Dr. Tiffany Jana

Podcast Description

“Na-na-na-na-no Boo Boo. If you’re a good person then you need to understand exactly what your white ness means. And you need to understand what kind of harm that it has caused and continues to cause on a daily basis, no matter how woke and good you think you are.”

Dr. Tiffany Jana [pronouns: they/them/theirs] is a non-binary Awareness Artist and Pleasure Activist. She uses her work and art to create a loving embrace of people and culture that includes an emphasis on liberation through joy. Dr. Jana is the author of four inclusion books, including three best-sellers. She is the founder of TMI Consulting Inc, the world’s first diversity focused Certified Benefit Corporation. Dr. Jana has been featured in numerous publications and media including Fast Company, NY Times, and Forbes for their work on diversity, equity, empowerment, and inclusion. She was also named one of the Top 100 Leadership Speakers by Inc.com.

Additional Resources

Transcription

00:30 

Kim Crayton: Hello everyone, and welcome to today’s episode of the #CauseAScene podcast. I’m so happy to have as my guest Tiffany Jana; pronouns are them/them she/her. Will you please introduce yourself?

Dr. Tiffany Jana: Yes. Thanks for having me on! I’m Dr. Tiffany Jana. I am an awareness artist. I use every available medium I can get my hands on to bring people together and to make social justice and transformative justice the most pleasurable thing we can do. And I’m also a pleasure activist, as of recently. [Laughs]

KC: Ooh, ooh shit. Okay. Definitely want to know what that is! Alright, so we start always with two questions: why is it important to cause a scene? And how are you causing a scene?

01:14

DTJ: Well, it’s important to cause a scene because for some reason unbeknownst to me, the vast majority of humanity is walking around sleepwalking. They, you know, often are unaware that they’re just walking through the world in ways that are not productive or at worst, harmful, and causing a scene helps wake people up not only to their own presence and possible impact, but to whatever it is that you’re causing a scene about. So wherever you see things that need to be addressed in the world, it can be, you know, the things that need to be corrected and highlighted. Or it can be the positive, aspirational aspects of life that we need to put more emphasis on.

Like, if you look at the news, you know, I don’t watch the news anymore. I’ll listen to curated news from time to time, but I don’t watch it on television because it’s always highlighting negative stuff. We need people causing a scene about all of the amazing things that are happening in the world and all of the victories that people are celebrating. So causing a scene is about raising awareness. And that’s why I call myself an awareness artist.

02:16

KC: And so how are you specifically causing a scene?

DTJ: Oh, great number of ways. [Laughs] I think that… I read somewhere that just being a joyful person of color—particularly gender minority of color—and existing joyfully and unapologetically, is its own scene, is its own act of revolutionary defiance, because the world is structured in a way as to kind of negate or underplay or downplay or undermine our happiness and our joy and our success. So my first way of causing a scene is just by being happy and successful, unapologetically Black, and as of 2019 I’m identifying as non binary, which, you know, I come from a Christian background and for a lot of people, depending on the generation or the state of mind, that is just an unnecessary change that I have made. And really, it’s not a change. All I’ve all accessed is language to be able to more clearly demonstrate and live into who I’ve always been.

So I’m causing a scene through my LGBT identification as non-binary, which is a subset of trans; I’m causing a scene by being a, [laughs] a sort of revolutionary in the diversity, equity, and inclusion space, because I’ve been developing metrics around an otherwise very nebulous [laughs] field of study and I’m now putting concrete numbers behind it. And diversity ROI, which is challenging for a lot of people that we can possibly have real accountability, which I’m all about.

And then, you know, for the first time in my adult life, I wrote an article called “The Delusion of White Supremacy” on Medium, and I don’t like to use the words “white supremacy” without prefacing that with “delusion”, because it’s something that we’re all adversely affected by whether you’re white, Black, or otherwise; and in naming—you know, words have power. So being able to name that white supremacy is a delusion; that if you say white supremacy by itself, words have power, and somehow there’s an implication that whiteness was ever supreme, and it never has been and never will be. So the delusion of white supremacy for me is an act of defiance and an act of causing a scene by naming the thing, pointing it out and then providing people with tools and skills and things that they can use to help break down the delusion of white supremacy in their own lives and in their workplaces.

And I do this all under the umbrella of pleasure activism in which, and I thank Adrienne Maree Brown, the author of “Pleasure Activism” and “Emergent strategy”, for introducing me to this concept because I believe that all of these changes, like they’re different ways to approach the work of activism, the work of inclusion, and my bent has always been towards the aspirational. I think that justice and form and the transformational work can be done in a way that is joyful and everyone can join in the party by shifting their mindset and finding ways to make it pleasurable.

05:24

KC: Fuck. Okay. Okay. All right. I usually take notes as my guest… I just was like, just listening. Because, you hit so many… on so many things, and I just didn’t want to just, like, miss something. Because when we first… Okay, so how—let me explain how I came to you—I don’t think you even know that. 

I am a business strategist. So, I have consulting clients who I’m—okay, so hopefully when I say this, it’ll pick up on a lot of the threads you just laid down—so, I do not call myself an inclusion and diversity specialist. That bothers me because that should be the bedrock of your organization. People having authentic welcoming and feeling psychological safety in the knowledge economy is required for you to get anything out of them for you to differentiate and innovate and be competitive. And so I read the B Corp handbook two years ago, I think it was. And I was working with some clients and I was like, “Let’s read this book,” because they have, they’re—you know, people have these aspirations of being “companies for good,” quote unquote—but we’re missing so much because people’s perspectives are so limited. 

So I was like, “This is a good book on some strategies. Let’s read this.” And then one came, he was like, “Oh, that’s a second edition.” And I was like, “Yeah, you know, I’m not gonna… n’yeah, let me just go on and get it to see if it changed.” Oh my god, did it change because you’re in it!

[Both laugh]

07:05

And I love that B Corp—and how this book is written—it puts inclusion and diversity as fundamental to any business. And that is—I tend to keep telling people, “We’re not creating widgets anymore. This is not the industrial age where I give you a binder and you need to get on an assembly line and you create 100 widgets a day, but they have to be identical to everybody else because they have to go into 1,000 different things.”

We’re in the information slash—it has to be—that information needs to be turned into knowledge so that we can compete. But information goes in, knowledge comes out. And if I don’t feel safe enough, if I don’t feel included, if it’s not diverse enough a spectrum there, I’m gonna keep that to myself. And I can’t—and organizationally—they aren’t gonna have access to leverage what I know and how I do my job, and I’m gonna leave. And then when I leave, they’re gonna be like—two weeks, three weeks, months later:

“What’s goin’ on here? What’s goin’ on?”

“Well, you know, Tiffany left.”

And then like, “But what do you mean, Tiffany?”

“Well, Tiffany was doing all the things, and Tiffany just left because she didn’t feel included every time she spoke up at a meeting. Somebody shut her down. People wanted to touch her hair. All kinds of weird stuff was going on, and we just…”

“You know what? We’re so, we did not realize how much Tiffany played an integral role in making us successful.”

Yes, that is problematic. And this is what I’m seeing when I do my consultations, I’m talking to some future clients, and they’re like, “Well, I thought I had a problem with—because I can’t recruit people from marginalized communities, but you’re—what I’m noticing is I’m just not ready.” I’m like, “Yeah, your organization is not even ready for this.”

08:50

DTJ: Yeah, I call that the container theory, right? You’ve got to—you know, people always want to address the symptom. “Oh, let’s just bring more bodies of color and bodies from underappreciated groups into the environment.” But if you haven’t optimized your environment for inclusive behavior, then no one’s gonna feel safe or welcome, and that’s actually toxic and dangerous to the people you’ve invited into your scene.

KC: Oh, and when they get it, they’re like, “Oh shit, we got work to do!” I’m like, “Yes, yes!” [laughs] I can’t even help you do the things that you want to hire me for because you don’t have a space that supports what you’re trying to do. And this, and then I want to tie into—oh, I loved what you said about white supremacy. ‘Cause what I tell people all the time, white supremacy is—right now, what we’re seeing is white supremacy is the parasite that’s eatin’ its host. 

DTJ: Amen.

KC: But white supremacy—no one escapes white supremacy. Black folx, everybody is dealing with some level of internalized white supremacy and anti-Blackness. 

DTJ: Yep.

09:55

KC: And these are the things we need to address. So it’s not just yes, I have to keep flaggin’, you know, like waving in the flag of white folx. Hey, hey hey hey! But when I’m also looking at—when we air this, it’ll be not recent—but there was a recent when… what’s Beyoncé’s daughter name?

DTJ: Blue.

KC: Yeah, they’re Blue, Beyoncé, and um… Thee Stallion… sheesh…

DTJ: Meg.

KC: Yeah. Thank you. Thank you so much. They did a beautiful picture, and there was a white woman and a Black man who decided to make fun of what this little girl looks like. And it—and people highlighted why—that he demonstrated internalized white supremacy in anti-Blackness. And so did she. And it goes back to how you said that us being joyful—oh my lord!—is like our kryptonite. And it’s so funny because people—they will tag us with the angry Black woman—I’m like, “I’m not angry. I’m just challenging you. What you’re saying is utter bullshit and you’re gonna have to, you’re gonna have to, we’re gonna have to unpack this.” But I’m not angry. I’m sitting on the couch right now. Why do I have to be angry? It’s like any moment of us being happy is torn apart. 

DTJ: Mm-hmm.

KC: No one—I’m like you. I refuse to watch any more videos of Black people being tortured by police or Becky calling the cops. And I don’t—don’t send me that. I don’t need to see that. Why do I need to be, continue to be traumatized by that just so you could see that there’s a difference—I tell people all the time: why do I have to—this is the issue with also doing this work that I’m quite mindful of: I have to be harmed in some way for for people in privilege to understand, to believe my lived experience that I’m being harmed.

12:04

DTJ: That’s interesting. That’s a very interesting perspective. I think that a lot of people share that. And I feel like, yes, I don’t watch these videos and curate them the way that some people do. I think the awareness of them is important. 

KC: Yes.

DTJ: Both for—I mean that is, you know, those videos I think are what created kind of a tipping point. Because until we started recording these atrocities, there were way too many—particularly well-meaning white people—who honestly believed that everything was post-racial, that everything was copacetic…

KC: Ugh.

DTJ: Because they couldn’t see it, they didn’t believe it was real. So they’re just waking up in these last four or five years and realizing, “Holy crap, this is real!” But then there’s this additional burden of, you know, like I lived what—particularly for a person of color—is what I would consider a charmed life. I have not been harmed in a great many overt ways. You know, the “Subtle Acts of Exclusion”—title of my fourth book, total plug right there—you know…

KC:  Go ‘head, go ‘head.

DTJ: Notwithstanding. Those are the micro aggressions of things that we deal with all the time. But by and large, I’m not experiencing a lot of the things at scale that my brothers and sisters experience. But being able to, certainly being able to point to these things and to inform—particularly the well-meaning white folx—that this is the reality of existence. This is the lived experience. I don’t need to go through it to share it with you and to have some empathy while you learn, but I do think that it’s so important. What I see more and more of now is as these wonderful white people are waking up to the reality of the delusion of white supremacy, they’re expecting for people of color and people from, you know, undervalued communities to educate them and be their teachers. And that is not our place.

KC: Mm, girl.

14:00

DTJ: Like for folx like us who do the work, that’s different. You can pay me a very high hourly wage…

KC: Yes, exactly. [laughs]

DTJ: …to help you learn and to help restructure your company around doing this well, but don’t you dare go and ask the nearest person of color or the nearest person with a disability about what it is that you need to know. Google it, get a book. And that was the, I think you said you read my last article on Medium was… 

KC: Yes. 

DTJ: Yeah, “Your White Education.” Absolutely. People have to take their own responsibility for taking on the mantle of becoming an antiracist. And I love Ibram X. Kendi’s most recent book, “How to Be an Antiracist.”

KC: Oh, we’re reading that. We’re reading that as a part of—I do a Sunday series, a book club series—and we’re reading through that. We’re on chapter 16.

DTJ: Oh, interesting. My favorite… you know, the sort of big, marquee header for me is “the opposite of racist is not not racist, it’s antiracist”.

KC: Not racist, exactly.

DTJ: So you don’t get any more excuses for not taking on the work. If you are not being actively antiracist, and supporting antiracist policy, and nurturing antiracist ideas, then you are by default in our country, a racist.

15:16

KC: And so what’s funny is how I don’t—okay, everybody should know—I don’t plan these. I find people that I find interesting, I come on—we didn’t rehearse this—I don’t know what we’re gonna talk about. So it’s interesting because the book that I’m about to start writing is “Redefining Capitalism without White Supremacy: The Economics of being Antiracist.”

DTJ: I love it. I can’t wait to read it.

KC: It goes back to when you were talking about ROI. People want to say, “Oh, capitalism is evil.” No, no, no, no, no, no. Capitalism, Marxism, communism, socialism, fascism have all been rooted in white supremacy. Not one of them has not been rooted in white supremacy. 

DTJ: They have.

KC: I want to test the hypothesis: can we have a capitalist system that does not—is not rooted in white supremacy? I don’t know if we can. [laughs]

DTJ: Ooh girl, you givin’ me chills. That’s amazing. 

