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Back in America

News & Politics Podcasts

A podcast exploring America's identity, culture, and values.

A podcast exploring America's identity, culture, and values.


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A podcast exploring America's identity, culture, and values.






How would you go to Zoom School as a homeless youth? We asked Bridging Tech, a charity devoted to overcoming the digital divide

Bridging COVID-19 Isolation and the Digital Divide with Bridging Tech In 2021, it is nearly impossible to get anything done without a laptop: apply for a job, go to school, safely connect with friends, or schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment. Yet, there are fewer laptops in existence than humans on this planet, presenting a unique challenge for unhoused students. Not only are they disadvantaged in terms of their living situation, but also have to deal with this extra technological...


Listen Again: Guns, God & the 2nd Amendment in America - David Treibs Christian & Guns Activist - Prof. Robert Spitzer Constitution and Gun Control Expert, SUNY Cortland

As Biden announces new executive actions on gun control, the Back in America team invites you to re-listen to an episode on guns in America, initially published on Oct. 23, 2020. In his executive actions today, Biden restricted the sale of “ghost guns,” untraceable guns which are sold in kits. Today’s announcements are less expansive than the president’s initial campaign promises. Yet, administration officials suggest that these measures are only the first steps of Biden’s plans for...


Derrick Jensen: Are We at the End of the World or just the End of our Civilization?

In this episode, Stan Berteloot continues to explore how leading American collapsologists thinkers conceive of the collapse of our Western civilization. Since the 1990s, scholars have been predicting that the end of the Cold War and the struggle between capitalism/communism will also bring about “the end of history.” But, are these worries founded? What are we to make of the last 30 years? After previous episodes with John-Michael Greer and Richard Heinberg, Stan sat down with Derrick...


International Women's Day - Listen Again - Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings: Black Feminism, Civil Rights…

Today is March 8, International Women's Day, and on this day I suggest that we listen to Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings and her work for civil justice. This episode was previously released on Jan. 22, 2021. In this episode of Back in America, I speak with Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, former chair of the Maryland Democratic Party, political consultant, and activist. She recently ran to represent Maryland’s 7th District in Congress after undergoing a double mastectomy. Dr. Maya Rockeymoore...


Who should get the vaccine first? We didn’t know so we asked a philosopher

As countries worldwide scramble to vaccinate their citizens against the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, governments have to make the uncomfortable calculus of who deserves to get the vaccine right now. The ones who are spreading it the most? The ones in essential high-risk jobs? People over a certain age? That threshold is unclear and hotly contested. With several months to go before vaccines are readily available to any desiring American adult, legislators have to ask The Question: who first?...


Listen again: Eric Marsh - Being a Black man today in America

First published on November 18, 2019 When a French journalist returns to live in the US 25 years after leaving it as a student, he struggles to recognize the country he loves. He embarks on conversations with Americans of all backgrounds in a quest to understand what America means today. This was the first installment of Back in America. The episode is part of a series on masculinity in America. Here I speak to Eric Marsh a Black activist and a social worker in Philadelphia. We...


Witchcraft and Feminism: Three American witches share their experiences

Witches are everywhere! Your neighbor might be a witch, you can run into one at the farmer market, the organic food store, the alternative medicine section of your bookstore, and definitely at feminist rallies––you could even be a witch without knowing it! Since the 1960s, the historical stereotype of the witch has been reclaimed as a feminist icon. In their everyday lives, American witches act just the same as anyone else. While it is forbidden for outsiders to enter certain covens, many...


Tricia Baker: "My Dog Saved My Life" - Inside Dog Therapy and Mental Health Education

This episode was originally recorded live and you can watch the entire interview on our YouTube channel. Trica Baker was the VP of Marketing Services at Merrill Lynch for 13 years before leaving her job to take care of her teenage son who was struggling with severe depression. After battling this disease for three long years, her son tragically committed suicide. In the aftermath of those dark days, Tricia fell into a terrible depression and suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress, barely able...


Zionism, Mysticism, and the Law: Sam Shonkoff and his students on American Judaism today

What is really at question is the American way of life. What is really at question is whether Americans already have an identity or are still sufficiently flexible to achieve one. This is a painfully complicated question, for what now appears to be the American identity is really a bewildering and sometimes demoralizing blend of nostalgia and opportunism. ––James Baldwin In recent months, shows about Jewish thought and theology (Pretend it’s a City, Unorthodox) have populated Netflix’s...


The Promise of a Better Human: James Clement on our Transhuman futures

In this week’s episode, Podcast Editor Josh Wagner takes a look at transhumanism, the philosophy, and ideology that the next stage in human evolution will arrive through artificial enhancements. Started in the early 1990s in Silicon Valley, transhumanism has accrued a wide variety of adherents, ranging from Ray Kurzweil and Elon Musk to Jeffrey Epstein, who believe that the human body itself needs to be upgraded. In their minds, such technological enhancements will increase the quality of...


