The Takeaway

One Year After The First Step Act 2019-12-23

One Year After The First Step Act

Has the law achieved what it set out to do?

How Migrant Communities Throughout History Have Grappled With American Christmas

Hanukkah in the U.S. evolved alongside Christmas.

This is Not the Queer Representation You’re Looking For

Many are calling out the most recent Star Wars for teasing LGBTQ representation and then not following through in a meaningful way.

The Takeaway

Laughing in Color

While the lines in comedy are changing at the moment, not everyone is feeling limited by these new rules. As with much of the media landscape, women of color are severely underrepresented on stand-up and improv stages. But as the barriers to entry shift, some are finding their voices heard in a way that seemed impossible five or ten years ago. As part of a new series, The Takeaway is going to explore this complicated moment in comedy. We’ll speak to some of the women of color stand-ups and sketch comedy stars who shaped the comedy world into what it is today. And we’ll hear from younger comics on what the landscape looks like for them. One question at the center of it all: whose moment is it in comedy today?

Headlining the Biggest Sketch Comedy Shows of the 90s

The Takeaway speaks with comedians Ellen Cleghorne and T’Keyah Crystal Keymáh about breaking out on Saturday Night Live and In Living Color.

Margaret Cho on Pushing the Boundaries of the Comedy World

Margaret Cho joins The Takeaway to discuss the comedy scene and the lonely moments as the “only Asian American woman out there.” 

Cristela Alonzo on Finding Her Voice Through Comedy

Stand-up comedian and actress Cristela Alonzo is the latest guest in our series on women of color in comedy. 

What Does the Comedy World Look Like for Young Women of Color?

Karen Chee and Ayo Edebiri are up-and-coming comedians. They represent the future of comedy.

The Takeaway

Mormon Deaths In Mexico Reignite Questions About the Ongoing Drug War 2019-11-18

Mormon Deaths In Mexico Reignite Questions About the Ongoing Drug War

Mexico and the United States are in an embittered battle with drug cartels, but some are calling into question its effectiveness as well as the media coverage. 

 Mark Ruffalo and Todd Haynes Tackle Corporate Corruption in ‘Dark Waters’

Actor Mark Ruffalo and director Todd Haynes sit down with The Takeaway to discuss bringing the true story of a decades-long legal fight against chemical giant DuPont.

New Study Shows Two Million Americans Lack Access to Running Water and Toilet

As federal investment in the U.S.’s water infrastructure continues to shrink, the scope of this crisis is projected to grow.

Despite Trump’s Efforts, Louisiana Re-Elects Democratic Governor

This weekend, Louisiana residents re-elected incumbent governor John Bel Edwards.

The Takeaway

Border Crossings Swell as Resources for Migrants Diminish

Border Crossings Swell as Resources for Migrants Diminish

U.S. Customs and Border Protection released new data on migrant crossings at the border, revealing a system overwhelmed by more unauthorized crossings than seen in over a decade.

How Natural Disasters and Recovery Efforts Discriminate Against the Poor

The Alabama tornadoes blew through a low-income communities and left many mobile homes mangled. 

EXCLUSIVE: New Jersey ICE Detainee Details Transfer, Force-Feeding During Hunger Strike

A man detained by ICE in New Jersey told WNYC’s Matt Katz that in 2018, while on a hunger strike, ICE transferred him from New Jersey to El Paso, where he was force-fed.

Director Sebastián Lelio on Remaking His Own Film and the Limits of Representation

“Gloria Bell,” a new movie starring Julianne Moore, opens this Friday. It’s an English-language remake of the 2013 Chilean film, “Gloria,” but both are made by director Sebastián Lelio.


Sheri Fink

Dr. Carlos Gutierrez

Pat Duggins

Matt Katz

Ranjana Natarajan

Sebastián Lelio

The Takeaway

2019 News Preview: Stories to Watch in the Year Ahead

Today, on a special New Year’s day edition of The Takeaway we’ll look at what 2019 has in store when it comes to some of the biggest issues affecting our country and our world—everything from climate change to domestic politics to U.S. foreign policy.


Sarah Wildman is a deputy editor at Foreign Policy magazine and host of the First Person podcast.

Kendra Pierre-Louis is a climate reporter for The New York Times.

Vann R. Newkirk II is a staff writer for The Atlantic who covers politics.

We’ll also look back at some of our favorite segments from 2018.


