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Up First: Thursday, December 2, 2021

The first case of the omicron variant has been identified in San Francisco, California, and experts say it could spread to the rest of the country in a matter of weeks. President Biden will unveil his COVID strategy today as coronavirus cases start to rise this winter. And, the Supreme Court looks poised to roll back abortion rights after hearing arguments in the Mississippi case.

Business Story of the Day : NPR: Inflation means recreating 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' for 2021 will cost more

Partridge prices are flat this year, but a pear tree will cost you more. Compared to overall inflation, though, the gifts in the song could be a relative bargain.

The NPR Politics Podcast: Why Two Experts Think The Supreme Court Is Prepared To Roll Back Roe V. Wade

The Supreme Court heard arguments for a case that challenges the foundation of Roe v. Wade, the decision that originally made abortion legal. In their questioning, the conservative justices seemed primed to overturn the fifty year old precedent. That decision would radically change abortion access in the United States.<br/><br/>This episode: political correspondent Juana Summers, legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg, and Mary Ziegler, author of <em>Abortion And The Law In America</em>.<br/><br/><strong>Connect:<br/></strong>Subscribe to the <a href="">NPR Politics Podcast here</a>.<br/>Email the show at <a href=""></a><br/>Join the NPR Politics Podcast <a href="">Facebook Group</a>.<br/>Listen to our playlist<a href=""> The NPR Politics Daily Workout</a>.<br/>Subscribe to the <a href="">NPR Politics Newsletter</a>.<br/>Find and support <a href="">your local public radio station</a>.

Talk and Interview

Fresh Air: Remembering Sondheim (Part II)

Stephen Sondheim fans, like Terry Gross, always wonder: How did he write those brilliant lyrics? His 2010 book, <em>Finishing the Hat,</em> provided a lot of answers. It collected his lyrics from 1954 to 1981, telling the stories behind the songs. In the second part of our remembrance, we're revisiting a 2010 interview with the Broadway legend in which he gave his take on other great lyricists — and some of whose lyrics he thinks aren't really so great.

1A: SCOTUS v. Roe v. Wade

The future of Roe v. Wade is uncertain. <br/><br/>The case legalized a woman's right to an abortion in 1973, and this week the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case that considers the legality of a Mississippi state law banning abortion 15 weeks after conception. <br/><br/>How likely is an overruling of <em>Roe v. Wade? </em>And what did this week's hearings tell us about the Justices' stances on abortion? <br/><br/>Want to support 1A?<a href=""> Give to your local public radio station</a> and subscribe to this podcast. Have questions? Find us on Twitter<a href=""> @1A</a>.

On Point: Linguist John McWhorter on how to combat the harms of 'woke racism'

<p>When linguist John McWhorter hears activists and academics condemn "whiteness" or talk about "centering" people of color, he doesn't hear effective anti-racism. "The issue is what do you do about it? And frankly, it’s not this." He joined Meghna Chakrabarti to discuss how to combat the harms of 'woke racism.' </p>


Fun and Sports