KC: That’s what I want to work on. That’s…

16:13

DTJ: Yeah well that’s why the second edition of the B Corp Handbook worked for you because they’re starting from a foundation of triple bottom-line economy where we’re not just privileging profits, which is the first extraction of a little bit of white supremacy, right? So it’s not just about profits, it’s also about people and the planet. And then when you’re injecting this people orientation, particularly centering and lifting up the experiences of those who have been historically left out of the wealth-building parts of society, that’s exactly what you get when you marry those two. So I look forward to it because I think that there is an elegant solution and it begins with these conversations and it begins with—you know, what is it? There’s a, who said that like, the biggest trick of the devil was making you believe that he doesn’t exist? That is the biggest trick of white supremacy, right?

KC: Yes!

DTJ: The delusion of white supremacy has been incredibly effective because we pretend that it doesn’t exist. That’s what’s so important to name it and to start breaking down where it is everywhere, right?

17:13

KC: Yes! Let’s… don’t say people of color when you mean Black people. Don’t say women of color when you mean Black women. Let’s name the thing. I tell people, even when these politicians, they’re pissing me off when they figured—well, not figured out a way because the system is set up that way—but they talk about racism and privilege and all that stuff in one sect, and then they want to talk about health care and education for all and, no! That’s the same; it’s the same boat. Stop separating these things. One, you’re saying because you don’t want to tie those two together because then, then, definitely you will be unpopular amongst other white folx, when you make that distinction.

But I want to bring up the guiding principles of #CauseAScene community are:

First: Tech is not neutral.

Second: Intention without strategy is chaos.

Third: Lack of inclusion is a risk management issue.

And forth: Prioritize the most vulnerable.

And this is why I stay in the business space. There’s a lot of people we can have conversations about this is the right thing to do. That ain’t hitting them right. I ain’t got time to be talking to you. I don’t have the bandwidth or the patience to be getting on your moral side. What I need to be talking about is your ROI and hittin’ you in your pocket.

DTJ: Can you tell me those four things again? I wanna write them down. What were they?

KC: I can—actually—I’m gonna actually email you because we’ve created a Twitter banner.

DJT: With those four pillars?

KC: Oh, yeah.

DJT: Oh, my God. That’s brilliant. Like, I cannot believe that in four bullet points you just encapsulated the whole freakin point of my career. [Laughs] Girl, where was you when I was [inaudible]?

[Laughter] 

18:57

KC: And that’s the guiding principles. Every decision I make, I look through that lens. So when I’m working with my clients, this is what they have to learn. This is the lens you have to look through. We have to—if we’re not prioritizing the most vulnerable, the most vulnerable will always be harmed. When we’re prioritizing the most vulnerable everybody else is taken care of.

DTJ: Everyone wins. I know. Yes!

KC: Yes! And so, I have shifted from—also—from shareholder value versus what I call—stakeholder value. So it goes from: you have to prioritize who works for you first. And then you have to look at who partners with you. And then you look at who buys from you. And then you look at who invests in you. Investment comes last. They gonna get they money.

DTJ: People do it all the way backwards! People do that exactly backwards.

KC: Yes!

DJT: You’re toppling it on its head.

19:52

KC: If people who work for you are aligned and and feel safe, then they can—when you’re looking at partners—you don’t have that issue with your partner doing something on Twitter or something and now you’re held accountable because they done did some’n stupid. And now you’re… then you look at who buys from you and they understand. That’s why I love the B Corp understanding or L3Cs. And so I’m seeing the beginnings of capitalism without white supremacy, but no one’s naming the thing, and I want to be intentional about naming the thing.

DTJ: Oh these… this structure, this construct that you’ve developed will be featured in the book? That’s part of the central…

KC: Yes.

DJT: Oh, god. Girl, you gotta let me know! I want that, I want it hot off the press!

Interlude

21:53

DTJ: You gotta let me know! I want that, I want it hot off the press! [Laughs]

KC: So people, let me tell you what I’m doing right now. I am DMing her the documents, the—what do you call ’em?—the logo stuff with the banner and one you can share in your Twitter feed, that you can share out. Yes. And I’m trying, yes, I’m trying to get people—and I have a LinkedIn one as well—so I’m trying to get people, just like I’m sharing pronouns now, trying to get people to share this thing. Because, as you said—this is why I get frustrated. Because I am, I’ve always been a strategist. So to me, I think like this.

So I started #CauseAScene in March of 2018. But people—and many people don’t know—I’m finishing up my doctorate in business administration focusing on technology entrepreneurship. Yeah, I took last year off, and people know why I took last year off because I had—I was already—had did the coursework, and I was working. I was like, “Oh, I got this.” I’m working with my clients, and I never went to school to get the degree. I went to get the information so I could turn it into knowledge. And then I was saying, “I’m not here to prove shit to white folx,” so that’s why I stopped. But after a year working with my clients, I woke up—literally woke up one morning—and was like “Okay, it’s time to finish.” And then I look at…

23:20

DTJ: That’s, you know, I think it’s so wonderful that you’re saying that because I literally I have an MBA and a doctorate, and the reason I got the doctorate it was because as a very young executive—I was an executive in my twenties—I started my company in my twenties. I was providing executive inclusion coaching for old white men, among other people. And I, you know, the women in my family, we look young, and until the day we die. So I actually was young, but I looked even younger and I could tell the people were like, “On what authority is this child in here trying to trying to tell me something?”

So I literally pursued… it was the delusion of white supremacy that caused me to pursue the advanced degree just so that title, that honorific, would go in front of me and make people feel a little bit more secure. But same thing happened to me, I had a crazy stalemate with one of my one of my chairs, so I had to, like, wait out until he left and I got to finish it. Finished the course work in a couple years, but it took me eight years total because I was stalling because I had a disagreement with my chair. But I did—by the time I got it, I didn’t need it anymore. And I understood what I had done, but I finished it. In my case, I did it for my children and for all of the little Black boys, girls and gender nonconforming folx out there, so that they know when you set a goal, go ahead and finish it. Because once you have that piece of paper, once you have achieved that milestone, no one can take it away from you. And it does add to credibility.

24:47

KC: And oh, I’ve already told people, “You think my price is high now, wait till that get to that piece of paper. That is gonna be…” But also the reason—so I like I said—I woke up, decided “Okay, let’s finish this.” Girl, I went back looking through my doc study. Tell me why the hell my doc study is not the first part of my damn book.

DTJ: Why is it not?

KC: No, tell me! I was being—I didn’t realize that because I got so like, “I don’t want to do this anymore.” So I’m reading through this, and I’m like, “This is the first damn chapter!”

DTJ: And you realized that it actually was?

