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With Friends Like These

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Ana Marie Cox, political columnist and culture critic, sits down with liberals and conservatives, pastors, writers, activists, and other people you should know for an open, funny, in-depth conversation about what divides us - a show about listening instead of arguing.




"Too Tired to be Angry" w/ Rembert Browne

A conversation with writer Rembert Browne (@rembert) [1:21]on how his “write-around” profile of football player Colin Kaepernick (Bleacher Report) became a piece about this moment in America — and why the stakes are too high to avoid the uncomfortable conversations needed to change it. You can read that very good piece here: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2732670-colin-kaepernick-anthem-race-in-america Also relevant to the discussion:...

Duration: 01:12:38

“Nothing messier than sex” with Kim Cavill

This week, sex education instructor Kim Cavill (@sexposparenting) is back on the pod to answer your (adult) questions about perhaps the messiest coalition of all: sex. We discuss when and how to talk to your kids about porn [2:46], what to do if a friend tells you they’ve experienced a sexual assault [56:13], plus the importance of asking for what you want [64:57]. Kim’s website, Tea and Intimacy, is at https://www.teaandintimacy.com/. If you have had experience with any kind of sexual...

Duration: 01:20:26

“We Act Like It’ll Never Happen” w/ Neena Satija and Jon Lovett

First, [2:15] a conversation with Neena Satija (@neenareports) from Houston, about Harvey and the choice to not prepare for catastrophic events. Second, [32:04] Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) helps field a listener question! And then [49:00] we talk about Game of Thrones as a metaphor for climate change. Lastly: [59:03] A short reflection on the Nashville Statement and attempts by Christians to dehumanize and deny our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. We want to hear from you! Tweet us at...

Duration: 01:03:33

One God, Under Trump w/ Jack Jenkins and Parker Malloy

First [5:35], why aren’t evangelicals turning on the decidedly ungodly Trump? Jack Jenkins (@jackmjenkins), religion editor at Think Progress, explains how Christian nationalism has fused with Trumpism to create an unbreakable (?) bond. Second [43:06], Parker Malloy, (@ParkerMolloy), from Upworthy, joins to talk about the re-animation of the “trans ban” and why it matters beyond the military. Also, responding to a listener who asked about the ways one can help in the fight against bigotry...

Duration: 01:15:46

"Are you going to join the fight?”

The aftermath of Charlottesville, considered from the right and the left. First [4:36] , Naval War College professor Tom Nichols (@radiofreetom) helps us understand how our enemies and allies abroad will interpret Charlottesville and Trump’s response to it. We also argue about whether it’s helpful, politically speaking, to connect the modern GOP to white supremacy. Then Jane Coaston (@cjane87, MTV NEWS FOREVER!) hops on the line [48:46] to argue that Trump’s defense of white supremacy was...

Duration: 01:28:15

“Keep it” with Kat Rosenfield and Ira Madison III

This week’s episode is a dive into the intra-left culture wars: Who is sufficiently woke, and who gets to tell what stories (about whom)? Segment A [1:31]: New York magazine writer Kat Rosenfield (@katrosenfield) discusses her piece on “The Toxic Drama on YA Twitter” (link below). Segment B [30:32]: Culture critic for The Daily Beast and GQ and #friendofthepod Ira Madison III (@ira) joins to help us figure out what parts of the YA debate are helpful, and how it is and isn’t like the...

Duration: 01:09:17

"Enormous waste and loss": What it's like to report on the death penalty

First [1:24], Montgomery Advertiser reporter Brian Lyman (@lyman_brian) joins to discuss covering the criminal justice system in Alabama -- including being present at the most recent execution conducted in the state. Also, what can the Alabama senate race tell us about the country at large? Second [40:50], #friendofthepod Jamil Smith (@jamilsmith) talks about the moment his life intersected with the question of capital punishment.... and stays for an extended chat about what the future of...

Duration: 01:14:23

“A President Who Makes Us Less Safe” with Greg Howard and Rick Davis

After an intro in which I acknowledge the numerous categories of people who have *some idea* of what it’s like to live with an oppressor in the White House, I am joined by New York Times Magazine writer Greg Howard (@greghoward88) to discuss the aftermath of his essay about white women ignoring his existence. [4:29] Then Rick Davis (@therickdavis), Never Trump stalwart, stops by to talk about Trump’s short-sighted and cruel Twitter declaration banning trans people from the military. I...

Duration: 01:26:09

“A Daily Insult” with Liz Cavill and Michelle Goldberg

Last week, without warning, the Trump administration cancelled over $200m in funding for research into teen pregnancy prevention (https://www.revealnews.org/article/trump-administration-suddenly-pulls-plug-on-teen-pregnancy-programs/). Sex education instructor Liz Cavill found out she was out of a job from reading about the funding cut on Twitter. She joins [3:52] to talk about the ramifications of the administration’s short-sightedness, and the importance of speaking truthfully and...

Duration: 01:25:28

“Health Care Is a Civil Right” with Anita Cameron and Vann Newkirk

We talk to ADAPT activist Anita Cameron (@adaptanita) [TIMESTAMP] about the history of the disability rights movement and its recent success raising awareness about what TrumpCare would do to Medicaid. (She also has a few pointers for reporters covering the protests on how to not infantilize the activists.) Vann Newark (@fivefifths) [TIMESTAMP] joins to talk about the intersection of health policy and civil rights, both philosophically and historically. Easter egg [TIMESTAMP]: A mini-op-ed...

