Part 2, Episode 1: ReCSistance

Kitchen table talk with Papaya Founders and Friends

Posted on November 11, 2022 · 92 min read


For our first episode we’re unpacking the concept of resistance, especially in computing and computing education. What is resistance? What is being resisted? How do we resist?

We encourage you to engage with the resources from Part 1 to become more familiar with the topic of resistance before engaging with the kitchen-table talk below. The resources below were curated by our kitchen-table talk guest speakers– among many others, these resources have helped inform their scholarship and their own lived resistance.


Listen from Papaya Project founders and friends: Natalie Araujo Melo, Dr. Francisco Castro, Dr. Earl W. Huff Jr, Dr. Gayithri Jayathirtha, Megumi Kivuva, Minji Kong, Dr. Amber Solomon, and Dr. Jennifer Tsan.


Our podcast is available below, on, Amazon Music, CastBox, and Spotify.

Read (Transcript)

Victoria: Hello, and welcome to the Recipes for Resistance Podcast, a multimodal podcast centering justice, joy, and healing. I’m your host Victoria. A little bit about me: I’m a proud Guatemalan born and raised in the west side of Chicago, who now resides in Wampanoag and Narragansett lands known as Rhode Island. I use they and she pronouns. And I’m currently a PhD student at Northwestern University.

Briana (Bri): And I’m your host Bri, an assistant professor of computer science and cognitive and learning sciences at Michigan Technological University, which resides on beautiful Anishinabek lands. I use she pronouns and my research mixes together computing education, user experience, and reimagining sociotechnical design.

Briana (Bri): So our podcast episodes are crafted around a kitchen table talk, where we informally discuss the topic of choice and share stories all while centering justice, joy, and healing. As a multimodal podcast, our episodes consist of three parts. You can learn more about the three parts of our episodes on our website:

Victoria: The short of it is, we post part one at the beginning of the month. Part one helps frame the conversation, which is posted mid month as part two.

Briana (Bri): Lastly, we post part three as a follow up and reflection. If you’d like to contribute to an episode’s follow up, please feel free to reach out to us! We’d love to feature art, poetry, think pieces and other forms of media inspired by the conversations from our podcast.

Briana (Bri): And joining us today in this kitchen table talk are our guests: members and founders of The Papaya Project, a group that is devoted to conversations about justice and centering joy and healing.

Briana (Bri): You’ll also be hearing a lot more from these same guests throughout the season because they’ll be helping us out as co-hosts.

Victoria: Now that we’re all done with the prep work and here with our amazing guests to dish up something special, let’s dive in and plate up some new perspectives on the intersection of computer science, justice, and academia that we’re sure will get your mind simmering.

Victoria: In this episode, we’ll be talking about resistance, which is the name of our podcast. Let’s jump in.

Amber: Hi, I’m Amber. I am a Black woman , an ATLian, or for people who aren’t familiar with Outkast, that’s a person from Atlanta. I do CS ed research and I also currently work for the US Army Futures Command.

Francisco: Hi, I’m Francisco Castro, I’m Filipino and an immigrant and my pronouns are he, him, or siya. I’m currently a Computing Innovation Research Fellow at New York University. And my research is on the human centered design of creative and educational technologies, spaces, and resources that serve to empower people to learn and use computing, AI, and STEM in culturally sustaining ways. And I work with educators, technologists, artists, and learners to engage critical issues and topics of equity, ethics, education, and social justice through creative production, technology design, and learning design.

Minji: Hi, my name is Minji Kong. My pronouns are she, her and I am a third year PhD student in Computer Science from the University of Delaware. My research focuses on how we could best assist K-8 teachers, in personalizing, their support for students just being introduced to computer science through different co-designed tools. The identity I bring to the table is that I am a proud first generation immigrant from South Korea.

Gayithri: Hi everybody this is Gayithri Jayathirtha. I identify myself with she / her / hers. I’m currently a post-doc fellow at University of Oregon, where I work with high school computing teachers to center justice while they teach computing in their classrooms. Thank you.

Jen: Hi everyone. I’m Jen. I go by she / her. Currently, my research is with K-8 students and teachers, looking at how to scaffold students and facilitate feedback giving, and, how to help teachers with professional development and learning computer science.

Megumi: Hi, I’m Megumi I use they / them pronouns. I am an incoming first year PhD student at the University of Washington in the Information School. And I broadly research justice centered CS pedagogy and best practices. And I am working a lot with Black youth and displaced youth.

Natalie: I am Natalie Araujo Melo. I go by she, her, and they / them pronouns. I currently am a rising, or I guess now a fourth year, PhD student at Northwestern studying computer science and learning sciences. My elevator pitch changes all the time. So I think right now I’m really interested in thinking about relationships and the ways in which we learn about and with and through relationships and how that informs the way we think about how we like perpetuate systems of power and how we can stop or like resist systems of power. So that’s, that’s just, jist of me.

Victoria: Yay, beautiful, thank you. Alright, so, as you all know, the podcast name is Recipes for Resistance. So one of the first things I’d like to ask y’all is what does resistance mean to you?

Natalie: I can start. For me resistance, it’s like a "no", it’s just a, "nah", I remember reading a book by Marquis Bey called Them Goon Rules and the way that they described resistance was just like, just like a "nah", like, I don’t know if people have heard that, like, that’s just, just like a "no" in formal words. It’s a "no", and I, I see it as like the way of pushing back against different kinds of things. The way I would like to see resistance is resistance to harm, but people can take up resistance in ways that aren’t always like for justice, which is interesting. And I have a lot of thoughts on stuff like that, but yeah, I’ll just start at that.

Megumi: Yeah, to add on to that, I think resistance for me is being bold and going against the dominant narrative of like, the status quo and just having that strength to, like Natalie said, say "NO!". And it’s like all in caps with the exclamation point in bold, like everything there to just not do what society expects you to do or has told you to do.

Gayithri: Yeah. I think I definitely like totally agree with both Natalie and Megumi’s, you know, what they shared about resistance. And for me, like just thinking about resistance also makes me constantly remind myself of like the status quo and how if you let it be, it’s gonna be its own machinery. So there needs to be resistance.

Gayithri: It’s for me, it’s a struggle to make space. And I also feel that it’s not just an individual resistance because when it’s an individual resisting, yes, that’s, that could be a starting point. But I think that it, it gets more forced with, people coming together. So for me, it also is a very communal thing.

Gayithri: When a group of people recognize that something’s not working for them. If things go status quo, if things just stay the way they are, and then it’s a collective force to do something about it. And I feel that to be resistance and, resistance to have voice heard, resistance to make space. Yeah. And at the end of it, I think it’s all tied to, making this world a just place. Yeah.

Briana (Bri): I love the way that you brought up the, the machine that sort of exists here, that this machine will just keep going without resistance because the term resistance in and of itself can also apply to, you know, physical systems and the way that we have forces that aren’t re resisting each other. And so it, it kind of imagines this resistance as its own machine or counter machine rather. And that really feeds into, I feel like the, the collective notion that you talked about there, that the more of us that assemble and the more of us that think about these concepts, that we are building our own counter machine or counter system in that physical force to, to push up against it.

Gayithri: Yeah, exactly. That’s why I think it’s not just one individual who can build like a similarly powerful thing to resist and that’s why it has to be a communal thing is what I feel. Yeah.

Francisco: Yeah. So building off of that, like that communal sense that you just mentioned, Gayithri, I think for me, resistance is also about recognizing how you can empower yourself and your communities.

Francisco: Not just to resist the status quo, but also to grow yourself and your communities, you know, you nurture your cultures, which are often what is being erased by the status quo. Right. And just create a space where people can thrive and live and create knowledge and support and uplift each other.

Gayithri: It’s almost feeling like empowerment is where you’re going.

Gayithri: Francisco. Yeah. I don’t wanna put words into your mouth.

Francisco: Oh yeah, absolutely.

Gayithri: Yeah.

Amber: I’ll also… cause I agree with everyone and I think like, I think sometimes when we talk about resistance, it just seems like this huge thing. But like, to be honest, my whole life is resistance, right? Like me being born a Black woman is resistance. Me just existing in life is resistance. I think there are just so many, like small things that we do each and every day that like is resistance. Like when we were talking, we had a lot of conversations before about like this process of whitening that we talk about, right? Like how, as like minoritized researchers, we’ve had to like adapt or basically change ourselves to fit into like these standards, right? Whether that’s the way we talk about things, whether that’s the way we write things or just in life, like how we dress, you know, like I’m putting on my white voice right now. Maybe the Black one will come out. That sounds horrible. But like, honestly that’s W. E. B. Du Bois, right? Double consciousness. Right? Like it, it, it happens. But like, even that, like, it, it, yeah, like it sucks to do, and it is like survival, but also that is kind of like an active resistance too, right? Because it’s allowing me to survive in these places, allowing me to exist in these spaces.

Briana (Bri): I love that. And I love this conversation that built out of all this, because it really speaks to one of the other questions we had in relation to this was what does it mean to resist? And it feels like we’re getting all of these threads of, you know, it means collective action. It means personal empowerment. It means personal existence. I don’t know if anyone wants to add to that in talking about what resistance means to them, but this concept of, you know, what does it mean to resist seems to be coming through in a lot of our discussion of what resistance means to us.

Victoria: Relatedly, like something that stood out to me was resistance as saying no, resistance as a denial of something, but also as whatever the opposite of denial is as like actually doing something. And so that was a point that, that stood out to me early on too.

Megumi: Also the idea that, I was not taught to resist growing up. I was taught to conform, especially being in a Black queer body, being an immigrant. Because just being me was a form of resistance and was counter to what society wanted me to be. I was taught to try and fit in as much as possible. So when I think about resistance. It’s a very active choice of unlearning those things that I was taught to do as a child.

Amber: Piggybacking off of that. One of my favorite, oh gosh, I love her so much. The Nap Ministries on Twitter. She’s about to release a book in October.

Amber: Rest as resistance. Right. It’s which is about like unlearning capitalism. It’s about unlearning, not just like productivity, but like even for Black people, how, like we always talk about, oh, it’s our ancestors wildest dreams to be doctors. And it’s like, well, was it, or was it for us to get a break? Right?

Amber: Like they were slaves to overworked themselves. And I bring that up, because, like, agreeing with Megumi, like, realizing that your entire existence is, is resistance is incredibly exhausting. Sometimes I just wanna live, you know, like sometimes I just wanna exist sometimes I don’t wanna have to do that. And part of my resistance, but also trying to unlearn resistance in a lot of ways is also allowing myself to be human and focusing on myself first, focusing on my humanness first, whatever that may mean, but purposely trying to not see that as an act of resistance, cause that politicizes myself, like allowing myself to just see me as the human that is allowed to rest in all of those.

Natalie: So something I’m hearing in this is, about how like resistance is, tied to asserting our needs. And our need to be, to feel seen, to exist. And so when I say "our" it’s oftentimes because of like dominant forces that don’t let us or, or tell us that we don’t have the right to, to nap, to exist, to rest, et cetera.

Natalie: I do wanna, maybe at some point bring up or I’ll just bring it up here and maybe at some point we could talk about it, but like, I don’t wanna fall into the trap of like romanticizing resistance. Cause just because you resist doesn’t mean you’re, like being totally loving, like you’re just kind of resistance is a push against and what are we pushing for? If that makes sense. So, yeah.

Briana (Bri): I think that’s such a really good way to phrase that, Natalie. And, and thank you for bringing it up. This idea about, you know, it is existing. It’s not necessarily romantic and, and pretty all the time. And, and you left on such a, a good hanging question there of what, what are we resisting? What, what exactly is resistance about? Like what, what are we doing here when we’re resisting? What does that, what does that mean for us? What are we resisting?

Gayithri: Like Megumi’s point, especially like really resonated with me as somebody who grew up in a different culture than what we know of here as the, the dominant culture. So like growing up, like, what are you, what you cannot wear, what you cannot do as a girl in a, in a, religious, not so religious, but religious family. I think kind of got me to really think about being agentic, like I want to be able to do what I want to do and take those decisions that people around me are doing. Like men around me are happily making those choices every minute, but why not me? And I think that it grew out of that and choice of dress that I wear. It starts from there, but then it goes much deeper. So I feel that I’m constantly resisting, a bit of everything that everybody said. Like, you know, the dominant, narratives around, us, the expectations that are laid upon us.

Gayithri: And I feel that it also trickles into how disciplinary fields like computer science also have had their own history has had their own its own history. And how some of these have gotten trickled into how we think of what is okay to be done in this field, who should do that work and, and how should that work look like? What is a legitimate work here? So it feels like they are there in so many different versions, across different spheres of life. And I feel that in this resistance, my hope is to actively engage with that and cause a change.

Victoria: In thinking about what are we resisting? And earlier on, there was mention of the status quo and the norm. And in putting those in conversation with all our varied backgrounds, right? We, we all grew up in, in very different households. Some folks didn’t grow up in the US, what are some of those norms and those status quos that we resist in our daily lives? And what are some of the ones that are ever present specifically in our field of computer science and computer science education?

