By Rebecca Shisler, Business Development Coordinator, Joining Vision and Action
I love living in Boulder; the Flatirons are beautiful and living in a college town means I have many great local opportunities to experience arts and culture. However, one downside to living here is my 80-minute round-trip commute down to the JVA office in Denver. This commute has made me into a bit of a podcast nut, so I wanted to share what’s on my queue. I find the following programs help keep me sane on those daily drives.
Every morning, I turn on Colorado Public Radio and listen to NPR’s Morning Edition. This helps me focus my mind and makes me feel more educated about the local, national, and international news of the day. I especially appreciate how NPR consistently provides diverse opinions on their shows. I love starting my day feeling informed and confident about the journalistic integrity of what I’ve consumed.
Another NPR favorite of mine is Code Switch. Code Switch is run entirely by journalists of color who describe themselves as “fascinated by the overlapping themes of race, ethnicity and culture, how they play out in our lives and communities, and how all of this is shifting.” As someone interested in intersectional social change, this podcast provides important commentary about the everyday lives of non-white folks. They cover issues about policy, culture, and traditions. The podcast even featured a multi-part series about former President Obama’s legacy. Race, especially in the United States, is a topic that is so often perceived as complex and uncomfortable, but Code Switch provides a medium to learn more about our society without defaulting to the common and damaging ideas of “colorblindness” and “post-racial” society.
Call Your Girlfriend is self-described as “a podcast for long-distance besties everywhere.” The besties, Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow are two women in their early thirties who discuss a variety of topics including pop culture, politics and their personal lives through a lens of “unapologetically feminist” views. I identify with these women’s in-your-face criticism of society; Friedman and Sow are witty and fun, and do not put on a filter on how they feel. This does have an explicit rating on iTunes due to language, so it’s not something you’d want to put on with kids in the car.
One of my favorite podcasts is The West Wing Weekly, which is an episode-by-episode discussion of my favorite television show, The West Wing. The hosts are seasoned podcaster Hrishikesh Hirway and former West Wing actor Joshua Malina. They bring on guests from the show as well as from the government, policy and social change worlds to inform listeners about the diverse topics appearing on The West Wing, many of which are still relevant today.