My favorite part about the Internet is getting to know regular people. Regular people don’t get media training. We don’t know that we don’t have to repeat ourselves. We don’t speak from talking points to make soundbites. If we get something wrong, it’s accidental and not a manipulation ploy. Knowing that still, somehow, those are the most cringe parts of listening to myself on The Chopping Block at VisceralChange.org.
Visceral Change aims to move equity and inclusion from an individual resource to an organizational value. The founder, Sherard Robbins, asked me to come onto the show to talk about my personal experiences and how they lead me to promote equity and inclusion for readers and learners in general.
It’s intimidating to talk about yourself, to be vulnerable. And I didn’t expect how warmly people would react once my episode of The Chopping Block dropped. People want to support their community. I appreciate every social media validation, email of support and words of kindness from friends and colleagues as well as the people behind Visceral Change. But I did make mistakes.
False Facts and Half Truths
* I’m pretty sure my brother owned Rosie (the honkin’ Rambler American) up until my senior year, when it was rudely impounded. I may have messed this up in the timeline, but we will all agree to allow the error in the spirit of a good story. Please know that I have a fact checker IRL; my son keeps me on the straight and narrow in real time and in mixed company. Unfortunately, he was not with me during the interview.
* Bookmans’ four core values were Literacy, Anti-censorship, Animal Welfare and the Environment when I worked there. They have since revised those values, but the spirit is the same.
* Also, see my previous post on censorship for the court case around a child’s right to learn as determined by the U.S. legal system.
* No shade on my parents because I said I wasn’t their priority. Their priority was to get through the day, which they did. There were plenty of “I love you”s. These people were forced to live and raise a family in an environment that included flammable green shag carpeting.
* This quote from my daughter is 100% accurate and a hilarious unintentional burn. She literally puked and was sent home from work, so she didn’t get a chance to listen at that time.
Additional Links for Fact Checkers
A Legacy of Excellence – tusd1.org/legacy – A Legacy of Excellence provides scholarships to graduating African American seniors of Tucson Unified schools who have achieved academically, are active in their community, and aspire to go on to higher education. @TucsonLegacy on Twitter.
Worlds Of Words Center – wowlit.org – Worlds of Words: Center of Global Literacies and Literatures is committed to creating an international network of people who share the vision of bringing books and children together, thereby opening windows on the world. We encourage thoughtful dialogue around global literature so that children can reflect on their own cultural experiences and connect to the experiences of children across the globe. @WorldsOfWords on Twitter.
We Need Diverse Books
American Library Association
Cooperative Children’s Book Center Diversity Statistics
I appreciate anyone who makes it through this hour and a half interview, but I do recommend listening to it at speed and a half or 2x speed. Also, big thanks to Sherard and his team at Visceral Change.