Uncommon Ground with Van Jones

Amazon Music | Van Jones

Are you concerned about the future? Tired of divisiveness? Join political commentator and changemaker Van Jones on a journey to find unifying solutions to our country’s biggest problems. Each week, Van and his guests explore topics that affect us all—from climate change to prison reform, from voting rights to political polarization. In Uncommon Ground with Van Jones, you’ll hear inspiring, hopeful and unique perspectives on what it takes to create meaningful change and foster productive dialogue in a divided nation.

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Our Editor's Take

Anthony Kapel “Van” Jones is an American TV commentator, author, and lawyer. He founded several nonprofit organizations and has been a New York Times best-selling author, a CNN host, and an Emmy Award winner. But now, he is on a journey to solve real problems and create meaningful change in the United States with his podcast. Jones started Uncommon Ground With Van Jones back in October 2021. He has since attempted to tackle many big topics that affect many Americans daily.

The main aim of the podcast is to find hope and create a platform to discuss these topics. Each episode sees Jones talk to some of the brightest thought leaders from around the world. Guests include José Andrés, Trae Crowder, will.i.am, John Hope Bryant, Phillip Agnew, and many more. Guests share inspiring, hopeful, and unique perspectives in thought-provoking conversations.

Jones shares experiences from his life and accomplished career. He asks difficult questions about how people can make a difference in today's world. His great conversational style brings out honest and open responses from his guests. This podcast is perfect for those wanting to make a change in the world. Jones's passion for finding solutions comes through in each show and makes for a great listen.

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Hope for the Democratic Party with Rep. Ritchie Torres
Oct 19 2022
Hope for the Democratic Party with Rep. Ritchie Torres
“Yes, the system is broken. But the solution lies not in dismantling it or burning it down, but in finding solutions that have been shown to work. We should focus on the bread-and-butter issues. Most rank-and-file Democrats are practical and not ideological. Most of them have no Twitter accounts. They worry about the cost of housing, healthcare, and higher education.” Congressman Ritchie Torres is a pragmatic progressive who stands out among a new generation of leaders. He is often compared to a young Barack Obama, and in this interview you’ll see why. At the age of 25, Ritchie became the youngest elected official and the first openly LGBTQ+ person elected to office in the Bronx. Now age 34, Ritchie is still too young to be president. That said, he is making major legislative strides and his future is bright. In this episode, Ritchie shares stories about growing up in the South Bronx and how his working-class upbringing has influenced the way he thinks about the Democratic Party. He shares his views on the two camps inside the his party, and discusses the issues he thinks Americans are focused on as we near the midterm elections. Tune in to hear a fresh and nuanced political perspective. This may be the first time you’re hearing of Ritchie Torres. It most certainly will not be the last! See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
From Actor to Authentic Self with Adrian Grenier
Sep 28 2022
From Actor to Authentic Self with Adrian Grenier
"There's that quote: ‘First I was smart, and I tried to change the world. Then I got wise, and I tried to change myself.’ What I've leaned into now is: let me stop soap-boxing and telling everyone else what to do. And let me start looking at myself. I was a fraud in many ways because I felt that I had to represent the thing, but I didn't have to be the thing.”Adrian Grenier was an A-list actor who had it all, including fame, money, and influence. But even in the midst of great success, Adrien realized he wasn’t truly the person he wanted to be. He walked away from it all in pursuit of a deeper vision and a higher calling. This week Adrian lets us in on his powerful personal journey. We get a glimpse into the inner and outer work he’s done to get to where he is, and how he went from representing causes to embodying those causes. Today Adrian lives a life in harmony with his values as a creative and effective environmentalist, entrepreneur, and change agent. Tune in to hear a strikingly honest conversation about how to live with integrity and make a positive difference.New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday.For support related to childhood sexual abuse: https://enoughabuse.org/get-help/survivor-support/For support related to childhood trauma: https://www.samhsa.gov/child-trauma/recognizing-and-treating-child-traumatic-stressSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
How to Avoid Civil War in the US with William Ury
Sep 21 2022
How to Avoid Civil War in the US with William Ury
“I've seen situations, which are far worse than our situation, where the impossible became possible. I saw the Berlin wall come down. I was in South Africa in 1989 when Mandela was still in prison. And within six years there was an astonishing political transformation in South Africa. Even in the Middle East, Israel and Egypt forged a peace that endures to this day, 40 years later.”Tensions and polarization within the US are increasing. Many people are wondering: could we be heading toward a civil war? And more importantly, what can we do to avoid that outcome? This week, Van sits down with peacemaker and negotiation expert William Ury, who has spent his career trying to address hostility between parties in conflict-ridden areas. He knows exactly what it takes to address deep-rooted disputes in hopes of finding a positive way forward. In this episode, William teaches us how to identify an impending conflict, and what we can do about it. In a time of uncertainty and high stakes, William’s wisdom, expertise and cautious optimism are sorely needed. New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday.What would an ideal America look like to you? How can you restore trust in the institutions and communities around you? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
How to Thrive in a Changing World with Arianna Huffington
Sep 14 2022
How to Thrive in a Changing World with Arianna Huffington
“Failure is not the opposite of success. It's a stepping stone to success. If we're lucky, we get 30,000 days to play the game of life. How we spend those 30,000 days depends on what we value. And if we are disconnected from our spiritual essence, it is so much easier to value things that will never really fulfill us.”This week, Van is joined by Arianna Huffington – renowned author, entrepreneur, media personality and one of Van’s most influential mentors. Arianna is no stranger to transformation. She was born in Greece, moved to England and eventually the United States. She's been a Republican and a Democrat. She founded the revolutionary media business The Huffington Post, and is now leading the behavior change tech startup Thrive. Arianna is a master of self discovery, reinvention, and doing work that has a real impact on our world. All of this makes Arianna the perfect person to answer the question: how can we change for the better, while staying true to ourselves? In this episode, Arianna speaks about the importance of spirituality in her work, and her views on the state of politics today. If you are trying to figure out how to take better care of yourself while also making a big difference in the world, there is no better mentor to guide you than Arianna Huffington. New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday. How are you trying to transform? What role does spirituality play in your daily life? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
How to Combat Anti-Asian Hate with Lisa Ling
Aug 24 2022
How to Combat Anti-Asian Hate with Lisa Ling
“Because there were so few people who looked like me in my business throughout my career, I've been so cautious about drawing attention to my ethnicity, to my gender. To bring these issues to the fore has been very uncomfortable, but necessary. I hope that I've inspired people in my own community to no longer be content to sit on the sidelines. It's been an incredible experience to see this community come together.” Lisa Ling is a beloved and gifted journalist and TV star. Since the age of 18, she has traveled the world as a reporter. Lisa's reporting always gets to the human heart of the stories she uncovers. She is a bright star within the Asian American community. But in the wake of COVID-19 – as violent attacks and other racist activity against Asian-Americans skyrocketed – she stepped up into an even more powerful and visible role. This week, Van and Lisa talk about the impact of anti-Asian racism and how the Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) community has come together. They bond over the often overlooked but rich history of solidarity between Asian and African Americans in the United States. Tune in to hear what true solidarity sounds like, how we can come together in times of violence, and why it’s so important that we recognize our shared goals. #StopAsianHate New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday. Is there a community outside of your own that you can support? How can you use your voice to uplift and protect those who don’t look like you? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