KC: Yes! I was like, floored!

DTJ: Yeah. My doctorate, my study ended up becoming what is the industry-breaking, ground-breaking tool that I have been developing. You know, that I’ve been testing metrics for almost 10 years. Now I’ve got beta, I’m moving to MVP. My stuff is tested and it’s moving. Like I already know my work was proven on longitudinal field study. Because thank you very much, doctorate.

25:46

KC: Yeah, and that is, that was like, the joy of that. I was like, “Oh, I had to take some”—so the reason I got a DBA and not a PhD is because I don’t want to create theory, I wanna test theory. I want to take it out in the wild and see if what you’re saying works.

DTJ: Girl! [laughs]

KC: And so my theory is based on Peter Senge’s “The Learning Organization”, which is so what we need in knowledge economy.

DTJ: We have so much in common! I don’t have a PhD, I have a Doctorate of Management in Organizational Leadership because mine is applied. [Kim laughs] I’m not trying to theorize jack squat. I am trying to apply it in the workplace, make sure it works, and proliferate good practices throughout the world. Come on now,

KC: Girl! We are—so this is what I love! And this… I have some people who come on this, “Do you want…” No, I don’t want to ask you questions beforehand. Nothing. I love these moments when we are like “Oh my god, there’s so much serendipity here!” I just love it. Wow. So it’s like I’m building this little network of people when I get ready to start doing my research. I’m like, “Hey, you remember when?”

DTJ: Love it!

26:59

KC: Oh, so let’s talk about—because one of the things that pisses me off to no end in tech is, first of all when we talkin’ naming things, we use the term “technical” incorrectly. We use “technical” only to talk about technology or coding when—and we don’t ascribe technical skills to people who aren’t at a keyboard all day. Where, as I tell them, I have a set of technical skills that many of these mediocre white dudes will never have and are lacking. And I—it will be a long time before you can program out what I do. 

And so, when I’m talking about building businesses, when I’m talking about prioritizing the most vulnerable, I’m talking about—how do we stop trying to extrapolate out humanness even though we cannot do—we are—there is no such thing as unbiased. Period. As a qualitative researcher, I know that just by… so I’ve been doing some of my questionnaires, right? So I’m doin’ ’em via Zoom, the same thing we’re using right now. And I’m really conscious of how I may be agreeing, what my face may be looking like, am I nodding my head because I don’t want to give nonverbal cues to the participants who are in the study. We all have these biases. There is no such thing as non-biased or unbiased data.

And yet that’s the first thing we’re trying to do is extrapolate out the human parts so that we have organizations when I say they are not ready for this economy because you don’t even know how to… You have absolutely no interpersonal skills. You don’t know how to… none of the things that… you don’t… at the beginning… So one of the things I love about learning organizations is about systems thinking and not silo thinking. We have to move from silo thinking to systems thinking. I really get frustrated when people was like, “Yeah, my company sucks, but my team is great.” Yeah, let your manager go and go somewhere else and see what happens to your damn team.

[Laughter]

I want you to take some time—first of all, tell me how you became a part of this book because I was so—I immediately saw you’re and I was like, “Oh, I got to get her on the show!” And tell—and let’s talk of business—because people think we have “soft skills”. And I hate that term.

29:38

DTJ: No, I call them “interpersonal competencies”, because if you don’t have those…

KC: I call them “human-centric skills”.

DTJ: Right? Like the technology that I’m building to quantify diversity ROI. We are measuring across 80 different interpersonal and organizational competencies. But we need to stop calling them “soft skills”. It’s terrible.

KC: Okay, so I’m gonna give you this time to break all this down. I’m about to put myself on mute because I want you to take the time to—because that’s another thing. So where I was starting with that, because I don’t code, I’m—people always question, “Is she even in tech? What does she know?” I’m like, “Oh, okay.” So I need you to break down, because all you people who’re coding, if there’s no business around you, you have nothing. And this is what I often find; most people, most—I call them organizations, because they’re not businesses—what they’ve been able to do is scale a product or service. You don’t have a business ’cause you have no process, procedures, nothing in place to make it a business. What you’ve been able to do is scale a product or service. So I want to let you spend some time breaking that down as the expert. You go ahead.

30:43

DTJ: Well, the first thing, the first question was how I got involved with that book. And in 2014, when the first edition of the B Corp handbook came out, my company and I were actually featured as one of the case studies. And, you know, TMI Consulting was the first diversity-focused company in the world to get B certified. So that’s how I landed in the book. And then when Ryan Honeyman, the author of the first book, got ready to write the second one—he and I had developed a friendship through the B Corp network and the Champions Retreats—he asked me if I would rewrite the book with him from the perspective, like through the lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion. And of course,  this wonderful white man asked me if I would rewrite his best-selling book. Of course I would!

And I do owe an interesting debt of gratitude to Ryan Honeyman for that, because he was the first person who—it was hilarious that it was ultimately a white man who kind of gave me permission to stare at the delusion of white supremacy, and very unapologetically, because he’s really on fire about that topic. And he helped start something called The Dismantle Collective where they’re dismantling white supremacy. And it’s a People of Color-led organization. But he helped plant the seed to make that happen. And now there’s a conference and a business and all kinds of things.

But he invited me to rewrite it, and I think probably about 30% of the book or so is this diversity content that links back to everything that’s being measured through the B Impact Assessment and really very explicitly lays out how centering the more vulnerable folx—People of Color and the otherwise historically marginalized or underserved folx—can actually not only make the world a more thriving place, but actually drive business and create a different kind of economy altogether. So it was an honor and a privilege to be part of that, and we continue to work together on that journey, and it’s been really great.

32:36

As far as being, you know, now a leader in tech—it’s interesting, ’cause I’m also not a “technical” person in the coding sense—but you’re right, technology involves systems that improve processes that make things better. I mean, ’cause information technology, the digital aspect of things gets all of the highlights and all the love, but that’s not where technology ends and begins.

But that said, I developed a company. I have a business. You know, I’ve got 32 total associates around the world who help drive diversity, equity, and inclusion, primarily in the workplace, but also in communities and within institutions and structures. But what happened for me was, you know, in 16 years I’ve never solicited a client. I never knocked on a door and asked anyone to work with me. It was all through word of mouth. I focused on quality, on delivering real transformational change within organizations, and then one client to the next reaches out and tells somebody else about it, and that’s what happened.

