New York Public Radio is giving a podcast produced by its WNYC Studios a permanent spot on the weekend radio schedule. The United States of Anxiety, the political podcast that is described as a show about the “unfinished business” of American history, will air Sunday evenings at 6pm as a lead out from the NPR flagship “All Things Considered.”
Podcast host Kai Wright has been covering racial and economic justice issues for more than two decades. His leap to the radio schedule coincides with an expected uptick in political news and commentary during the weeks leading up to the election. On United States of Anxiety, Wright and a team of WNYC reporters will offer a deep dive into the cultural and political stories that are playing out. That includes an examination of how America’s history affected where the country is in 2020.
“I’m excited to join WNYC’s radio schedule in the lead-up to the next presidential election,” said Wright. “Having a live radio platform each week gives us the chance to build on that and talk about the issues we’ve been covering — racism, economic inequality, inequities in healthcare and education, criminal justice reform, sexism —with listeners in real-time at a moment when the stakes couldn’t be higher.”
For the radio debut on Sunday, Wright was joined by two guests for a review of the Democratic National Convention. He also took listener calls on their reflections of the Democratic race. Next weekend will include a review of the Republican convention.
Wright was previously a host of “Indivisible,” the national live radio call-in show that WNYC launched during the first 100 days of the Trump Administration. He has also been involved in several WNYC Studios limited-run podcasts, including The Stakes, There Goes The Neighborhood, and Caught: The Lives of Juvenile Justice.
Andrew Golis, Chief Content Officer at WNYC, said adding The United States of Anxiety to the radio schedule will help the station grapple with covering the unprecedented changes in New York and the world.
“Since the debut season’s prescient — and at the time, rare — look at Trump voters before the 2016 election, The United States of Anxiety has deftly kept its finger on the pulse of the nation’s mood and illuminated the historical roots of how we got here,” said Golis. “Kai’s weekly presence on the radio expands the audience for these conversations, and allows for more opportunities for listeners to join in.”
While it now has a radio timeslot, WNYC says The United States of Anxiety will continue to be available as a podcast.