8:26PM Jun 11, 2020
Lee Skallerup Bessette
Hey everyone, and welcome to another episode of all things ADHD.
Somehow you've managed to cover your microphone while you do that. It's funny because you're trying to do better and that like I know, I'm like leaning my face toward Oh, hey,
boys. Yeah, it's good to say now if you're a Wicked Witch of the West
I know I'm now I'm going to be the Arcade Fire because I'm going to do a subtract in French to play shoes. has a deep cut, there
was a very deep cut. I appreciate that a lot. Um, remember in the 90s when everybody was doing that, like not just like, Canadian bands, like we're doing like French cuts, but like, I remember chumbawamba Do you remember chumbawamba did a French version. I'm serious. chumbawamba did a French version of I get on down, but I get up again.
Oh my gosh, I don't even want to imagine what that was like but I know like in New Wave 80s kind of songs there's often like, you know, some French in the background like you know fade to gray that has a lot of French did or a lot of industrial music. Or like hard dance music had like German in it, you know, or like you get to see spoke German bits in it too. So like there's a way in which there's always been pretentious people inserting other languages into what they're doing for some kind of visual effect. Maybe some kind of like oral culture affects you even if the words don't make sense. You're like meant to get something out of it.
Yeah. Well, it was an interesting experience to growing up in Quebec, because you would get so I can also remember, Wyclef Shah doing it doesn't matter. And like the English version was done with the rock. Right? Yeah, French, but there was a a bilingual version because he's Haitian is some of us Yeah, right. And so we you would see the rock version like on, on like, on like much music, but like Montreal radio even the English stations would play the some of your avid version. Oh my God, that's amazing. Yeah so you got all those interesting things so like there's a lot of particularly French from France or or Haitian Caribbean where you would get there was an English version and there was also a French version
and what you got on the radio that was your to deliver seal leaks
it's it's it's been it's been a couple weeks since we last spoke hasn't it? It's been it has
shits been going down. There's our explicit rating for this podcast again, they're going down plea
shit is going down.
That's the laugh cry that I'm doing right now. Actually chuckling with mirth. Just like
Yeah, lol sob it's the lol saw like, Oh goodness gracious and I mean, it's it's sort of a again, it's this idea that all of this is going on all these protests all of this like really, in some ways inspiring social movement but also, you know very real protests and very real anger is going on at the same time as we're still in a pandemic like there's still like
yeah, I think there's like a lot of intersecting issues well, intersecting I was. I mean, all of these protests have been motivated in the primary sort of causative case by the murder of murder George Floyd in, in Minnesota and and brought waves and waves and waves of people into the street right under the same rallying cry. After Eric Garner's death of I can't breathe, right? So yeah. The kind of like squashing out of life by someone who knew they were being filmed. Right so and that that video was made as it turns out by a 17 year old girl, by standard or writer took an incredible risk to take that video. And the police officer with his knee on the neck knows that he's being filmed and makes eye contact with the camera and somehow that doesn't change how he behaves right, leading to this kind of wave of release of other videos. And then there's the murder of Briana Taylor where you can't even be safe as a black person. If you are asleep in your own home. in your own home. You the police may come for you and murder you there. I've been reading today about New York City police officers I mean among many other egregious transgressions are not wearing masks right by and large not wearing masks and the Just like you know, they'll they'll wear a bulletproof vest and they'll say like it's too much because we're wearing bulletproof vests and, you know, bulletproof helmets and you know whole body armor systems like I've asked us too much like is maybe the body armor too much right and has made no mask? Not enough. Right. So that's a kind of offense against people's health there or the using of chemical irritants like tear gas, in a respiratory in an era of respiratory pandemic illness, right for some people to kind of yank their own masks off, choking to get air we've seen in Canada to the recent to recent deaths of racialized people, one black woman in Toronto who felt her death from a 24th storey balcony when the police came to do a wellness check on her her mom was in the apartment with her and had called the police to come and help and it ended very rapidly with this woman's death and then on the east coast. This week or early last week as well, a native an indigenous woman, who again, her boyfriend had called in for a wellness check on her. She was in some sort of mental health crisis. And within one minute of the police arriving there, she was also dead. So there's an intersection there of, of police violence and racialized people, but also a mental illness. Right. Yeah. And some kind of divergence where people who are in crisis because of a health problem, right, particularly mental health problems prove often to many people to be fatal in encounters with the police, right and this idea of police not wearing protective gear when they're interacting with people or like there's there's a lot going on there for us to to kind of process and I've been spending a lot of time sort of thinking about how calls to defund the police means not, you know, taking their entire budget away and setting that budget on fire but of redirecting that money, yeah to social supports and mental health services and sort of anti racist outreach work in in ways that feel like inclusion rather than than punishment. So I've really been trying to sit with that and think of ways in which the disability community can be kind of act in ally ship and sort of support and add a strand to some of these calls for for defunding police or or thinking through what social justice would actually look like. At the same time. I don't want to go to any protests because they're really loud. And people stand too close to me and there's like a lot of smells and and then I feel like a bad person for staying home and prioritizing my own comfort, but nobody wants me there who got my hands over my ears the whole time giving dirty looks to people for yelling, right.
