Monday-Friday, 9-11 a.m.
  • Hosted by Jenn White

1A is a show for a changing America. 

Every day, 1A's host convenes a conversation about the most important issues of our time. The show takes a deep and unflinching look at America, bringing context and insight to stories unfolding across the country and the world. 

With a name inspired by the First Amendment, 1A explores important issues such as policy, politics, technology, and what connects us across the fissures that divide the country. The program also delves into pop culture, sports and humor. 1A’s goal is to act as a national mirror — taking time to help America look at itself and to ask what it wants to be.

The conversation isn’t just on air. 1A invites you to join in. We’ll regularly post questions and requests for feedback on this page. And you can talk to us on TwitterFacebook, or by texting 1A to 63735. 

1A is produced by WAMU 88.5, and distributed by NPR.

The pandemic has changed many things in our lives, and entertainment is no exception. Fans can no longer attend live shows and concerts. The production of live-action television shows and movies halted. But the creation of animated films and television is particularly suited for a socially-distant working world.

Find our conversation about ‘Star Trek: Lower Decks’ here. 

John Lennon’s Life And Legacy, 40 Years On

Dec 8, 2020

In the 1970s, Beatles frontman John Lennon was a global icon. But in his final years, in his apartment in Manhattan, he was a stay-at-home dad. December 8, 2020, marks the 40th anniversary of his assassination.

Dollars And Sense: Unpausing Student Loan Payment

Dec 7, 2020

More than 40 million student loan borrowers haven’t had to pay anything on their loans since March. These borrowers also haven’t accrued any interest, representing a rare chance for those saddled with such debt to save some money or make ends meet during a recession.

It’s time to talk about the health of public transportation in America.

From Boston, to San Francisco to Washington D.C., public transportation is facing a shortage of funds and an uncertain future. Many of these systems had problems before the pandemic that have only worsened since the advent of COVID-19.

The News Roundup — International

Dec 4, 2020

The United Kingdom has become the first western nation to authorize a COVID-19 vaccine. The first doses of Pfizer’s vaccine could be rolled out in the country as early as next week.

The News Roundup — Domestic

Dec 4, 2020

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are backing a $908 billion COVID-19 relief bill as a good starting point for a compromise on a plan that will assist Americans struggling in the pandemic. It’s the first time bipartisan support appears to be present for a relief plan in many months.

We touched on the stimulus package during our conversation about the deficit

President Donald Trump isn’t the only person still pushing the lie that he won the election. He’s helped by the lawyers around him, including Trump senior legal adviser Jenna Ellis and Rudy Giuliani. They filed lawsuits seeking to invalidate absentee and mail-in ballots. They’ve gone on television and twisted the truth to support President Trump. And now, 25 former presidents of the D.C. Bar say that’s enough.

In their new book, “Black Futures,” Jenna Wortham and Kimberly Drew take on the question of what it means to be Black and alive now.

The pandemic is showing no signs of slowing down. The U.S. Congress is attempting to pass a stimulus plan to aid Americans whose personal finances have been hit hardest by the pandemic. Aid, however, could mean the national deficit continues to rise.

In the weeks since Election Day, states around the country are certifying their election results despite President Donald Trump’s persistent attempts to refute them.

You’d expect fans of famous pop stars to spend much of their time online posting about songs they love to music or speculating about when a new album might drop. But some fans of pop superstar Britney Spears remain focused on the legal arrangement that shapes her life: conservatorship.

It’s been six months since George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police. Since then, the fight for racial justice has continued to sweep across the United States. For many, the current struggle for equity is reminiscent of a bygone era.

Many analysts and experts think that President-elect Joe Biden’s early cabinet-level appointments signal a change in how America is going to approach climate change. The former vice president has appointed John Kerry as his special presidential envoy on climate. It’s a brand-new position that’s the first ever to focus on climate and have a seat on the National Security Council.

It’s safe to say Emmanuel Acho is a renaissance man.

Since leaving the NFL after a career with the Cleveland Browns, Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants, Acho has begun to work as an analyst for Fox Sports 1, amassed 435,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel and written a book named after a successful series of videos called “Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man.”

