Category: Advocacy (52)
Protecting Free Speech: Suzanne Nossel
December 27, 2019
“There’s this kind of overt hostility toward the press that has been unleashed.”
Suzanne Nossel is the CEO of PEN America, the world’s foremost human rights and free expression non-profit organization. We discuss the importance of the First Amendment for American democracy, Trump’s unprecedented attacks on the press, and the state of free expression around the world.
Practical Equality: Robert L. Tsai
December 20, 2019
“It’s important to be practical and hard-nosed about equality and justice.”
Robert L. Tsai is a law professor at American University and an expert in constitutional law. His latest book, Practical Equality, is a call to arms for equality and social progress. We discuss why equality is essential for citizens in a democracy and how the law can often serve as the primary mechanism to ensure justice.
Deliberative Democracy: Jane Suiter and David Farrell of the Irish Citizens’ Assembly
December 13, 2019
"Citizens who were in there came to sensible policy decisions."
Jane Suiter and David Farrell helped co-found the Irish Citizens’ Assembly, a deliberative forum that puts citizens at the heart of the considerations for constitutional and political reforms. We discuss how regular citizens can be trusted to weigh the evidence, make nuanced policy decisions, and become deep stakeholders in civic life.
Responsible Statecraft: Stephen Wertheim
December 6, 2019
“We want peace to be the norm, and war the exception.”
Stephen Wertheim is the Deputy Director of Research and Policy at the Quincy Institute, an organization that promotes responsible statecraft. We discuss the history of our foreign policy, and why it is in the public interest of all Americans to move away from endless war and reinvigorate diplomacy for a peaceful world.
Powering American Democracy: Seth Flaxman
November 22, 2019
“The real tradition in the U.S. is make voting convenient.”
Seth Flaxman is the co-founder of Democracy Works, a non-profit and non-partisan organization that aims to make voting simple and seamless. They provide tools for voters, such as TurboVote, as well as critical data infrastructure for elections. We talk about voting in the 21st century, creating partnerships for a stronger democracy, and increasing voter turnout.
Podcasting for Democracy: Civics 101
November 8, 2019
“If you don't understand the system you're in, you can't change it.”
Hannah McCarthy and Nick Capodice host Civics 101, the podcast refresher course about the basics of how American democracy works. We discuss the importance of empowering citizens and understanding the rules of our complex system, as well as the enduring repercussions of slavery in the United States.
The Ethics of Big Data: Matthew L. Jones
September 6, 2019
“When things become social and granular, it becomes extraordinarily invasive of our privacy.”
Matthew Jones is a historian of science and technology at Columbia University. We examine the moral and ethical elements of big data, the big business of the surveillance of our personal information online, and how we can demand solutions that reflect our collective values.
Achieving Tolerable Climate: Jonathan Lamontagne
August 30, 2019
“Not taking action guarantees failure.”
Jonathan Lamontagne is a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Tufts University School of Engineering. In his recent study, he finds that immediate global action is required for robust climate abatement. We discuss the narrow window that still remains for both a tolerable climate future and tolerable economic conditions.
Dave Archambault II
June 21, 2019
“When there's a movement, it is a catalyst for something to change in the future.”
Dave Archambault II is a global leader for Indigenous Peoples’ rights and the former Chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota, where he led the movement against the Dakota Access Pipeline. We discuss his advocacy for indigenous rights, constructive dialogue between stakeholders, and the fundamental importance of a healthy environment.
June 14, 2019
“Just bearing witness is important.”
Jackie Zammuto leads the programmatic work in the United States of WITNESS, an organization that makes it possible for anyone, anywhere to use video and technology to protect and defend human rights. We discuss how to use video more strategically and effectively for change, and how videos bring a human perspective to big complex challenges.
March 8, 2019
“Without housing, nothing else is truly possible.”
Maria Foscarinis is the founder and executive director of the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, and has advocated for solutions to homelessness at the national level since 1985. We discuss why housing is a human right, how criminalization of the homeless is both perverse and ineffective, and examine the leading reasons behind the affordable housing crisis.
Ross Morales Rocketto
February 15, 2019
“People are running because they have issues that they want to solve in their communities.”
Ross Morales Rocketto is co-founder of Run For Something, an organization that supports diverse, young progressives running for state and local office. We discuss which candidates win, why building a bench of local and state politicians is important, and how an increase of candidates leads to better voter turnout.
November 16, 2018
“Education should prepare kids for life.”
Ted Dintersmith is an avid education advocate and the author of “What School Could Be: Insights and Inspiration from Teachers Across America”. We discuss why developing a child’s human potential as a fulfilled and self-supporting citizen should be the top priority, and how equitable access to high quality education is imperative to achieve this goal.
October 26, 2018
“I'm passionate about making sure that people who want to vote, can vote.”
Max Feldman serves as Counsel in the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU, a nonpartisan institute that works to improve our democracy and judicial system. We discuss the powers of voting, the need to modernize election systems and enact pro-voter laws, as well as the rising trend of voter suppression since 2010.
July 13, 2018
“Our history shows that we are a nation of immigrants and refugees, and that we have benefited from that.”
Mark Hetfield is the President and CEO of HIAS, the oldest refugee assistance organization in operation. We discuss our humanitarian obligations to refugees, the tremendous benefits that they bring to American society, and bust the misconceptions about the current refugee situation in the US.
July 6, 2018
“Fighting corruption is not an end in and of itself, it's an effort toward improving society at large.”
Paul Lagunes is a Columbia University political scientist whose scholarship focuses on corruption in the Americas. His current book project is “Corruption and Oversight: Insights from Field Experiments”. We define corruption, discuss how it relates to democracy, and learn that voting is a tool to fight against it.
April 14, 2018
"Being eligible for enrollment is so different than being ready to persist and complete degrees."
Nick Ehrmann is the founder and president of Blue Engine, which was borne from the discovery that the strongest predictor of college completion is sustained academic rigor in high school coursework. The organization re-imagines the classroom in order to teach students how to master core academic skills and be truly ready for college.