Yes. Yeah. And and that's the that's the sort of interesting thing that I that I wanted to sort of Think about because I've, I've been. And the other thing is, is that I've got, you know, I have a daughter 13 who is currently working through her own feelings and thoughts about this and about it and she has always had a very acute sense of justice. And so this her and it because it's all over, of course, social media and it's all over tik tok. And, you know, so she is, you know, coming to me and said, Did you hear about this? Or did you see this? And, you know, 99% of time, yes. But sometimes she comes up with stuff that I haven't seen, and I'm like, oh, God more. And she's just she's, again, under a pandemic situation of being a 13 year old and she's like, what, what can I do? Like, what is it even possible to be able to do under these circumstances and I'm trying to negotiate she's like, I'm gonna post something on social media. And I'm like, well, hon, like there's and tried it like how do you have a conversation with a 13 year old over performativity And oh, yeah.
Let's talk about the black squares children. Yeah.
Yeah. And I did actually talk to her about that. And that made sense because I like she knows enough that you could talk about the algorithms and talk about how there's balance and she's been her way of doing it. It's been actually kind of funny to hear her do it is that she has a lot of friends from all over the place because of we've moved around a lot and because online, so she's, she knows friends who are in larger urban areas or larger areas who have gone to protests and she has basically researched the heck out of how to stay safe protests. And so has passed on all of this information to her friends. If they ever say I'm bored to a protest, she is like, and here's what you need to do. Right. Here's what
it sounds like a good roll for her. Oh, yes. personality, right. Yeah. But it's when the one with the hand sanitizer in your backpack?
Yeah, yeah. But at the edge of it, right. So you had an opportunity to Do we live in a very well to do suburb? And the local there are some local teens from the local high school who are organizing a protest in the parking lot of the local high school in like one of the richest zip codes in the country. Right. And, you know, so it was one of those things where I was like, NDC is not really where I want to take you to protest, like into the party DC. But sure, a local one. Like, I found it, I showed it to her. She said, Oh, yeah, that sounds interesting. And, you know, talked about it and getting ready. And then finally, it was time and she's like, No, I just can't, I'm just too, too nervous. I'm too anxious. And so even with all of the things and knowing and having a conversation and knowing what to do and at the same time also knowing that where we live, we were tremendously concerned.
She still was just like no and like her anxiety was just too much to be able to
to Be able to, like take that step to be able to do it.
And I think that's, that's real, right that,
Oh, no, no, it's like,
much better for her to sort of understand that her own anxiety would get in the way of her being able to participate. Because, I mean, we don't account for those sorts of things, and we go and try to participate anyway, somehow we wind up centering ourselves there because we will need help, right getting rescue from the noises, our own anxiety or we will have some sort of panic attack and the medics are going to have to take care of us. Right. And so, you know, sometimes the best action to take is to stay home, but it sounds like I mean, there are other actions she's taking as well, right, which is, you know, becoming educated about issues which is, you know, something else we're all being asked to be a little bit more cognizant about and, and I will say, one of the things that I have kind of struggled with when not with the protest so much, but as a sort of, you know, liberal white person response to the protests on social media and these acts that feel to me, I think this is the artistic part of me coming out, but I become a little bit detached and I sit back and I'm like, well, where were you last week? I never saw any type of this content from you last week, or you know, or to be honest, like the week before or any time before that, and this feels to me a little bit like maybe very well in despite don't have any friends, right. Feels like bandwagoning in a lot of cases. Yes. I mean, very interested in performing a certain type of correct response and and the the black squares on Instagram. I mean, for like the four people in the world who don't know about the black squares on Instagram, it was a sort of like, you know, like a game of telephone where the original message got distorted and turned into a thing where a bunch of white people were posting black squares onto their Instagrams as a way and tagging it with like Black Lives Matter and Black Tuesday as a way of seating space and becoming silent. I'm like, but you're making an awful video. deal about stepping back. If you're stepping back by putting forward like a black square image here and you're flooding the Black Lives Matter hashtag with blank squares, which is like white people saying, Look at me, and how quiet I am. Look at me not asking for your attention. I'm over here, do you see me? And so I think for a whole day, I just kind of sat, I didn't really do anything because I thought I'm going to hurt everybody's feelings by saying, I think you are producing a bunch of empty gestures, no, nor with my brain, did I feel competent or qualified to go wave assign at a protest because for me that would be out of character to do. And so if I don't like to see these kind of what feel like purely performative gestures that kind of like produce the broader sense of the person's own correctness rather than actually affecting social Like, if I don't want to do that, then it's probably not going to be on me to now start going to marches and protests, which would be out of character for me. But what I have been doing over this past week is doing anti racist training with my daughter because she is 14 and they don't teach this stuff in schools. And so I've been teaching or that's what I've been doing. And I've been boosting tweets, I've been boosting Facebook posts, I've been boosting Instagram posts, I've been participating on the various committees where I work in my day job to promote anti black racism agendas. And I have been going through my own syllabi, right and thinking about what more can I add in here? What can I take away from here? How can I make all of my courses kind of more inclusive, thinking about like, what is the substance of the issue that I can participate in? Right Yeah, instead of making some kind of gesture, about my performance, because those things always really great for me, they really, really great. And I mean, I'm saying I didn't want to do that. I didn't want to say that to people on Facebook because I would hurt their feelings but I'm saying it on a podcast so
and I think the other thing about the black the the black squares was that it was also
basically erasing valuable information that activists on the ground were sharing with one another about resources about the color armband, the New York NYPD we're wearing that day at the protest, like all of these sorts of things, so resources about bail, to, you know, the bailout funds, which I've linked in our last podcast to is that was recorded way before any of this happened. So you know, with any with some resources too, but you know, and I think That that's that's been an ongoing conversation as well in my house as well, you know, that we're, I'm, I'm glad that my daughter is paying attention and has noticed these things and, or is more conscious about them and we can have these conversations about it and that my son is listening at the table while they're going on. And, and I think like in the same sort of way that I've been really careful about amplifying about what I've shared, about where I've participated or not participated. And, you know, it's one of the one of the things that we're doing, I mean, because again, I'm helping faculty prepare for the fall, where this has now become a really important part of the conversations that we're having with faculty