The 1A Movie Club Sees ‘Mangrove’

Nov 30, 2020

Mangrove” is a new film by “12 Years a Slave” director Steve McQueenIt’s the first in his new film series 

Building Confidence In A COVID-19 Vaccine

Nov 30, 2020

There’s been a lot of positive news about the release of a COVID-19 vaccine lately. Major pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer and Moderna are touting better than expected outcomes from the research trials of their vaccines.

The News Roundup — International

Nov 27, 2020

Despite statements to the contrary from the Arabian Peninsula, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin-Salman reportedly met secretly with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Neom. While Israel and Saudi Arabia have had a back-channel relationship for many years, this is the first time a meeting of this nature has been made public.

The News Roundup — Domestic

Nov 27, 2020

Despite President Trump’s administration making it exceedingly difficult for President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team to do its work in full, the office of the president-elect has wasted no time in announcing some of its cabinet-level appointees. Of particular note is Biden’s choice for a new position: special presidential envoy on climate.

You probably know John Kerry already. Former Democratic senator from Massachusetts, Secretary of State under former President Obama and a former presidential candidate. But the incoming Biden administration gave him a new job – special presidential envoy for climate.

The role is a cabinet-level position. Kerry won’t need to be confirmed by the Senate, according to the Biden team.

From The New York Times:

Maybe you’re wondering whether we’re all pawns. Or maybe you’re hoping for the moment coronavirus gets placed in checkmate. Maybe you just want us to stop talking about chess this way.

Fine, we’ll chill and get back to your regularly scheduled text.

What is true is that people are looking for all sorts of diversions in the midst of the pandemic. TV shows, movies, video games, cooking, baking and many more indoor activities are all popular distractions. But chess in particular is enjoying a culture-fueled surge in popularity.

What Is An mRNA Vaccine?

Nov 25, 2020

Since the start of the pandemic, the race to create an effective coronavirus vaccine has moved fast. If successful, these vaccine efforts would be the fastest developed in history. So far, the two leading companies developing a potential vaccine, Pfizer and Moderna, claim their mRNA vaccines are

The Hit List (Or, The 1A Pop Culture Roundup)

Nov 24, 2020

November is wrapping up, which means it’s time to look back at all the shows we’ve been watching to keep busy at home. Thankfully, plenty of new TV and movies dropped alongside the fall leaves.

All eyes have been on Michigan since the two Republicans on the Wayne County Board of Canvassers at first refuse

President Donald Trump is doing his best to undermine the results of the 2020 election, but his options are dwindling. Almost every legal challenge he’s brought against the results has failed. And Georgia’s recount reaffirmed Joe Biden’s narrow victory.

The deliberate destruction of knowledge is as old as knowledge itself. It’s often a tactic used by those with power to control those without.

People. We know it’s bad out here during the coronavirus pandemic. And at 1A, we’re lucky enough to be able to largely work from home and keep doing our jobs bringing the news to you. But almost everyone is having a tough time, especially with the emotional toll of maintaining social distancing, the labor to keep up with shifting pandemic guidance and the significant added stress on essential employees as they keep going to work.

The News Roundup — International

Nov 20, 2020

Following the departure of Mark Esper, acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller said that the U.S. will withdraw portions of military forces in Afghanistan and Iraq by Jan. 15. The proposed plan is to reduce the troops in Afghanistan by half and to withdraw 500 troops in Iraq.

The News Roundup — Domestic

Nov 20, 2020

The United States cleared another awful pandemic milestone. Over 250,000 Americans have now died of COVID-19. The country is now bracing for what could be a devastating cold and flu season.

Native Voters Shaped the 2020 Election. What’s Next?

Nov 19, 2020

Since the pandemic first began, Native American communities have been some of the hardest hit in the country.

1A Remembers ‘Jeopardy’ Host Alex Trebek

Nov 19, 2020

The death of ‘Jeopardy’s’ best-known and much-loved host Alex Trebek did not pass without comment from The New Yorker