American's Mission Statement read by Senator John F. Kennedy
Season 4, Ep. 24
On July 4th we celebrate the birth of the American Experiment. The Declaration of Independence -- written in the Spring of 1776 by a 33 year old Thomas Jefferson -- is America’s mission statement. And like all mission statements, the words represented not what we were, but what we aspired to be. In fact, the author himself was a gifted writer, but a deeply flawed person who – like his country -- did not embody the ideas and ideal of that document.For more than two hundred and forty years, the story of America has been the struggle between those who want to move us close to the words of our mission statement– and those who want to stop them.It is often forgotten that the Declaration itself was meant to be spoken.In 2004 the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library released a previously unknown1957 recording of then-Senator Kennedy reading the Declaration of Independence in New York on July 4th.So this week to honor Independence Day -- And to remind ourselves that as a country must continue the struggle to turn America’s founding words into reality – we give John F. Kennedy’s reading of the Declaration of Independence the final word.
Barack Obama's Eulogy for the Honorable Reverend Clementa Pinckney
Season 4, Ep. 23
On June 26th 2015 President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy at the funeral of the ReverendClementa C. Pinckney, the senior pastor oftheEmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Churchin Charleston and a South Carolina State Senator.Reverend Pinckney and 8 other Black church members had been murdered a week earlier during Bible Study in a racially motivatedmass shootingperpetrated by a white supremacist.TheEmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Churchis one of the oldestBlack churchesin the United States, and it has long been a center for organizing events related tocivil rights.Founded in 1816, the church played an important role in thehistory of South Carolina, duringslaveryand Reconstruction, during thecivil rights movementof the 1950s and 60sandin theBlack Lives Mattermovement.It is the oldestAfrican Methodist Episcopal Churchin theSouth, often referred to as "Mother Emanuel".Rev.Pinckney, was a well known activist who had held rallies after theshooting of Walter Scottby a white police officer two months earlier, in nearbyNorth Charleston. As astate senator, Reverend Pinckney had pushed for legislation requiring police to wearbody cameras.The Reverend and his church were targeted because of their history and role in civil rights activism.With a rousing eulogy and a chorus of “Amazing Grace,” President Barack Obama called on the country to honor the nine victims of the South Carolina church massacre by working toward racial healing.He said that included removing the Confederate battle flag from the South Carolina State House grounds.“It’s true, the flag did not cause these murders,” The President said, but “we all have to acknowledge the flag has always represented more than just ancestral pride. For many, black and white, that flag was a reminder of systemic oppression and racial subjugation. We see that now.”“By taking down that flag,” he said, “we express God’s grace.”But I don't think God wants us to stop there.“On July 6, 2015, theSouth Carolina Senatevoted to remove the Confederate flag from display outside the South Carolina State House.Make no mistake - the protests we have seen in the last month are a continuation of that struggle. And none of us can stop - none of us should rest until we dismantle and remove every symbol and every fact of thesystemic oppression and racial subjugation that President Obama described in his eulogy of Reverend Pinckney.
American History Tellers -- Lindsay Graham Interview
Season 4, Ep. 22
Not THAT Lindsay Graham. This week we profile one of our favorite podcasts American History Tellers.The Cold War,Prohibition, the Gold Rush, the Space Race. Every part of your life -the words you speak, the ideas you share- can be traced to our history, but how well do you really know the stories that made America? American History Tellers will take you to the events, the times and the people that shaped our nation. And they'll show you how our history affected them, their families and affects you today. Hosted byLindsay Graham(not the Senator). FromWondery, the network behindTides Of History,History Unplugged,Fall Of RomeandDirty John.And check out Lindsay's latest podcast --American Elections: Wicked GameSubscribe onApple Podcasts,Spotifyor wherever you got yourpodcasts.American Elections: Wicked Gamehttp://wondery.fm/AmericanElectionsWM
President John F. Kennedy on Civil Rights
Season 4, Ep. 21
This week we highlight presidential leadership and one of the most important civil rights speeches ever delivered by a sitting American president.By June of 1963, John F. Kennedy has been president for nearly two and a half years.While Kennedy had long privately expressed his deep moral objections to the treatment of black people in American society and indicated support for New federal legislation.His public comments ranged from cautious moderate criticism to a 1950s version of “both sides-ism” but were mostly nonexistent.In June of 1963, however the man and the moment met.Alabama Governor George Wallace’s staged photo op defiance of federal law by standing in the school house doorway had lasted less than 90 minutes.On June 11th 1963 two black students were peaceful enrolled at the University of Alabama under the protection of a federalized Alabama National Guard commanded by US Marshals under the direction of the Department of Justice and the Attorney General of the United States.Kennedy’s advisors recommended and Fully expected that the president would NOT address the American people that evening.With a little less than 18 months until to the 1964 elections, the President’s legislative agenda and his political future depended upon the votes Southern Democrats in Congress and those of their politically unforgiving constituents.The President had other ideas. Kennedy saw a way to exercise moral leader on an issue where he had to that point failed. He would request Network Television airtime to address the nation on the issue of civil rights.The facts and statistics on racial inequality in the United States described by President Kennedy to the American people that evening had even never been acknowledged by a President before - much less spoken in such a detailed and direct language.In a telegram to the White House after watching the President’s remarks in Atlanta with other civil rights leaders, the Reverend Dr Martin Luther King Jr. described the address asONE OF THE MOST ELOQUENT,PROFOUND,AND UNEQUIVOCAL PLEAS FOR JUSTICE AND FREEDOM OF ALL MEN,EVER MADE BY ANY PRESIDENT.Dr King knew that Kennedy was moved by his now famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail” - written just weeks before.To President Kennedy and many Americans Dr. King’s letter was more thanthan a spirited defense of civil disobedience. It was an indictment of white indifference.As you listen to the speech, you will hear Kennedy echoing King’s “Letter”The President rejects the idea that Black Americans should have to wait for equality. "Who among us," Kennedy asks the American people, "would then be content with counsels of patience and delay?"
