Episode One of "A Lot to Learn": Discussing Racism with Mike Reid
Understanding that people have been shaped by their own human experience and that those experiences and opportunities may not be equal because of the colour of their skin is something that needs to be acknowledged. We must have discussions that help us learn and discover our own blind spots. Invite change, invite growth, and embrace being wrong. We must be willing to shift our personal opinions when presented with new information and hard conversations need to happen where diversity is celebrated.
The first guest joining us on “A Lot to Learn” is our friend, Mike Reid.
Mike is a Vancouver based entrepreneur and has previously worked with companies such as and Rogers. He is currently the Head of eCommerce at Cat Janiga Jewelry, the creator of All In Collective, and the founder of his own consulting business.
The inspiration for this series actually came from a conversation with Mike and the many vulnerable conversations we shared as the Black Lives Matter movement gained momentum. It lit a fire for our team and we decided to fully commit to listening, learning, and creating a place for diverse voices to be heard.
In this episode, Mike shares his many experiences with racism. From his childhood growing up in Toronto, to college and his early career, to eventually landing in Vancouver and building a family and business of his own. This conversation was eye-opening for us and allowed us to better understand the systemic issues that exist, and the challenges Mike has faced purely due to the colour of his skin. We learned a lot from this conversation and hope our Casca community will learn from this episode and will commit to taking action too.
Our goal is to always be learning and we are very open to feedback and new perspectives. If you feel we missed anything or want to share your insights with our community, feel free to leave a comment below or send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Topics of Conversation:
1:20 - Meet Mike Reid.
7:15 - What is appropriate Black? African American? How does Mike identify himself?
11:20 - All road trips aren’t as they appear. A road trip to California for Mike is very different than for Braden...
16:20 - You don’t have to be a bad person to be a racist/racially insensitive. Checking your own behavior. Is it overt or is it subtle?
22:45 - Due to COVID everyone was listening when George Floyd was murdered. How do we make this more than an interesting social media moment and move towards long-term change?
33:45 - Don’t compare yourself to a low bar of racism, how do we hold ourselves accountable, and be better.
40:45 - Stealing your child’s innocence as a black parent.
46:35 - How white people deal with police vs how Mike has been taught to deal with police.
54:45 - This moment will be a catalyst for change.
69:00 - Actionable takeaway for long-standing change. Be willing to change your mind when you are presented with new information despite your beliefs.
Some resources to learn more about how to take action: