On this season of the StoryCorps podcast, we’ve been highlighting difficult conversations between friends and loved ones who are building connections where you’d least expect it.

But in this episode, it’s strangers — who are on opposite sides of the political spectrum, no less — doing the very same thing.

Their conversations are part of One Small Step, national effort from StoryCorps that seeks to counteract intensifying political divides by bringing people together, not to argue issues, but to get to know each other as human beings.

One Small Step Director Stacey Todd tells us more about the preparation that goes into these interviews. We’ll also hear from participants Cassandra Adams and David Wilson, who addressed the conclusions they jumped to prior to meeting one another.

After that, Nicole Watkins and Austin Suellentrop, two strangers who sat down for StoryCorps in Birmingham, Alabama, discuss how their personal experiences informed their views about healthcare. 

Next, we’ll hear from Jessica Vittorio and Katie Hays, who, over the course of their interview realized that some of the things that set them apart also tied them together.

Lastly, we’ll hear from StoryCorps founder Dave Isay on why these conversations are important, especially today.

Top photo: Artwork by Lindsay Mound
Middle Photo: Nicole Watkins and Austin Suellentrop at their StoryCorps interview on July 30, 2019 in Birmingham Alabama. Photo by WBHM.
Bottom photo: Jessica Vittorio and Katie Hays at their StoryCorps interview on July 16, 2019 in Dallas, TX. Photo by Mysia Cole for StoryCorps.

Released on January 21, 2020.

Like the music in this episode? Support the artists:
“Heat and Memory” by Jarrett Floyd
“Surly Bonds” by Blue Dot Sessions from the album Aeronaut

This podcast is brought to you by supporters of StoryCorps, an independently funded nonprofit organization, and is made possible in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people.