Divers from the EPIX/ BBC Docuseries “Enslaved”: Diving on Shipwrecked Slave Ships

In this episode, I interview three crew members of the EPIX / BBC docuseries Enslaved: The Lost History of the Transatlantic Slave Trade. While 2020 has been a year of intense examination of racism in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, Enslaved takes a deep dive at the historical realities of the Middle Passage. Starring Samuel L. Jackson, The Guardian’s Afua Hirsh, and investigative journalist Simcha Jacobovici, the series travels across the globe to sites of slave ships to...


Richard Heinberg: Has America Reached Its Limits? Biden, Climate, The End of Fossil Fuel

Richard Heinberg is a Senior Fellow of the Post Carbon Institute and is regarded as one of the world’s top advocates for a shift away from our current dependence on fossil fuels. He is also the author of thirteen books on climate and energy. Today, in this episode I am releasing the complete interview I had with Richard on November 11. This interview was broadcasted live and you can watch it on Youtube. Richard and I talk about the election and what impact the new government might have on...


On the Frontlines of the 2020 Election with Poll-worker Josh Wagner

The 2020 election cycle has been wracked with scandal, accusations of fraud, and uncertainty. Fearing the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of Americans voted by mail, and have little idea what in-person polling looked like in this historic year. Join us this week as Stan sits down with Back in America’s new Podcast Editor and poll worker Josh Wagner. A native Los Angeleno, Josh worked the polls in Downtown Los Angeles at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, site of the Los Angeles...


Listen Again: Sheri Kurdakul CEO of VictimVoice tells her story of abuse that started when she was a toddler (with Nov. 2020 update)

Today is The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. In this episode, first published a year ago, I speak with Sheri Kurdakul the CEO and founder of VictimsVoice an app that provides a legally admissible way for victims to document abuse incidents. Sheri speaks with Back in America about her father’s abuse that started when she was a toddler, her recovery from post-traumatic stress disorder PTSD and how she reclaimed her life to become who she is today. Since...


How do you feel about the election? Six Interviews with Democrats and Republicans

Twenty-four years ago, I was living in Washington D.C. while studying at the University of Maryland. I came back to America in August of 2016, this time with my family. It was just a few months before Trump's election. As I settled in the US and tried to understand why Trump got elected, I noticed how much the country had changed. I believe that two major crises have determined the shape of what the country is today: the terrorist attacks on 9/11 and the subprime economic crisis in...


Listen again: John Michael Greer an American Druid on Americans Individualism, Societal Collapse, and the Values of the Frontier Period

Join our mailing list for exclusive information I am publishing this episode once again for all of the listeners who might not have heard it yet. I find it strangely prophetic and visionary which if you know my guest shouldn't be much of a surprise. John Micheal Greer a widely respected author and blogger in the fields of nature spirituality and the future of industrial society. He is the author of more than fifty books and his blog, Ecosophia. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife...


Thierry Sauvage -- COVID, changement de vie : de Shanghai au Croisic

Rejoignez notre mailing list exclusive Aujourd'hui, et une fois n'est pas coutume, Back in America est en français et contrairement aux épisodes précédents nous n'allons pas traiter de la culture, des valeurs et de l'identité des Etats-Unis. Mon invité, Thierry Sauvage, va me rejoindre dans quelques instants. Si je lui ai demandé de partager son expérience avec Back in America c'est qu'à l'image de beaucoup de mes invités interviewés depuis le début de la pandémie de COVID, cette...


BrooklynDad_Defiant: Liberal Online Activist Majid Padellan Talks About his Fight to Elect Joe Biden

Join our exclusive mailing list! This episode is an edited version of a live interview that was recorded on September 16, 2020, and streamed on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. My guest, Majid Padellan might be better known under his Twitter name BrooklynDad_Defiant and his handle @mmpadellan. He is a social justice warrior, social media expert, and Twitter celebrity, an author, a digital designer, and a proud father of 5. And I will add that he is pissed off! He has been upset at the...


Derrick Cobb - From New York Homeless Teen to Hollywood Music Star

Join our exclusive mailing list! The podcast is an edited version of the first live interview of the podcast Back in America. The original can be seen on the Podcast YouTube or FaceBook page. My guest is a model, a dancer, a singer, and an incredible performer. Look him up on Spotify or wherever you listen to your music and you will understand why he is such a rising star in this industry. Getting where he is today has been a long and challenging journey. A Journey that started...


Dr. Glenda Wrenn on COVID, Remote work, Mental Health & Corporate America

Join our exclusive mailing list! "COVID-19 has created a worldwide public health crisis, and the resulting lockdowns and social distancing measures have sent most country’s economies into a severe downturn. But we believe these crises are only the tip of the pandemic’s iceberg," writes Mario Iacobacci and Mathieu Laberge in a recent Deloitte study. "There is another crisis looming – a human crisis," they add. "Our past research ... has revealed a potential for increased incidences of...