Natalie: What I heard from that was like, what are things we resist in our field? So for example, I resist the idea that, technology is apolitical. Like we do things. We are people who have biases, who do things with the technologies we create and use et cetera. I also resist the individual nature of computer science, at least the way that we learn about it. It is a it’s very social. Like we are social human beings. We’re creating things for other human beings, Or, or other kinds of beings, even beyond humans. But it’s a tool that is social in nature because it’s not just used by one person it’s used by a lot of people.

Gayithri: Yeah, and I can just quickly add to that. It just reminded me of how I think across the different strands. I think personally for me, I resist the dehumanizing that we do in the field. For example, in the methodology, there is still so much resistance for qualitative work like n = 10. I was in a conference recently where there was a debate about an n = 10 study. Like really are we here? And thankfully there were a few others in the room who felt so, but there were many more still asking the same question. So that is like, you wanna see more of N and somehow you think that is, that is better study a better way to understand the world. And I think that also percolated to what exactly, Natalie was telling. We wanna, like, we, I think we have a tendency as a field to stay away from the human nature of what we do and try to abstract out. Just because we live in a world of abstractions, but that does not make us, I think, by moving away, you’re losing so much more that we, I think as a field need to recognize, and it’s high time just given the things that technologies around us are doing, causing so much harm and even amplifying, not just perpetuating what was there before, but amplifying, which is very, very problematic if we don’t look at it or if we don’t choose to look at it, it’s even worse. So I think that dehumanizing piece is something that I constantly grapple with and resist in how we think of our field, our discipline, the work we do and how we make sense of world and contribute back to it.

Amber: But just like, sorry, really quickly, the dehumanizing part, we also have to think about, I think dehumanizing is also in like the fact that we don’t go back to the people in the sense that like, when we talk about these apolitical technologies, it’s always the technology, well, like what about the people? Like let’s humanize the fact that there are people behind this who are absolutely just honestly the, probably the real issue here, but that’s a different conversation that people aren’t really quite ready to talk about– white supremacy and shit like that.

Briana (Bri): Yeah. I love, I love hearing this conversation and this building surrounding, you know, the, the lenses that we’re viewing the world in and that this resistance within the field is this, this pushback, this rejection, almost of the lenses that we’ve been told that we must use, that we shouldn’t be thinking about more than humans and the world around us.

Briana (Bri): That even when we’re thinking about humans, that we are dehumanizing them in some ways, because of the lens that we’ve chosen to view the world in that there’s "one right way" that’s, that’s what I’m hearing in this conversation. And I don’t know if anyone wants to add to, or modify, you know, the, the things that I heard out of that, but I, I loved how you all sort of built on each other with that approach and that, that concept.

Jen: Something I think about in terms of the dehumanizing aspect is as teachers, especially now, I know in the school district we’re working with the teachers only got one month break for the whole summer. And they were still asked to do PD and a lot of, a lot of other things. And I feel like as researchers, a lot of people think this, well, we still have funding the research must go on. We must still try and recruit, but to what ends? Like these teachers are so burnt out. And so how do we continue doing the work without asking more of the teachers is a question I think about a lot.

Briana (Bri): This framing of a question too, and a question of such importance, you know, in terms of thinking about how do we ask, you know, the teachers to be able to, how do we give them rest?

Briana (Bri): How do we, ask them to be doing less when they’ve been asked so much more. These questions are things that we’re putting out into the world as an act of resistance to, to sort of reimagine otherwise. And I think it sort of gets to some of the other questions that we were wondering about, which is what does resistance sound like? To, to Jen’s point, resistance sounds, I think like some of these questions, but I think there are other ways that it may sound or other questions that exist within that.

Briana (Bri): So for you all, what, what does resistance sound like at a personal level at working with others? You know, what, what are we saying or doing or hearing when, when we feel that resistance is happening?

Jen: I think sometimes resistance is silent. It requires a lot of reflecting to be able to think about areas where you need to improve yourself or your project needs to improve. And I think then acting on that, I feel like in academia, there’s not enough time for reflection. It’s go, go, go, submit another grant, publish another paper. And that’s just not sustainable.

Minji: I think of it as more of like this two tier system where going off of Jen, it starts out quite silently through lots of self reflection. And then with much more voices coming together as a whole, it gets a lot louder. And only if we are very vocal about our acts of resistance are people more, I mean, people end up being more aware of our stance and what we hope to eventually achieve in our own field.

Victoria: Minji you bring back this idea of collective and there being power in numbers. And I think that is potentially a great segue into kind of putting, connecting the dots for folks listening right now. Right? So this amazing group of people came together on their own as part of The Papaya Project. And so would you all care to tell our listeners, what is The Papaya Project? How did this collective come about?

Francisco: Oh boy, is that me? Well, I’m not the Papaya Project. We are the Papaya Project. I’m just gonna start with that. But it really started very informally where it just so happens that one day people were talking about like how, people about, were talking about like problems within CSED right. And people were kind of resonating.

Francisco: Resonating with those problems and kind of also sharing the kinds of issues and personal experiences that they’ve had within this space. And at some point, and they really have to go back to, I really have to go back to these old conversations on the slack space, where it all started. At some point, there was a discussion about like, Hey, let’s create a space where we all can sort of like workshop collectively our shared thoughts, our shared experiences and how we might move things forward within the CSED, at least within the CSED domain, because all of the, of the people involved, were working in the CS ed space and then there were eight.

Francisco: Right. And then there were eight people who like gathered together. That would be, myself, Jen, Minji, Gayithri, Amber, Natalie Earl and was that eight ?Yerika. Yeah. And Yerika, and. Kind of like, just, Hey, let’s start this workshop. We submitted that workshop and I believe that was like August of 2020, yes.

Francisco: August of 2020. And then that kind of like moved towards what we now know as the Papaya Project. And as for the name, we were kind of like trying to figure out, oh, what, what were we kind of like, how do we refer to this movement? Right. And I pitched in like, Hey, in the Filipino culture and everyone in this podcast is already, knows kind of like the history, but like.

Francisco: The Papaya P roject name came from, at least , the, the pitch that I brought to the group was that, Hey, in the Philippines, there’s this idea of the papaya, as this thing that you can use to whiten yourselves, to like kind of lighten your skin so that, you know, you’ll be more acceptable to the dominant narrative of like, oh, lighter or whiter is better.

Francisco: And that kind of resonated with that, with a theme of that workshop, where we were investigating, or like, looking into how we’ve had to align our identities often forcibly into dominant narratives of whiteness. Right. And how that’s like, kind of permeated into the work though, into the work that we’ve done and the work that we have to do in order to be recognized and accepted within the space.