around the courses around their teaching. Georgetown where I work has a particular history because it was discovered revealed
Georgetown University was going to be going to go bankrupt. And in order to stave off bankruptcy, the Jesuit priests sold. I'm going to get the number Wrong number of slaves from the DC what I don't think was DCF from the area here, down to Louisiana. And so there's a project to a reconciliation project where we, the institution is tracking the descendants, offering them opportunities to study to go to Georgetown for free, but also thinking of other ways around repatriations. And so this is this taken on a sort of interesting flavors in particular Georgetown as well having to like how do we incorporate this into this larger conversation that we have been having, that our African American student demands our academic students have been making on the institution In order to increase inclusion in order to better support them. So it's and and I think it's been, it's been heartening to work with faculty, because anyone that I've worked with and it's a small sample size, have been very interested and have cared and have wanted to talk about it and talk about ways that it can be incorporated, and to think about ways that they want to talk about it in their courses in the fall. So
this is this is very interesting to me, because the language that you use, you know, you're saying like it is, it has been sort of discovered, you know, that this thing happened. And I think, you know, institutions of long duration, maintain their own institutional histories in very specific ways, generally to their own glorification, right. Yes. You know, like, the longer standing an institution is, the more prestigious it is, the more can trace its roots back to, you know, whatever, the more important it is, and I think that Discovery is, is less a kind of like, sort of happenstance. You know, lucky break and more, an unpaved locking of information that once had been known and has been for some time deliberately suppressed, which I think is relevant to you and me. We have outdid ourselves on this podcast as over shares with poor social boundaries. Is that correct to say? Right, yeah, pretty is pretty spot on. It's very accurate. Yeah, Priyanka, we say the things that you're not supposed to say. And so one of the gifts I think, that our neurodivergent colleagues maybe can offer in this fight for greater justice is to say the things that everybody else knows enough to not say. Yeah, right. And so most of our institutions have some kind of parts of their histories that have been suppressed, or some parts of their realities. I mean, it takes a certain kind of blurted madness, blurting impulsivity, you know, to to say at a department meeting, look around this room. Right? This room doesn't match the demographics of our classrooms. Yeah. And that's on us. I mean, those are the types of things that you're not supposed to say. Right? And to say, Well, you know, Georgetown was saved by bankruptcy by selling somewhere between 160 and 200. Slaves into much worse conditions. And you know, Louisiana is also something that you're not supposed to say, right? Yes. Say that things like the statues of the Confederate generals are monuments produced in the early part of the 20th century to remind black Americans that they were never going to be in charge of anything. years and years and years and years after that fight already lost the war. We are not supposed to say those things right. And so I say to our ADHD friends, all of you hyperactive impulsive people with poor social boundaries. Say the awkward truths that other people are too polite, or too socially appropriate to say. And I mean, I think all of us have developed a pretty thick skin. Even with our rejection sensitive dysphoria. We've developed a pretty thick skin to producing awkward interactions, we produce awkward interactions, literally all the time, right? And so I am going to inadvertently say something because I didn't realize that these people were divorced, and I've really stepped in it and the whole room just kind of stops and looks at the floor. Well, that happens to me all the time. I might as well deploy that intentionally. Right.
Yeah, might as well
agitate my capacity to say things. Damn the torpedoes to produce an awkwardness that may have some social value to it. Yeah, right. There's not a lot of I mean, there are god bless neurotypical people who do this and we call them activists but a lot of ADHD people, just really, it was like when we were talking with Kelly and we were having that discussion about how people call us brave,
right? That's what I was thinking to.
This is just constitutional. Like You can't stop me from saying the thing, if I've noticed it. So like maybe if we don't want to go to the protest because they're too loud, or we're too scared, or whatever it is, maybe we can learn, we can direct some of our hyper focus if we are able to do so. And we're really interested in this topic of bringing our knowledge up to speed, we can learn the things that other people have decided that they are not going to learn. And we can say those things because we are very well versed in producing awkwardness. And we are very brash in expressing both opinions and facts. And I think that can be part of the way that our people are ADHD people and our white lady ADHD people with severe jobs. Yeah, can can participate, right? Other people are really terrified about producing awkwardness amongst you know, their their stuff. muscle group and I mean I'm no longer terrified about that because there's nothing I can do to stop it. So they're really really constrained in their capacities to ask sometimes because they're so wrapped up in in fitting in
right when I think that that's yeah and I think there's there's interesting though because Kelly writes about white supremacists and and she has a piece and I'll find it and share it about you know, politeness as being a cover for racism right out there that that you know that it's it's a particularly with white women it's a nice polite white ladies there Yeah. Know. bless their hearts. Exactly. But you know, that that well, they can't be racist. They're so nice.
yes. polite. Yeah. And I'll find that link and I'll share it. In the blurb that goes along with this. If you go to the website, all the things e th e.com. I will be it'll put the show shows? Well, I think that there's something also different about this is that it's because I think that because we're under a pandemic, I think that because you're saying why now, why this week and not three weeks ago? Why? You know, and I've been thinking a lot about that too, because I'm like I was we saw Ferguson, like, this is not a new thing. Like, and I think part of it is, again, because of the pandemic, that we don't have anything else to do. Right, right. No, but I mean, like, so what really triggered this for me was hockey players, right hockey players, and they're notorious for not saying anything controversial ever, ever, and not having an opinion about anything. Right. This is like, we're just gonna play the game and you know, I'm gonna be there for my teammates. We're just gonna play together and I don't, you know, we're playing and so we don't like all these distractions and I will I have to interrupt you here. Say that that is called hockey masculinity and my graduate student, a Lee's this writes about this in her
about real person fiction dealing with NHL hockey players. She has a chapter on race and the whiteness of hockey and describes particularly this kind of lucky masculinity. So I just wanted to give her a little shout out Yeah, work that she's actually doing on this and because she's been tweeting a lot about Sidney Crosby's sort of deleted yes lately, anodyne eventual response.