But what we ended up doing was, we really kind of inadvertently through my doctorate work and through the requests and relationships with clients, we ended up longitudinally field testing what is now a proven, proprietary process that actually quantifies the organizational change and holds both my company and the client company accountable for the change that we’ve calibrated. So what we have now is a software platform where we are measuring, mapping, and improving organizational culture—ultimately will be an artificial intelligence play—and also recognizing that technology, like everything else, has bias built into it. So one of the things that I’m doing to mitigate the bias built into my tool, which, by the way, also measures unconscious bias, which is super dope. [Laughs]

One of the ways that I’m addressing the bias that’s built into code is I cannot, with a piece of diversity ROI tech that actually measures, like I said, 80 different interpersonal and organizational competencies across 11 categories; I can’t afford to have the usual suspects coding for me. I can’t have a room full of white men coding for me on a diversity platform. So it is imperative that my coders—I have, you know, LGBT code. I’ve got [inaudible] code. I’ve got old code—like the old heads who started way in the beginning of coding. You know, I’ve got code of color, I’ve got international code, I’ve got people who represent all kinds of visible and invisible diversity—are the folx who are responsible for helping create this product because that is the best way, at least one of the ways, to mitigate that risk of embedding bias into code.

35:13

Because as with literature, poetry, your signature, your stamp, the subset of your experiences is embedded and it’s marked into what you create. Like, you know, your favorite author—when you read your favorite author—because they have a way of writing in which their spirit is imbued into that piece of prose or whatever it is. Same thing happens with coders: whoever you are gets locked into your code. So you’ve got to be able to create something that is representative across a pretty broad spectrum. 

So yeah, so the idea that we’re actually quantifying diversity ROI, we’re giving people a path to implementation that actually tells people how to get their organization from where they are to where they want to be through this calibrated technology. If they don’t know their destination, we actually can calibrate that within the tool to help them figure that out, because a lot of people are out here are doing diversity work and they don’t even know why. You know, they’re just doing it because it’s the flavor of the year and everybody else is doing it. We’re gonna look bad. You gotta know specifically why you want diversity. I’d rather you not even start! Don’t even play with it if you don’t know what it is that you’re doing!

36:17

KC: Because you are gonna cause harm.

DTJ: Because you’re causing harm. Right?

KC: And it’s gonna cause harm to people who look like me. Good lord.

DTJ: Thank you. Thank you. So we want to know granularly, down to the nitty-gritty specifics, why specifically do you want diversity at this organization? And how specifically is it going to help you accomplish what you came to accomplish? And it’s totally okay if part of it is a social justice reason. If you woke up and you realized, “Holy crap! You know, my organization is nothing but white people, and that’s not okay.” That’s one good reason. But let’s find 17 more. Let’s get really specific about how these good people are going to deliver, to share their time and talent with you in service of your goals. And let’s figure out how that’s gonna work. Because you know, the people, the people who you’ve already hired, I promise you they’re not ready. They are not ready. And we gotta get ’em ready.

37:08

KC: So it’s funny, because I have my clients write bi-weekly blog posts about what we’re working on, ’cause this information has to scale. I can’t—me working with you doesn’t work if that stays within your organization. And one of the upcoming blog posts is gonna be, your organization—it’s not the name—but the content is basically your organization is not ready for D&I. That’s why you’re failing. And and this is one of things: I am not—so I get people, because I’m the Black girl doing this work—I get all these emails and posts and shares about when they’ve hired some other Black woman to be in this position, and I’m like, “I am not impressed because if this Black woman doesn’t have the autonomy to make decisions, have a budget that they can use without having to get permission, and can hold people accountable for whatever. Then that is a waste of time.” You have set this person up for failure and then you can check it off on your box. “Well we tried, and it just didn’t work.” And then the whole time, this young woman is getting gaslit. This whole time she is being harmed during the work that you said that you wanted them to do. And I would rather you not do that.

DTJ: Yup. And there’s two things I want to share with you that I feel like are my core things that kind of help move the needle here. One is the three top reasons that I see people failing. One is  the insufficient buy-in from the top. If leadership is not serious about this, then it’s not going to work.

KC: Oh, none of my clients… if you’re not the decision maker I can’t, I don’t have the bandwidth.

38:46

DTJ: I’m not messin’ with you. Exactly. And also in my mind, I believe that the most successful people make it one of the top three priorities. If it can’t be one of the top three priorities, don’t even waste your time. The second one is the failure to define clear, measurable goals. If we’re just doing this to be doing this, I can’t help my clients be successful if we don’t define goals. Which is why I’m obsessed with this tech.

KC: You cannot manage what you cannot measure.

DTJ: Right? I can’t—I’m obsessed with this calibration in this ROI tech, because it helps us define clear, specific goals around what we’re trying to do. And then the third one is exactly just said: accountability. If we don’t embed true accountability, right? If we’ve defined what are these inclusive behaviors? Why are we trying to do this? How are we expecting people to interact with each other? I don’t care if it is your number two executive. If people continue to behave in ways that cause harm, if you’re not prepared to actually implement real consequences from affecting your bonus and compensation to outright exiting you from the company, then you will never be successful because it’s inauthentic.

Interlude

40:21

DTJ: You will never be successful because it’s inauthentic.

KC: And we see that in tech on the micro level with code of conducts. You have so many people pushing back on code of conducts. It’s like, “Dudes, this is the bare minimum. This—a code of conduct—is the absolute bare minimum.” That is so reactive. There is nothing proactive about a code of conduct, because now, once I’ve put a code of conduct in place… Hopefully, you didn’t just copy and paste; you tailored it to your situation, and then you had a conversation about why… just like people like, “Oh no sexual…”—I’ve consulted on several code of conducts—I’m like, “You need to take this ‘no sexual harassment’ out of here if you’re not going to define it.” Because what I consider sexual harassment and what somebody else considers sexual harassment…

DTJ: Totally different thing.

KC: Totally different things. And if you have not defined it, you cannot have anybody hold anybody accountable for it because somebody who thinks, “I’ve asked you three times to leave me alone,” is sexual harassment; to somebody who’s like, “Well, I didn’t rape her.” That’s a big gulf.

DTJ: Aw… god, that’s crazy.

KC: That’s a big gulf. And so if you haven’t defined what that looks like in your community, how do you hold anybody accountable to anything?

DTJ: Yep. That’s it. You’ve gotta be clear. No more… I mean, and this is…

KC: So yeah. Woo! Okay, so I want to go back in our last—because I want to go back to where we started… before we even started this conversation. I was like, “Don’t talk until we start recording!” So you talkin’ about your article, “Your White Education”, and tell me what you were saying when you started—you’re like… because I was like, “Are you talking…” When I mentioned it, you’re like, “My article that did…” What? Now what did you say that was?