Gayithri: And I think just to give a bit of a context there, Like 2020 reminds me of so many nightmares that we were all going through pandemic was new to us. We didn’t know what kind of a community support we would get while we are all staying home and trying to pretend like, oh, let’s keep going. Let’s keep working.

Gayithri: And at the same time, I remember like it was also the Trump era, where we saw a lot of policies roll out that were, that were constantly harming us. And I particularly remember as an immigrant international student, being faced with issues around my visa, my stay here, you know, there were some back and forths going on, universities were not being as helpful.

Gayithri: And we just, at that point, and of course not to forget, like all the Black murders in the country at that time. And so there was this mood to organize urgently, to do something about what we are noticing, what we are seeing and not to stay silent, but to do something about it. And I feel that I am like this, the story about like how it papaya come to be what it is today.

Gayithri: It kind of like those are the chills that I get in my body, like those days and how we were all seeking so much to have a community, to be able to speak about these. And I think, that is the time, at least personally, for me, I was like, yes, we need to jump into this and, you know, take this up and, do this as a group. Yeah.

Victoria: I mean, I remember my first encounter with papaya was at, was it SIGCSE or Tapia? Where was the conference? The workshop.

Amber: It was SIGSCE.

Victoria: It was SIGSCE. Yeah. And I remember, I was going through the list. I was already overwhelmed. I think it was the first conference that I actually successfully attended amidst the pandemic because everything else, it was just a sham.

Victoria: I mean, I said I was go, I would go. But I was teaching at the time. So of course I didn’t have time, but I remember seeing this workshop listed and immediately knowing that I had to make the time for it and just immediately falling in love with that space and feeling so safe and so welcome. And for the first time ever after being in CSED for as long as I have been, which is not that long, but still felt like a lifetime. For the first time, feeling hopeful about the direction where this could potentially be headed because I felt that there are people who care. There are people who get it. There are people who are willing to show up and talk about these issues and do something about it. And I don’t know if y’all realize how big this is and how meaningful it is to so many of us, but this, the fact that this started as just y’all coming together and is now so many people on a slack and always doing things and coming together and being super active is it really is truly amazing.

Briana (Bri): It absolutely is.

Amber: Cry. Sorry. I was just, that’s all I’m saying. You’re just gonna make us cry.

Briana (Bri): No, I just, I wanna add to what Victoria just said there really quick that ,it really is like everything that you all have done and made for this. Being able to have these conversations and have this community. I know always ends up filling my cup up. There are days where I’m not sure, you know, how to be able to continue to think about this work, to take care and having a community that reminds me of what care can look like and what moving forward can look like.

Briana (Bri): And those supports and that love. That this is such a group filled with love. That is something that really sustains me. So I wanna say my thank you to you all also.

Amber: I remember when we first started, we went like when we first met. Right. I think that started out that CS-Ed. What was it? CS-Ed grad group slack or something.

Amber: But when we first met the first few meetings were us just like, literally talking about like things that were pissing us off about CS. And the people, no just kidding. But like, I think it just like was really organic and I don’t think we were really, like, it turned out to this space. It was called fuck shit up. Yeah, that was exactly it, Jenn wrote that in the chat. I didn’t say that part.

Amber: But I, I think when we first started, we were, I don’t know if we were necessarily like looking to like create anything big, but I think like Francis and Gayithri were saying, like, we were just looking for like some community, you know, like I think we’re all just feeling kind of lonely . Like, damn like another thing is going on, you know, like it was just a lot.

Amber: And I think, because like we all came into this space, like immediately loving each other and in such like a very, just kind of healing sort of way. I think the group just, just started embracing that. Like, I don’t think we were really just, everything just always felt super organic to like the kind of people that we are and like the kind of like love that we were trying to, like, it just, it just grew organically.

Francisco: So just adding, adding to that. I think that’s what I personally find as beautiful with the Papaya Project is because you know how a lot in a lot of stuff that comes out within, the academic setting is about like collaborating towards some product that can be published or produced for, for the viewing purpose of other people within the academy or whatever.

Francisco: The Papaya Project to me was something that came out, came out from a space of love because people were genuinely concerned about things that people had experienced, the violence, people had experienced harm and people were looking for a space and support and community with each other. And well, what used to be fuck shit up is now the Papaya Project.

Francisco: I think that space was just that, it became a community where people acknowledged each other. Not because people. Or publishing papers left and right. Which, you know, people were already doing anyway, but like it’s because people recognize that people had something to contribute. People were recognized that people were capable of love and that this space was just something where people can grow.

Francisco: People can love each other and people can acknowledge that there’s a human aspect to everything that we do. It’s not just, you know, for the fame and glory or whatever, whatever worldly desires we want, but it’s also this place of building community of building a space where people can be safe with each other and just acknowledged that people exist.

Francisco: And there are, while it is currently difficult to exist, that people can be supportive in helping each other thrive.

Amber: I think like, even just for me, like, I really just needed this, you know, maybe gaslight is the wrong word, but like coming from like my own PhD programs, I was a PhD student at the time.

Amber: Like the way I would think about problems, the kind of research I wanted to do in CS-Ed. Like I could not for the life of me find anything even remotely like it. And like people would have this conversation and I’ll think to myself that don’t make no fucking sense. Like, what are you talking about?

Amber: But then I’m sorry, I’m gonna stop cursing. But then like, everyone else was having the same conversation. Everyone else was thinking the exact same way. And I was just thinking like, well, maybe it’s just me. Like, maybe there’s just like, maybe I’m just thinking about these problems wrong.

Amber: And so like to just like be alone in that thought is horrifying and it’s a horrible experience. And so like for this group, when we started talking, it just felt so validating and it just felt like. Like I was finally existing, I guess. And like, my thoughts were important and I wasn’t like wrong to be in my program.

Amber: So like I’m very focused on right / wrong, but it just, it just felt like really good to just be in a community that like I had been looking for so long with people who I not only love like crazy, but who are just like so thoughtful and like so smart. I’ve just never been in a space where I’ve learned so much from other people y’all are amazing.

Amber: And I just, it’s just been crazy.

Briana (Bri): I wanna acknowledge too how in, in the chat messages here, this conversation of not knowing how big it would grow or sustain, and I think that’s something so admirable. About this as well. Gayithri brought up how, you know, there’s this idea that, you know, it started off because it was needed, but that "what’s next?".