The Next Gen TikTok Star Reinventing the News with A.B. Burns-Tucker
Aug 17 2022
The Next Gen TikTok Star Reinventing the News with A.B. Burns-Tucker
“You have a bold generation now that you can tap into. Younger people. They are ready to go toe-to-toe with whomever on an idea that they feel passionate about. And a lot of the ideas could help us be the America that we claim to be.” TikTok is becoming the social media home of a new generation of activists, while older folks debate politics on Facebook and Twitter. The rules and expectations are totally different on this newer platform. Nobody has found their political voice or footing more powerfully than A.B. Burns-Tucker.A.B. was a law student when she exploded onto the scene thanks to her ingenious TikTok videos. She explains current events and big news stories, but does so using Ebonics or AAVE (African American Vernacular English). To some this sounds like a gimmick, but A.B. is reaching an audience that has traditionally been ignored by the mainstream media. In this week’s episode you’ll hear what inspired A.B.’s journey to law school and her path to becoming a TikTok star, and in the process learn a lot about the next generation.You can find A.B.’s TikTok videos @iamlegallyhype. New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday. What does your community need to hear more of? How can you be a translator across communities? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
Unapologetic Joy with Billy Porter
Aug 3 2022
Unapologetic Joy with Billy Porter
“To be queer and come out in 1985 when I'm 16 years-old, and be thrust into the AIDS crisis and fighting for our lives on the front lines…Silence does equal death...I don't know anything else, but to fight. I do understand that as a queer Black man in this space who has been unapologetic from the beginning, there is a responsibility for me to continue to speak my truth.” The incomparable Billy Porter does it all! He’s an Emmy, Tony, and Grammy award-winning actor, singer, producer, director, composer, and playwright. Billy is a cultural icon and a trailblazer on issues of race, sexuality, and gender. On top of all that - he’s an activist. For most of his life, Billy has been spreading awareness about the HIV/AIDS epidemic and demanding action. And he’s done all of this while daring to live his truth.In this episode, Van and Billy sit down to talk about Billy’s impact on the culture and the way his career has been intertwined with activism. This is a conversation filled with wisdom and laughter. It is proof of the fact that despite the pain he has endured, Billy infuses his life and work with joy.New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday.How do you infuse joy into your work? What activist traditions do you pull from? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
A Christian and an Atheist Search for Common Ground with Sam Harris
Jul 27 2022
A Christian and an Atheist Search for Common Ground with Sam Harris
“While people are occasionally motivated to do wonderful things on the basis of their faith, faith generally speaking provides bad reasons to do good things when good reasons are actually available.” Can a Christian and an Atheist have a civil and constructive dialogue about the future? For the past 20 years, neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris has been one of the leading thinkers of the New Atheism Movement. Van Jones, on the other hand, is a man of deep Christian faith. Despite this seemingly stark divide, Sam and Van both share an interest in life’s big questions: How can people come together to create positive change? What does it mean to live a good life? How do people achieve a sense of belonging, especially during times of crisis? In this episode, Van and Sam confront their differences as they discuss the pitfalls of dogma in religion and atheism. They both affirm the importance of some form of spiritual practice - whether through religious worship or through meditation and mindfulness. Wherever you fall on the spectrum of belief, there is something for you in this episode.. New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday.What are your views on religion? How much of a role does rationality play in your day-to-day life? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
Why Does This California Congressman Care about Jobs in Kentucky? with Rep. Ro Khanna
Jul 20 2022
Why Does This California Congressman Care about Jobs in Kentucky? with Rep. Ro Khanna
“You have this phenomenal wealth-generation going on. Yet you still have so much of the country totally left out – half the country, if not more, thinking the American dream isn't gonna be available for their kids.”U.S. Rep. Ro Khanna is an uncommon Congressperson. He represents California’s 17th district – a district with one of the highest concentrations of billionaires in the country. But he is adamant that we should tax billionaires fairly. He represents Silicon Valley, yet he works across the aisle with Republican leaders in Kentucky to foster opportunities and bring tech jobs to rural parts of the country. All while still upholding the interests of his own constituents. Why does he do this? From his grandfather’s role in the Indian Independence Movement to his parents’ immigration to the United States, the Khanna family’s journey is a living embodiment of the American dream. And now as a Congressman, he wants to keep that dream alive. New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday. How can you get outside of your bubble? What can you invest in to increase opportunity? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
Abortion: What Can the Left & Right Agree On? with S.E. Cupp
Jun 29 2022
Abortion: What Can the Left & Right Agree On? with S.E. Cupp
“I am pro-life. But Roe is a 40-year-old legal precedent. Respecting the rule of law, means I accept the decision. I don't want to celebrate abortion, but I don't want to demonize it, either. I'm the majority. It has never felt so lonely to be in a majority.”S.E. Cupp is back – this time to discuss abortion. Van is a pro-choice progressive. S.E. is a pro-life conservative. One might expect fireworks!But in this episode, S.E. lays out a nuanced, sophisticated and emotionally intelligent perspective on the topic. She challenges people on every side of the issue – while showing empathy for all sides. She may be the one pro-life conservative that every progressive needs to hear from.The discussion also reveals surprising areas of common ground. For example, Van and S.E. both are concerned about the SCOTUS draft decision, which would overturn Roe v Wade. Together, they examine what it means when the will of the majority is ignored by the government, and what could happen next.NOTE: Van and S.E. had this conversation after the Supreme Court draft decision was leaked, but before the official ruling came down. But their discussion could not be more relevant, timely or penetrating.New episodes of Uncommon Ground with Van Jones release weekly, every Wednesday.What does the Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade mean for you? What do your conversations around abortion sound like? Call 347-770-2785 and leave Van a voicemail. Your comment or question will be recorded, and may be played and answered on a future episode of Uncommon Ground!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
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