Duration: 00:48:36

“An existential crisis happening to America every day” w/ Neera Tanden

We sit down with Neera Tanden (@neeratanden), CEO of the Center for American Progress and friend of the pod, to discuss why we should stop debating the election — it’s everybody’s fault! — and the reasons she’s optimistic the Trump presidency will build a progressive majority. We were remiss in letting you know about the podcasts recommended by Jon Ward in last week’s pod. They are: Truth’s Table: “Black Christian women who love the truth and seek it out wherever it leads us.”...

Duration: 00:51:34

“Typical white dude attitude”

Jon Ward (@jonward11) was one of the people I had in mind when we came up with "With Friends Like These": A seriously smart and dedicated reporter who doesn't see the world the same way I do, but with whom I have found fertile common ground. He joins to discuss his reporting and his faith, and what it means to embrace the evangelism of racial reconciliation. Jon is a Political Correspondent for Yahoo News and is writing "a narrative history of Ted Kennedy's decision to challenge Jimmy...

Duration: 00:51:02

“It’s not who we’re supposed to be, but it is who we are”

A bonus pod about the Philando Castile verdict and what happens next, with Greg Doucette (@greg_doucette) and Jane Coaston (@cjane87). Jane is a political correspondent at MTV News, you can browse her content here: http://www.mtv.com/news/author/coastonj/ Greg is a criminal defense attorney and criminal justice reform advocate, and is also known as Durham’s “Weed lawyer.” He now has his own podcast, Fsck ‘Em All: https://www.fsckemall.com/ Greg and Jane have appeared on the pod before,...

Duration: 00:43:48

“I have no regrets”

We take a field trip to Iowa to interview Trump supporters in line for his don’t-call-it-a-campaign rally. Our main question: Have any of your relationships suffered because of political differences? Their answers will probably not surprise you. Their attitudes might. You can contact the show with questions or comments at withfriendslikepod@gmail.com

Duration: 00:48:57

“Surprised you called me a feminist”

A Very Special Father’s Day episode. First, some words on saying the wrong thing. Then at 4:40, Anil Dash (@anildash) explains why he doesn’t retweet men, and we discuss the (incredibly light) burden of being a woke person with relative priviledge. Next at 31:26, New York Times writer Claire Cain Miller (@clairecm) joins me and my dad (@samcox) to talk about how to raise a feminist. Lastly at 50:46, Some words on words, and shout-out to a hero from last week’s shooting in Alexandria, VA:...

Duration: 00:55:49

“Justice is a mechanical duck”

— Trump agoniste Rick Wilson (@therickwilson) sheds some light on the chasm between how Trump loyalists and Trump skeptics will receive the Comey testimony. — Quinta Jurecic (@qjurecic), associate editor at Lawfare, elaborates on the insight that gripped many Comey observers: His story parallels that of anyone who’s been the target of a sexual predator. — Commentary editor Noah Rothman (@noahcrothman) helps field a listener question about a relationship that’s soured since the election....

Duration: 01:38:04

“Proud pigheadedness”

W. Kamau Bell (@wkamaubell), of CNN’s United Shades of America, joins to help a listener puzzle through how (and if) to have a relationship with her Trump-supporting parents. As he put it: Do they deserve the privilege of her children’s company? Also: What Kamau’s TV show has taught him about a post-election America, and a primer on the *good* kind of white pride. Kamau’s new book! The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell: Tales of a 6' 4", African American, Heterosexual, Cisgender,...

Duration: 01:01:30

“You can’t build things with pitchforks and torches”

Segment 1: Bob Inglis (of RepublicEN.org) is a conservative climate change denier turned conservative climate change activist. We talk about what he’s learned about how to approach those who disagree with him — there are some concrete tips! Lots of Greek and Roman references! Segment 2: We dive into the power and powerlessness of prayer with Washington Post writer and editor Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig. (TRIGGER WARNING: CONTAINS JESUS.) Bob on Twitter: @bobinglis Liz on Twitter: @ebruenig...

Duration: 01:11:50

“Poetic justice and justice are not the same thing”

This episode wound up being about the limits and costs of empathy. First up: Franchesca Ramsey (@chescaleigh), creator and star of the hilarious social justice (really, all of that!) series, “Decoded.” We discuss about what she still feels uncomfortable talking about and who she feels uncomfortable talking to. Second segment: National correspondent for The Atlantic Graeme Wood (@gcaw), whose profile of honest-to-god Nazi and high school classmate Richard Spencer wound up being closer to...

Duration: 01:17:56

“Women in power are always complicit”

Red State contributor and Never Trump stalwart (who made the Trump doc “The Sociopath”) Ben Howe (@benhowe) comes on to talk about what the Left can learn from the Tea Party’s successes and mistakes. We also dive into how leaving the conservative movement has changed how he thinks about social issues such as abortion. In the second segment, Brandy Jensen (@BrandyLJensen) helps us dispose of the question, “Is Ivanka a feminist?” Instead, we wonder if neoliberal feminism is itself the problem.

Duration: 01:23:58

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