Antiracist Parenting Podcast

E15: Talking to Your Children about 9/11

September 02, 2021 Hannah Carney & SooJin Pate Season 2 Episode 15
Antiracist Parenting Podcast
E15: Talking to Your Children about 9/11
Show Notes Transcript

SooJin and Hannah bring in 9/11 expert, Deepa Iyer, to process the horrific terrorist attacks that took place twenty years ago. Deepa describes 9/11 as a watershed moment in history that significantly changed the way South Asian, Arab, Muslim, and Sikh communities were perceived in the U.S. Since then, racial anxiety, Islamophobia, and anti-immigrant sentiment have only gotten stronger - making the work of community building and advocacy more complex and challenging. Deepa is a dedicated learner and activist who helps us to better understand solidarity as a practice. Some of the fundamental features of solidarity include 1) finding commonalities, 2) understanding our unique differences and 3) centering the voices of people who are most impacted. Deepa explains how we can tailor this framework as we talk with our kids - helping them to find connection, recognize privilege, choose empathy, and prioritize the needs of people who are experiencing the most harm. We are reminded in this episode that we have much to learn from our kids too.

Please note: We sometimes use the acronym BIPOC, which means Black, Indigenous and/or People of Color. 


Movement Building Project

We Too Sing America by Deepa Iyer

Solidarity is This podcast

From Orphan to Adoptee: US Empire and Genealogies of Korean Adoption by SooJin Pate

E15: Talking to Your Children about 9/11

Co-hosts: SooJin Pate and Hannah Carney

Guest: Deepa Iyer

Intro & Outro: Music by Mike Myth Productions

SooJin: Welcome to the Antiracist Parenting Podcast, where we're working to create an antiracist world for ourselves, our children, and future generations to come.

Hannah: We are Hannah Carney and SooJin Pate. And we're coming to you not as experts but as parents who want to share our missteps and successes in raising antiracist children. Thank you for being on this journey with us, as we work together to build a community of antiracist parents who are raising a generation of antiracist kids.

SooJin: Welcome to Episode 15. In this episode, we're going to reflect on the impact of 9/11, as this month marks the 20th anniversary of this event. And we have an incredible guest with us today to help us talk to our children about 9/11 and its aftermath 20 years later. But before we get to that, it's time for our Accountability Check-in, where Hannah and I check in with each other about the commitments we made from the last episode. So Hannah, would you like to start us off? 

Hannah: Yes. Thank you. So I had made two commitments. The first was to learn about PACT, which is the Adoption Alliance that Malaika Parker is involved with and works for and with. And so I looked at their website and through various resources and materials and really learned a lot. I feel like the work that they're doing is really important, and they work really hard on centering the child in the adoptive process and throughout the child's life, even into adulthood. It was very obvious to me that they are, they bring a truthful lens to the work and ethical lens to the work and are really upfront about the complexities that exist within the adoption experience. And they're very mindful to include all of the different groups that are involved. So, for example, birth parents, the adoptive parents, as well as the child. And I learned a new term, which is adoptism. And how I understand it is basically I think about it like racism. So it's an “othering,” a stigma or a way of separating someone, and a dehumanizing way where it's seen as less than. And, of course, this is very harmful. And that is important for me to understand. So I really appreciate Malaika Parker for bringing her work and all of this learning to me, as it's really eye-opening. And I will continue to learn more about adoption as a result. Grateful for that. 

SooJin: Great! And you can always reach out to me, since I’m an adoptee myself. 

Hannah: Yeah. And you know what? SooJin has a book and everyone should read it!

And then the other thing that I had committed to was analyzing what we need versus what we think we need. And that is helpful. And I feel like it's an ongoing process. Something that comes to mind immediately is like material stuff. I feel like that's, in our culture, such a push of we need material things. But the biggest way that this analysis showed up for me was around the notion of needing to say yes to everybody. And if I say no, that somehow is disrespectful or breaks some unwritten rule. And I'm thinking about this in the context of setting healthy boundaries. And so, since I'm a helper, I always am like, “Oh yes, I want to help. I'll do that. Sure!” So this process is helping me to understand that not only that saying no is possible, but it can be really helpful and that it can be in service of preserving the relationship and that saying yes all the time actually can be damaging to a relationship. And so I am not great at saying no yet, but I'm practicing and I'm getting better. And in the instances where I have done this successfully—like saying no to certain requests—I have definitely felt like in my body a little more space and a little more confidence and a little more peace. And so that is super motivating to continue to figure out like, “What do you healthy boundaries really feel like in my body”? And also to be able to bring that new sense of a “subtle body” into all of the meaningful things in my life. 

