Fulbright Forward - A Diversity Podcast

Black Lives Matter in the Asia Pacific - Guled Mire

May 19, 2021 FulbrightD&I Episode 14
Fulbright Forward - A Diversity Podcast
Black Lives Matter in the Asia Pacific - Guled Mire
Show Notes Transcript

CW // This podcast contains discussion of violence, gun violence

The Black Lives Matter movement, while initiated in response to the state of racial relations in the United States, has reverberated in societies around the world. With the growing awareness of the global relevance of the movement, the call to address the historical roots and realities of  contemporary violence and discrimination has also been taken up around  Asia and the Pacific. This has started to facilitate difficult but necessary conversations about race and systemic forms of discrimination, and underscored the need for building solidarity between communities who have been marginalized on the basis of their identities in order to combat racism. This episode features Guled Mire, a Black Muslim activist and Fulbright Scholar from Aotearoa New Zealand. Guled is young leader and community advocate who is passionate about advancing and encouraging the social well-being and inclusion of New Zealand’s ethnic and former refugee communities. In our conversation, Guled shares his experiences of growing up Black in New Zealand and his role as an advocate for New Zealand’s Muslim community.  As an organizer of the Black Lives Matter movement in the Pacific, he reflects on the challenges and potentials of addressing racial issues in the context of the region, and how his identity has shaped not only his activism but also his experiences as a Fulbright Scholar studying in the US.

You can follow Guled's work on his Twitter account.

Further reading:

Why I spoke up about racism after March 15th, and why others should too. Guled Mire, The Spinoff, August 31st 2020.

Black Lives Matter.com: Herstory.

George Floyd Death: Pacific Peoples in NZ Raise Their Voice After Black Lives Matter Protest, New Zealand Herald, June 4th 2020.

Supporting Black Lives Matter In Asia. Nithin Coca, Medium.com: Asia Uncovered, August 18th, 2020.

Kelli Swazey:  0:06 
Welcome back to Fulbright Forward, a Diversity Podcast. I'm Kelli Swazey, the Diversity and Inclusion Liaison for Fulbright East Asia and the Pacific.The Black Lives Matter movement, although initiated in response to the state of racial relations in the United States, has reverberated in societies around the world.

Founded in 2013 by Alicia Garza, Patrice Cullors and Opal Tometi in response to the acquittal of the individual responsible for 17 year-old Trayvon Martin's death, the movement is now a global point of reference for organizing to expose and dismantle systems that perpetuate the oppression of Black individuals and communities worldwide.In the words of the movements founders, Black Lives Matter "is an ideological and political intervention in a world where black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise. It is an affirmation of Black folks' humanity, contributions to society and resilience in the face of deadly oppression."

The circulation of a video documenting the murder of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota on May 25 2020, was a catalyst for international recognition of the aims of Black Lives Matter. People worldwide began to connect with the momentum of the movement to take direct action, organizing to address violence and discrimination towards Black individuals and communities in their own societies.Activists and communities in these countries framed their understanding of the BLM movement in ways specific to their social and national contexts.

On this episode of Fulbright forward, we'll hear from Guled Mire, a Black Muslim activist and Fulbright Scholar from Aotearoa New Zealand. Guled is a young leader and community advocate who is passionate about advancing and encouraging the social well being and inclusion of New Zealand's ethnic and former refugee communities. He's also the founder and CEO of Third Culture Minds, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the mental health of young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds in Aotearoa.

I caught up with Guled in Ithaca, New York, where he's currently studying for a graduate degree in Public Policy at Cornell. We talked about his experiences of growing up Black in New Zealand, his role as an advocate for New Zealand's Muslim community and as an organizer of the Black Lives Matter movement there, as well as how his identity has shaped not only his activism, but also his experiences as a Fulbright Scholar studying in the US.

 Kelli Swazey:
Hi, Guled. How are you? 

Guled Mire:  3:19 
Kia Ora, it's a pleasure to be here.

Kelli Swazey:  3:22 
It's great to have you and I want to say, Ramadan Mubarak, it's the first day of the holy month of Ramadan, and the first day of fasting. So I hope that you are going to have a beautiful Ramadan month, this year in the United States where you're currently studying at Cornell.

Guled Mire:  3:38 
That's correct. Thank you. It is it is indeed the first day of Ramadan. So Ramadan Mubarak to yourself and also to our listeners.

Kelli Swazey:  3:45 

So your Muslim identity and your identity as someone who was part of an immigrant family that came to New Zealand is a big part of your activism and scholarship. So I was wondering if you could tell us a little bit about your background and how you came to be an activist in New Zealand?

Guled Mire:  4:02 
Yeah, I think that's a really good question. So, um, my, my background, I was born in Somalia, in the 1990s. So I was literally born at the height of the Civil War. My family who were initially involved in, I suppose, the rebel movement, who were involved in the overthrow of the government. So I suppose you can say, activism is something that has been extended to me by by blood and family relations, I suppose in that sense, but um, yeah, so our family fled to Kenya when I was about two years old as refugees. We spent some time at a refugee camp, one of the largest refugee camp still active until this day, Kakuma refugee camp. And after, you know, spending some time there, we found ourselves in capital Nairobi. And we were quite lucky enough to have been offered the country resettlement in Aotearoa New Zealand when I was age six. So we arrived, they told us that we were going to New Zealand, which was part of Australia. That's literally what the officials in Kenya had told us. So, here we were thinking, okay, it was a completely new country which had just been created for us. And, and also happened to be part of Australia. So we came to , and we came to New Zealand, and they told us is definitely not part of Australia, that's for sure. Yeah, you know, I grew up in a place called Hamilton. I, you know, went to school over there pretty much did primary school, intermediate, and high school. I dropped out of school at about 16 years old, umm there's a couple of factors behind that. I never really went to school, my teachers had told me that university wasn't for people like me, I would never amount to anything. So I pretty much was written off at a young age. And I never really, I guess, I began to internalize those things, and I never really believed in it. But um, you know, the activism that I'm involved in now stretches across the different identities that I hold as a Muslim, you know, a Black person, a person from refugee background, and so forth. So, you know, from such a young age, I've experienced discrimination. You know, that has been a key feature of my life growing up in Aotearoa. So, a lot of my advocacy work is kind of dedicated towards, I guess, you know, helping create a much more just welcoming, humane society. And that is, you know, traverses through all the different forms of identities. That, that, I hold.

