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In this episode, we speak with Shawna Gann. She is a management consultant in the DC Metro area. Though originally from Anchorage, Alaska, she has lived and worked all around the world, primarily teaching elementary school. In recent years she shifted gears to focus on organizational development and other workplace matters. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Business Psychology with a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion specifically for those perceived as racially ambiguous. This pursuit also inspired the creation of her weekly podcast, Our True Colors.

We connected on about how we both of us are racially ambiguous and are judged based on where we are and things surrounding #BlackLivesMatter.

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00:00:05 April Grant
Welcome to the other side of 40. My name is April Grant, and I’m here to help women make positive changes with their lives. After the age of 40 let the other side of 40 become your community to find inspiration and support to start the next chapter of your life.

00:00:29 April Grant
Welcome to this week’s episode of the other side of 40. Today we have Shauna Gan, and she is a management consultant in the D. C. Metro area. Though originally from Anchorage, Alaska, she has lived and worked all around the world, primarily teaching elementary school. In recent years, she shifted gears to focus on organizational development and other workplace matters. She is currently pursuing her PhD in business psychology with a focus on diversity, equity, inclusion

00:01:02 April Grant
and inclusion specifically for those perceived as racially ambiguous. This pursuit also inspired the creation of her weekly podcast. Our true colors welcome, Shauna. Thank you. Welcome. Welcome. Well, I used to say welcome a zoo. We see you’re also about e

00:01:22 Shawna Gann
m. Thank you for having me. Let me let me get in the correct seat. And now I’m ready.

00:01:27 April Grant
All right. Oh, um, well, I thought was really interesting about your bio was the, um

00:01:37 April Grant
that you’re focusing on diversity and equity, especially right now, with everything going on in the world. We have a lot of, um, injustice out there. And people are really taking to the streets literally, uh, literally for demanding justice. So we will get into that. But let’s start, um, What is your awakening moment and tell us about it?

00:02:09 Shawna Gann
Yes. Well, I am a military spouse. My husband’s an active duty member of the Air Force

00:02:16 Shawna Gann
and for nearly 26 years, actually,

00:02:20 Shawna Gann
and we met when both of us were really, really young. I was in university studying to be a teacher, and, um,

00:02:29 Shawna Gann
we got married and got on our way, so we met in Alaska. But as it typically goes with military life, we moved a lot and a lot, a lot, although probably less than some. So I feel fortunate that we did get stick around some places a little bit longer, but with that meant Uprooting. You know, our family, our kids. But also, I was uprooted from my job every single time. So every new location meant, um, establishing myself again, proving myself again. I mean, there was a lot of growth in that, and I have learned a lot because I’ve been with so many people and lived in so many places and have been around the local culture, but also the culture of every workplace. But, um, I just felt so stagnant because I could never really get ahead because I had to start over every time. So even though I had personal growth and a little bit of professional growth, it wasn’t really evident in my job because, you know, I was always the new kid on the block s. Oh, yeah, when we got to

00:03:39 Shawna Gann
Korea because we like I said, we lived a lot of places I don’t know. Well,

00:03:44 Shawna Gann
talk about that at some point. But, um, my last teaching position was when we lived in Seoul and I was applying for a position that would have been sort of a step between

00:03:57 Shawna Gann
I’ll wait a second. You

00:03:59 Shawna Gann
I don’t know if you could hear the sirens that I live fire station. So

00:04:04 Shawna Gann
and it’s not loud. I’m I’m just Oh, good. I’m used to chopping them out every time, So Okay,

00:04:11 Shawna Gann
um right. So my last teaching position was in Seoul South Korea, and I really was itching Thio move up somewhere and the thing about teaching, I loved it. I loved the kids. I mean, I just I loved being a teacher, but there’s not a true career path. You either continue being a teacher and take on some additional duties, which I did a lot of, Um, the bookmark that because that has a lot to do with why I changed or why I made the change that I did, um, or you move into administration, which I did not want to dio. And there are very few sort of in betweens. And there was a position that would would have allowed me to work with the school district with teachers and with admit, it was a great sort of liaison position. And when I lost out to it Ah Thio long term Dodds teacher. I taught for the Department of Defense Schools. I I realized, OK, I’m just not growing, and my husband would soon retire

00:05:17 Shawna Gann
and I hadn’t had that. So he has had this wonderful, beautiful career, but my career was just so choppy and my resume is like 17 pages long because of all the jobs. I’m just kidding. But really,

00:05:31 April Grant
every two years you’re changing every one or two years, you’re changing jobs, so

00:05:35 Shawna Gann
yeah, well, fortunately for us, it wasn’t quite that often, but it was good. Yeah. So, um

00:05:43 Shawna Gann
right. I was mentioning that I did all these extra duty sort of things. I ran after school clubs for for students. I was, um and some of those clubs had to do with school improvement. So at one of the schools, I was the school improvement leadership chair. So it’s called. It’s like a continuous school improvement thing. It has to do with re accreditation whenever schools need to show that they’re progressing, etcetera, and eso I chaired that. And then after that experience, you can never kind of take that out of your blood. So everywhere I went, I was somehow involved with that. And then I decided I needed more education. So I went back and got my master’s degree and continues Turina curriculum instruction and assessment.

00:06:26 Shawna Gann
And then came the common core standards, which kind of freaked everybody out, right? Yeah. Dodds did not, uh, follow common Corbeau. There is a similar one. That kind of

00:06:41 Shawna Gann
Oh, there’s a similar one, that kind of, uh, mirrors that. So I went back and got a certificate in that and all of these credits, I was hoping would kind of push me along to the next level, and it just wasn’t quite enough. And it’s speaking with a friend who, actually she and I taught together when both of our Children were in elementary school, like 10 years prior, when we both worked in Italy. Um, she just showed up on the base one day and says, Sean again, Oh, my God, we connected And I kind of told her about my life. And what I’ve been doing is she said, Have you ever considered doing organizational leadership?

00:07:19 Shawna Gann
They had. So I was like,

00:07:22 Shawna Gann
I will look into this on and I did. I didn’t want another masters. I didn’t want another cert. So that was kind of it. You know, I had I was looking at my husband, about to retire after his wonderful career. I was not regretting our military experience is not even in the least because

00:07:42 Shawna Gann
I’ve learned so much. I’ve seen so much, but I just I couldn’t stand the idea of not growing anymore.

00:07:49 April Grant
It’s time for a new chapter. You needed to really turn that page and start something new. And

00:07:55 April Grant
organizational leadership? Was it?

