Why We’re Having a Moment is the most important podcast of 2020

I am assured all of us agree that 2020 has thrown loads at us — a worldwide pandemic, an financial recession and a social justice awakening. There’s a lot info flying round about what all of it implies that it is robust to know who or what might help lower by means of the cacophony of cross-currents.

I needed to share one of many voices who has helped me: Baratunde Thurston. I additionally needed to highlight the author and comic’s six-episode podcast, We’re Having a Moment, which I take into account an important podcast of the 12 months — and one of the helpful units of insights you’ll find to make sense of this historic journey across the solar.

In my interview with Thurston as a part of CNET’s Now What series, I spoke with him about how the podcast occurred and broke down a few of the episodes to additional unpack the troublesome matters he dug into throughout the collection. That features, for instance, “defund the police,” an idea that originally made Thurston do a double-take, however which he explains within the podcast in a manner that anybody can digest. The podcast collection additionally dives into the Black Lives Matter protests, white allyship and the methods we powerfully use and misuse phrases to explain racial injustice.

(Full disclosure: Thurston previously labored for The Daily Show, which is now a part of ViacomCBS, the proprietor of CNET. He was additionally one of many featured innovators in Follow the Geeks, a ebook I co-wrote with Lyndsey Gilpin in 2016.)

I’ve lengthy admired the truth that Thurston has ardour with out acerbic partisanship. He causes his approach to truths, whereas making sufficient room for everybody to hop in and are available alongside for the experience. He additionally approaches each subject with a wit that disarms haters and sits us all again down in our seats earlier than we get too self-righteous or stuffed with ourselves. 

I’ve followed him on Twitter for a decade and I’ve usually discovered myself drawn to his voice of motive and knowledge in occasions of disaster just like the Eric Garner “I am unable to breathe” incident, or the capturing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in 2014. So once I noticed he was doing a podcast on the intersection of the COVID-19 pandemic and the social justice motion of 2020, I used to be all in. And I wasn’t disillusioned. Whereas I take heed to plenty of podcasts — and podcasts are having a second of their very own proper now — with the whole lot that is taking place on the planet, We’re Having a Second is time nicely spent.

In his 2019 TED Speak, How to deconstruct racism, one headline at a time, which has over four million views, Thurston struck a constructive word. “We will change issues,” he mentioned. “Methods are simply collective tales that all of us purchase into. Once we change them, we write a greater actuality for us all to be part of.”

That hope and positivity — balanced with a wholesome dose of realism in regards to the state of the world — runs all through We’re Having a Second and the whole lot Thurston does. On the finish of our interview he additionally teased his subsequent podcast, Find out how to Citizen, which can try to show the phrase citizen right into a verb and contain the viewers within the means of constructing that higher actuality.

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Jason Hiner