Yes. What's your what's your Twitter handle? Because I went to
her Twitter handle is at VISTA cups VI. T, I see you FF s. Nice.
No, because I've been listening to, you know, and again, it's kind of a joke with hockey writers. I listen to a hockey podcast where like the ongoing joking before this is that like hockey players aren't gonna say anything. And then there was
So bad with names but there was a player who recently
came out after a coach was fired and said, Yeah, no wonder this coach was fired. And this player is black of African descent, first generation Canadian, and was basically pushed out of hockey, right. Like he had a really bright promising future. He was on a major junior team which is in in Canada. It's like, we have our own like farm system in Canada. That's kind of like the baseball farm system. So Americans like coolers for this cooler. Yeah, literally cooler. So we don't do college sports, really in Canada, like people who can't make it do college sports. People can't do like sports. Go. That means we really do. Yeah, well, it's Junior hockey. So you end up with a billet family and you still go to school and that's where you get drafted. And then we have a farm system. Yeah, yeah. So uniquely Canadian, but anyways, so he is on a junior team and he is hazed. He has a, you know, he's invited to a Halloween party, and they invite him to show up a half an hour and he shows up and one of his they're all waiting for him because one of the teammates has dressed in blackface. And, you know, a coach's complaining about his music and using the N word and just, and then he was cuz he was the troublemaker, right. He was a problem
with it reminds me of Sarah Ahmed. Right? Like, yeah, I'm the problem
of when you identify the problem. You become your problem,
the problem, right, and so that had happened and this was before all of this and maybe even late 2019 time has no meaning anymore. But you know, nobody really came out and said anything about it, right? In terms of NHL players, like nobody said anything about it. There's the whole like Don Cherry thing as well. Nobody has really said anything about it just happened and we're just going to like pretend Ontario doesn't exist. Finally, Finally yeah it's so all of these things It is so it's it's this moment a month where I'm sitting there going why now why now or like maybe not all the hockey players but certainly more hockey players who are pretty white
it's very white
rocks it doesn't get wider than that no
and so you know if you've if you've ever seen it like it is a constant not a constant but a consistent thing that Saturday Night Live makes fun of like if like they can I'm remember Chris Rock doing his thing. And then they had common not common.
Doing the like, he's he's been assigned to cover a hockey game and he literally as a US boy, yeah, yeah.
Hockey is very white.
Yes, hockey is real hockey. So white. But you have these players, these high profile players who are now all of a sudden coming out and saying I saw the video. This is horrendous. I don't know, like I, you know, we need to get rid of racism and like making these really strong statements that you kind of look at from the outside like, duh, like, why is this problem? And you're like, No, no, you don't understand hockey players never say these things like they'd never say anything. And and I think what it is, and particularly the case of hockey is like, they don't have anything else to do. And they don't have an excuse anymore like to willfully ignore what's going on, like, under the guise of focusing on my game and not being a distraction. Like, there's nothing Right, right, that they can sort of use as a cover to willfully unsee or not see or not comments, not excusing it, but just kind of thinking about like that.
I am wondering if there is a way that I mean, I'm, I think part of that is true, but also that because everybody has nothing left to them right now except social media, that that people began to engage You know, in these like acts of of performative ally ship through their Instagrams or their Twitter or whatever, because it's the only activity that people can do and now it's like, it's like having the right kind of purse, right? It's this year's tiny sunglasses that the the, the trend now the way of fitting in is to, you know make these gestures these anti racist gestures. Like Is this the the new thing that all the neurotypical people are doing to fit in with each other, like and is that going to be durable or is it going to be like, last year was chunky feelers and this year it's performative ally ship and then next year, it's like face masks. I don't I don't know. So I guess I'm very skeptical of the speed. I am not at all skeptical of the power of the demonstrations because people are putting something on the line. Often when they go to these demonstrations. They will like break a curfew or they are sort of putting themselves at risk of COVID or they are you know sort of taking a visible stand and opening themselves up to arrest or violence or worse but like this kind of sudden bandwagoning of of social media posts I think it's because everyone's trapped at home and I'm worried about it being a trend and and so my impulse is to kind of pull back from all that but that's not really like a good act as well so I guess like I'm leaning towards like use my social awkwardness for good use my capacity to not really respect the boundaries of what can and cannot be said in polite company I will you know decide that you know, learning the history of race kerfuffles let's say racism racially charged I can we just cancel racially charged because whenever somebody says racially charged what they're trying to not say is racist, and it will be better Yeah. If we just said race, you know, somebody made it racially charged Halloween costume, like I think the word you're looking for is racist. That I'm gonna make that a special interest and I'm like, just going to dig right I'm going to dig and I'm going to dig and I'm going to dig and I'm going to talk and I'm going to talk and I'm going to talk because that's what I can do. So one of the things my university used to have, which you can find if you go through the go through the archives of the student newspapers, they had like, quote unquote, slave auctions in the, in one of the faculties on campus that was like a fundraiser, you know, initiative where like, they were not actually buying and selling, you know, people in a racialized context, but they were calling it a slave auction. Yeah,
I can see my face right now on the podcast, but I am like, dude, he can no one else can but like, yeah, trust me, my face is like probably a lot like your faces, right? Yeah, Nina this but like, yeah, my face is like, Ooh, yeah, that Okay, yeah. So
like, maybe maybe I give in my university is only like, not quite 60 years old. So like, I think that's it. Recent enough to know better than to name a fundraising event a sleeve? auction but no radio?