00:07:57 Shawna Gann
Well, I thought it Waas Oh, okay, so I registered for classes, got started. And after my first term, you know, if you’ve ever done it was an online program. I’m still in online program. I started to see all these posts from people called Io psychologist, and I was like, the X i o psychology. I have never heard of it before, so I looked it up

00:08:19 Shawna Gann
Industrial organizational psychology, and I read about it. And basically, it’s problem solving and your consulting and, uh, pardon me working with

00:08:31 Shawna Gann
clients on solution ing And it could be anything from HR two big groups, sort of organizational design E I was like, Oh, my God, these are my people. So I I switched and I couldn’t go in tow. Io psychology specifically since my undergraduate work and my master’s degree were in education. But I could do business psychology, which is a very, very similar So that iss what got me to where I am now. And I haven’t been in the classroom for four years, so

00:09:02 April Grant
yeah, wow, Listen, I think I

00:09:05 April Grant
I put my hands up to anyone who goes back to school. I did my straight, uh, 17 years of it going straight through undergrad college in law school and I was out. I was like, I can’t do anymore. I see all sorts of good programs and interesting programs, but I just don’t know if I could bring myself Thio, go back into the classroom and have that focus and concentration. But that could also be because I have a six and eight year old at home and it just seems overwhelming. Thio try to help educate them and educate myself. That and a 16 year old to So we’re about to send him off to college. So

00:09:42 April Grant
it just seems very overwhelming for me. Um, I applaud any woman who could do that because there are women who do it and I applaud them and

00:09:52 April Grant
much respect. That’s what I have to say. Thank you.

00:09:57 Shawna Gann
I did split mine up, so mine was over time. You know, I think I got my masters in 2009. So some time has gone by and my kids are big. I’ve got a 21 year old in 18 year old. So I have, um I guess that at least it’s helpful.

00:10:16 April Grant
Yeah. Yeah. So Okay. You were You wanted to start talking a little bit more about moving. Ah, lot. Did you want to speak more on that?

00:10:24 April Grant
About the different locations you live in?

00:10:27 Shawna Gann
Um, sure. And that kind of ties into my interest in diversity inclusion as well. So as a As you said, I am from Anchorage, Alaska. I mean, that’s my home. I grew up there, and it’s one of the most diverse, diverse cities. Um, the

00:10:48 Shawna Gann
I knew, as you know, a young person. We did move temporarily to Pennsylvania, and that was a stark difference. So this is in my childhood. So when we went back to Anchorage, it was a breath of fresh air, so glad to be back. And, um,

00:11:06 Shawna Gann
one thing about me is that I’m often I’m perceived as racially ambiguous. People are always trying to guess, quote what I am unquote, um, you know, or I got Are you mixed or are you this or a lot of times? People assume that I’m just like Latina, which I’m not, um, and it’s just it’s always been kind of. It turns up in conversation at some point. It’s something that I expect. It’s really interesting because it also depends on kind of what My hair stylist, I always say I have seasonal hair. Eso you know,

00:11:42 Shawna Gann
I dio you know, So depending on that, that kind of drives the kind of assumptions or the questions. So when I met my husband, who is white, So we’re also an interracial couple? Um, yeah. When we moved Thio the middle of America, we went to Scott Air Force Base, which is really right smack in the middle of soybeans and corn fields. And aside from the military base, it’s pretty homogeneous, like military communities tend to be pretty diverse. But, um, yeah, it was. That was an interesting experience because I taught at a school where the teachers, the staff, weren’t quite racially representative of the students that attended, and I remember

00:12:35 Shawna Gann
I had a friend, Teresa. She Waas, the only other black teacher in the school, and her husband’s military, too, and they were PCs ing or moving to a new location, and I wanted to teach her grade level, so I put in for it. everything at this point, I had already gotten, you know, exceeds expectations on all of my valuations. And I have done all the extra stuff you’re supposed to do to kind of, you know, get a Zai Told you every place I went, I was trying to prove myself, right. All the extras Gold stars, gold stars

00:13:04 April Grant
You quickly learn what that extra waas. So people that put people on notice that you knew what you were doing? Yeah,

00:13:11 Shawna Gann
or just like I’m here, I’m Shauna. Let’s do this. You know, like I need to move ahead.

00:13:16 Shawna Gann
And But they pulled somebody else and they hired someone from outside. So yeah, I I went thio my We had a new principle that year,

00:13:27 Shawna Gann
and I went to my superintendent cause it’s fairly small district.

00:13:32 Shawna Gann
And I asked her,

00:13:34 Shawna Gann
you know,

00:13:35 Shawna Gann
I was said, You know, I I’ve done all of these things, and it appears according to my evaluations, I have exceeded expectations. I’ve got the experience.

00:13:47 Shawna Gann
What could I have done to give me the leg up so that I would have gotten that position instead of missing, you know,

00:13:53 Shawna Gann
look atyou. Taking that next step, asking the hard question the hard question asked. Oh,

00:14:01 Shawna Gann
I am famous for hard questions, but I I challenge sometimes. So I I asked her this and she said, Well, you know, Sean up

00:14:13 Shawna Gann
as you know, we’ve been trying to really diversify the staff because of the the student body and all of that. And I’m looking at her like okay,

00:14:23 Shawna Gann
and so they didn’t mention they hired a man for this. So that’s diversity, you know? Especially field. Yes, exactly. But I was still wondering, You know what

00:14:35 Shawna Gann
I could have done because they could have put him in my position and I could have moved to the one that I wanted, you know? So there’s still some placement that could have happened there

00:14:43 Shawna Gann
with the vacancy. And she said, Well,

00:14:48 Shawna Gann
how did it go? She she said, You know, we were trying to diversify and I looked at it. I was like

00:14:54 Shawna Gann
Karen like, how am I not a diversity? And she’s like,

00:15:01 April Grant
Well, Shauna, we didn’t know what you are.

00:15:04 April Grant
I was like, Oh, they couldn’t check the right box for you,

00:15:08 Shawna Gann
right? So I looked at her. I go, Karen, I’m black and she goes,

00:15:13 April Grant
Oh my God, go tell Peggy. Go tell Peggy. Here’s a

00:15:16 Shawna Gann
My goodness.

00:15:18 Shawna Gann
Right. So I was like, Yeah, I’m not running down the hall to go bang on the principle story. Go, Peggy, I’m black, you know, like, what is that?

00:15:27 Shawna Gann
So that one experience kind of began to put me on the trajectory of diversity inclusion equity, you know, fully understanding what it means to be diverse, knowing and recognizing that diversity doesn’t equal race, you know, But it could be a pleasure of things. Let’s not even get into intersectionality right now. But I learned, you know, over my career that I had to find these different ways to show different aspects of my own diversity. And so when this happened in every place we went And of course, every place meant a different culture, a different group of people that I had to kind of break the code

00:16:09 Shawna Gann
to, um,

00:16:11 Shawna Gann
figure out what that might look like for me in that setting.