Briana (Bri): It was needed now. And you know, there wasn’t that question of how much it would be needed or valid, or, you know, this continued sustaining into the future. And I think that the way that this group has sustained itself through loving each other through the ways that we act and care as a community, I think there’s something beautiful and important there as well that this wasn’t just a one off lightning in a bottle.

Briana (Bri): During COVID to give everybody, you know, a sanctuary that it became something bigger and it’s something that’s been able to sustain itself. And that in and of itself shows the importance, the necessity, the value, the validity. I don’t know. I just, I wanted to call that out specifically from the chat messages we have going here that, that sustainability of this group is also, you know, we talk about sustainability in so many different ways and it’s wonderful to see it with this group and how it’s grown.

Minji: I hope it sustains going forward, like long enough. Like for me, when our group first gathered together, I was a PhD student to be, and to have started the grad program with this supportive and amazing of a community. It definitely gave me a very good head start, I think, in the program in comparison to what others may have experienced.

Minji: So for, I think future incoming computing ed PhD students to have access to such a supportive environment would be amazing. I, I think I would love for all of us to continue providing that space for everyone.

Megumi: Yeah. I want echo what Minji said, because I’m an incoming PhD student and to have this community of people doing awesome research and also a diverse group of people that I can go to and not just talk about research, but then also talk about how hard research is, and, All of the other things that aren’t just, okay, what methods am I gonna use?

Megumi: But talk about how we can make these communities better, because we are the ones who, when we graduate, we’re going to become professors or be in the field. And so it also gives a lot of hope for what CSED is going to look like too, and looks like now, so that when I do go to conferences, I can remind myself that the work that I want to be done is being done by like my peers and, and just to have this community too.

Megumi: I remember seeing Gayithri at a conference at ICER, and I just got so excited because it was just like, oh my gosh, I know somebody that’s not in my lab. And someone else that I can like back channel with and talk about different things with.

Megumi: And so just knowing that there are familiar faces and having this space to even network with people who are in the same position as you, as PhD students and early career professionals too, which was really awesome.

Gayithri: And just to add to that, I think the funny thing was now like reflecting on meeting Megumi at that conference, like this like, oh, papaya, papaya. I was just so instantaneous. Like we just hit off like talking about some, oh, this is what I’m interested in like, I’m trying to look at this. I’m like, yeah, I get that. Like, you know, we, we immediately had that conversation. We actually didn’t need like any kind of a formal introduction so I think that was like the most fun part. And that hadn’t happened to me before Papaya Project, which I think is, it’s just such a homey feeling, to have this kind of a community.

Jen: Yeah, it’s still amazing to me, how I think I have not met most of you in person. I met Francisco before this ever happened. We met years and years ago, and then I was lucky to be able to meet Minji and Gayithri in person, but only very briefly. And then we keep wanting to meet up, but we’re all in very different places in the world and or the country. And so it’s still here. And so many other things.

Briana (Bri): We know that the papayas are a group that’s devoted to resistance. We know that resistance takes many forms, personal, just being, being a part of a group, being a part of countering a machine that it can be silent, that it can be loud. We talked a lot about these forms of resistance and what it sounds like, but I’m curious about why the folks that are here feel that these acts of resistance are so important and so critical.

Natalie: Can I start by bringing that question back to you two? When you first thought of this podcast, you know, what were you thinking? And, and I think some of us were helping, helping y’all with creating this podcast. I would love to hear what we were thinking when we originally kind of started this all up. If that’s okay to ask.

Briana (Bri): I think that’s more than okay to ask. I, I love that you tossed the ball back there. You know, I feel a little maybe like I’m not the best person to be mentioning, like the catharsis behind the podcast, cuz it kind of came in late. So I might bat that ball over to Victoria a little bit, but I know for me it was an exciting project because I think that it allows us to amplify the space that papaya and the concepts that the Papaya Project stands for, occupy. You know, we have this community that we’ve created, that you all created and invited us all into that really allows people to feel love and accountability, and to grow and have these amazing researchers to be involved with.

Briana (Bri): But not everyone knows about this community or is hearing these voices and recognizing themselves and the things that matter to them in this community, cuz they don’t know about it. So I think being able to amplify the voices and these ideas and these conversations in the form of a podcast, to me that was such a beautiful and kind of loud act of resistance that would allow other people to hear that voice and go, that sounds like me. That sounds like the things that matter to me and see that there are people out here that they’re not alone. Just like what the Papaya Project has been for all of us being involved in it.

Victoria: Yeah, for like so many things that we’ve done, the idea evolved so much. I think the original idea for a podcast didn’t really have this emphasis.

Victoria: I think if I remember correctly, the original idea came out from the study group and thinking about like, how do we engage, continue to engage with material almost like in productive ways. Like we were having conversations about things that we were reading and specifically about the, my goodness critical,

Natalie: like critical consciousness for computing.

Victoria: Yeah.

Natalie: By, Amy co and other folks

Victoria: mm-hmm yes.

Natalie: And that was the, to clarify, that was, we started like a reading group to begin within like the, our papaya like community. So not just , like open to everyone, and. We wanted to read this new book, that just came out called, I believe it was like critical consciousness or critically consciousness computing.

Natalie: Mm-hmm mm-hmm mm-hmm go ahead.

Victoria: Yeah. Yeah. Thank you. I don’t know why I was blanking on the name. Yeah, so we, we started reading this book and we would meet and, you know, discuss what we read and how we felt about it. And, you know, some, some things that we found as shortcomings and flaws and, you know, we’ll, we’ll have a whole nother episode to unpack some of those things.

Victoria: And there was this conversation of like, how do we, how do we take this stuff, these conversations that are happening and package them up in a way that is productive in a sense that other folks can engage with our ideas about these ideas, if that makes sense. And so that was the original idea. And then we kinda, I don’t know, the idea kind of dropped off or we, you know, pushed it, pushed it for later.

Victoria: And then we brought it back up. At some point unrelated, it wasn’t even part of the book club anymore. It was just like, Hey, we had this idea for a podcast, like what are some topics that we would want to talk about in a podcast? And we have the, we had this jam board of ideas and everyone contributed to it.

Victoria: There were so many ideas. We still, I mean, we still have this spreadsheet. I think there are like more ideas. There are definitely more ideas than we would ever have space to fit. And as, as we were working on like what we wanted this podcast to be, it just kept evolving and it became this beautiful, I don’t wanna call it a safe space because it’s so much more than that, but it just came, became this beautiful entity of its own that really just, I don’t know, it just like took a life of its own and it was very much a space designed by us and people like us. And it was a group effort. And I know like I for sure would not have come up with it on my own and without the support of everyone who contributed to it and contributed to the ideas for the individual episodes and to the crafting of the purpose and the why.