I mean, are we aren't we post racial in Canada?
God? It's like mostly, you know, German people in Mennonites where I live right? In that period. So yeah, I mean, I think every institution, if you dig a little bit is going to have a lot of that going on. And it's not that those people individually are very racist is that somehow they're in a system where they can have a fundraising event called the slave auction and nobody says, hold up. Right? That feels pretty racist to me. So
Well, I mean, this systems, yeah, no, and I mean, I and I know it's the systems and so I've was I've been right I wrote a couple years ago, and I write a lot and I teach about the history language back and I, I teach particularly the history language, I'm gonna come back killjoy. Right, because a lot of people think about oh my goodness, socialist paradise, you know, like Medicare and the unions and the and I'm like, Yes in the racism. And they're like, and they're and I'm like, you know, we have an entire concept of identity around the back wall that is basically translated to pure blood, right, like people and like, you know, people blend. And they're like, No, I didn't know that. And I'm like, yeah, and then we also, you know, have to there was recently Robert Lopez, who's a huge director and a huge deal was like, I am going to, you know, produce a musical called slab on entirely an entirely white cast and have them sleep and singing slave songs.
Yeah, that was like a whole lot of something and then maybe you've seen in visual memorabilia this week, the return of the return of this like 1960s poem about how cool Becker's are the Negroes of Canada,
right? Yeah. Yeah. So I wrote about that. There's, there's a there's a literally a book and branch that was like a groundbreaking is they lean a club law? Yeah. The Nef MFA. Right? Like That was the rallying cry for part of the separatist and independence movements in, you know, in Quebec. And you know, and so like when I see the premier of Quebec come out and be like, we're not a racist society. We've never been a racist society that is not one of our values that we have in this province. And it never has been. And I'm like, and I'm like, let me get my writing out. And let me get other writing out. And I just bought a history book that digs up the history of slavery in Quebec, which I knew about that they used to trade. They used to trade the the Jesuits who were there and the people, the catholic church that was there would have indigenous slaves, that they would trade with other French colonies in the Caribbean and Louisiana, because you would take them out of their environments that they want. We're used to an assignment that they were used to, and they were much less likely to escape. That's right. That's right. It
was it was all about like, basically cultural genocide, right is to get people outside of their systems of knowledge, culture and family support so that they became dependent, right? And that you break down those bonds that that help a culture remain vibrant and strong, which is the story. So the indigenous people all through Canada,
right. These days, yeah.
And it's like super important for us to be able to dig into the specificities of, of where we are right to keep our eyes on the particular prize of our own sort of implications in these systems, and that there is a work that goes beyond going to protests, right and that work consists of getting educated for yourself, and it consists of educating your children as well and it consists of addressing the specificity in case of anti black racism, which is a very particular kind of racism, right, which is different from anti indigenous racism or different from the sort of prejudice against Muslim people or brown looking people who appear to others to be Muslim, right? It's like so so racism has very many flavors and, and it's important for us to understand those those distinctions but also to be able to see the points of connection between disability rights movements, right, and social justice movements and anti racist movements because it all comes down to a dominant group, getting to decide on the humanity or not non dominant groups, right, and the exercise of a kind of majority or dominant power over the body's lives and life chances of people who are outside of that, that magic circle, right. And so we we can work to find ways to act to act in ally ship with one another without collapsing the specificities. Of what, what makes anti black racism different from, like prejudice against people with mental disorders, while at the same time having an intersectional enough understanding to know that there are black people with mental disorders, right? So that, that these groups are not monolithic and there is slippage between them, and that they are both specific, but they have names that they can share in common names that we can share in common, and that our tactics are going to have to be specific to the audience's we address the circumstances we find ourselves in, we're going to have to address a lot of like socially difficult, socially difficult work, which may be challenging for some of us. And we're going to have to take some risks in our interactions with others. I was seeing something online earlier this week. I wish I could remember the name of the Twitter user who shared this. It was like, you know, white ladies who are trying to do right. You're going to make mistakes, right? Just get used to that. Yeah, I'm sorry. And then move on. Right? Right, so the example she used was, so you try to start an anti racist initiative at your school and you like, do all the writing for the thing and you start a letter writing campaign and you do a petition, and then people accuse you, of foregrounding your own white self and not including people of color. And they're right. But then let's imagine that you've done it the opposite way. You have had this idea and you want to dissenter yourself. So you reach out to every scholar, a black scholar on your campus, you can think of to help you with this and then you will be accused of overburdening and tokenizing the Black Scholes and that will also be right, you know, you're going to have to be uncomfortable because no matter what you do, yeah, as a white ally here, you're going to fail in some way because that's how white supremacy works. Right? It works that no matter what you do, as a white person, you are going to be somehow advantaged over the people even when you are trying to help right? You will nevertheless have an unfair advantage and they're like just get used to being wrong all the time. But you try anyways. And I don't know about you, Lee, but with my particular flavor of neuro divergence, I have got very used to being wrong all the time and
having to apologize for stuff all the time. All the time. Yeah. I now remember who did the hockey sketch? I feel really bad. It was Chance the Rapper. I was wrong. Yeah.