00:16:14 April Grant
Yeah, it’s interesting that I don’t know. I mean, I’ve

00:16:18 April Grant
started the podcast a couple months ago, and it seems like I found the tribe my tribe, because I relate so much of that because I am also black, but I look mixed, so I’m a Cali girl. So when I lived in Southern California, most people just assumed I was mixed and they were very surprised that both my parents are darker than I waas. I’m like, I don’t know. I’m just here. I don’t have any control over what I look like. I’m just just here. And then when I moved to Florida where I live now, um, I became Dominican. So everyone just assumed time Dominican until I tell them otherwise. And then when they see me showing up for black events, they’re like, Oh,

00:17:00 April Grant
I didn’t know you were black. It’s like, Okay, I don’t know why that mattered, but Okay, sure. Good to know on it’s just one of those interesting things because you don’t want to make it

00:17:14 April Grant
the elephant in the room. But somehow it always becomes elephant in the room. I’m not always, but often it will become the elephant in the room of people looking and wondering and, you know, do we accept her because she’s mixed? Or do we not accept her because she’s mixed? And I felt

00:17:33 April Grant
oddly in California

00:17:36 April Grant
actually felt mawr on the outskirts of the black community, Um, and not as accepted as I am here in Florida, even though I would consider

00:17:47 April Grant
California much more diverse.

00:17:50 April Grant
But getting engaged in the black communities always was a struggle to me, and I don’t know what I did, or I don’t know if it was something I gave off or an impression I had, or they’re expected what they’re putting on me. And then I moved here and I felt very at ease slipping into the black community. And I guess because the black community is a lot more, um, robust. There are all of the shades in every

00:18:20 April Grant
every region and out there. I think it’s more if you are a lighter shade. You probably are not 100% black. And there’s some kind of something I don’t know. I’m just speculating. I’ve done no research on this. Um, this is all personal experience, so it’s just

00:18:39 April Grant
it’s

00:18:40 April Grant
it’s interesting because all the jobs I’ve had

00:18:44 April Grant
it’s always been kind of that elephant in the room like, Is she a diverse, higher or not? On how much of a diverse higher is she and, um, I had a friend out of the law firm I used to work at. And she found out that for diversity they had checked her box multiple times. Um, Thio count as because she was black.

00:19:09 April Grant
She was native American. She was, uh there was another I can’t remember. There was a third race that was non white,

00:19:17 April Grant
and she was a woman. So when you put that on a report, it made it seem like she was four people got it instead of one because they multi. They counted her as black. They counted her as Native American and they counted her as this other, uh, ethnicity. And so when the diversity report comes out,

00:19:40 April Grant
she counts. They’re like, Oh, yeah, we’re super diverse. And it’s like, No, that’s just really one person counted multiple times. That’s interesting. So, um, it was disappointing to find that out. And I think she was disappointed in the firm because we felt the firm was pretty progressive. And, um, overall, it did look more diverse and most firms did. But when you actually added up the numbers because when they do the diversity, um, report, they actually outline how many people out of how many people and we were like who are these people? Because we do not have right that many black people and that many, you know, Native Americans and that many we just don’t. So it was just It was disappointing. And

00:20:29 April Grant
I just made you realize that

00:20:31 April Grant
your skin color goes

00:20:34 April Grant
counts for something, and sometimes that’s very disappointing.

00:20:38 Shawna Gann
Right? So what you’re describing is actually, um ah, lot of the meat of my dissertation topic. So, um a Z I mentioned I’m studying business psychology and my topic is all about women aspiring to executive roles. But women who are racially ambiguous on the reason is I feel like

00:21:02 Shawna Gann
so back in the day, you know, as a woman of color, it was so tough. Thio, Thio, advance in any field. Really? You know, we’re looking at we’re talking about equity, So pay equity was off all of these things, which there’s still gaps. I’m not trying to say that’s over. I mean, there’s still gaps, but suddenly diversity is cool

00:21:26 Shawna Gann
and, you know, corporations, organizations, or like we got to get on this Diversity trained, you know? So they they’re trying thio like highlight their corporate social responsibility by showing how diverse they are and their brochures have the I’m sure you’ve seen the iconic linking hands of all the different shades. Of course, of course, you know and you click through websites and there’s all the different shades. And, you know, never mind that again. I said that there’s other kinds diversity like, because the representation of ability is a represent, you know. But that’s people tend to say,

00:22:04 Shawna Gann
Like when you said a diverse hire, people automatically equate diversity with race. And

00:22:09 April Grant
that was a site just a side note. That’s also what people equate when you have, when the argument is the people of color, the POC. And that’s what the assumption is is Oh, the person of color must be black, You’re right and it’s not right. Yeah,

00:22:27 Shawna Gann
And that’s exactly why I started to focus on Rachel Ambiguity. Because, for example, I’ll never forget this. That situation I told you about in the school I taught in in Illinois when, in that sense I wasn’t black enough to represent the black community, right? They had to pull in somebody else. My friend that left, she was visibly, you know, black Americans. So they were like, Okay, but then she left this vacancy and I wasn’t enough. And, you know, you discussed your feelings of fitting into the different communities in California vs Florida. Well, I mean, that’s the same for me. Like in Alaska. Didn’t really matter because everybody up there is multiracial or indigenous or their military families that state. Oh, there’s like this. It’s just

00:23:13 Shawna Gann
almost people assume that you’re gonna be multiracial before they don’t. And nobody really asks you what because, like, why? Because they probably have mixed dance history, too. So But when you go to a place like when I lived in Pittsburgh, in the community that I lived in, that was super homogeneous or, um, when we left Illinois and we went to Italy, you know, that’s like you’re either Italian or you’re not, you know, so it it was an interesting experience, too. But there’s so many different ways to be a person of color. It’s not just black. So, um, right, So that’s why I decided to focus on this because I thought

00:23:51 Shawna Gann
we’re trying to move beyond tokenism and not just have quote diverse hires,

00:23:57 Shawna Gann
but what happens if you don’t visibly look black enough to represent what that company thinks, or

00:24:08 Shawna Gann
if they air so like it’s like a kind of an over correction like we’ve got before we didn’t have enough. Now we’ve got a show. We’ve got to prove that we have people of color, I e black people. So they try, you know? Then what happens if you’re not clear? That box isn’t, You know, like I don’t have boxes I’ve got like, you know, these kind of semi circle That’s, you know, I don’t fit neatly anywhere. And I know there’s other people like me. And so that’s what I’m aiming to find out what those experiences air like, particularly for women,

00:24:46 Shawna Gann
you know, aspiring for those exact positions.

00:24:49 April Grant
I just find it very interesting because, you know, being in that, I would say I ah, lot of times I fall into that role. There are some people who are like, Yes, you’re definitely black. They don’t ever have any questions. They only think about it. But there are other people who I remember my first job,

00:25:06 April Grant
and I’m not my first job, but one of my early jobs at a law firm,

00:25:11 April Grant
and

00:25:13 April Grant
I was just a legal assistant, but it was just a two person office. So I was like the secretary, the paralegal, the legal system, everything. And I had a new attorney and he was white, and I would they knew his face because his face was you know, what was on the website and all that stuff, And I was just

00:25:31 April Grant
And I didn’t care to be on the website, honestly, So it wasn’t something I was looking for, so I would have conversations with people and

00:25:41 April Grant
be happy to talk to them and, you know, advise them however I could on what they need to dio. And then they would come into the office and it was always the most heartbreaking thing. And it was the weirdest.

