In this episode Joanne Williams, LCSW has a conversation with Jemal Knowles, CMHC who was arrested in the Black lives Matter protests in June 2020
What it is truly like being black in America
- We had an open conversation about how it feels to be Black in America, looking in the rear view mirror if Police are there, Driving While Black (DWB) “Having the Talk” With our sons about how you react to Police if stopped, can save your life.
- Why Black Lives Matter as a discussion. Because there is a racism issue to be discussed to heal and move forward.
- Whose responsibility is it to “educate” the public on racism issues. The anxiety living black create and weighs down.
- 2 books White Fragility by Robin Di Angelo as part of the education for white people as they look at their white privilege and how they can look for their own racist view or racist statement that white people don’t realize they make. And Tears We cannot Stop -Michael Eric Dyson- What Truth sounds like-
- Moral outrage that is felt by Joanne for the Central Park “Karen” calling the Police on a black man bird watching , while Jemal feels, complacent of these kinds of things that happen everyday being black he feels like it is just another day.
- The compounding issues with a pandemic with social and health risks because of the systemic issues with poverty that more people of color are effected by
- The question to ask a white Friend- Would you like to change places with a Black man today.
Next podcast episode: Part 2 BLM racism conversation
Anxiety simplified podcast and this is a podcast today that I just want to make a little
introduction about the setting we are in right now.
I'm doing this podcast with a black male therapist friend and this is part 1 of 2 to discuss race in
America this is during the coronavirus in 2020 and there was another police shooting of a black
man George Floyd that erupted into social unrest in even riots and most of the protests were
peaceful this conversation
I'm having with Jemal Knowles is in June of 2020 while many things
are changing all Americans for quarantine tour homes are cities or states are shut down need to
wear a mask and people complaining about it or not following rules. Social unrest and protests.
I wanted to have this conversation about anxiety and racial issues and how to have a
conversation around racism.
That everybody can treat everybody fairly and respectfully.
Laws may be needed but we cannot just expect the government to insist we are responsible
citizens we are responsible for each other. We are brother and sister Americans we are
responsible for our own actions or behaviors in each other it is time to have the conversation
between white Americans we are all in this together ask listen to each other from our hearts open
our minds and listen to when can have the conversation for fairness for loving each other so let's
listen to being black in America.
Joanne Williams here today with Jemal Knowles. We are both therapists. At the same time
people may need counseling through these issues. This podcast is anxiety simplified we will be
offering some solutions, or what does have a conversation with our own personal experience
with that in mind.
Jemal Knowles speaks of the protest where he was arrested by failure to disperse. The problems
came at the end of the rally My daughter went her way and I went for the train home. There was
a skirmish and I went to see what was happening. I was arrested and spent 8 hours in jail.
Black lives matter too. I had this explanation and I don't remember this man's name because he said something about if you went to the doctor with your arm was broken the doctor said to you
but you got all these other appendages and they are alright, I want them to matter too like this
broken arm but I am here because my arm is broken.
You are not hearing me and that just brought something to my attention that we want to feel like
everything's okay or look at all of you you know your arm is broken in America with racial
I thought that was a good way to describe all life matter, but you know right now this arm is
broken and it needs your attention.
Robin Di angelo Book White Fragility helps us to look at why it is so hard for white people to
discuss racism. Reminds me very professional black man he was a professor I don’t know his
name. He said Police don’t see any difference in me because I'm a professional or an older black
man. I am still scene as a threat. I can’t help my neighbor to pick up packages on her porch for
being arrested for stealing them.
The story of Jackie Robinson he was not the best MLB baseball player. He was best because
the white folks decided that he would be the best 1 st black baseball player to play on white teams.
White privilege I don't think most white people in here I am going to do a generalization but we
have a clue or really can recognize that we have that we don't even have to think about such
things like asking a black man neighbor to pick up packages off my porch.
Unfortunately it wasn't ADOS American descendants of Slaves I don't think I've ever heard
anybody find it like that why do I need to call you you know I don't know it is it's very odd but
you bringing up something that I never thought of in this way and I think that's really important
point is an educational piece and it sounds like you a question do you think stop other even
maybe black people that do come here you know in some other way I wonder if they also get that
same are they think about it somebody that is descendants that would make you think they even
consider that what's the process in nature who makes a difference 300 years of building this
country imagine before World War 1 or World War II US. Civil War black people I said that
because with exception of Vietnam War Iraq have also been fighting for their country Joe Louis
all of these situations, I don't know what was that the black no cost of the danger.