But I and I think that that's, that's where I'm at right now in terms of my advocacy work so that this is where the intersection so I on the ground, I am helping the faculty on our campus. incorporate these things, think about these things, you know, put it foreground it rather than, you know, help them foreground it. But then more widely. I think the thing that's frustrating to me and where I'm sort of bringing the rages is this discuss is this idea of discomfort. And this idea that we can't teach these things in online spaces. Mm hmm. And so I have seen too many particularly humanities instructors, I don't even know professors, whatever. Don't say titles. You know, who teach courses who are vocally speaking out against online learning and online classes because, and and and they're terrible and they're awful and they're writing them off and saying we can't have these conversations in them. We can't have any conversations. They're not useful. The students don't learn. No more online education like this is this is a waste of time. And to me, and let's be honest, sure, would you would I prefer you in a face to face classroom? You bet I would, or maybe not, I don't know. But the reality of COVID-19 in the pandemic is we're not getting back in the classroom. Like, we're not for the health and safety of ourselves and our students. We're not getting back in the classroom. All right, and we have all of the shit going on in the world, that our students are going to come to us to try to help make sense out of or not, and then they'll have to make sense of it on their own. And so like
you cannot use online the modality as an excuse not to try.
Right. Right. And and I think there's a kind of connection there that sometimes people don't immediately see where they will be, you know, sharing videos and going to protests but then demanding that their students be able to attend synchronously in the fall like without realizing that, you know, if we all have to be online, synchronous classes assume a certain like 24 hour a day availability both of my time and the stability of my internet and my access to private spaces, right so that, that people who are quite honestly in one domain of their lives understanding themselves to be political activists, in search of justice, against and seeking anti black racism, the diminution of that are in their work lives, making demands about fall teaching, that work against justice. I would rather teach synchronously, I would rather teach in a classroom. Would it be great if I could just reproduce my synchronous in person class to a synchronous online class, I mean, that would suit me. Great. But I understand that the same circumstances that prevent me from being able to teach on campus and prevent students from being able to teach on campus have produced reverberating effects in their lives that reduce their access to internet, their access to privacy, they may be acting and caregiving roles. They may be, quote, unquote, essential workers in the economy, doing shift work in a variety of places. And so if I'm really seeking justice and equity and access to education, I'm going to put aside my personal preferences for synchronous and or in person teaching. And understand that I need to step take a step back from my relatively privileged position and use that privilege to support people who are working in circumstances a lot more difficult than what I'm working in and what I see a lot from people Unfortunately, is this like, lack of connection between the things that they're doing in their jobs and the jobs that they're putting on their Facebook?
Yeah, yeah, yep. Yeah. And I think that I mean, it's again, this idea of it's not going to be perfect. But it wouldn't be perfect in your class either. But we're okay with my class. Yeah. Nobody, I mean, if we're gonna have these hard discussions, and if you just want to use Well, they're online, and we can't have these hard discussions online. Right? Um,
you know, ever been on Twitter. Twitter is nothing but hard disk.
And not to mention the fact that like, how can you tell your students that there's no possibility for connection and meaningful growth and relationships in online spaces? When, like, the majority of these protests are organized, and executed in online spaces right lately? Yeah. You know, you can't It just so that's that's where I've been ranting about and just trying to get awareness and for people to understand like it Yes, it's hard not saying it's not hard, nothing doesn't suck, but it's the reality. And, and we know we've got to step up right and not use the circumstances as an excuse for it like I said, Not trying, right, like yeah,
I think I mean, many people, neurotypical and otherwise are kind of expressing overwhelm right now and confusion and then kind of emotional upset and maybe somebody has called them out because they said the wrong thing and they made it awkward and they don't know what to do with this one interaction they're having and they don't know what to do about these things that they don't understand and, and so they're like overwhelmed and confused and they've done the wrong thing. And I say welcome. Welcome, because I am usually overwhelmed and confused and have done the wrong thing, but I I'm here to tell everybody who's neurotypical that you can, in fact, survive that feeling confused and overwhelmed and uncomfortable and unsure of what the right thing to say is. And knowing you probably have to apologize to someone is not fatal. Right? Yeah. If you are a black person on a traffic stop, that can be fatal, right? Being trouble as a white person because you're not sure how to act and ally ship, or someone has told you you have done something wrong that you need to apologize for is not going to be fatal. So maybe it is our turn to sit in some of that discomfort and try to muddle through anyways. Because any, any ADHD person can tell you that terribly awkward conflict ridden social interaction is not the end of the world. I mean, if it was we'd all be dead.
Yeah, I mean, yeah, we're not right. So it's our ghosts. It's our ghost. We're dead. I'm dead. And these are our ghosts. Yes, that's right.