Victoria: So, yeah, it was, it was absolutely a group effort and a lot of the folks who, who helped be brain buddies in that are, are on here. So super, super grateful for that.

Briana (Bri): I think I’ll add that when I’m thinking back to the question prompt of like, why is resistance important? We had so much discussion too, about methodologies that are underrepresented; individuals that are being dehumanized; the unsustainability of how we’re approaching our land, our waters and our animal kin and plant kin. Thinking about all of those things and thinking about why is this resistance so important? Like it just is, we need to preserve those things. Or the very, not just preserve.

Briana (Bri): We need to allow them to flourish. Cuz preserve indicates that they’re static. You know, it makes this sense that we’re curating things. It’s organic. And I think we need to allow to flourish these ideas and these perspectives, because I think there becomes so much focus, nourish.

Briana (Bri): Yes, nourish, there becomes so much focus on these ideas of like diversity in fields or diversity in campuses or wherever being that they can take a photo and that individuals look different, but looking different doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone’s diverse perspectives. The ways that they approach problems, their cultural knowledge, their ways of knowing and being are being kept.

Briana (Bri): And I think this resistance is so important because to build a better world for ourselves, for others, for, every being that we inhabit with and live on and live with, it is so important that we think about the ways that we nourish these diverse and different perspectives that we don’t just stifle them by saying there’s one, right way to think there’s one right way to do things. There are so many different approaches and this idea of innovation, gets battered around. But the idea of progress can’t really happen unless everyone is willing to commit to thinking about what to do differently. So I think if we’re gonna make a better world, if we’re gonna make a better field of computer science and computer science education, we need to really commit to what that means. And that means resisting the notion that there’s just one right approach, one right way. There are so many different bodies of knowledge and so many different approaches that could bring new value, new ideas and new progress for us.

Earl: And to touch on that even further resistance is necessity to push back. So long have we been too comfortable, by accepting a standard placed by the dominant and as the world is starting to become more sensitive and aware of the more diverse perspectives that are flourishing. We need to take a look back at some of these standards and change them. They, these standards follow just one way that has been set in place for decades, and that’s not sustainable for the future, not at all. Many different intersections call for a change in how we view, everything. Everything that we look at in terms of society and its impact with technology, education, et cetera, like all that needs to be reevaluated. And we need to become more comfortable with these uncomfortable conversations and convince others, who’ve set the standards to be uncomfortable as well. They need to be held accountable for the rigidity of these standards. And we need to convince everyone that we need to consider the voices of a much larger range of society. If not, then we are potentially losing out on innovation in and of itself. We can’t just have one group decide what is innovation.

Earl: We need to have everyone’s voices involved for that to be realized. Cause what is innovation? Really? Innovation really is acceptance by a large range of society of people. But often that’s determined by just one particular group who accepts that, but that can no longer happen. We need to now look at, including, being more inclusive of who also decides, what we accept instead of keeping those voices silenced and saying they don’t matter, we do. No, everyone’s voices matter. And it’s time that we push back on that notion that there’s the standard of who gets to say, what’s accepted. Everyone now has to participate in this. If we, as society are to become greater and to progress even further for that.

Francisco: So talking about inequitable and exclusive standards and dominant narratives. So just this morning, I read about a scholar who was told that a language that was not English was not considered a proper scholarly language. And there’s a ton of similar sentiments or conditioning like that, where cultures, practices, knowledge and identities that don’t align with dominant narratives are often just seen and regarded as not valuable and not contributing to building and moving scholarship forward.

Francisco: And to me, that’s a form of dehumanization. And in response to that situation, there are many people who were collectively acknowledging and calling out how elitist, classist, and racist, whoever it was that even said that, but really it’s also the prejudice racism, hate, misogyny, homophobia, and classism that’s been baked into all of the larger systems that we have to navigate, and it is these large systems that continue to perpetuate these kinds of hateful ideologies. And when I think about resisting as a community, it’s this work of standing up, not only on our own feet, but alongside others that needs to be done, right. We talk about recognizing, and this act of recognition needs to be about recognizing the voices of people when they bring up experiences of violence and harm within and around these systems of inequity, as well as, reflecting on how we all yield some form of power and how we might use that power to fight against systems of harm.

Francisco: We also talk about embracing and building relationships within our communities. And that I think should include an active form of solidarity and allyship that is driven by action towards breaking down barriers and systems of harm and nurturing diversity in equity, in communities that is also driven by minoritized voices rather than some form of saviorism.

Francisco: And all of this work of resistance has to also be about healing and restoration because the work of tearing down harmful systems, speaking up against hate and prejudice, protecting against violence all while also building up and protecting and uplifting communities. It is a lot of physical, emotional, and mental labor. And those cultures of burnout and overwork and 24/7 hustle mentality are things we should also be resisting against, by healing as a community so that we can continue to do meaningful work.

Natalie: And everything Francisco said is pretty much, almost verbatim of like the gist of what we’re getting at in this letter that we’re sending out to the community, to the computing community. So yes everything Francisco’s saying is what we’re trying to get at. And it makes me think of one of a dear professor friend I have, Shirin Vossoughi, has brought up this, she’s brought up this idea to me in class before that I just have never gotten out of my head ever since. And that it’s like essentially that there are implicit dreams in our critiques and there are implicit critiques in our dreams. And so resistance, when we hear resistance, it’s about a lot about, pushing back and fighting against and within these words, you hear today, like you also hear it’s also for something. It’s for love, it’s for care, it’s for healing and restoring. And that’s where we start our letter. We start our letter for what is this resistance for?

Natalie: Because ultimately we do wanna see a community that cares for one another, that deeply respects and advocates. For one another. And we wanna be a part of that. We wanna practice what we preach.

Victoria: Natalie, you mentioned this letter and it’s to me, I see it as a very explicit act of resistance. And another thing that it very much is, is an act of love. And I think that that’s something that this group has taught me: that resistance is love, and that love is resistance. And as someone who is a very angry human being, those of you who know me at a more personal level, know I’m all about burn it all down to the ground and forget about consequences later, which isn’t always the move. Sometimes it is the first step , but you need to worry about the later. And this group has really taught me to think about, Natalie especially, has really taught me to think about what is it that we dream of? And what is it that we want to see? And so I would love it if folks could share a little bit about the letter and what this letter is, what it means, where it came from and what the goal or vision for it and the community at large is.

Natalie: I’ll start us off, but please folks help me out. Help me out community . So I think originally and feel free to correct me. At least this is where my heart was coming from. Originally, it came from a place of hurt and being tired of seeing people with really strong privileges, get away with a lot and get away with a lot of harm in computer science and not hold themselves accountable for that harm.