Morgan Neville is the director of “Won’t You Be My Neighbor,” a documentary on Fred Rogers that was released in 2018.

Arlan Hamilton is a venture capitalist and founder of Backstage Capital.

Gloria Steinem is a feminist writer and activist.

DeRay Mckesson is a civil rights activist and the author of “On the Other Side of Freedom: The Case for Hope.”

The Takeaway

Puerto Ricans Pay the Price for Debt Crisis

Puerto Rico is facing the biggest local government bankruptcy ever filed in the United States. The territory is currently 72 billion dollars in debt. Public employees are currently owed more than 50 billion dollars in pensions. And it’s Puerto Rican residents who are feeling the impacts of the debt crisis. We look at how the government is preparing to restructure its financial obligations. Plus, a conversation with the mayor of Miami about building a resilient city; a look at the newly-created school safety commission that won’t discuss the role of guns in school safety; a review of what it means to be a female rocker in a male-dominated field; and a discussion about Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood in light of a new documentary about his life.

You can connect with The Takeaway on TwitterFacebook, or on our show page at

The Takeaway

“These are animals”: The Risks of Dehumanizing Language

In a roundtable discussion with local California politicians and law enforcement officials opposed to the state’s sanctuary city policies, President Trump referred to some immigrants as “animals.” It was not immediately clear who the president was characterizing with these remarks. After the incident, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders clarified that the president had been, all along, referring only to the criminal gang MS-13. The Takeaway looks at these remarks in the broader context of dehumanizing language being used by politicians to marginalized communities. Plus, we look at allegations that now-defunct political research firm Cambridge Analytica tried to suppress the African-American vote; the financial barriers to running for public office; the upcoming royal wedding which will welcome the first acknowledged mixed-race royal into the family; the latest movies to catch (or skip) at the box office this weekend; and a new T.V. show on Starz that features unflinching portrayals of Latinx culture and queer intimacy.

You can connect with The Takeaway on TwitterFacebook, or on our show page at

The Takeaway

Why Are Police Called on People of Color Who Haven’t Committed a Crime?

This week, the public witnessed yet another incident of a white person calling the police on a person of color when no crime had been committed. A white Yale student called 911 on a fellow student, who was taking a nap in the campus lounge. It’s just the latest in a string of similar incidents where the police have been called for discriminatory reasons, or for no reason at all. The Takeaway looks into who is calling the police on people of color and why they’re doing so. Plus, we examine the conflicting impulses that drive what it means to be both Native and American; and we review the films you should catch (or skip) at the box office this weekend.

You can connect with The Takeaway on TwitterFacebook, or on our show page at

The Takeaway

The Making of Childish Gambino’s ‘This Is America’

On Saturday night, actor and musician Donald Glover, working under his musician’s alter ego Childish Gambino, released a music video for his song, “This Is America.” The video quickly became a viral sensation on social media, and as of Tuesday morning the video had garnered 30 million views on YouTube. “This is America” presents itself as a jarring tableau of the American experience, specifically the black American experience. Abrupt, dissonant scenes transition freely from one to the next. Gambino guides us through them fluidly, wearing facial expressions that appear to caricature his performance. The Takeaway interviews one of the creators of Gambino’s viral sensation. Plus, we consider the overlooked faces of the working class; the resignation of New York’s A.G. Eric Schneiderman amid a sexual abuse scandal; and the series of federal judgeships that President Trump is making haste to fill.

You can connect with The Takeaway on TwitterFacebook, or on our show page at

The Takeaway

How N.R.A. Fundraising Shapes the Political Landscape

The National Rifle Association’s annual conference beings today in Dallas. Around 80,000 people are expected to attend and the event is slated to feature high-profile speakers such as Texas Senator Ted Cruz, social media personalities ‘Diamond and Silk,’ Vice President Mike Pence, and President Donald Trump. The renown of their speakership illustrates the massive influence the N.R.A. enjoys in politics, which in turn comes partly from organization’s longstanding success in fundraising. The Takeaway examines the N.R.A.’s outsize role in American political fundraising. Plus, we look at the fallout from a school bus drivers’ “sickout” in Atlanta; the launch of NASA’s first-ever probe exploring the Martian interior; former Boston Celtics player-coach Bill Russell making history 50 years ago this week; a brewing diplomatic controversy between England and Ethiopia over stolen artifacts; and a preview of this week’s must-see (and must-avoid) films.

You can connect with The Takeaway on TwitterFacebook, or on our show page at