42:03

DTJ: Ooh, so yeah. [Laughs] Basically said that I don’t give a rip about the delusion of white supremacy because once upon a time, if you had said to me five years ago, 10 years ago that I would be naming the delusion of white supremacy out loud and putting out ideas and strategies to combat it and holding folx accountable—particularly white folx—accountable for their behavior, I would not have believed you because I’m a gentle spirit. I’m a kind soul. That wishes nothing but love and grace to people. What I’m recognizing is, we’re running out of time. We’ve been hundreds of years invested in a social construct that is nothing but harmful.

And there is no more room for the tolerance of people who are allowed to be walking in their sleep. And just causing harm and saying, “Oh no, but I’m a good person.” No no no no no boo-boo! If you’re a good person, then you need to understand exactly what your whiteness means, and you need to understand what kind of harm that it has caused and continues to cause on a daily basis. No matter how woke and good you think you are. This is mandatory learning for people.

And again, that’s one of the reasons I love Ibram X Kendi is because he put out a pretty challenging notion: people have said for a long time that Black people can’t be racist. Because racism is prejudice plus power and there is something to that. But what Kendi says is there’s a whole lot of Black people who do have power. Like us, for instance. We run our own organizations. We do have the power to hire and fire people. Maybe not at the scale of other things, and and systemically we’re not—we don’t have as much of that kind of influence—but we do have all kinds of people—people of color, Black folx, you know—in courts, our former President, et cetera, et cetera.

That said, anyone can have a racist idea. Anyone can both behave in a racist fashion. Unfortunately for white people, the entire system—everything that we know—has been constructed around this delusion that whiteness is superior and that white people are entitled to all kinds of privileges and to all kinds of passes that everyone else is not. And it’s important for the white people who are trying to see worldwide change and meaningful change and equanimity; it’s important for them to get down to the business of really understanding where this came from and what it means. There is no more hiding in the shadows. And I’m personally blown away that I have found my voice in this space and that I’m willing to stand up and say it. ‘Cause what I know is one day I will be dead, okay? And I will be damned if I’m gonna go out knowing what I know now and seeing what I see now and not trying to help shake people out of this coma.

44:54

KC: Okay, so you said some very interesting things. So, I’m gonna bring us back to Kendi. So, I too—I have always been a “But why? Okay. I can’t go into the woods. But why? Why won’t you let me? Okay, so that don’t make no sense to me. So I’m gonna go in the woods” kinda [person]. I’ve always been that, and I’ve always… but as I’ve unpacked this thing of white supremacy, I started with—I think it was… it definitely was Kendi—when I was listening to “Seeing White” series. And it was another podcast he was on. He was talking about—when I was first introduced to the difference between segregationist / assimilationist and antiracist.

And it was really interesting ’cause I started really thinking about civility, and I was like, “Civility is optional for whiteness. It is expected behavior of people of color.” Because that’s how white supremacy has taught us and taught whiteness that that’s how we manage our own behavior. So I have a—one of the #CauseAScene shirts says “Fuck Civility.” I’m done. Yeah, I can’t play this game. And I’m just like you. Once I knew I couldn’t, I cannot not say. And I’m gonna be really honest, there was a reason, ’cause when this airs—this is out right after the holiday season, everyone—I did not go to two family functions because I knew there were gonna be white people there that when you bring white people in Black spaces our behavior changes. We accommodate whiteness. We want to make sure you’re comfortable, and I’m not doing that shit anymore.

So when people ask me what I do for a living, if there’re white people around—particular if it’s family stuff—folx start whispering, and they start saying… they don’t say “white”. They say [whispers] “white”. Naw, I ain’t got time for all that. I’m not doing the whispering. I’m not doing anything to mitigate them being—and I’m also aware that I’ve made this choice not to comfort… or the comfort of white people is no longer my responsibility. If you need help, you need to go get therapy. It’s not my issue anymore. 

But I recognize that’s my choice. And I don’t wanna—and I try not to put other people in that position—because I know that that has consequences that they don’t want to deal with. So I said, “You know what? I’m not gonna go through these events because I refuse to be…” These white women will come into the space and not speak, and um-um, I’m not doing all that. I’m not doing it. So I’m just gonna stay my ass at home and eat me some crab legs. That’s what I’m going to over the holiday, [laughter] because that’s that civility thing. And I’m like, “I’m not doing it.” If your comfort comes at the expense of my discomfort. I’m not doing it.

47:44

DTJ: Amen. Well, I see. And this is where I think that you will love the pleasure activism because you’ve privileged your own joy, which is absolutely fantastic because as a Black woman, the narratives and the constructs that have been built around us, you know, have—and pleasure runs on the whole spectrum—from, I wake up in the morning and the sun shining on my face and it just feels good and I’m happy; all the way down to everything to do with eroticism and sexuality. Our relationship to that, and the way that the narratives have been written around Black women and our pleasure and our joy are completely jacked up. So any opportunity that a Black woman in particular has to claim her own joy, claim her pleasure, claim her sexuality, and live right the heck into it? That is, again, an act of revolutionary defiance and so very important.

KC: So I’ve already bookmarked that. So I will be getting that because I’ve always been attracted to Tantra and all those things because for me that sexual energy is about creativity.

DTJ: It’s power!

KC: Yes, so you just hit… girl!

DTJ: So why do you think the misogynistic aspect of delusion of white supremacy is always trying to cover us up, hide us, control our bodies, tell us that we’re dirty, tell us that we’re this, because a woman’s—particularly a woman of color—leaning into her sexuality and her sexual power and all of the glory that is that body and that ability to emanate joy and radiate pleasure and happiness? Those are superpowers.

KC:You are speaking to my soul right now!

DTJ: When we own that, we are super powerful super beings that can accomplish just about everything. So when I say I’m an awareness artist and I’m trying to help make sure that people understand that social justice can be one of the most pleasurable things that we can do, that encapsulates all of it.

49:34

KC: And that’s what people don’t understand. I enjoy this work. They think I’m just joining out of… No! I enjoy—I love seeing when someone tweets something like “Kim said this and this made me think of this, and now I’m gonna write a whole thread on it, and I’m gonna share.” I love that!

So that was the one thing I want to talk about. The second thing is how you highlight whiteness studies. Oh lord, have mercy. [Dr. Jana laughs] I no longer recommend “White Fragility”. I no longer use the term “white fragility.” When Robin D’Angelo coined it—I’ll use that word—it was an academic term. It is now being used as a term, as, “Oh, I didn’t know. I didn’t…” An “abdicate responsibility” kind of thing. And what white people need to understand, your fragility is not one sided. Your fragility has a cause and effect. And people who’re most vulnerable end up being harmed based on your fragility.

DTJ: Get hurt from it. Absolutely!

