, Mor…
 
New science finds we’ve got less than a decade to avoid climate catastrophe. Activist and author Bill McKibben says the only solutions that can beat that deadline are collective. Host Kai Wright invites listeners to ask McKibben their own climate questions, on the heels of a United Nations report that declared the damage from carbon and methane emi…
 
How did September 11, 2001, and its aftermath, affect the way anyone perceived as Muslim, and those around them, fit inside the American experiment? Host Kai Wright is joined by award winning journalist Aymann Ismail, who talks about his post-9/11 childhood in northern New Jersey -- and what he learned about his identity as an adult. Then, a conver…
 
One man’s ongoing effort to get justice for the abuse he endured at a U.S. prison in Iraq. At the start of the Iraq War in 2003, Salah Hasan Nusaif al-Ejaili was working as a journalist when the U.S. military detained him inside Abu Ghraib, a prison that would become notorious for American abuses committed in the wake of the September 11th terroris…
 
The “Great Resignation” appears to be a real thing. But why? We ask workers what they really want. Plus, 45 questions to help us understand each other, and ourselves. Recent research shows that for a lot of us, our relationship with work has evolved greatly through this ongoing pandemic. In our Labor Day episode, journalist Sarah Jaffe, author of t…
 
Hundred year old school buildings. Sputtering HVAC systems. Covid revealed a legacy of racism that’s built into the physical infrastructure of education. A lack of investment in school buildings determines who can safely go back and who can't. But if we all pay taxes, why is our public school system full of inequality and inequity? Kai speaks with …
 
Why do we equate macho bullying with competent leadership? The cautionary tale of Andrew Cuomo. From sexual harassment to intimating deemed rivals, the list of accusations against New York Governor Andrew Cuomo have crescendoed into a long awaited resignation. But what kind of leader do we value? What makes a competent leader -- and why are we so o…
 
Haiti’s recent tragedies revive a conversation about disaster, aid, and how people recover. Then, a discussion about perspective on the 30th anniversary of the Crown Heights riots. After a 7.2 magnitude earthquake rocked Haiti’s southwestern region, many of us were left wondering -- what does it mean to best support Haiti through disaster? And if t…
 
Originally Aired: 11/23/2020 “Reverse racism” has haunted the fight for job equity for generations. How’d this bizarre idea become such a bugbear? One Supreme Court case, 50 years ago helps explain. This week, our reporter Marianne McCune tells the story of that case -- and its aftermath -- to help explain why the American workplace is still so seg…
 
If sports are a metaphor for life, what are they telling us about our society right now? Dave Zirin, sports editor for The Nation, and author of ten books on the politics of sports, joins Kai to talk about the “Pandemic Games,” the peril of chasing perfection, and just how much has changed since the 2020 summer of activism in big league sports. Plu…
 
Remembering the life of Bob Moses, and his mission to build a more equitable America from the bottom up. From teaching in New York City to registering Black voters in the 1960’s Mississippi, Moses was a measured man who believed leadership was about listening, not talking. Rutgers University Professor of African American Studies Charles M. Payne jo…
 
Today’s viral videos of police abuse have a long political lineage. But what if one of the oldest tools of copwatching is now taken away? Ron Wilkins takes us back to 1966, in the wake of the Watts uprising, in which he joined an early cop watch program -- one that would inspire the likes of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense. Then, reporter …
 
2021 began with an insurrection, and it’s remained quietly intense ever since. We open the phones for a six-month check in on the political culture of the Biden era. Kai is joined by Christina Greer, Associate Professor of Political Science at Fordham University, to unpack all that has — and hasn’t — happened this year. Did the Jan. 6 attack on the…
 
Birth, August 1965. Death, July 2021. So now what for multiracial democracy? Mark Joseph Stern, who covers the Supreme Court for Slate, explains how the Roberts Court has rewritten the Voting Rights Act to render it a dead letter law. We explore what, if anything, can be done to revive it. And Kai talks with Vann Newkirk II, a senior editor at The …
 
Eddie Glaude and Imani Perry consider the question through the work of James Baldwin and Richard Wright. Plus: How our country could enter a period of “post-traumatic growth.” The two professors of African-American Studies at Princeton talk with each other about the impact of James Baldwin and Richard Wright’s work — on their own intellectuality an…
 
More than 100 anti-Trans bills have been introduced across 30 states since January. We find out what’s happening — both in the courts and in society — and what still needs to be done. Executive Producer Veralyn Williams guest-hosts this week and is joined by journalist and media-maker Imara Jones of TransLash to discuss her work to elevate Trans st…
 
New York City faces a consequential election. We look at the history of our local election laws. Plus, the mastermind behind new voting restrictions nationally. Senior Reporter Arun Venugopal guest hosts and sits down with WNYC’s City Hall and Politics Reporter Brigid Bergin to discuss her reporting about voter turnout across New York City, the new…
 
How NYC’s first Black mayor tried to balance concerns about public safety with demands for a more accountable police force -- and the violent resistance he faced from the police union. Under the Dinkins administration, the crime rate declined, but his complex relationship with the New York Police Department - which grew in size under his tenure - o…
 
Ibram X. Kendi reflects on a shifting political culture -- and the fierce backlash against it. Plus, a remembrance of the 1921 Tulsa massacre. With five best-selling books, including How to Be an Antiracist and Four Hundred Souls, Kendi has been at the center of the nation’s racial reckoning over the past year. He talks with Kai about the ideas peo…
 
Jazz pianist Jason Moran brings us an exploration into the life and work of James Reese Europe and how the infamous 369th Infantry Regiment - also known as the Harlem Hellfighters - crossed racial lines and brought jazz to Europe. Joe Young of New York Public Radio talks about how using music as a service member informed his own patriotism Companio…
 
New Yorkers reacted to George Floyd’s murder with mass protests demanding police accountability. NYPD met them with targeted violence and abuse. On June 4, 2020, a few hundred people gathered in the South Bronx neighborhood of Mott Haven to protest the murder of George Floyd. They were met with overwhelming force -- in an event that has come to rep…
 
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