Current Obsession Wednesday: More Perfect (Podcast)
What: Stories about the Supreme Court. How did it become so powerful? Why are they now like “priests of the Constitution”? What cases were pivotal and most influential, that you’ve probably never heard of? Who was impacted? How were We, the people, impacted?
The host and producers from Radiolab research and interview people as part of their narration of these stories. I am not usually one for nonfiction but these stories are compelling and, in my opinion, important.
Note: This is public radio and therefore inherently liberal in its perspective. That being said, I think they do a good job of trying to be unbiased in the information they provide. They are not without their opinionated comments though. I appreciate that they do think critically about the information they are presented with, in their research, and discuss it as fully as possible.
Why: Each episode is a really interesting story. The stories, history, research, interviews, and narrations are presented in a fascinating way. Think of each episode like an origin story or prequel to our procedural dramas on TV. Or think of them as vignettes of formative moments in our country's history (both recent and distant past).
With everything going on in our country, shouldn’t we try to know more about it, and not just current events? I first listened to a couple episodes a year or so ago. Then season 3 started (a project involving Schoolhouse Rock inspired songs about the 27 Amendments) and I listened to Dolly Parton’s song about women’s right to vote (the 19th Amendment) and just started crying. In the weeks following the supreme court appointment of Kavanaugh, I oscillated between feeling devastated or numb. I found myself thinking more about the supreme court and the few things I really know about them. I have been bingeing More Perfect ever since, listening to (often crying about) the good and bad ways the Supreme Court has impacted the United States.
If you like fiction or non-fiction, are vaguely political or interested in history, and/or want to know more about the Judicial Branch without reading a textbook, I urge you to try one episode of More Perfect. Just pick whichever one sounds interesting to you, that will be a good place to start.
Where: Free on any podcast app OR on their website, OR just listen to “The More Perfect Album” on Spotify or YouTube to hear the songs about the Amendments.
Here is a trailer for Season 3: