"I took the word 'cripple' and I've been swinging it around sort of like a bull in a china shop."
Timothy Iverson talks about his early life with Cerebral Palsy that required many surgeries and now means he walks with crutches. He talks about the process of going to a special school and then being "mainstreamed" in a way that was meant to be positive but didn't necessarily have positive results. He also talks about the way people treat folks with physical disabilities, how he's come to own hurtful labels and why his tenacity isn't a choice so much as a requirement.
Plus, Timmy talks about being a gay man and dealing with the idea that people with physical disabilities don't have sex. He shares openly about the realities of the similarities he sees in how gay people are treated and how people with physical disabilities are treated.
Timothy Iverson is an IT expert, a frequent participant in the Renaissance Festival, a huge part of CONvergence, a graphic designer and a huge nerd. He's also very funny. You can connect with Timmy on Twitter @iversonimage
“Often times an assumption of most people is that I am white.”
Taj Ruler talks about being bi-racial but mostly being perceived as white. She talks about the differences between time in her mother's house where Sri Lankan culture was prominent and in her father's house SpaghettiOs where more common and explains the feeling of not quite fitting in either space. Taj talks about her own, ongoing quest to understand her identity. And she explains the challenges of being a person of color who doesn't fit into the black/white dichotomy that often dominates conversations of race.
Taj Ruler is an actor, improviser, voice over artist, comedy writer and teacher in the Twin Cities. She has performed at Pillsbury House Theatre, Mixed Blood Theatre, The Playwrights’ Center, HUGE and the Brave New Workshop. Taj studied improvisation at the Groundlings in Los Angeles and Second City in Chicago.
“I think that spending time with only people exactly like you is sad and boring.”
On this episode, Carin Mrotz talks about growing up with social justice through the lens of teacher parents who engaged with the union. She talks about what American’s think of when we think of the American Jewish community and how that isn’t necessarily representative of the diversity of Jewish experiences and voices. Can unpacks how whiteness hurts literally everyone, talks about the relationship between Judaism and resistance, goes deep on Christian hegemony and tries to explain why Anti-Semitism never goes away and how it’s used to separate people.
Carin Mrotz is the Executive Director of Jewish Community Action. She has worked on campaigns for immigrant and workers’ rights and played a central role in organizing the Jewish community in support for marriage equality in Minnesota in 2012. Carin has worked as a trainer, curriculum designer, fundraiser, college instructor and organizer. She’s one of co-hosts of the political podcast Wrong About Everything. She grew up in South Florida but has lived in Minnesota for the past two decades.
Find Carin on twitter @mrotzie
Check out the Wrong About Everything podcast
For further reading:
Toward the Next Jewish Rebellion by Yotam Marom – Read I it on Medium HERE
“A Brief History of Everything” by Ken Wilber
“How Jews Became White Folks and What That Says About Race in America” by Karen Brodkin