00:25:54 April Grant
It’s hard to handle because

00:25:56 April Grant
their first reaction was No, I’m here to speak to April,

00:26:01 April Grant
Uh,

00:26:02 April Grant
and I’m like, I am April.

00:26:06 April Grant
Oh, we just assumed you were white

00:26:09 April Grant
because quote unquote sounded white to them

00:26:14 April Grant
on. That was a regular occurrence for our meetings. It was I sounded white.

00:26:20 April Grant
So when they come when I walked out and for like I said, a lot of people do find me racially and and, uh,

00:26:30 April Grant
ambiguous, gotta pronounce the words correctly ambiguous to mouthful. It is a mouthful, and they would just kind of look at me and do a double take and look and say

00:26:43 April Grant
Oh, and you could see them trying to backtrack without seeming like they’re backtracking and oh, yeah, yeah, you know, when we knew it was you was like, No, I just said I was April and I just introduced myself, and then you acted like you were looking for someone else,

00:26:59 April Grant
and it’s just heartbreaking When here’s a someone

00:27:04 April Grant
took me straight on my abilities didn’t care what I looked like. He had just hired me because I was good

00:27:12 April Grant
and

00:27:13 April Grant
the clients have a different perspective of me. And the clients are like, Oh, you did a race higher like that’s how they came across to him was Oh, you’re helping this little Negro girl. It’s just like

00:27:26 April Grant
I mean, some of the conversations he’s had, he because he would tell me, you know, and and those people he would not be

00:27:34 April Grant
excited to invite back to the office because he knew it made me uncomfortable.

00:27:41 April Grant
Eso he made sure he limited the amount of time they came in. Obviously he couldn’t fire them as clients because he needed to make money. But he

00:27:50 April Grant
he did understand how it was hurtful

00:27:54 April Grant
and

00:27:56 April Grant
and how some of his clients, I mean, some, some just brush it off. It was that one statement and they were good. But some were, you know, actually took that extra step to say to make mention to him

00:28:06 April Grant
about being, you know? Oh, you’re why are you helping her? It’s like, why does he have to be helping me? Like

00:28:14 April Grant
I’m employed, I’m doing a job. And until you walked in and met me, you thought I was actually doing a great job. So, um yeah, it’s just one of those things in the corporate world that you’re just in a very different

00:28:28 April Grant
arena and it’s sometimes very hard to navigate.

00:28:32 Shawna Gann
Fortunately, I haven’t experienced that where someone if they were shocked or surprised. Anyway, it wasn’t vocalized, so I haven’t experienced it that way. Um,

00:28:47 Shawna Gann
I do get the questions, though, you know, or even questions like,

00:28:54 Shawna Gann
How do you How do you change your hair? So Oh, so we live here? Yeah. So we lived in Berlin. We lived in Berlin for four years and I taught at a German American school

00:29:08 Shawna Gann
and I I sometimes would wear extension. Sometimes I wore wigs. Sometimes my hair is naturally very, very, very curly. Eso. Sometimes I would wear like that’s my summer hair. Typically is the curls, um or whatever. I changed it sometimes a ponytail. So this one morning I was doing like a You know, when kids come in, they they’re waiting before school and they’re in the cafeteria or someplace. They’re waiting for their teachers. And one of the moms was like this can

00:29:37 Shawna Gann
Oh, my gosh, your hairs grown. How How does your hair grow so fast?

00:29:45 Shawna Gann
And yes, I looked at her and said, Oh, I have these magic beans

00:29:50 Shawna Gann
Add.

00:29:52 Shawna Gann
I know I shouldn’t have said that,

00:29:55 April Grant
man, but I get on that one because I just get over. It’s

00:29:59 Shawna Gann
like I was just so you know, and and I’ve been asked, I had another person in my community once that she was just so fascinated by how I would have different hair all the time. And I was like, We live in the world of YouTube, like looking at like, if you’re so curious and I know that’s probably not the best attitude, but when you’re confronted with it all the time,

00:30:21 April Grant
it gets exhausting. It really does that. I mean, the funny. That’s funny. You said that because literally, I had I got my hair cut recently, so it’s about maybe three

00:30:33 April Grant
curly. It’s, like three or four inches long, and so I braided it up and put in four lakhs. So if you had seen me yesterday and then you see me today, I look completely different because of the hair and full locks are, you know, 22 inches down my back. And I used to have that same thing I didn’t used to wear. Obviously, bollocks are relatively new, but I used to get weaves and extensions and, um,

00:31:01 April Grant
they would constantly say, My God, your hair grew overnight like, Yes, that’s exactly what it did. And that was normally my reaction. I’m like, Yeah, it sure did. It grew overnight. Yeah, if that’s what you believe. I can’t really do anything about it. Um, there are you and it’s not even look at YouTube. Just look at television.

00:31:21 April Grant
You see that play one role and they have short hair, and then then they’re very next role. They have long hair. There’s a way that happens. It’s not

00:31:32 April Grant
in their head like it’s not. Oh, they waited to their hair. Grew out there’s extensions. There’s options. There’s, I mean, because, obviously, you know, we’re kind of before the YouTube stage when we first started,

00:31:44 April Grant
Yeah, doing all of this.

00:31:47 April Grant
So I mean, it’s just look around this pay attention, but it makes it clear that

00:31:55 April Grant
you’re getting extra attention because of things like that. Unnecessarily, it’s unimportant.

00:32:02 Shawna Gann
Well, I mean and I

00:32:05 Shawna Gann
Yeah, and I understand that it’s curiosity, you know? I get that, and so that I don’t. My answers aren’t always forecasting, but there are just sometimes I’m like and I think I don’t know about for you, but for me,

00:32:21 Shawna Gann
Harris personal. And so my husband, who I mentioned, he’s, you know, he’s a white guy he didn’t grow up with

00:32:29 Shawna Gann
with black women dealing with hair. So he’s learned a lot, too, and, you know, people would like if I did tell them Yes, I have extensions or I put in braids or whatever they always want to examine. You know, I’m like, I am not letting you examine my I was like, I don’t you know? I don’t say this, but I think of it like I don’t ask,

00:32:51 Shawna Gann
like about your underwear or something like that. Like this is my personal, you know, to me, someone going through my hair to see how it works is really an invasion. So but

00:33:02 April Grant
it is. It’s like you. You don’t walk up to anyone and touch their hair like any of them. You would never turn around and say, Hey, can I go through your hair

00:33:13 April Grant
and see how your hair works on and the only people? The only time you would do that typically,

00:33:20 April Grant
pets.

