Mitch Landrieu and a slew of advocates, historians, and experts help us better understand what systemic racism looks like in America today. By better understanding how we got here to this moment, we can better chart a path forward towards a more just, inclusive, and equitable America for us all.

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The Case for Racial Equity

The Divided By Design podcast kicks off with discussions exploring the “truth” in our history, including the history of racial inequality in the United States; how systemic racism has divided and crippled this country; and the need for audacious leadership to create the change that we all desperately need to be a just and equitable America. We’ll learn about some of the periods and events in our history that have laid the foundation for the systems that continue to perpetuate racism and oppress people of color in the U.S, including the Civil War, Reconstruction, and the Jim Crow era. We’ll also hear from residents across the South on how racism impacts their daily lives. Featuring Dr. Eddie Glaude, Angela Glover Blackwell, Danyelle Solomon, Dr. Andre Perry, and more.


Dollars & Sense

In this episode, we’ll go deeper into how we are divided by design on economic opportunity and inclusion, including the long history of the racial wealth gap. While the United States economy has experienced both amazing highs and catastrophic lows since the end of World War II, there is one economic statistic that has remained eerily constantwhite families have on average ten times the wealth of Black families in America. At the heart of the insights on this episode, the lesson remains: By leveling the playing field for Black Americans, we help ourselves, and we help our society and our nation as a whole. Featuring conversations with PolicyLink founder Angela Glover Blackwell, Brookings’ Dr. Andre Perry, Center for American Progress’ Danyelle Solomon, HOPE Credit Union’s Bill Bynum, Nathaniel Smith of the Partnership for Southern Equity, and Garnesha Ezediaro who runs Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Greenwood Initiative.

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Criminal Justice Illustration


Criminal (In)justice System

We explore and discuss the history of the American criminal justice system, and how systemic racism was a part of its DNA, from the advent of the slave patrol to laws that ensured both power and privilege were to be maintained by white males of wealth and their families. We will also look at the various ways in which the criminal justice system has evolved since Reconstruction, but yet maintains a strong grip on the rights and civil liberties of African Americans, women, and other minority groups to this very day. Interviews feature Harvard professor Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Alec Karakatsanis of Civil Rights Corps, ACLU’s Alanah Odoms, Nicole Porter of the Sentencing Project, longtime police chief, and reform leader Charles Ramsey, and Baltimore Police Superintendent Michael Harrison.


In Search of Health Equity

We delve into the roots of racism in medicine in the US–that is, the false notion of a biological basis for race–and the way that has shaped the profound systemic racism and anti-Blackness in American medicine. We’ll also discuss the underlying disparities further unveiled during the COVID-19 pandemic, created by actions and inaction at the federal, state, and local government level, as well as in the private sector. And we’ll begin to explore the restoration of trust between Black patients and those who provide their health care. Featuring Dr. Camara Jones, Dr. Jeremy Greene, Dr. Toni Eyssallenne, Dr. Corey Hebert, Dr. Michelle Morse, Dr. Takeisha Davis, and Daniel Dawes, J.D.

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Block Away But Worlds Apart

In this episode, we look at the topic of housing and segregation, particularly in the South. The legacy of segregation is palpable across the American South and has enormous implications for how people lead their daily lives. From redlining and housing policy to physical separations by highways or railroad tracks and transit policies, physical separation is a real-life consequence of decades-old decision making. Featuring Nathaniel Smith of the Partnership for Southern Equity, Dr. Temika Simmons of Delta State University, Danyelle Solomon of the Center for American Progress, and more.


Democracy Denied

In this episode of Divided By Design, we discuss the history of democracy in America. The promise of America is that we all come to the table of democracy as equals. But our democracy is in crisis. Long before the 2020 election or the coronavirus pandemic, laws and processes have been in place to disenfranchise many Americans from exercising their right to vote. How did we get here? Featuring political leader, voting rights activist, and New York Times bestselling author Stacey Abrams, National Urban League CEO Marc Morial, and noted voting rights attorney and Democracy Docket publisher Marc Elias.

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Getting Closer to Reconciliation

In this episode, we start to frame out what getting to reconciliation could look like by talking to behavioral scientists and psychologists who have studied race and bias to shed light on various strategies used to address the pre-conscious thoughts and ideas that prevent us from finding common ground on issues of race and bias. We’ll talk to former White House Communications Director for President Obama and bestselling author Jennifer Palmieri, sociologist Dr. Whitney Pirtle, psychologist Dr. Peter Coleman and founder and executive director of Over Zero, Rachel Brown.

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