ENCORE: Hill Women - with Cassie Chambers
Season 4, Ep. 20
Our guest this week is a writer, lawyer, speaker and an advocate. Cassie Chambers grew up in Eastern Kentucky, graduated from Yale College, the Yale School of Public Health, the London School of Economics, and Harvard Law School, where she was president of the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau, a student-run law firm that represents low-income clients.Cassie received a Skadden Fellowship to return to Kentucky to do legal work with domestic violence survivors in rural communities.In 2018, Cassie helped pass Jeanette’s Law, which eliminated the requirement that domestic violence survivors pay an incarcerated spouse’s legal fees in order to get a divorce.Her new book,Hill Women: Finding Family and a Way Forward in the Appalachian Mountains, celebrates the amazingly resilient women in her family and the beloved mountain culture that helped shape her.
ENCORE: FDR on Democracy with Professor Harvey Kaye - Part 2
Season 4, Ep. 19
This week we welcome back historian and sociologist Harvey J. Kaye for Part 2 of our discussion of his important book FDR on Democracy: The Greatest Speeches and Writings of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.Harvey J. Kaye is Professor Emeritus of Democracy and Justice Studies and Director of the Center for History and Social Change at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.An award-winning author and writer, he has written 9 books – including:Take Hold of Our History: Make America Radical Again (2019)Thomas Paine and the Promise of America(2005)The Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great (2015)“Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History?” and Other Questions(1996)Follow Professor Kaye on Twitter @harveyjkaye
SpyTalk: Shots in the Dark
Jeanne Meserve looks into the mysterious directed-energy attacks on officials in Washington with Mark Zaid, lawyer for CIA and StateDepartment victims. Then Ronen Bergman, author of a groundbreaking book on Israeli assassination operations, talks with Jeff Stein aboutthe effect of Mossad’s hits on Iran’s nuclear scientists and uranium facilities. Last but hardly least, Jeanne talks at length with technologyventure capitalist Gilman Louis about his work with the CIA and the perils of losing the raceon artificial intelligence to America’s adversaries.Each week, we’re bringing you a new episode of one of our favorite podcasts, Deep State Radio.Deep State Radio, hosted by David Rothkopf, produces newepisodes 2-3 times per week and brings together top experts, policymakers, and journalists from the national security, foreign policy, and political communities. You cansubscribe to the podcast on Apple, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.If you become a member of the DSR Network, you’ll receive benefits such as ad-free listeningvia private feed, discounts to virtual events and Deep State Radio Swag, and access to the member-only Slack community.This is one of the most closely followedpodcasts among the people influencing the most important decisions in Washington and worldwide today.You can learn more by visitingthedsrnetwork.com. Listeners to Words Matter will receive 25% off of the regular membership price. Use code wordsmatter at checkout.
ENCORE: FDR on Democracy with Professor Harvey Kaye - Part 1
Season 4, Ep. 18
This week we welcome historian and sociologist Harvey J. Kaye for Part 1 of our discussion of his important book FDR on Democracy: The Greatest Speeches and Writings of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.Harvey J. Kaye is Professor Emeritus of Democracy and Justice Studies and Director of the Center for History and Social Change at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.An award-winning author and writer, he has written 9 books – including:Take Hold of Our History: Make America Radical Again (2019)Thomas Paine and the Promise of America(2005)The Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great (2015)“Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History?” and Other Questions(1996)Follow Professor Kaye on Twitter @harveyjkaye
SpyTalk: A CIA Spy in Syria, and US Responses to Russian, Chinese and Other Adversary Hacking
This week, in the debut edition of the SpyTalk podcast, co-host Jeff Stein talks to the Washington Post’s Joby Warrick about an extraordinary CIA operation in Syria, as told in his new book,Red Line. Jeff and co-host Jeanne Meserve also discuss the Biden administration’s recent expulsion of suspected Russian spies, then Jeanne talks with former NSA Director and Cyber Command chief Admiral Mike Rogers about Chinese, Russian and other hackers’ infiltration of U.S. computer networks.