00:33:22 April Grant
You do that with a pet, you go. Oh, I like the type of hair that pet has. Oh my gosh, it’s so curly. It’s so nice. It’s so fine. It’s so this and so that and then you run your fingers to it. But you don’t go up to people.

00:33:36 April Grant
If we were not

00:33:37 April Grant
black

00:33:39 April Grant
or having a different hair texture, they would never will think of walking upto someone who has a similar hair texture of them and say, Let me see how that works. They just wouldn’t. And it’s not just a lack of curiosity thing. It’s just kind of a lack of respect of you’re not really human. You’re just kind of here. At least that’s how I feel. Like you’re just kind of here. And if I want to do things like touch your hair or, you know, especially when you have kids, I don’t know if you have girls.

00:34:07 Shawna Gann
I have a boy and a girl. Okay, so the girls get a

00:34:10 April Grant
lot more attention for their hair and, you know, with the different styling with the, you know, from a puffball toe, a break to cornrows, to whatever. And it’s like because their Children, they don’t even ask or anything. They just start walking up and putting their hands out.

00:34:27 April Grant
And as if that’s acceptable practice for you to invade personal space. And really, that’s what it is. Invasion of personal space.

00:34:36 Shawna Gann
It iss it iss

00:34:38 Shawna Gann
Well, I think the most

00:34:40 Shawna Gann
the biggest wake up call a shock for me when I combining my changing career and my focus on D. I was when he lived in Prague, so I most recently lived in Prague and you know, at this point I am over 40 and feeling there was like this weird sort of. I started my my new trajectory, you know, started a new job that wasn’t teaching, and everything seemed to come down at once. It was also the first year my son went to university eso like a little bit the start of empty nest kind of happening. Um, my husband was about to really retire because he was going to retire right before. But then we did this other. We’re like, Okay, we’re going to do one more. So that’s why we went to Thio Prague so that it was like, OK, Oh, my God, Everything is changing at once. Like everything was changing at once. And I had kind of a freak out moment, like,

00:35:44 Shawna Gann
almost like, um,

00:35:46 Shawna Gann
going through adolescence again,

00:35:48 Shawna Gann
like, who am I? What am I going to do? How am I sure I can do this? I started it out myself like,

00:35:55 Shawna Gann
Why did I change my career? Can I do this? Can I run with these people that have done it already for the last, you know, 15 16 however many years and then came like I would say,

00:36:08 Shawna Gann
a year. So after that,

00:36:10 Shawna Gann
almost like a sense of empowerment, like uh,

00:36:15 Shawna Gann
I got this. I mean, not that everybody. Everyone has their sort of moments of doubt, and you go through this sort of imposter syndrome time. But I felt so good, like it was it took me a minute to realize that it was the right choice. You know, for me, it was the right fit,

00:36:37 Shawna Gann
So I mean, that was pretty exciting, But it I had to go through all of this other stuff and that that included, sort of because talk about homogeneous Prague, the city of Prague or the country. The Czech Republic? Yeah. I mean, you don’t get I mean, it’s

00:36:56 Shawna Gann
it was pretty white E. I mean, it’s just the nature of things. It’s a land like a landlocked country. They don’t get a lot of, you know, immigration and stuff like that. Most most of the people of color that you see are tourists coming in, and so living there was That was kind of a tough period for me because I did not look like my neighbors or or anything else. And I didn’t really speak Check that well. And I was also going through this huge transformation, so but coming out of there. I mean, it was I’m still going on. The journey does a journey end, you know, it doesn’t really does blurry and you keep growing. But yeah, that was, I think, the most tumultuous period. Um, sort of that transition.

00:37:40 April Grant
What can you explain? A little bit of the, I guess, experience that you had in Prague being not Ah, homogeneous.

00:37:49 April Grant
Not Ramadi in this community.

00:37:53 Shawna Gann
Sure, I almost wanted to dio sort of a social experiment, actually. E I know I go back to the hair a lot. I’m sorry, but it’s a big part of my identity. And, um,

00:38:07 Shawna Gann
I realized

00:38:09 Shawna Gann
so if I

00:38:11 Shawna Gann
where, like, I know your listeners can’t see. But I’ve straightened my hair today, So if I My hair is straight and it’s summertime and everyone’s a little bit

00:38:23 Shawna Gann
sun kissed, let’s say, um,

00:38:26 Shawna Gann
you know, every it was like nothing. I mean, the culture there is not the most warm and open as could be compared to other places anyway. So if you get a friendly debris, then like that’s a big deal. Like they said, he’ll look to me, you know, But But if I had my hair, if I wore my hair in its natural state. Very curly, like no smile, no greeting and lots of staring. And, um, public transport is just kind of what you dio in Europe. You know, eso I treated, but in the U. S s. Oh, so much more. Um, so I can recall being on the bus like with my daughter, and people would stare at me openly. And my my kids just look like they just look like moderation. We white kids, um, so she would be infuriated and kind of block. She would stand in front of me to block their vision of me, And I would be saying, It’s OK, you know, they’re just checking me out. They’re curious, but a smudges. I loved

00:39:30 Shawna Gann
the people there, like my colleagues and my friends. There were quite a few people there that are openly racist and, um, xenophobic. And so some of those stairs could be out of curiosity. And some could just be like you don’t belong, So it did make me feel very uncomfortable. Um, but it all depended on how I left my house that day. It is to how I was treated, um, stairs, like I would go into, like, cosmetics door and be followed. And, you know,

00:40:08 Shawna Gann
like that didn’t happen to me in Italy. You know, it didn’t happen to me in Germany. We lived in Berlin, which is also a very, very diverse city. It’s so international. So again, a little bit like Anchorage. Um, even though Berlin has the history it has, like these days, it’s so

00:40:27 Shawna Gann
international and welcoming. And but people just didn’t treat me like that. So I had to kind of Yeah, like, it was a bit jarring. Um,

00:40:36 April Grant
I would imagine I’m there.

00:40:39 April Grant
Wow. So tell us a little bit more about so you have a podcast. How long has it been going on our true colors? It’s our true colors. Correct.

00:40:48 Shawna Gann
It is. It was originally called Tribe and true, actually. Eso you’ll have to listen. Thio uh, the city The Sea Season two episode called What’s in a Name? To find out about that change in the name. But yes, it’s our true colors. It’s a weekly podcast. Um, right started publishing November 2019 and about to wrap up the second season, getting ready to go into the third, and it’s really a focus on a sense of belonging. Um, when When you are a person who doesn’t, as I described earlier, neatly fit into one particular category, at least in the way the other others perceive you. Uh, so I wanted to have a platform for people who could feel, uh a sense of community and feel like they do belong. And then I’ll express their experiences that they go through as a racially ambiguous person.