We're talking a different level that you're talking about. The Karens’ calling the Police on a
black man in Central Park, they can be arrested for making a false statement. There already has
to be a law for making a false statement saying lies of what this person would do it but it might
have been in her head she actually thought that black man who was asking her to put her dog on
a leash was going to attack her.
Check your heart rate right now. I don't like it either but it was like listen engaged in
conversation let's speak to anxiety with this then because I cannot imagine this not creating
anxiety this creates living as a black man. Yeah it's anxiety, form PTSD. I don't have my car
registered everything and if I see police in the back of me, that's it we're on you I mean it sounds
like you have had anxiety does you know a lot of times because we have these catastrophic for
PTSD can be certainly or panic attack and never ending Loop up where we thought that really
can be wearing on you, always in the back of your mind.
I like the term strength in numbers there's something about support group about being with
people who know what it's like in there so yes we're safe, Someone understands. Suppose that
black American descendants of slavery that really spoke to me because as I got to know about
the different kinds of the moderators and people who joined those groups, they shared a lot of
the similar things about the anxiety of trying to explain over and over again for braces were for
whatever it was understood what you been thoughts are as a black person as an American
descendants of slavery. Very comforting to the point because I knew every Wednesday that
spoke to me, that spoke to the things I've been dealing with my life to reduce anxiety so I can
focus on other things in my life like my relationships and work. I want more resources to help
my anxiety significantly. As the coronavirus is kind of gone across the country and affected
difference day differently and even if New York was one of the hardest-hit they were in anxiety
and depression affect where Mississippi was number one with 50% now they're showing of
having anxiety and or depression when something Rises.
I'm going to say that there's already a high level of anxiety and depression in the population in
Mississippi and you know they did talk about economic resources but now we throw in a couple
more issues on my opinion and a tsunami you have any thoughts or things we can say to people
who are feeling is layers and layers and can you think of anything else we can actually say to
some of the groups that are feeling this whole all these in layers hitting them right now the
chickens coming home to roost.
What goes around, coming back around and so think about it if I am at same person and I feel
that money has not been met anyway and now we have this color coming through going to
happen number one why the hell would I do that to somebody who left in the first place why
would I trust the president and number two what's happening now is that the same people I want
to see now is a lot of white people now do the same kind of pinched in other words damn I was
just going down to Big Time hey buddy what's up?
I'm starting to see the picture of me and my family and well that sounds like the across the
railroad tracks call us again coming around comes around however, I think there is a similarity
on whites now on the past 300 years a little taste of a job little taste of kind of feeling a little taste
Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd where they switch and things could happen when you have
other person experience send a really kind of weird looking things.
I do wish for that change and believe Mother Nature is kind of putting her thumb on us right now
and say and listen up and this also might bring like you're saying bring all of us a little closer I
think we're going deeper in our understanding I think we got more I think a lot of us are kind of
experience having the time maybe I can see baby what how others I've treated even or that I have
had similar experiences are all the same similar experiences but we do have some big differences
at the same time that I have some white privilege as a white person as a privileges no fault of my
own but I have as a White Person period.
In equities as a person of color, as a white has build equity, blacks have been trying to survive.
This was a study of all races and if your income was under $20,000 take two steps back and it's
pure white males black Hispanic What's brother in the back that is the key was talking about
income in equity you know and a lot of others and it's a big class really a lot of people have just
been trying to survive and it's that same how it is not the right but to have an equal chance at
things when one's just building equity and then given you know and that 1% were many of the
others are just surviving got their money's worth.
No argument that black people have been in the same work and pennies for their labor so how
the hell do you expect to stay on the same level when your ability to read rights learn the
intricacies of the Green District in Tulsa Oklahoma business of blacks were burned down, you
never knew about the Oklahoma burn down you know Oklahoma is telling these things and I'm
talking about him we're not hearing that we're not allowed in a sense.
I would like to do is I would like to stop for now and I think I would like to continue this
conversation in part 2. I'm going to take a little break then we will actually have part 2 in my
next podcast but for this one we're just going to say I thank you and I'll kind of make a break
here and In podcast number 2 we are going to continue this conversation on being black in
America and racism and how exhausting it is to constantly worrying about how will hurt me or
my family. we will continue the our conversation but I will have it in our next podcast so for it in
our podcast next week thank you for listening please support our podcast by reading reviewing
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