SooJin: Yeah, and that settled body, I'm sure, helps with your parenting, right? 

Hannah: Totally. Totally! Such a huge benefit. 

SooJin: Awesome! Great. Thanks, Hannah. 

So I made two commitments from our last episode. The first was around incorporating the language of joy because that's something that Malaika spoke a lot about: how they have “Joy Hour” with the family. And so I said that I would start incorporating that language more and asking my daughter what brings her joy and having conversations around that.

And like in the past with all of the things that I said I'm going to have a conversation with my daughter about it, it did not go the way that I thought it would. And it was extremely short: the conversation. 

So she was she went to a birthday party. And after it, I'm like, “Oh, how did it go? What'd you do?” And then I asked a follow-up question of, “Did it bring you joy?” And she looks at me and she's like, “Why are you asking that?” And then I explained to her about the conversation we had with Malaika and stuff. And she's like, “I think that's a weird question.”

And I'm like, “Why is that weird?” And she's like, “because it's something that’s for yourself, you know?” So essentially she told me, “I know when I feel joy and I don't need to let other people know when I feel like.” It's just something internal, like within, and I'm like, I totally get it. And honestly, I know when my daughter is feeling joy. I know her enough that based on her nonverbals and all that stuff, I know. But I just, I loved how she just kinda called me out on it – like we don't need to have this conversation for me to know when I'm feeling joy.

And then the second thing was from what Malaika talked about, how one of the ways that she's incorporating joy into her life and also incorporating practices that are not white supremacist in her life is by tapping into the assets of her people. And so that's where the urban farming and the gardening came from and all that stuff. And so the commitment I made was to tap into the assets of my ancestors. And the first thing that came to my mind when I was thinking about, “What are the assets of my people? Korean people?” And the first thing I thought of was food. We have the most amazing food. Like it's just so amazing and delicious and it induces all kinds of feelings in us. And so I reached out to someone that I know who spent, I think four or five years in Korea and was taught how to make Korean food by his mother-in-law. And he's going to be teaching me and also go grocery shopping with me and teaching me about what ingredients to get and all that stuff. So I'm super excited about that. I think that's going to happen this fall. 

And then the second thing is eating – like actually eating the food of my ancestors. And I realized that eating is my way to connect with my ancestors. So my sister was visiting for the last couple of weeks from Uganda, and we ate Korean food for half the time that she was here.

And my former students, they invited me out for lunch to their place where they cooked Korean food and it just felt so nourishing. And it was really quite powerful because the food induced and inspired in us this amazing conversation that we had. And it literally felt like our ancestors were filling the space and eating alongside with us. And from them, I learned about this concept of singi. They said that every time they talked to me, they tell each other like, “SooJin has singi.” And I'm like, “Oh, what's that?” And so shin means God in Korean and gee means like to rise or stand up or connect. So something about a connection with God or to God.

And it was interesting that they said that because that is something that I've been deepening. My practice is like being able to listen to my ancestors. And also shamanism is a really important aspect of Korean culture. It is actually a pre-colonial practice. So before Buddhism Confucianism, Christianity, it was shamanism. That was the religious practice of my people. And shamanism and singi, I think, are connected in some way. So anyway, I'm making the commitment to learn more about shamanism, what it means to be a munyeo, which is a shaman. And then what this singi thing is to connect to the assets of my ancestors.

Hannah: Cool. That is amazing. Wow. So building onto your accountability check-in, we will set our intention to be tapping into the assets of our ancestors. 

SooJin: Yeah, let's call them in. Let's bring them into the space. Awesome. Great. Thanks. 

Okay. So I have the amazing honor and privilege to be able to introduce you all to our amazing guest Deepa Iyer. We met at a Black History Month event that was sponsored by Act to Change. And the panel was devoted to talking about combating anti-black racism in the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. And so, in the same way that I met Melissa Beck, this is where I met Deepa. And so I was so thrilled when Deepa accepted our invitation to be on our podcast, especially given that we are on the eve of the 20th anniversary of 9/11. And before we talk about that, I was wondering, Deepa, first of all, like who you are, where you come from, and what you do.

And then if you have an intention that you'd like to set for this episode, you could share that, as well.

Deepa: First of all, thank you so much, SooJin, for having me and I enjoyed hearing your conversation with Hannah just now about intention setting and really love your practice of accountability in this way. 

So a little bit about myself. I am a South Asian American immigrant who grew up in India and moved to the United States, to Kentucky actually, when I was 12 years old and have been living in the U.S. since. I have been working primarily in Asian American and South Asian American communities for about a decade and a half, perhaps more. And my focus areas have been around community building and advocacy, particularly in the wake of the 9/11 attacks and what followed. And over the last five years, I've been focused on really thinking more about how we do this work rather than what we do. So what are the ways in which we build our muscle for practicing solidarity? How do we create organizations and practices that enable us to be more effective in the social change work that we want to do? So I work right now at an organization called The Building Movement Project, where I produce resources and reports and train organizations and individuals and collectives on social change and solidarity practice. 

In terms of an intention to set: I really want to go back to one that you mentioned earlier, SooJin, around how to actually infuse a culture of joy even when it feels like we are consistently in a place of struggle. I think like many people listening, I am overwhelmed by all of the different layers of trauma and pain and loss that are swirling around us. And so trying to find and have that conversation with myself or with others around joy, I think that’s an intention that I will try to keep in mind, especially as we move into the next month and a half.

SooJin: Love that. That's beautiful. So before we talk about 9/11, I was wondering if you would share a little bit about your family, who your children are and how you're raising your children to be an anti-racist.

Deepa: That's a big question. So I have one child who just turned 11. And I guess I would answer that in a couple of ways. I think that, for us, it's always been important to infuse conversation with books that my son reads and events that we go to with an eye towards, “How does this foster community? Or how are we understanding barriers that people face?”

And so I guess some concrete examples might be more helpful. If we are walking around the neighborhood and see a lot of Black Lives Matter signs, that has been an opportunity to have a conversation, to say, “Why do you think that sign is on this lawn? And what does it mean?”

And I think one time my son did say, “Why don't Black Lives Matter? Why do we have to say that they do?” And so that was an opening to have a deeper conversation, right? Or recently this past year when we were trying to— We talked about the Civil Rights Movement and the March on Selma that happened for voting rights. I used that as an opportunity to talk to my son about the different roles that people played in order to make that March happen. And so I think they're just, and then books that we introduce to him. Not all the time. But when we can, to introduce books that actually have characters that are kids of color, that center kids of color, and where we can have some deeper conversations around what sorts of situations they're facing.

So those are just some external pieces. But then of course, like conversations around, “What does it mean to be a brown child?” Or if he faces any sort of situation at school where he feels othered, we talk about that and we also talk about how his dad and I have faced othering when we were growing up in this country and how that affected us. And so being open and having those conversations as opposed to, at least for me growing up, we didn't have those conversations so openly in my family. So really disrupting that model of not sharing. So I think that's one way to think about being clear about racism and its role in this country.

SooJin: You had written a book about 9/11, which I just felt was like ground shifting in many ways, centering the voices of the community, letting the community speak for themselves, and also building off of so much of the activist and solidarity and community-building work that you do. And I was wondering, maybe you could talk a little bit about that. B then also, what are some things that you think we should be considering when talking to our children about 9/11 in preparation for the anniversary? Because the news, social media—we're going to be inundated with that stuff very soon. So curious about how best to prepare our ourselves and our children for that. 

Deepa: Yeah. Thank you for that question. I think that it is one of those situations where it obviously depends on each family and how much of a conversation folks want to have. And it depends on the age of the child, as well. I think that, I would say that if you have older children like middle school, high school age, college age, it's really important to have a deeper conversation about the full histories and the full impact of the post-9/11 moment. I think that generally speaking, and I remember this because I was teaching a course in college a number of years ago, and it was on like Asian American, South Asian American, history, and we'd gotten to that part on 9/11. And I was a little bit surprised when my students who were probably like third graders, I guess, when 9/11 happened? Or maybe a little bit younger? Obviously, they don't have a living memory necessarily of what happened, but what they also said was that they learned very little in their classrooms about 9/11 and its impact. And what they did learn was really framed through a national security lens, which is really how generally the American public thinks about 9/11 at all. So they learned about terrorism. They learned about obviously the war on terror. And they knew that there was backlash against communities.

But that was the extent of what it was that they had learned. And as we unpacked the impact more, as we talked about, “How did the profiling and hate violence against South Asian, Arab, Muslim, and Sihk communities affect people, right, in terms of their mental health? in terms of their understanding of belonging? in terms of state policies that ended up deporting, detaining profiling, and surveilling so many people? 

One of the things that, you know, many of the students said was, “I wish I had learned this earlier. I wish that I had known about the full impact and the full histories better” because, as you know, everything really literally changed after 9/11 when it comes to domestic policy and foreign policy. We had a new architecture for the government and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. We had national security policy and immigration policy come together in many ways. And that's really been the blueprint that the government has followed since then. And I think that it's so important for young people to understand that what they're used to living in is a result of the way in which our country reacted. And in many ways, our country reacted in ways that that were mistakes. And I think we need to share that with young people so that when they come into leadership positions in the future, they're able to make, they're able to make decisions that are a little bit more considered and balanced, understanding what the impact would be.

SooJin: This idea of talking more about the mistakes we made in order to learn from them. For your son, who's eleven, what would a conversation like that look like? 

Deepa: Yeah. So in the conversations that we have had with him, it's been first and foremost focused on the tragedy, the fact that thousands of people lost their lives on that day in a horrific set of events. And we have shared that. Perhaps not all of the details, but it's important that he understands that happened to our country and in our country. Wo really understanding the grief and also understanding how, he and his father, I'm sorry, his father and I were personally affected because of what happened on that day. His dad was in New York and I was in DC. And there were a lot of personal implications of being in two cities that endured two of the attacks. And then talking about how the community responded, like what was the impact of what happened in terms of community backlash. And I think that it's important to move through what happened. How were we personally affected—those of us who really were personally affected, right, in some way, shape or form. And then what about the community? That might be a trajectory to follow. That's what we did, but I also think we have a different— I think for better or for worse, I think my son is probably used to having some of these conversations in his household. And that's not always the case. So that's why I said at the beginning, it really depends on how much people want to share about their own experiences.

But I always think grounding it in, “How did it affect me? This was an important moment in my life. It was a watershed moment. It happened when I was X years old and this is how I endured it.” 

I think another way that we might want to contextualize it at some level is—because a lot of our children are going through the pandemic which has been a watershed moment in their lives—and to say that there are some connections there. When we have a crisis like the pandemic, it affected all of our lives. We're coming up on an anniversary of a crisis moment that affected my generation in my life in a particular way. So that could be another entry point to have the conversation. But however, we have it, I think that it's really important to not sanitize or provide an incomplete history or recitation of events. I think it's important to share the full histories and that means we have to be educated and informed ourselves. And thankfully there are lots of places and resources that folks can go. And you mentioned my book, but it’s one of many other books that are out there, documentaries. There are artists who have produced multimedia art on the impact of 9/11 and its aftermath. So there are so many resources out there that we can go to educate ourselves so that when we're talking to our kids, we can really share these kind of full histories depending on what their capacity is to absorb what we're going to be sharing with them.

SooJin: When you talk about making the connection of 9/11 to the pandemic, it also made me think about like I could talk to my daughter about the increased, heightened attacks and hate crimes against the AAPI community because of the pandemic. And so that, even though, like it's different and the scale in which, you know, Arab, Muslim, and South Asian folks were surveilled and targeted is completely different from 9/11 to what happened now from the pandemic, I think that might be a good reference point in helping her kind of understand that these moments are very…they repeat. They're recycled. And they repeat in different communities of color at different times in our country, in our lives, depending on the political and social climate of our country.