Natalie: So it start, it started with a conversation that we had together. I don’t know if we were talking, like at some point we were talking about it where Dr. Nicki Washington came out with a Medium article addressing this microaggressions game, and I’m not gonna get into it because harm does not deserve our time unless we’re trying well, I guess it deserves our time when we’re trying to heal from it.

Natalie: But I’m healed. Like I’m, kinda good. It’s the person who, who enacted this, that needs to heal a little bit. So essentially that article was talking about , was just laying it clear, like this is why this is hurtful. And even after that came out, there was no accountability. There was no, I don’t know if this is the right word retribution and it was hurtful that hurt even more because then the person just said oh, sorry, but, and that’s it like, just sorry, but y’all liked it.

Natalie: That’s essentially what it sounded like. So it was like, did we though, did we like it though? Like that we’re people are telling you this hurts. And so let’s talk about this. Let’s like dive into this because people need to stop. People need to like stop and actually mean their sorrys and actually do something about their sorrys, you know what I’m saying? Cause it continues to happen. We’ve seen it happen. Like we’ve literally witnessed it happen on multiple occasions even after that letter. Even after that. And then yes, exactly. Amber, I don’t know if you want Amber, you wanna speak out about it? No more harm. Stop harming Black women. Stop it. Stop it! I’m serious. It’s not okay at all.

Natalie: I think Black women in our field have tried to hold us the most accountable or definitely have been part of the group holding us the most accountable. And we need to hear that. We need to honor that cuz that takes work, telling someone how they’ve hurt you, that’s emotional work. And that that’s also an opportunity. that’s a portal someone opened for you to listen to, and to learn from. They didn’t have to tell you this. So we just wanted to amplify that, we wanted to amplify so that we can support folks and it won’t have to be like the same people sharing their pain over and over and over again, because that’s, again, it’s a lot of emotional labor when you share your pain, it’s in hopes that someone’s going to listen. And if no one’s listening, what are we gonna do? Like we, we’re still hurting so we’re still gonna be at like, it’s people screaming into the void at this point. This letter is into the void, but that’s how it started anyways. But as, as everything with our group, it’s grown and reshaped itself into being a lot of different kinds of things.

Natalie: And I will let my fellow folks take it from there.

Briana (Bri): I just wanna say that I love the way that, you discuss this need for us to be talking about this harm, but also that the talking about harm should not be on the shoulders of just one individual and all too often, we also expect individuals to air and share their harm and then do nothing for them.

Briana (Bri): I keep thinking about how we’ve talked so much about the Papaya Project as a group that has a lot of love in it love for each other love for this community, that we do things so much out of love. And I’m also thinking a lot about how love is accountability. And accountability is an act of love because it feels as though there’s a lot of fear among people to hold someone accountable sometimes because it feels like you are attacking that person or that you don’t care about them, that you wanna see them "canceled".

Briana (Bri): When, again, echoing back to the words that your friend had shared with you, there’s a dream in that critique. We’re telling them about the harm that they did because we want them to understand our pain. And we have a critique in that dream of them understanding our pain. And we hope that they’ll change. We love them as a peer, as a member of the community, we want to see a community that uplifts. And I just keep thinking about, accountability is an act of love and how it feels as though this letter is coming from a place of asking for accountability, because we’re asking for a space that has more space for love.

Natalie: Okay. I’m gonna do it. I’m gonna put y’all on the spot because I know y’all like y’all were so brilliant and we were crafting this letter all together. It was just so wonderful. And it was actually like healing in itself when, as we were crafting this. I’m just gonna say, I’m gonna, I’m gonna cold call if that’s okay, but feel free. Just let me know if it’s not okay. But Amber, I remember during this crafting, I’m pretty sure you’re the one who, who was really, helping us think about, Hey, like who are we writing this letter for? And does it just have to be against these folks with privilege? What if this was a letter to build community. And I just thought that was so beautiful. I was wondering if you wanted to talk about it.

Amber: Thanks. I don’t, I dunno if there’s more to say than that than yes. It was the point. My whole healing process has really been about learning to validate myself and not needing anyone else’s validation to feel like I’m good enough. And sometimes when you’re trying to like shout at people, when you’re trying to hold people accountable, when you’re trying to form these communities, at some point I know I’m enough and I don’t necessarily need you. And whether or not you’re willing to change whether or not you’re willing to hold yourself accountable. I guess that’s not my problem anymore. And I deserve to be in spaces where I feel like people are going to support me where I don’t have to jump through hoops where I don’t have to do a bunch of stuff just for you to see who I am as a person, just for you to see me as valuable.

Amber: So that’s where the whole part about focusing on forming community, because there are a lot of people who wanna be in community. Like we found each other, right. There are other people that want that too. And I, and so sometimes it’s just for yourself, it’s just not always like healthy to always just be focused on trying to fit in trying to feel like you need to belong to a space, find a space where you do belong and, fuck the haters. And move on. Sorry, I’m gonna stop cussing. And then move on from that.

Earl: I will say for the letter’s intent, from my perspective is a general wake up call to the entire community. I say that because it’s a call to everyone. Not just for the people that harm, but those that have been harmed. And it’s for a couple of things, one, to let the people who have done harm know that it’s time to take an account of your actions and who they have harmed and how they have harmed and what you can do to work towards changing this behavior that continues to harm people.

Earl: For those that have been harmed, it’s more so to, gather around and really support one another. To stand in solidarity of being hurt and making space for each other, to lend a voice of your hurt, to begin that stage of healing. And then also for those that did not harm anyone, but also were not harmed to also join in this effort too, cuz this is a collaborative effort to make that space. Whatever power you wield, use it to help people heal, to love one another, to hold others accountable, and to collectively work towards a grand understanding of how we can lift each other up.

Earl: There’s so much potential, so much talent in this whole space. We should not be tearing each other down intentionally or not, but working for building opportunities for those whose voices are not being heard. For those who have the ideas for those who have, this talent, but have been continuously shunned have been hurts, have been betrayed and really start focusing on, make sure that they’re healed, they’re protected. But also have the ability to, rise in the space. And it’s problematic that people of power are not realizing this yet. There are some that are raising their voices, using their power and privilege to help, but then there are many others that continue to ignore it.

Earl: We’re hoping that this, letter is a way for them to notice, Hey, we see what’s going on, but it’s time for you to see it for yourself. You need now to, take responsibility, accept this responsibility, not double down and try to explain, why you do what you do and why it’s not harming people when you have the masses saying otherwise. Just the half-hearted apologies, oh, I didn’t know it would harm people, but, and that but is aggravating because anything you say before that, "but" tends to be invalidated because you’re getting defensive, you’re becoming more passive aggressive. It’s time to stop that. It’s time to realize the harm you’re doing and work with the community to build a better community for us all.