Yeah, I mean, you look a bit ghosts. With your legs zoom background Yeah, virtual like that every time you move your hair or part of your body disappears. It's gone. Yeah, that's right. Interesting. Yeah. So maybe you are a ghost a weird
ghost. I don't know that but and I think that that's like the important part is like being willing and able to have the hard conversations to do one of the one of the things that I've appreciated, it was an article inbox. And I just saw it pop up again on my Twitter feed and I know I shared this is that there's a lot of reading lists that are out there. And I know I've made recommendations as well. I I still say eloquent rage. If you can listen to Brittany Cooper, reading her own work through an audiobook I think it's amazing. I can't recommend thick by Tracy McMillan cotton enough. You know, if you google Black Lives Matter syllabus or anti racist reading lists, there's tons of them out there but what the Vox article is like okay, no, now what now? What are you gonna do? Right, you bought the book, you've read the book. Now what? What are you going to do? What does it mean to share an anti racist reading list? Was it mean to purchase an anti racist book? You know, all of all of these kinds of things, and to get to think of it as and it's true, like what what are you going to do with it? Are you going to have a hard conversation reading group with, you know, and I think that's a space to where, you know, that ability to blurt and that ability to be okay with the discomfort is like, you know, what, start a reading group and bring the book and like, bring in, like, bring the talking points, right. Like,
some of these things are framed online, as I think I may read that same pieces you as, like, the such and such syllabus and like, it's not a syllabus, it's a reading list, right? It's a list of a list of books can't teach you anything, right. So how do we organize these into sort of thematics and what is what are the learning outcomes? We what are the desired learning outcomes and be syllabuses, right? You have a list of books and it's a, you know, here are the things to read in order to demonstrate that you understand but like understanding is like just step one, right? Yeah. What exactly are you understanding? And the goal should be personal transformation, right? Yeah. And sort of deprogramming from the white supremacy that we've all of us been raised in, right, white people, black people, indigenous people of color more generally are all you know, sort of inculcated in white supremacy and so a list of books is like a good place to start. But then like, a reading group, a blurting group learning group Yeah, blurting group right? Because the goal should be not just to sort of, like, passively imbibe textual information so that you can say like, I've read my Brittany Cooper, I mean, my Roxane Gay, thanks. Yeah. But like what gets to change about you and I know all of us, probably listening to this podcast have had a lot of opportunities in our lives to produce This kind of self inquiry, what is wrong with me? Generally, right? What do I need to do to change? And so I think here again, my neurodivergent peeps, so there are much more likely to have developed a capacity to sort of look at themselves a little bit askance, right. And to say, like, is this right, is the way that I am being right. Right? What can I do to sort of like hack myself into a more optimal version of me, right, I think because everything tends to come to us everything social tends to come to us, like through repeatedly doing it the wrong way and learning it the hard way and then having to figure out what it was that we actually learned from that because it is just so hard, right?
How many times did we hear again, we've talked about this before, how many times did we hear growing up what is wrong with you?
What is wrong with you? Like people don't do that? Don't say that, like, oh, like and people accuse you of being sort of our people
don't react like what is wrong with you? Why are you reacting this way?
Right, like your face is too much stop. Right. And so we've we've like, we're very used to the art of self scrutiny. Right? Yeah. And and I think that may that may give us you know, an advantage in thinking through how to undo the racist programming that is sort of like being raised in a Western culture, right. I think that we are lucky in a way that we're so used to self surveillance and self scrutiny in those ways that we can understand ourselves as imperfect, but perfectible right in ways and that we can maybe bring that kind of awareness and practice of self transformation with us into our interactions with people who's maybe passage through the social world has not had as much friction in it. as ours have been, this might be the first time that someone has been, you know, led to understand that, you know, something like the phrase sold down the river comes from slavery, and it might be kind of a racist thing to continue to say and they're just sometimes If you challenge some people on something even as simple as a turn of phrase, it shakes their identity to the core and they have like a white fragility freak out in ways that people who've been told they've been wrong their entire lives or just kind of, oh, what did I do? Okay, I can change that. Right. So I think we have something to offer here to ourselves and to others in terms of fun programming.
Yeah. Well, it's
there's always read like there's I still remember the the conversation we had with Kelly about the like binder, we have the binder binder, social interactions, and this is just, this is just another section of our binder, like and I don't mean to downplay it and to dismiss it, but like in the field of like, our like trying to manage our behavior to acceptable ways. This is just another section of our binder, right? Yeah, no, it's it's the end and, you know, I'm still awkward. And I am still stammering and I still, you know, we'll get it wrong nine times out of 10 because I haven't quite flipped to the right page yet by the time my mouth says something, you know, and and the number of times I've apologized. But but but again like it like you said, like we have that and it's like, you know what, like, I'm glad you've never had that binder before. And I know it's really uncomfortable to flip through that binder because that's one of the things that as well, I don't know how to gauge and I don't want to say the wrong thing and I don't want to and you're like yeah, welcome my life. Welcome to the binder like here it is, like, you'll it'll get better at it. Find the page, even if it's too late, and then, you know, sit with that and next time, and you know what you could say you're sorry, but they may or may not forgive you. And you know what, like, That's life.
My yoga teacher says right, like all yoga teachers say fall down seven times. Yeah, get up eight, right? So if you're the type of person who's used to falling down in these scenarios, then you're like, Oh, yeah, eventually I'll mail the landing, right? But if you've never fallen down ever before, right, if you've maybe been knocking people down without realizing it, right, this movie feel hard landing, right. And I think the kind of resilience and self awareness that many people, many neurodivergent people have built up, as always feeling somewhat alien in the worlds in which they live and how we've had to try to fit ourselves to these things and learned ways to change our behavior to achieve the outcome that we desire, right? It's never self evident. It's never I'm just gonna move through the world and I'm gonna do whatever I want. And because I want things, they will come to me, right. That's never been how it works. And if that's the kind of learning that everybody else has to do now, right, I am maybe moving through the world in a way that supports white supremacy, right? If I change the ways that I behave to match my intentions, I will achieve the outcome I want instead of just saying, but I have good intentions, you know, for you, this is not like the secret,
great, but I'm a good person.
I'm a good person, right? I'm going to manifest my intention to be anti racist, but not actually change anything that I do. Right? It's like, so much self help
Right. Yeah. Take it from us, you can change who you are, and how you behave in order to achieve better outcomes.
Yeah. And, and I know Brittany Brown had a conversation recently a recorded conversation and I mean, she's always been somebody that I've kind of gone to and seen and listened to. And again, I'm going to collect all of these links.
I'm going to do my Google foo now as soon as we're done recording and I get to find all these links and put them in there.
And and make sure that that we have those resources and I will get everyone's name spelled properly and I'll say this that I'm terrible with names anyways, like, you know, I don't remember everything. I could repeat that entire hockey sketch but not the name of the person who's in it. Chance the Rapper, everybody was Chance the Rapper I finally Oh, that was driving me crazy, too. And so, so yeah, so I think that that, you know, get used to not being comfortable, right, like just like, get Get, get there and it's and it's it it is both personal and not. Mm hmm. Right like, and people are going to think things about you. Um, you know, and there is very little that you can do to change that. Right. Like, it's, you know, and again, that's uncomfortable to
hear you make mistakes. I mean, like,
I'm just thinking about a mistake that maybe you and I made today is maybe at the beginning of our podcast, we should have said, hey there ADHD people. This is mostly to the white people today, right? Yeah, I mean, because I I think our ADHD people who are racialized, particularly our black ADHD listeners don't need any of this lesson today, which is mostly pitched at well meaning white people and the well meaning white people that they are friends with, right? So if I could go back in time, I would put that disclaimer at the front. It's like, we got to do the work. And we don't need to expose people who already don't care.
I can put that I can put that in the show notes. Oh, hallelujah. You can do some some some of your food. It won't be Google. It'll be No, it won't be Google. Yahoo. Yeah, it'll, it'll, it'll, it'll be my WordPress food.
Oh, I had something I was gonna say. Well, and I think that there's something there is another conversation to be had. And I've shared resources on this too How ADHD is very much a white person. Oh, man. diagnosis that is heavily stigmatized in black children and not recognized as ADHD. But it then is punished as deviant, for lack of a better word, behavior.
My friend, you know, I have an article with 106 things in the work cited, please. So maybe maybe we could talk about that next time maybe we can talk about, you know, the racialization of mental health and disease and that sort of differential impacts of those and how maybe we can D racism, right, some of our some of our structures around disability.
Yeah, yeah, I think that would that would be good. But we we do want to say though, and I, I want to sort of mark this occasion as well. The original plan before everything sort of caught on fire, and not necessarily in a bad way, is that we hit our 10,000 Download of this thousand downloads.
And we I've been saying I've been asking, we've been asking listeners to write in and we've had tons of listeners who have written in and I wanted to do an episode
that 10,000 sounded like a nice round number to like do like let's do a reader like what they've been saying and stuff we've gotten from around the world. But this all seemed too important not to talk about instead. And I think that you know, it's it's even even the conversation itself in the podcast has been difficult and a little awkward and it's been super awkward. We're modeling it. We are modeling it, we are doing our best we are self correcting. When we are trying to find a path to action. We are trying to direct our energies where they would be most useful and we are learning as we go. We're really trying, right so we're modeling it. We Yeah,
yeah. And and we're trying to amplify too.
And maybe next week, we'll have to apologize for things. And we will, we will apologize sincerely.
Yep. And we will do better.
Yep. So tell us,
tell us what we need to apologize for it. We hope we were not blundering
into error on purpose.
I think I think that there's, you know,
we might listen to it, because I'm going to set this up for tomorrow. So we might both listen to this tomorrow. And then like, you have to like issue in a deeply because let's do it like, Oh, god, oh, God, I heard what I just said, and oh, I have made mistakes. Oh, yeah. Yeah. But I think but I think it's important. I really do think it's important. And you know, I appreciate that you and I are able to do this together in that way. So I appreciate that a lot and I appreciate that. We both understand each other's wavelengths in a way that we can. No, but I mean, but there's something to be said about that in terms of being able to have these conversations in a place where we know each other very well and understand each other's wavelength very well. To be able to kind of discuss and have the conversation and be able to be open and honest.
you know, careful with one another too, right. So it's like I've, you know, we say things and it's like, well, also and I'm like, Yes, right. Also that Yes, thank you. And, and, and have that kind of back and forth and exchange. So, you know,
what I wish for our our listeners in their social worlds as well, right is the capacity for an authentic and trust based exchange, where hopefully the the hole that arises will be greater than the sum of the parts or, particularly for those of us who have ADHD who never know quite what you're going to say until it's already out of your mouth. That simply having That interaction will produce insights. Yeah. for everyone.
Yeah. Which is why I don't have any of the links in any of the names because I didn't know that these these references are gonna cry my mouse.
Yeah, look at me I'm referencing hockey if needed.
Well, we should we should probably draw this too. You can get to work on all of that stuff. And I can Yeah, I don't know. Watch high Q. On like, Crunchyroll
I'm working very hard on my anime. Oh, good. Good. We're still we're about to finish Dragon Ball watching all of Dragon Ball again. We're just about to get to the Tournament of Power, which is sort of the most recent things. And then I am hoping now that the last airbender is on Netflix. I'm really hoping I've never seen it. I know it's supposed to be amazing. I'm just I'm hoping that we get through Dragon Ball and that maybe I could convince the family that last airbender should be our new like, let's watch an episode in anime before going to bed. Sort of My
husband and my daughter watched all of that together and they they really, really enjoyed it. So I missed that train, but I'm on the hiking train right now. So don't spoil it for me anybody.
Spoiler alert. All right. Well, take care. I hope you get some rest and
time away from zoom. Here's hoping
right back at you, babe. No.
Bye, everyone. Have a great weekend. Stay safe.