And so I feel like that could be a really productive way not only to help enter this conversation and make comparisons so that they can better understand the moment—even though they didn't actually experience the moment—but also to help build connections in terms of like forming solidarity. So I was wondering if you could share a little bit more about your work in building community and solidarity across race.

Deepa: Yeah. And I just wanted to just really reinforced what you said, SooJin. I think that's another entry point of talking about the current climate of anti-Asian hate and the scapegoating that Asian American communities have had to deal with because of the pandemic. And there are similarities there, right? In terms of the scapegoating of Muslims and those perceived to be Muslims after 9/11. And that is connected to solidarity at some level because, part of solidarity practice I'm learning and have learned is that, it is important to identify commonalities and similarities in terms of our experiences with oppression in different ways. And it's also important, just like you did, to really nuance and bring in the nuances of the differences. 

So solidarity practice is saying that we're connected, but we're not all at the same. And it's important to find the notes of connection. And in this case, it's scapegoating of communities of color because of some, for something that they had nothing to do with and then facing attacks as a result. But then recognizing that there are unique ways in which that's happening that's different, right? After 9/11, we saw government profiling at such a wide swath that really affected people in many different ways. So hate violence and state violence together. So we can also then recognize the differences while we talk about the commonalities.

So that's a big, that's one of the principles of solidarity practice: where we're able to find commonalities and connections without equalizing them and say that they're all the same or that we're all the same. And so part of the work that I've been doing around solidarity practice is really learning about the characteristics of effective solidarity practice in different social change movements here in the U.S. and around the world.

And one of those is commonalities and connections, and another one is around centering. So the importance of centering communities that are directly affected by unjust systems and unfair policies. And recognizing that those that are most effected should be the ones who are leading, who are providing solutions, et cetera.

So part of my work is to do trainings and provide resources to help us build our muscle of solidarity. Another part of my work is to share narratives. So I do a podcast on solidarity practice. So sharing narratives of how community leaders, organizers are actually thinking about solidarity and wrestling with it, not just the potential of it, but the complexities and the challenges of it at the real top. So those are a couple of different ways in which I do, I work on solidarity practice at the Building Movement Project with amazing colleagues. And those are the kinds of issues that we think about and try to push out into the world. 

SooJin: I'm sorry for not pointing out your podcast as part of my earlier comments about you because I listen to your podcast, and I want to thank you for providing our community with such an amazing example of what solidarity looks like. Thank you for that because I love what you said about how solidarity is about finding connections and similarity, but not equalizing them, not equating them as all the same. Unfortunately, that's been like the way that solidarity has been wielded or has been understood in like mainstream circles which doesn't feel right and doesn't, to me, lead to the kind of outcomes that we're actually looking for when we're doing solidarity work. So thank you for highlighting that for us.

Deepa: Of course, and thank you so much for listening to the podcast. 

SooJin: It's awesome. It is so great. So many wonderful guests!

Deepa: Yeah, the guests are amazing. 

SooJin: They are amazing. Yep. 

Hannah: I have a question. As I'm listening to you talk about solidarity, I wonder, are you talking and teaching your son about solidarity? And do you see kids doing this type of work like in schools or with their communities? 

Deepa: Yeah, I think that at the end of the day, solidarity's a very basic practice that we've all learned in our lives. It is basically choosing to empathize with other people and understanding that our lives are intertwined. And I think these are lessons that young people are taught. We all teach them to our children. We aspire to them, and I think they're in the classrooms, as well. So, yes, I do talk to him about, I would say I use the words empathy and connection more than probably solidarity. And I think that what I aspire for him to learn is that it's important to look at people and not see them as the other, or not see them as different for any reason, but to find the places of connection and to develop a sense of empathy. And in that, also recognize his privilege and recognize that there are ways in which he can show empathy towards other people that actually center those people rather than himself. And so I think that these are hard for all of us, even adults to do. And I also am on a learning journey and still struggling to learn a lot of this myself and practice it. But empathy is the container that I utilize the most when I think about solidarity and young people.

Hannah: Thank you. 

SooJin: That makes sense. Yeah, that makes total sense. 