Earl: We’re not trying to cancel people, as Briana has mentioned, nothing comes down just trying to destroy someone’s reputation, or throw ‘em out, cast them aside. That’s not the way to go and that’s not what we’re aiming for. And I imagine it’s going to be a group of people who are going to read this letter and be like, they’re going on a witch hunt. They’re trying to attack certain people. There, there will be. Some people are going to take offense.

Earl: Those are the ones that refuse to view their own flaws. But this letter is to tell, let us all, examine ourselves. And let us work together to bring healing love, and also to build up a more diverse and inclusive community.

Amber: And like real quick, I just wanna get to the point on doubling down, right?

Amber: There are gonna be people like Earl said who are gonna be like, well [mocking mumble] all that kind of stuff. I think a lot about when people say, like nobody benefits from these systems of oppression, like nobody benefits from white supremacy, not even white people or nobody benefits from patriarchy, not even like men, but there are people who are choosing to actively participate in those systems, and perpetuate them.

Amber: But that’s a little later part, but I guess the point is that the amount of people who are dominant, right? "Dominant" have power, the amount of them who are literally struggling and going through it, who are on like literal, antidepressants, right? They don’t feel like they have a community. They don’t feel like they have, like, they are literally going through it. Like , these systems are literally killing them. And it’s not an exaggeration to say that, nor is it metaphorical. Like you are getting nothing out of wanting this system to continue to exist because it’s literally killing you.

Amber: But again, the latter part of that is, but they are still actively choosing to participate in this system, which means that they’re actively choosing to perpetuate harm. Right? And I think those, and that’s something that I think we have to start teasing apart is how we are both quote, unquote, benefiting from these systems slash also getting killed by them slash also perpetuating a lot of the oppressions from them.

Natalie: And just to build on that. I think a lot of people might not see themselves as committing harm or something like that, but being just not doing anything, there’s so many different ways to, as we’ve learned today, to resist. And so to not resist, if, unless you are someone who is just really just trying to survive, in which case, like your survival is your resistance, please use your privilege and do something with it you know, like please, because not doing anything is also in action that you are taking to continue to perpetuate harm. I don’t know what the word is like implicitly or just going with the flow with harm saying like you’re kind of saying it’s okay. And it’s not.

Victoria: On that note of being passive and inaction and either because not recognizing the harm or because too diplomatic to call out the harm or whatever reason that causes this inaction. What do you hope people do after reading this letter?

Earl: I would say reflection for one, I think first and foremost, reflect on your own actions, reflect on your own experiences. Think about who may I have done harm to intentionally or unintentionally. And for those that were harmed, think about, How was I harmed? What are my experiences like? And are there others out there that may have experienced this same harm? How can I comfort them or help them to heal along with me? How can I, how can we work towards our own healings? And for those neither those categories to think about what can I do to support this process, to support this development of space for this healing and this love, but most importantly reflection. I think that’s very important that everyone who reads a letter takes the time to self-examine themselves and take it account of what they have done during this time or what they have not done and what can be done in the future to build a more inclusive, loving, and healing community.

Briana (Bri): I love what you said, Earl, and I love that you asked this question, Victoria, cuz I feel like it hits at a lot of notes of a question that I was trying to percolate in my mind that there are so many folks that may look at something like this letter or maybe even this podcast, or maybe even in general, the idea of a group like the papayas and suggest that such things are unprofessional, whatever that means or that, this idea of accountability and love has no place in certain disciplines. And that these notions are choices that have been made. So to Earl’s point about reflecting, I would really like people to reflect also on what worlds they want, what communities they want us to have in these spaces and why. Really deeply interrogating why. If there’s this belief that such conduct or conversations are unprofessional, why, what is being harmed? What is being gained, what is being lost? Being honest in those conversations of who and what are you protecting and why are you protecting it? What’s being embodied in those values? What are these choices that are being made?

Briana (Bri): So, this notion of a community with love and accountability, for some people, that’s going to be something that at first I think is resisted in their minds , that the internalized ideas, the beliefs that they have about what the world should look like, you know, there’s not room for that. And they might not get there maybe reading this letter, but I would love for them to reflect on what worlds and communities they do want, what values they think they, that exist in those. And to really be honest in reflecting on why they feel that way and what they think is embodied by that.

Amber: I just wanna throw in, and then I’m gonna stop talking, I agree with everything Earl and Briana just said. Those were beautiful points. I think for me, sometimes a lot of these problems just can feel so like far removed, right? When we talk about even the conversation, like resistance, people are doing this all the time, right?

Amber: These conversations on harmful research practices and like all of that stuff, that’s happening, professionalism, all of that stuff that’s happening very much so affects people. And it’s it, this isn’t some abstract thing. These are very grounded. These are really affecting people’s livelihoods.

Amber: And I think that’s one thing that I want people to get from reading this letter is like these actions that you are doing very much, so have like physical, tangible results on people. Like it’s not some theoretical harmful, right? Like it’s actually harming people. And I need you to understand, I need you to understand that lived experience. I actually need you to really grasp your actions have absolute consequences to them.

Natalie: And the mic has been dropped. That’s all I’m gonna say.

Victoria: It truly has, I don’t know, like there, there is no topping , there’s no topping that it is absolutely a beautiful, beautiful thinking thought to leave for our listeners. I don’t know if that makes sense? A thought to leave our listeners with, and of course the letter which we will be sharing, so that folks can read it. Which has an option for you to sign as well as, an option to add your own commitment action, right? What are you gonna do? What is going to be your act of resistance?

Victoria: So thank you so much to all of you for this beautiful conversation for your time, for your thoughts, for your, all the emotional labor that you’ve put in, not just into this conversation, but into creating papaya into all the, all that went into the letter, into all that you’ve done. Thank you all so very much for all that you do, and for sharing that with us today.

Briana (Bri): Yes. Thank you so, so much, everyone. This has been amazing. Thank you for your thoughts. I hope that our listeners enjoy them, ponder them, reflect on them and grow alongside all of us with them.

Briana (Bri): And that’s a wrap on some amazing food for thought. We hope you’ll marinate on these ideas and that you’ve got more than a few morsels to take with you.

Victoria: Thank you so much for joining us, and we’ll see you next time! Remember to follow us on Twitter @recipes4resist and sign up for episode updates on our website: Bye everyone.

Briana (Bri): Bye!

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