KC: I see this—and I keep talking about this—I see this with white trans women, when they come into brown and Black lesbian spaces. I have so many brown and Black lesbians come to me telling me these stories about how white trans women who are used to being individuals—cause whiteness is about the individual, everybody else is about groups—that come in and they center whiteness, and when you center whiteness, whatever marginalization you have goes out the window because now these women and non-binary individuals who have created a safe space for themselves are in defense mode. So you can’t just call them a TERF, when you came in and said they can’t talk about their wombs, they can’t talk about giving birth, they can’t talk about their cycles, they can’t talk about anything ’cause all you want to talk about is what we have in common, and that’s being a woman. We can’t do that. That is terrorizing that group, and you need to stop it.

DTJ: Oh, that’s interesting.

51:35

KC: Yeah, so white studies is—although I understand where—and this is where again, when I talk—like I talk about Stack Overflow. How they created it and how it’s being used now. I don’t care what your intention is, it’s the impact. So white studies, I understand what the intention is. But the impact has now become quote unquote “woke” white folx using it as a weapon to not do the work that you’ve been talking about they need to do and put the responsibility on themselves and not on other people.

DTJ: What I like about white studies—and the construct is you know, obviously we’ve got African American studies, right? And African American studies should be called American History. [Laughs]

KC: Uh-huh. Yeah. Exactly.

DTJ: It shouldn’t have to be isolated. It exists because we have failed to accurately and truthfully embed it into our curriculum. However, it serves its purpose. What I like about the idea of white studies is that, like until five minutes ago, white people didn’t even know that they…

KC: Oh yeah, whiteness was totally unexamined. Yes.

DTJ: Exactly! Exactly.

KC: No, so I get it. If you come at it from an academic, “I’m doing this because I need to understand myself?” That’s fine. But what I’m seeing in the wild is not how it’s being used.

52:53

DTJ: But see, and that has always—so that’s just the “warriors”. That’s the Social Justice Warriors have always done that. Social Justice Warriors have been out here from time immemorial, you know, they start doing their work, and then—and again, this is another delusion of white supremacy construct—everything’s a fucking competition to these people, right? And so they go…

KC: Yes! Oh, yeah, and I have to have my… I will take my ally and take it away. Oh, who told you you was an ally?

DTJ: Exactly. So I I learned something, and my favorite analogy to that is it’s as if… to me, the white folx shaming white folx because they haven’t done the work yet, you know, in some of the ways… Like holding people accountable and ushering them into a space where they’re able to do the examination and to do the work, fine. But shaming people, shutting them up and telling them that they’re horrible human beings because they aren’t as far along as I am or as the next person is so counterproductive. That does not make the work pleasurable. That does not drive change. That is as useful as you know, if you think about a church saying, “No, you got to sit down and shut up. You don’t get to take communion because Jesus doesn’t love you yet,” or whatever, right? “You can’t pray here because you’re not all the way, whatever it is.” You can’t do that; we’ve gotta make room for people to be where they are on their journey.

KC: Yes, you gotta meet people where they are.

54:15

DTJ: What is most important to me is, are you genuinely trying to do the work? Are you trying to look at this? Are you trying to examine yourself? If you’re doing that in all earnestness, great! I am all there for it. Now if you’re full of crap, and that’s why in that article, I said “there’s no cheat codes, there’s no Cliff Notes, there’s no short way around it. It is hard work, and I expect you to put it in.” But if you’re putting in the work and you are genuinely trying and you are apologizing when you cause harm and you’re willing to not use your whiteness as a weapon when you when you mess up and when you don’t, then we’re cool. It’s a hard needle to thread.

KC: This is my baseline engagement boundary that I have. I say, “All whiteness is racist by default.” So to me, that is… But what I’m looking for is—and I say, “All whiteness is racist by design and cannot be trusted by default without consistent demonstrated antiracist behavior.” Because whiteness is used to getting the benefit of the doubt, the default… No, no, no, no, we’re not doing that anymore. I don’t—I’m Black—you never give me the benefit of the doubt. So we gonna be on equal terms. You gonna have to earn trust. And that brings me back, because I want to end—because I want to make sure we have this conversation—because two things that I’ve challenged Kendi, and I’ve talked about as we break down the episodes in this community; one is, he says antiracist anti-capitalism. And I said, I want to see that—I believe that could be an antiracist capitalism. So that’s where I want to focus my attention.

DTJ: It wouldn’t look like capitalism as we know it is the problem.

KC: Exactly.

DTJ: I believe you that there is a possibility, but it would be such a huge divergence from what currently stands as capitalism, that it would be not capitalism by default.

56:03

KC: And so, but my thing though with that is, I look at definitions, and if you look just at the definition of capitalism, it’s just a theory. So that’s how I hold onto it if we can take that theory and not embed white supremacy, it is still capitalism based on how capitalism is defined. So that’s one thing.

I fundamentally disagree with “Black people can be racist”. I believe we—as I said before—we have internalized white supremacy and definitely anti-Blackness at various degrees where if I’m looking at things—because I’m a systems person—if I’m looking at the systems, the only powers Black people ever have are powers that are bestowed upon them from a white supremacist system. If I cannot create my own power, and it has to come from a system, and can be thus taken away by that system, I don’t have inherent power. I do believe we could say racist…

DTJ: Interesting. So you don’t believe that we could be racist once we’re within that structure? Once we’ve been bestowed that power, can we be racist?

57:10

KC: I believe—because when I look at Candace Owens and all these other people—their role is to serve white supremacy. Nothing about what they’re doing serves them individually if it’s not condoned by white supremacy. And there’s historical references to Black people who have done this work. We’re all “rah rah rah” for white supremacy. They make one misstep and they’re gone. That is not… so you can have racist-ass ideas, because we’ve been all designed to have them.

And I look at how I’ve been as a middle class Black person—’cause I have this—I could say the same thing as you. I have not had those traumas that many people in my community have. And I have been taught—or not been taught—been under the illusion because white supremacy also makes us think that we’re all having the same experience and we’re not. And so we don’t understand when we’re doing the same thing as this white person and we’re not getting the same results. So I can say that as an individual, I have been prejudiced against poor Black people in the past because that’s how I’ve been designed. That’s how I would, you know, “that middle class, it’s their fault.” No one ever told me to challenge the systems or whatever.

But even with Barack Obama; he uses the examples of Barack Obama—and I cannot remember who else he uses. But even in that, what could that man actually get accomplished with Mitch McConnell as the head of the Senate? So that’s the one caveat, and I’ve really… So when I first read it in the introduction, I told my community, “Hey, this is where I’m gonna be open to—this is something that I see different from what we’ve been talking about, and I’m open to that. So let me continue reading.”

