Monday, May 4, 2015

Chadwick William:"Against The Grain" interviewed by Paula R

 Chad left home as an adult who couldn't tolerate his family's racist behaviors and how they affected him. I wondered what it was like to be conscious of others racism and to be so put off by your own family that one would rather leave everything that they know and go against the grain to set out on their own. What makes a person sever contact with their family completely? Even if they can’t stand racism, it’s one thing to only see your family on holidays and send an occasional online message; it’s another to completely disown them.
 List of Video Segments
1 -  Background
2 - Growing Up
3 - A Unique Perspective On Racism
4 - Affects Of Racism
5 - Can We End Racism
6 - Community Action Networks and Recommended Reading
7 - Family 
8 - Advice 


A quick introduction followed by a brief history of Chad's background as a teacher in Oakland and the east bay. Teaching just about everything just about everywhere throughout the district and the city. His ethnicity is also briefly discussed in this clip.

Growing up

Chad talks about being born in Long Beach then moving to the south and the mid-west and how growing up in the south, mid-west, life on a military base and all over L.A. helped shape his unique perspective on life, race, and human behavior, and how it molded him into the person he would become later in life. He talks about first becoming aware of racism and becoming aware of some harsh realities at a very young age. He discusses tragic events and his reaction and his families treatment of the issues of racism and violence in the south.

A unique perspective on racism

Chad acknowledges the affects of racism on his life and his views. How he avoids racist folks to the extent of being alienated from what he feels is the majority of white people and eventually disowning his family as a result of their racism. He then discusses his own personal views on racism as it pertains to white privilege, what that means for him and other white people. Chad discusses why white privilege is systemic racism and why that's a bad thing. He talks about being young and "criming while white" growing up and not really realizing those advantages as much growing up. Then we tackle the topic of "reverse racism" and how it doesn't really exist. 

Affects of Racism

 In this clip Chad talks about his role as an ally and activist in his youth, his belief in social justice, understanding of how racism has affected him and how people need to be aware of it's presence in their lives.  He talks about how the system of racism doesn't target him as a white male and that as an ally you are trying to help others. He talks about being a teacher and teaching his students to think critically and question things that they're told. Giving assignments that create a direct link to the past and learning about the sacrifice it takes for people of color to level the playing field. He discusses his role as an educator and what it means to him. He talks about pushing for an increased awareness of race and inclusion for people of color in education and social justice events.

Can we end racism?

This clip talks about how we can work together to lesson racism in our lifetime. The ideals and practical helpful tactics that we can all work together to support and call for in our communities. Topics like teaching critical thinking, restorative justice as a community concept and it's use in schools he has worked in, as well as citizen review boards and how and where they are in place now

Community Action Networks and Some Recommended Reading

Continuing our talk about ending racism we discuss community action networks and the influence of books like "Rules For Radicals" and how they have shaped political minds and our nation without most people ever having read them. The rest of the video breaks down into recommended reading for those trying to make a difference.


This clip deals with Chad's family and how they affected him  with their behaviors, views and choices. He talks about their racism and why he chose to leave them behind to start a life without them. The clip ends with him talking about what he would want his family to know about how he feels and why he doesn't talk to them any more.


Advice for those dealing with racism in their family. How to talk about racism and deal with its presence in the home environment. He talks about challenging those concepts as respectfully as you can, and making sure your opinions are known. He talks about having realistic expectations and knowing that you can't change everyone's mind.

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