00:41:45 April Grant
Nice. So from there, where where do you see yourself with the new Ph. D? Do you know exactly what you want to do with that? Are you going to dive in a little deeper with? And I keep doing this, giving compound questions its’s I’m like, let me just throw out everything that I can think of right now. Um, I guess let’s start with, uh, What are you going to do or what is your plan so far with your PhD that you’re you’re attaining?

00:42:14 Shawna Gann
Well, right now,

00:42:18 Shawna Gann
I I don’t specifically have any intentions of going back to teach at the university level, although it could with the PhD. What I’d like to dio is become an expert in my field. So the reason my dissertation topic is what it is is because I was originally. It’s really interesting in light of what’s happening right now. Actually, I did a project about a social issue and it was best when they’re taken. The A movement was starting with Kaepernick,

00:42:49 Shawna Gann
and through that I learned about the Rooney rule, which waas in football. There were no black head coaches, and Rooney decided that there needed to be at least one black candidate interviewed for a head coach position so that because it was kind of like this whole like Buddy System Oh, my friend would be a good coat, you know, just the kind of

00:43:13 Shawna Gann
you know, how it goes, right? The social promotion, let’s say and so, in order to diversify in football, that’s That’s the Rooney rule, which led me Thio, Huh? Head coach. Well, what about the heads of corporations? Because I’m doing business. Psych. Right? So that’s when I learned that Ursula Burns was the last black CEO female right in a Fortune 500 company, and she left the company in 2000 and nine. So, like when you ask, I would ask people like how many black women do you think are CEOs of Fortune five Cos people will say things like 15 you know, three. And I’m like

00:43:48 April Grant
00 I feel like I saw an article not too long ago that had female black female CEOs, but maybe it was that long ago. Or if

00:43:59 Shawna Gann
it’s Fortune 500 because there are black CEOs. But it’s the Fortune five and then in that there are women of color. But there’s like Asian women and Latina women. There’s a lot of females, but, you know, so that’s that kind of got me interested. And then I realized there’s tons of literature about the gender gap and, um, the fact that there aren’t black women and leadership like there should be. But I couldn’t find anything for someone like me who isn’t

00:44:30 Shawna Gann
quote black enough. You know, as I explained from my previous experiences with my own work, um, like what happened with me at work? And so there’s so little So that’s why I kind of got into that and and I think there’s a need for that expertise because our demographics in America are changing. You know, I don’t identify as multiracial or bi racial. I mean I do identify as multiracial because my family is black. But then I’ve got Creole, you know? But it’s not what people think of when they think of a mixed person or something like that. But we’re changing, you know, Um, Millennial generation is the largest generation, and among them it’s the largest group of racially diverse folks. Ah, lot of them multiracial. This is who is going to be our leadership. This is who is going to be, you know, running our businesses. And so for me, I took a very big interest in that. And so that’s what I’d like to dio. I’d like Thio

00:45:28 Shawna Gann
to be able to share expertise

00:45:30 April Grant
well on that. To piggyback on that point a little bit is

00:45:34 April Grant
a lot of people I know are in inter racial marriages as well. So you know, not only is this generation changing, but their Children

00:45:44 April Grant
will be there already interracial, and then they’re having interracial Children on top of it. So now we are

00:45:52 April Grant
compounding the interracial intersect of, you know, life,

00:45:58 April Grant
and it’s just so and that’s I think that’s what’s so heartbreaking about what’s going on. And these fights, um,

00:46:08 April Grant
over race and you know,

00:46:12 April Grant
if you’re listening to this podcast at a later time this week, Minneapolis police officer,

00:46:18 April Grant
um, I’ll say, murdered a civilian, um, over a supposed bad check

00:46:26 April Grant
with putting his knee into the back of his throat until he couldn’t breathe and he died.

00:46:32 April Grant
And I have. I’m watching. People say, Well, it’s not race related.

00:46:39 April Grant
And

00:46:41 April Grant
the question is, when is the last time you’ve seen a cop put their knee in the back of a white man’s throat to the point that he died? And I’m not going to say they don’t put it because obviously it’s part of the training to put me in the back of the throat, which I think is and say, Isn’t it isn’t I don’t know, because that didn’t see

00:46:58 Shawna Gann
there are no there are. There are restraints. There are neck restraints. There are certain restraints, but they’re only allowed Thio exert as much force is necessary to stop whatever is happening in the place with this gentleman. He was not resisting. He was handcuffed on the ground on

00:47:17 April Grant
the ground with the cops and the guy’s pocket. You

00:47:21 Shawna Gann
know there’s no force because he was able tohave his hand in his pocket,

00:47:25 April Grant
right? So but the conversations kept going back. Thio, you can’t separate race from this issue. I know you want Thio. I know it’s a big problem because it is also a cop hurting a human, which also

00:47:41 April Grant
that you have to see us as human. You have to see black people as human first before you because you would never do that to someone.

00:47:49 April Grant
And I I I liken it to, um

00:47:54 April Grant
you know, if that was his friend’s son,

00:47:56 April Grant
would it ever have gotten to that point? Would it even if he was resisting arrest, even if he was doing everything? I’ve seen countless videos of

00:48:07 April Grant
white men getting in. Police officers faces yelling at them, cussing at them, throwing things at them. And normally they, for the most part just kind of stand around and wait until the person comes down

00:48:19 April Grant
and then moves in when the person tires themselves out.

00:48:23 April Grant
Whereas it’s

00:48:26 April Grant
it’s act first

00:48:28 April Grant
and then figure out what’s going on with with blacks. Unfortunately, and so you can’t remove black from the argument because you’re not seeing it’s happened to other people, you’re just not You’re I mean, you see it other people who are non white. You don’t see it happening to white people. So it’s hard to not add race as a very necessary component to the discussion.

00:48:56 Shawna Gann
Okay?

00:48:57 Shawna Gann
And the thing is, I really had I had a tough time processing this because there’s a lot that happened at once. Um, back in February, you’ve got the situation with Ahmad operate down in Georgia, and we didn’t even know about it until the video it was released recently. And only then was there any action compound it by,

00:49:22 Shawna Gann
um, the situation with George Floyd. Compound it by

00:49:27 Shawna Gann
in the very same week. The story circulating about Amy Cooper and Christian Cooper in Central Park. The woman who weaponized her whiteness

00:49:36 Shawna Gann
because she didn’t like that she was being asked to follow a rule. And she knew exactly what she was doing when she threatened to call the police and say, I’m going to tell the police that a naff, rickon American man is threatening my life, right? Clearly he wasn’t, and I posted. I don’t usually post that much on social media. I’m just going to tell you, but I was so moved by the post that, um Bernice King, the daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. She She posted this picture with side by side with Kaepernick and with the policeman on

00:50:13 Shawna Gann
with his knee on Gregory Floor. You’re on George Floyd and said, um,

00:50:18 Shawna Gann
if the picture with Kaepernick

00:50:21 Shawna Gann
enrages you,

00:50:23 Shawna Gann
But the picture of George Floyd just kind of mildly bothers you.

00:50:28 Shawna Gann
Then you are a person that’s more interested in order than justice. And it was so powerful to me that I posted this and I have a very good friend. She’s a white woman. We come from different communities, and but we are good friends. And she said, I’m opposed to both And I said, I’m not at all opposed Teoh, a person taking a knee to protest the needless taking of lives. Okay, like I just am not.

00:50:54 Shawna Gann
And it just shook me and I had to go. We had this whole conversation where she said, you know, I just want peace and I pray for everybody and I’m like, Okay, but people of color been praying for generations. What we really need is allies. This is a time where we know what the problem is, and when I see things like you know, we’re going through the whole co vid, um, trialing tribulation right now as a country. And they say, you know, African Americans are affected more than anybody else. And we’ve gotta look into this, and I’m screaming at the television set. Look into it. We know what the disparities are. We know what the problem is, and so do you, you know, And it’s just right. So this is a very tumultuous It’s just so

00:51:36 April Grant
hard this week. I mean, I’m not saying the previous deaths. The Trayvon Martin’s, um, you know from

00:51:43 April Grant
years ago didn’t have an impact, but for some reason, I don’t know if it’s because we’re home with co vid and I’m I’m doing so much more online than I normally do. I don’t really I didn’t too much on

00:51:56 April Grant
social media before Kind of scroll Look,

00:51:59 April Grant
you know, and then turn it off. But

00:52:02 April Grant
it just seems so heartbreaking because people you like or you thought you liked or you thought they agreed with You have such apathy towards the deaths of these people or saying things like, Well, if he’d only complied, you know? Ah mod are very if he only complied I was and I really it bothers my mind to say that I was like, I missed that memo or rule or law, where we’re supposed to comply with basically random people

00:52:33 April Grant
coming up to you and telling you to do things I didn’t know We have to do that. I don’t really. I don’t remember any place that we’ve ever learned that if a stranger walks up to you and starts telling you to do something, it is your responsibility to comply. And if you don’t,

00:52:50 April Grant
death is acceptable. Death is acceptable outcome

00:52:56 April Grant
that that boggles my mind and the fact that there are people out there

00:53:00 April Grant
and they are not Facebook friends anymore on DSM of them were actual friends, and I just I was like, I just can’t

00:53:09 April Grant
I can’t be in this discussion with you because you want to

00:53:14 April Grant
say that It you know, there’s all this, these things that were supposed to do, We’re supposed to comply. We’re supposed to do this. We’re supposed to do that.

00:53:22 April Grant
Except for even when we do it, we die. Even when we do it,

00:53:26 April Grant
we get shot even when we’re just minding our own business. Walking down the street. Random people can come up to us and nothing happens. And so when the cops got fired for George Lloyd, George Floyd, I, um,

00:53:44 April Grant
posted one small step towards justice and people were like, Well, they should be arrested. I was like, Of course, the state should be arrested.

00:53:53 April Grant
The problem is, they normally don’t even get fired. We’re lucky if they’re even reprimanded. They normally get put on administrative leave until it kind of blows over, and then they go back to work and they’re the same cops that are our patrolling the area.

00:54:10 April Grant
And we’re supposed to just be like, Oh, it’s okay. I’m like, Well, at least they don’t have a job and they can’t keep doing this. Other people, In the meantime, supposedly they need to investigate. I don’t know what they need to investigate, but whatever, but at least they’re not harming other people. In the meantime, at least they’re not going out there and

00:54:28 April Grant
torturing or allowing other people to torture

00:54:32 April Grant
other civilians because they’re in a mood that day because they just felt like it. They want to take, will there police power over an individual.

00:54:41 April Grant
So sorry, I got very I’m

00:54:44 Shawna Gann
telling you. Okay, I get I get passionate, too, and it’s been a tough It has been a tough It’s been a tough one, e guess.

00:54:51 Shawna Gann
But the thing that I said to kind of

00:54:55 Shawna Gann
illustrate this is

00:54:56 Shawna Gann
all of these things have always happened. There always happened. The only thing that’s changed is we live in a time with Tech that’s ready to go and people will

00:55:08 Shawna Gann
If if it weren’t for video, like the phones, you know where people actually document what’s going on. I mean, how much more do we not see? Imagine with about Aubrey, It happened months ago. Yeah,

00:55:22 Shawna Gann
you know, I guess that’s to me. That’s the difference is like No, no, no. See, it’s not that suddenly things are getting bad. It’s just suddenly you’re seeing it. It’s highlighted.

00:55:32 April Grant
Yeah, you’re you are made aware of it, and now you have to address it because now you see that all of the complaints that people have been saying I our riel and their actual and another kind of side discussion I had with a friend yesterday. So So a friend of mine posted this whole list of things, Um, when he’s been pulled over by the cops and, you know, being not never being arrested, never actually getting charged. But he got pulled over. He’s called out his name. He’s asked to get out of his car. He’s asking how much he had to smoke that night. How much he had to drink that night. He doesn’t smoke. He doesn’t drink. They don’t smell it in the car. But that’s the question that’s coming out of their mouth. Um, they ultimately don’t even give him a ticket, so they know there was nothing wrong with it in the first place. And my my point. Waas

00:56:26 April Grant
all of us, and I will say all of us get pulled over for nonsense tickets. Unfortunately, cops have quotas. They like pulling people over, but not all of us air treated poorly. When that happens, not all of us get pulled out of our car while our car get searched

00:56:43 April Grant
because they wanted they need a traffic ticket. Not all of us do that. Who gets who often are the victims of that blackmail?

00:56:52 April Grant
That’s just it. Black men get pulled out of their car. They’re not doing anything wrong. And when they’re trying to meet their quota for that. It’s harassment. It’s Get out your car. I need to search you. Put your hands on the vehicle. Lay down on the ground, Um, calling names, all sorts of things. And

00:57:10 April Grant
that’s what people don’t understand, because when they say we get pulled over, they just say, Oh, well, I get pulled over to

00:57:17 April Grant
I get you know, And it’s like, Yeah, but your interaction is pretty friendly. You know? They say whatever

00:57:24 April Grant
you know, you may cry. You may, um, have a story, and then they just let you go. But even the ones that get let go are still harassed before they dio

00:57:35 April Grant
It’s a harassed action. So it’s,

00:57:39 April Grant
I don’t know. It’s just coming to a head for Yeah,

00:57:42 Shawna Gann
I think it’s coming to a head for America.

00:57:44 April Grant
Yeah, and, you know, and s So we were talking yesterday. I guess it was trending yesterday Boston tea party, because, you know, they were getting upset about Minneapolis burning down and the rioting and not realizing, really. This country is built on violence, this entire country. I know they want to act and walk around and be naive about our history, but

00:58:09 April Grant
we are violent towards the people.