So it was until we got to chapter four or chapter five where I was like, “Ah! Now I see where I take issue, or where I see the difference is.” Because I don’t care—you can look at Jay-Z—it does not matter money; his wife almost died in childbirth. It does not matter. Serena almost died in childbirth. She’s always compared to a monkey. We do not have any powers, system power that has not given to us by white supremacy. That’s the difference that I… that’s the only… Now there’s some asshole Black folx out here that I would not want to be around. And I tell people all the time the one thing I could tell you that I wouldn’t want to be at a dinner table with Omarosa. But I can tell you that white supremacy discounted her as a Black woman so much that she was allowed to take recording equipment in the Situation Room. How the hell does that happen? Because she was just like one of them slaves back in the day who the white folx sittin’ around the table talking and Black folx don’t even exist.

1:00:22

DTJ: So would you… so do you believe that the delusion of white supremacy also grants white people the same powers? Or is your argument—because I would say—because I’m with you, I’m a systems thinker. I’m a big picture thinker. So I get that theory.

KC: No, the delusion—as you call it delusion of white supremacy—got po’ white folx not understandin’ they would be better aligned wit’ po’ other folx than these… than Trump. That right there is the issue. And now, and I’m trying to get the guy who wrote, shoot. What is the name of that book? “Dying of Whiteness”—on this show so he can break that down to folx, because there’s many white people who have, who will work to their own disadvantage…

DTJ: Are disenfranchised by the system.

KC: That would work to their own disadvantage in protection of white supremacy. And we see it wit’ white women: they literally breed white supremacy.

DTJ: Yeah. Oh, my God. Yeah, that’s why the delusion is a scary, scary sickness. And I refer to it as an infection. And no one’s immune, no.

1:01:25

KC: And so that’s why I say no one, no one escapes it, not even white men. Because if I’m in tech—and as you said—because I say this all the time, people know this is one of my favorite, my main things: Black women are the moral compass of this country, period. And as you… that joy scares the hell out of white men. I see it every time I challenge them on Twitter and they block me. I see it every—I’m just asking a question—but they don’t… So they’re not even safe because they’re in the rat race. They’re trying to figure out this thing because they have never examined it themselves. They have been taught to believe that everything they’ve gotten was by their own effort. Then it comes a person like me to come in and say, “Naw, bruh. Naw, bruh.” That has to be a paradigm shift that fucks wit’ yo’ head, ’cause everything you’ve been taught…

DTJ: I mean, this is a thing. Like, I’m so excited. First of all, I’m excited because the lexicon of our trade is now part of the common vernacular.

KC: Yes!

DTJ: That is exciting, right? I never thought I’d see that, but I think… I mean, I’m sorry for the discomfort guys, that sucks, but I think it’s amazing that in 2020 white people don’t get to escape anymore. They’re right [inaudible] between every third post on Instagram is a Black woman in power, they’re—people are afraid. They’re afraid to shake hands, to hug a woman, to say anything to Black people. And it’s like, welcome to…

KC: To our world!

DTJ: Exactly. Welcome to the acrobatics and the jumping through the fiery hoops that we’ve been doing forever to accommodate y’all. Welcome to a tiny, tiny flavor of that. And oh my god, are they uncomfortable! And I’m hoping…

1:03:10

KC: Oh, I tell them all the time. I just let them know, when I do my talks, I need you to understand what it takes for us to write a goddamn email to y’all. How much effort and energy I have to expend—well, I don’t anymore—I could be your supervisor telling you, critiquing you with some legitimate… I could have data out the wazoo, I could have video recording of your ass doin’ something, and it does not matter because you would get in your feelings and then you would go to HR, and now I’m an aggressor. Now we’re not even talking about the email anymore. It’s talking about your feelings versus the impact of your behavior. Yeah, I no longer…

DTJ: Well I hope that they use this energy to grow because—I mean, obviously, we know that there’s a whole bunch of them who are not using the energy to grow—and they’re using the energy to take up arms and shoot people and use their power in even more dangerous ways. But guess what, y’all? That ain’t new. That began from the beginning and has never stopped.

KC: Exactly! And that’s why I’m not freaked out. That is—people just like, “How do you stay positive?” I’m a student of history. We’ve been here before. Y’all have never. Y’all don’t have the coping skills for this. We do. We, from how we come out of our house, have learned how to cope with this. Y’all don’t have this. This is why y’all freaking out. This is nothing new to us.

DTJ: Not at all.

KC: And so, we’re at a tipping point. And people like, “Why’re you?” Because we’re at a tipping point. Like you saying, we are everywhere. We are getting—we are bolder every day.

1:04:39

DTJ: And this is my call to Black people—and particularly to Black women and gender nonconforming people—I’ma need y’all to find your joy. I’ma need you to live into your joy. I’ma need you to identify that which makes your soul sing and smile. And I need you to radiate that light around the world because right now, we are blinding the man. And that blinding light actually stands a chance of course-correcting this historical ailment. And that the cure to this bullshit is the blinding light of our joy and our happiness and our success and our love. Like, let’s do this, y’all!

KC: Yes! Yes! And that’s why I tell people, I’s like, “Y’all think I’m doing this ’cause I…” Dude, if I wasn’t happy doing this, I wouldn’t be doing this for you. Come on, now. [Laughs] No. So that’s what the #CauseAScene community is: it’s literally majority white folx who realized—most of them all of a sudden—that they’re complicit in the harmin’ of people that they care about.

DTJ: Yup.

KC: So what would you like to say in your final moments? This has been a marvelous conversation.

[Laughter]

1:05:46

DTJ: So fun. So fun. Yeah, well, I’m @Tiffanyjana on most social media. I think I thought I was cute back when Twitter first came out, and I’m @Twiffanyjana on Twitter. With a “W”. But I just launched a YouTube series called “Life With Doc Jana”. And for anybody who’s interested in the journey of awareness, artistry, and pleasure activism, subscribe to my channel and check it out.

KC: I’m definitely about to get this pleasure activism book. Because it speaks to what I’ve been seeking right now, so I just love that. Love that. So thank you so much for being on the show and have a wonderful day.

DTJ: You too! Thanks so much for having me!

1:06:30

KC: Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the #CauseAScene Podcast. And I’d like to thank all our current sponsors of the podcast and the #CauseAScene movement. Of course, we strongly encourage everyone to become an individual sponsor of the #CauseAScene community. Just visit the website at hashtagcauseascene.com to sign up today. On behalf of everyone here at #CauseAScene, we’d like to thank you again for listening to today’s show and have a wonderful day.

Dr. Tiffany Jana

Become a #causeascene Podcast sponsor because disruption and innovation are products of individuals who take bold steps in order to shift the collective and challenge the status quo.

Learn more >

All music for the #causeascene podcast is composed and produced by Chaos, Chao Pack, and Listen on SoundCloud.

Listen to more great #causeascene podcasts