Hannah: Yeah, that's really helpful. So the next part of our agenda is around doing the Lightning Round. But before we get to that, is there anything you'd like to promote? You've mentioned your website and the podcast but, in addition to those two things, are there organizations or projects or anything you'd like our listeners to know about?

Deepa: Yeah, I think for folks who are interested in talking about the impact of 9/11 with young people, it would really…ask folks to take a look at the sources that are out there. There are a lot of organizations that are in the Muslim, Arab, South Asian space that have put out reports, that have put out exercises, reflections. I would suggest looking at a website that our organization and others created called, which is from more of an Asian American Pacific Islander standpoint but has short videos that are accompanied with reflection questions that could be used in the classroom or could be used for dinner table conversations. So those are a couple of examples that I would point folks to, particularly around having these conversations around the 20th anniversary. 

Hannah: Cool. And those stories and videos, could we watch them together with our kids? Is that recommended? Yeah. 

Deepa: Yeah. I would watch them first yourself and make sure that the “real talk is proper,” but it is basically short clips of interviews with Asian American Pacific Islander leaders who are talking about examples of solidarity. And there are a few examples of those coming from the post-9/11 experience, as well. 

Hannah: Cool. Thanks. Awesome.. 

SooJin: And then the title of Deepa's book is We, Too, Sing America, which is taken from the line from Langston Hughes’ poem, which I just think is so beautiful and lovely that you brought that in. And then the podcast is “Solidarity is This,” is the title of her podcast, which can be streamed from anywhere. And we will include those in our show notes. 

Hannah: Cool. Anything else before the lightning round? 

Deepa: I don't think so. I think you covered it all. 

Hannah: Okay. So it's just whatever comes to mind first.

Deepa: Oh, I overthink everything. I’ll try to get out of that space.

SooJin: We promise you, once you hear the question, you’ll be like, “Oh, okay. This is like nothing.”

Deepa: Ok. Alright.

Hannah: Okay. So fill in the blank: Anti-racist parenting or caretaking is…

Deepa: Challenging but required. 

Hannah: What's the last thing your son did to make you smile? 

Deepa: He told me that he helped his grandmother bring the groceries in

Hannah: What are you reading? 

Deepa: I’m reading a book on social movements because I'm teaching a class on social movements in the fall. And I finished— One of the books that I love that I finished a couple of months ago is the Midnight Library

SooJin: What's the Midnight Library about?

Deepa: It's a fiction book. It's this really great book about a young woman who is not satisfied with her life and is exploring sort of different timelines of what her life could have been like had she made different choices. 

SooJin: Oh, fascinating! That sounds like a really good read. 

Deepa: Yeah, especially this year…or last year.

SooJin: Yeah, a good way to disconnect from reality. The book on social movements, what's the title? 

Deepa: It is called Social Movements: The Structure of Collective Mobilization

SooJin: Thank you. I want to take your class, Deepa. 

Deepa: Let's see how it goes first.

Hannah: Cool. Okay. What are you doing to take care of yourself? 

Deepa: I try to do a number of things. I drink a lot of water. I am on that Peloton kick, so I try to exercise. And I also try to check out of work, of social media, and just take my mind off of a lot of what occupies it.

Hannah: Yeah, so important. Last question: what question would you like Antiracist Parenting Podcast to explore in a future episode? 

Deepa: Let's see. I think that…I don't know if you've already done this, but I think it might be interesting to talk to young people themselves as guests. You probably maybe have done this or to intersperse some of that because I just feel like there's so much to learn about parenting from children. I'm always struggling with parenting and trying to figure out what to do half the time. And so I think listening to young people or children can be— Sort of like you said, SooJin, earlier, when you were with recounting that conversation you had with your daughter about joy and what she said about you just feel it or something. That's really great. So sometimes we like want to do certain things, and I think our children tell us what they need. So I think it would be interesting to hear from young people who are experiencing the impact of parenting with the intention of talking about race and racism—like, how are they responding to that? How is it changing their lives, et cetera?

SooJin: Oh, Deepa. Yes! Thank you so much for offering that. We need to do that. Like they know. We have so much to learn from them. They know what works, what doesn't work. Yes, thank you for that.

Deepa: Sure.

SooJin: You've made our podcast better by that suggestion. So we're definitely going to do that. Thank you. 

Hannah: Anything else you'd like to say or share before we say goodbye? 

Deepa: No, I felt like it was a really well-rounded conversation, and I appreciate the space and opportunity but also just the container that you're creating for people to have these conversations and listen and learn.

SooJin: Thank you so much for your time and yeah. For all the work that you do for our community. Thank you so much. Take care. 

Deepa: Thank you so much. It was good to meet you, Hannah. And always good to be in touch with you, SooJin. 

All: Bye!

SooJin: First of all, she is super smart, and I just love how like the examples that she provided—the concrete examples that she provided in terms of how we can incorporate all this—I just thought was really helpful.

Hannah: Yeah. It's definitely such a heavy topic, important, and also as I'm thinking through—  We've had this climate report that's come out, we're in the pandemic still, and preparing to go back to school. And just thinking through all the social unrest that obviously is not resolved. And now thinking about, okay, so introducing the 20th anniversary of 9/11. And I'm thinking a lot about how to do that. And I feel like that was something that is really central to her is like how we do the work. Not only like in the movement, but like how do we introduce certain topics? What's the timing? How do we ensure that we support our kids? as we're telling them these things that are the truth and that they need to know about and making sure that they have the tools to manage the emotions that will surface undoubtedly. And also I will be very interested to see how schools, if and how schools will approach the 20th anniversary.

But I am feeling very thankful that she mentioned several different resources. So for myself to prepare ahead of talking to my kids, I feel like that's something I really need to do. I've read her book. I've read just finished another book that kind of shares seven or eight different stories of people who we're growing up around 9/11 and then trace their stories then afterwards and where their lives have gone.

And so I feel like I know some things, but I need to know, I want to know more. 

SooJin: I think for me, I really loved how Deepa was able to share how she's going to talk and how she has spoken to her son, making the connections of the pandemic to 9/11 because, in thinking about how I'm going to talk to Sxela about this…I hope that her school talks about it but, if they don't, I'm gonna talk to her regardless. But yeah, to talk about the anti-Asian hate that I think that will be a good way to enter into that conversation and just see where it goes from there. So I want to thank Deepa for helping me to come up with a strategy of how to enter into the conversation.

Hannah: Yeah. Yeah. Likewise. 

SooJin: And then I think the other thing— My biggest actual take away is actually having kids as guests on our podcast because I’m with her: in terms of like when we think about policies, when we think about like how we do the work, and how we approach certain things—that we need to center the people that are most effected. The people that are most effected by parenting are the children. And so we absolutely need to bring them in and to hear from them and to learn from them because they're able to see things that we can't see. And I constantly say that Sxela is the teacher in our relationship. And I'm the student. I say that all the time. And yet that hasn't translated into thinking about our podcast and having the children being the guests on our show and learning from them. So I want to thank Deepa for that reminder. 

Hannah: Yes, I will look forward to that conversation or however many it becomes. 

I feel like my commitment is going to be, to look at solidarity stories and the other documentaries and artists and other resources and prepare and have that conversation with my kids in coordination with my spouse.

So we want to finish up by offering a couple of announcements. The first being is that we are on Patreon now. And so you can find that on our website to become one of our patrons. And we would so greatly appreciate it. The money will be used to continue to pay our amazing guests and to help in covering costs just related to producing, editing, and creating the transcripts for these podcast episodes.

And our other announcement is that we will be starting a monthly conversation online. It's called the Antiracist Parenting Study Circle. And we will be delving deep into another podcast called “Finding Our Way.” Each month we'll look at one episode of the “Finding Our Way” podcast and delve deeper into understanding what that learning means for us personally and then also how that can inform our parenting. So we're super excited about that. And that information can be found on our website, as well. 

And we're just really grateful for you. Thank you for being with us on this journey. And we look forward to hopefully meeting you at the Study Circle and just to continue to grow and learn together.

SooJin: Thanks so much everybody. Take care.

SooJin: We just want to say thank you for joining us today. You can find more information about us and past episodes on our website A big shout out to Mike Myth Productions for the intro and outro music.

Hannah: This work requires us to challenge ourselves and take care of ourselves. Be well.

SooJin: Be antiracist.