Long Shadow

Long Lead & PRX & The Trace & Campside Media

The April 1999 massacre at Columbine High School hurtled the United States into an era of mass shootings. Now, a quarter century later, the horrors of that day have become an almost regular facet of American life, and gun violence a record-smashing epidemic. Clad in both camouflage and Kevlar, 21st-century America is a bastion of freedom where workplaces require active shooter protocols, schools run lockdown drills, and the Second Amendment has become a religion unto itself.

Guns are a uniquely American problem, but the U.S. wasn’t always like this. LONG SHADOW: IN GUNS WE TRUST explores the story of the people — some names you'll know, some you won't — who changed the way America relates to guns, for better or worse. This season, host Garrett Graff, in collaboration with The Trace, chronicles how firearms moved from being an ordinary part of the background of rural life to a menacing element of modern American life.

Crackling with rich archival tape and riveting eyewitness and expert interviews, this narrative podcast examines threads of history that are vitally relevant to our current political climate. In LONG SHADOW’s first season, Graff, a Pulitzer-finalist and a best-selling author and historian, examined the lingering questions of 9/11, the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil. Season two chronicled how bloody tragedies at the hands of federal agents led to the rise of American far-right extremism and ultimately the January 6 insurrection. Season three will help listeners understand how simply carrying firearms has become its own act of defiance, and how a very specific, carefully manufactured fear has driven explosive demand for guns across America. How did we get here? Subscribe and listen to LONG SHADOW to find out.

LONG SHADOW: IN GUNS WE TRUST is produced by Long Lead and Campside Media in collaboration with The Trace, and is distributed by PRX.

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Our Editor's Take

The lingering horrors of US tragedies still haunt many. Raids, bombings, attacks, and more have formed part of the nation's history. But some of the biggest questions surrounding these incidents remain unanswered. Long Shadow is a podcast that hopes to provide explanations. The show uncovers more about big events, including 9/11 and the US Capitol riots. Host Garrett Graf tries to work out how America got the far right so wrong.

Making sense of any large-scale tragedy is difficult. Decades on, there are still many mysteries. It raises the question-will there be some things people will never know? Although that's possible, Long Shadow attempts to provide as much information as possible.

The first season of the show focuses on the events of 9/11. But the show touches on other events like the Ruby Ridge raid, the Oklahoma City bombing, and the Waco siege. The commonality is that they're all standout moments in US history. Graf as he presents details and information on each.

Long Shadow contains sound snippets, music, and archival interviews. These add to the storytelling nature of the episodes and transports listeners into the moment. Plus, Graf's reporting background means he presents information in an engaging way. He discusses challenging topics with utmost reverence.

While these factors make him an incredible host, it's his persistence for answers that make him exceptional. Graf continues searching, even when it might be risky or confronting. This aspect means listeners get insights that they're unlikely to find elsewhere. It also makes the podcast an excellent source of information. For this reason, Long Shadow makes learning about America's history more accessible.

This podcast is for people who refuse to accept the status quo. It contains content on events that aren't available in mainstream media. Listeners won't find these theories in their morning news or on their TVs. Long Shadow details why these events happened, who initiated them, and their impact. It asks questions others might never have thought to raise. But better than that, it attempts to answer them, too.

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Season 3

Season 2

Season 1