00:58:13 April Grant
America. The structure of America is violent towards its citizens and always has been. People who belong and people who don’t belong belong from the Native Americans to Boston Tea Party. So that’s two different ones. The Native Americans were the others,

00:58:29 April Grant
but the Boston Tea Party were the same. They’re the same, you know, community. But now I’m like

00:58:37 April Grant
they’re still violent towards black communities. It’s just put in a prettier bow when you institute something like eminent domain, where you can just come in and buy property off a neighborhood and tear it apart.

00:58:51 April Grant
That’s violent. It’s violent to just lose your home just because, like, not because you didn’t pay the bills, not because you didn’t do something right. But the government decided this area is an area they want to improve and to improve it, they need to kick you out

00:59:09 April Grant
so they get to take your home, give you very little on the dollar, which means you don’t have money to move someplace else. So even if you own your home, you don’t have enough money to own another home

00:59:20 April Grant
and you’re displaced. And now now all of a sudden you’re the problem because you’re displaced and you don’t have any place to go. And how come you don’t work harder is, you know, societal response. How come you don’t work harder? I was like, I didn’t know your your house just got taken from you. And you have to restart your life basically for doing absolutely nothing wrong. And this is a continual pattern. Um,

00:59:46 April Grant
that happens. And we

00:59:49 April Grant
I think now white people can’t hide in the sand anymore.

00:59:54 April Grant
They’re trying to There’s still some people who are really desperately trying to pretend that this isn’t happening And they’re you know, they’re that slavery because, you know, it’s always well, slavery happened, you know, generation to go. I didn’t have anything to do with it.

01:00:09 April Grant
Um, so this became much more political than I was. Ha ha ha. Um e. I mean, even though especially a racial, you’re going to the racial equity, I just don’t know. It just gets me all up in arms. As you see, I get very passionate about it because

01:00:29 April Grant
I watched them burn down a city and

01:00:33 April Grant
I feel for them.

01:00:35 April Grant
I feel because it’s it’s comes out of a feeling of hopelessness

01:00:41 April Grant
because they can’t. There’s nothing. No one’s doing anything about it. You know you.

01:00:48 April Grant
The best you can hope for is the firing, like that’s where we’re at. Is someone loses their job because they could get another job.

01:00:55 April Grant
It just

01:00:56 Shawna Gann
my right. And then they continue with whatever behavior. And I was hearing a commentators say, You know these acts. It’s like not everybody has a platform. So how do you get your point across?

01:01:11 Shawna Gann
There’s only so much you can scream or shout or whatever. And I don’t want to see the destruction and the looting either. I don’t It’s It’s horrible for lots of reasons. And one of those reasons is the very community that we need as allies, then looks down further, right? But at the same time,

01:01:35 Shawna Gann
one has to be able to understand.

01:01:39 Shawna Gann
When you back someone in a corner, they’re going to fight and you’ve got to survive and you’ve gotta have a voice. And if you don’t provide a platform, then damn it, I’m gonna excuse me. I’m gonna I’m gonna build my platform. Yes, right. Yeah. And so it’s

01:01:56 Shawna Gann
It is frustrating. And it is. And you’re right. I am passionate about it, too. And it has been particularly heavy on May, um, with George Flood.

01:02:05 April Grant
Yeah, and we were looking. I was saying I was like, We’re all talking. Basically, we’re all talking about fear, and it’s fear in different ways. So the same way you can justify a cop killing someone for fear that someone may have a gun.

01:02:24 April Grant
You can’t be upset that someone is willing to loot out of fear that they’re going to lose your life. And I know it’s not a direct comparison, but granted, if you are just afraid that someone’s gonna have a gun and you kill them for it,

01:02:39 April Grant
I mean, that’s not rational. That’s not a rational response to a fear that someone has a gun, because, first of all, you don’t know that they’re gonna have a They have a gun. Second, you don’t know if they’re even gonna use the gun,

01:02:51 April Grant
and they haven’t pulled the gun on you. So the idea that it’s acceptable that oh well, he was afraid that he might have a gun is an excuse is no more rational. Then anything else that’s happening and you can’t make the argument that it’s okay, it’s acceptable to kill someone is what I’m saying. It’s acceptable to kill someone out of fear. But now we don’t have a platform and we enrage and it’s like, Well, that’s not that’s not the way it should be done. It’s like, No, that’s not the way it should be It’s,

01:03:23 Shawna Gann
uh but there’s no fear And it’s okay to storm the, um, capital there in Michigan when you don’t want to wear mask. So you show up with your automatic weapons and you shout in the faces of the police. They’re

01:03:37 April Grant
shouting and faces a police. No arrests made.

01:03:40 April Grant
Everyone just stands by and watches it all happen,

01:03:44 Shawna Gann
right? That’s that’s okay. That’s exercising. Your First Amendment rights and your second right were allowed to bear arms. But imagine if that were different. Group of men showing it. Never

01:03:57 April Grant
have the loud. As soon as there is a more than 20 of them, it would have been Shut down. Where’s your permit? We, You guys need to have a permit to form. And why are you here? You need to go home. And don’t let one of them yell in the cops face. Right?

01:04:14 April Grant
But we saw even in the because I believe the Minneapolis one actually started as a peaceful protest, and they came with tear gas

01:04:22 April Grant
with it.

01:04:23 April Grant
No guns,

01:04:25 April Grant
nothing.

01:04:26 April Grant
No guns. They came with tear gas ready, toe hurt people.

01:04:31 April Grant
Yeah. So you know, it’s it’s unfortunate. I’m

01:04:36 April Grant
It’s hard to watch.

01:04:38 April Grant
It’s hard to watch because, you know, those are

01:04:42 April Grant
all of them are,

01:04:44 April Grant
you know, our

01:04:45 April Grant
our sisters and brothers. You know, I’m I I do obviously relate to being black, but, you know, I still have respect for people who are also respectful, and, you know, their communities are getting torn apart as well. And, um, their neighborhoods are being affected by this. On the other hand, maybe this is a time for them to be true allies and help join in the fight instead of being an on looker on the side. Um, and realize that this is mawr than just a few people complaining and being overly sensitive. Um, because that’s typically what we get. We’re overly sensitive and

01:05:23 Shawna Gann
the result of a system that’s the result of it messed up for a long time.

01:05:28 April Grant
Yeah, so All right,

01:05:31 April Grant
well, where can we find you online without Roland?

01:05:36 April Grant
Where can we find you online.

01:05:38 Shawna Gann
Well, my podcast is listed on most major platforms. So apple podcasts, Google, etcetera and my Web pages true colors cast dot com

01:05:49 Shawna Gann
And you can find me on Facebook and Instagram as well. Instagram is our true couplers Podcast. So you know awesome. Thank you for coming on. Thank you for having me. Pleasure speaking with you. Likewise. Yeah, indeed. OK, All right, Take care. Thank you for listening to today’s episode of the other side of 40. You can find us at our site. Thea other side of 40 dot com and on Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook at other side 40.

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