Video & Podcast: What Does Being An Ally Look Like?

Wait, before I talk about me and Rosalind, I have to share something else.

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The same day that Rosalind and I had our webinar, her sister, Zoe Wiseman, dropped our interview on her podcast. Zoe represents a generation of folks, who in her words, think they’re doing everything “right.” In the description of the podcast, Zoe said:

I’m starting with someone that I know, well, that can help me have this conversation because even though I am a liberal NYC person who believes that they are consistently doing their best, I know I can do better.

Furthermore, embarrassingly,  before talking to her, I actually didn’t really consider myself a white person.

Yes, yes I know, this could sound crazy. But growing up Jewish, I never considered myself in alignment in any way with the blood soaked hands of the original sinners that built this country. If anything I kind of thought of myself as living in allegiance with the black community. But what I’ve come to find out is that I have been benefiting from racism and slavery since I was born. Who knew! Yes I am embarrassed. Trust me.

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Zoe and I on vacation.

No topic was off limits. We talked about Ahmaud Arbery, Amy Cooper and even what can white people do. Zoe is marvelous at what she does. She is loud, raw and real so here’s the caveat; have headphones on or listen in the car when you’re alone and not around children. I’m so glad we had this talkYou don’t want to miss it. 

Ok, now on to her big sister 🙂

Rosalind Wiseman and I have known each other for over two decades. We have worked together, taught together, trained educators together, and even traveled together. And not just work travel, vacation travel!

I sang at her vow renewal ceremony to her husband, James.

Her first-born slept by my desk every time she would bring him to the office.

No seriously, the exchange would go something like this:
Rosalind would walk in with Elijah in her arms. I would say hello to her, I think 🙂  I waited until they made it all the way in the door and out of the elements. Then I would politely take Elijah for the rest of the day. The way I saw it, the only time he really needed to see Rosalind was for his meals. Other than that, he was mine. #bestcoworkerever 🙂

Even when we both left Washington, DC, and moved to different states, our relationship was always there. Always.

I share all of that because it’s important to know what you’re about to witness.

With so much going on in our country in regards to racism, police brutality, allyship, and systemic racism, Rosalind and I have been talking a lot to one another. It’s what we do. It’s what we’ve always done. And the conversations haven’t always been easy but, they’ve been always been intentional and honest.

During one of our talks over the past couple of weeks, we decided we were going to write an article together to add our voices to the sea of opinions. And while sharing our plans with her colleagues at Cultures of Dignity, they (James) couldn’t understand why we were writing and not talking.  I mean, we do both speak for a living.

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So with that encouraging nudge, we decided to have one of our conversations with people in the room. With nearly 1,000 registrants, Rosalind and I took to Zoom and spoke candidly about racism, privilege, power, and what it really means to be an ally.

Here is our conversation.

After watching and listening, I’d love to hear your thoughts. You can comment below or drop me an email

Again, we don’t have all the answers but we do know something has to change. We’re committed to being a part of that change. Together.

With Gratitude,

Shanterra

 

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