Kelli Swazey:  7:03 
So those early experiences with education were really formational for you, in the sense of, of internalizing these ideas that, you know, going on to for education wasn't for you. And this was part of your experience growing up and Aotearoa. I know that you became an activist in some ways, or became a representative that was more public facing after the shooting at the Christchurch Mosque in 2019. So that probably was was a formative experience for you as well, because you suddenly were in the spotlight representing your community and other communities, I would assume. Can you tell us a little bit about that experience?

Guled Mire:  7:42 
Yeah, that's a really good question. So you know, I, what I do know is that ever since I was young, I've always wanted to be in a position where I was contributing back to society helping to make a difference of some sort. So that's kind of definitely led me to the work that I've been doing across those different areas. But I think, you know, my advocacy work probably came to prominence after the March 15 tragedy that happened in Christchurch, where 51 members of my Muslim community, were, were massacred in a place of worship, following you know, white supremacist terrorists who decided to shoot up two mosques. You know, I found myself in a place where I had to, I guess, speak on the national stage, or national TV in less than, you know, 24 hours with the incident unfolding to, I guess, provide the perspectives of my community or those who have been impacted by the tragedy. And, and that's really where I think a lot of my activism kind of came to the national forum, but also, internationally as well. And, and, and, you know, in those days, it was it was it was, it was, it was a lot to take on, but I think the bit that got me involved in all of that was at the time, I just was really frustrated in hearing people just sugarcoat it, you know, not really say, like, how we really feel, feeling like they had to cater their language to others, you know, to, I guess, hide the true perspectives in which they were feeling. So I think, for me, I was kind of spurred as a result of that feeling like there was a perspective missing from the conversation, which kind of made me jump at the opportunity when I was asked to speak on national TV about the situation. So yeah, in many ways, that's how my activism kinda has come to ah prominence, I think, in many ways. You know, the media never really got to know us before an incident like that. They never really get to know our community. So I always accidentally found myself becoming a voice and a face. And that really comes down to the very fact that you know, our media and public institutions never really understood or even took the time to even get to know our communities? So, yeah,

Kelli Swazey:  10:06 
Yeah, I your point about feeling like things were sugar coated and that you didn't have a voice, or that there were certain narratives that weren't being circulated or that that people felt they couldn't say out loud, I think it's so important to talk about because this is also in many ways, I think the impetus behind the the Black Lives Matter movement in the United States, the sense that people have not been able to talk about the visceralness of the experiences that they're having, and really the way that racism affects every aspect oftheir lives.

Guled Mire:  10:36 
Yeah, no, I think you're absolutely right. No, you're definitely on point is that, you know, even after that, and in the months that followed, the changes definitely brought an awareness around the country, that racism, on the very extreme end of things, will definitely have you, you know, get you killed or massacred in your place of worship. I think that became a reality that could definitely occur in New Zealand for many people. I think for many, including some in my community, the fact that such a thing could occur was definitely not something that even contemplated or thought about in New Zealand, I mean, so I think it drove that message home. But I think you know, what people never really understood, or realize in which we were kind of, I guess, compelled to raise a bit more awareness about is that actually, when racism isn't getting us massacred on the very extreme end of things, it's, it's slowly killing us anyways, you know, so things like mental health, you know, the implications that racism has on our everyday lives. It has a health and well being implication that can have long term effects. And you know, that in itself results in death.

Kelli Swazey:  10:37 
Absolutely. And this is something that we've been talking about in our Fulbright series Unmasking Inequalities, talking about the way that this pandemic has sort of, I think, exposed in a way that racism and discrimination and these kinds of issues about diversity, equity and inclusion have such an impact on people's health. And then inequitable, you know, and differential effect on people's health, depending on what community they belong to. I'm curious to hear where you first encountered the sort of idea of Black Lives Matter? Where did you first hear about the movement? And how did it sort of play out that you got involved in Black Lives Matter in New Zealand?

Guled Mire:  12:31 
Yeah, you know, that's a really good question. I think, you know, Black Lives Matter is obviously something to me, I've heard of the movement in America and American context. And, you know, with all the steps that I guess it's obviously the movement itself is something that started in America. And I think we all look to that, to obviously see where that movement was going. And I think that movement itself is definitely become global, because we know from evidence that, you know, the Black experiences is global. It's not just an experience that necessarily is refined to the United States. You know, despite the movement starting from there, and Black people being murdered on the streets that have far higher rate than anybody anywhere else. Still, the issue of you know, racial discrimination, police brutality, over policing, all of these things are still issues that a number of Black communities within settler, you know, colonial nations find themselves. I think, you know, for me, I looked at that movement, a lot growing up, because, you know, in New Zealand, it's like, so first New Zealand, the first place, I became cognizant that I was Black. Before that, I didn't even realize I was Black or different, you know, because nobody signaled that my Blackness ever, you know, until I actually set foot on New Zealand, so, I become cognizant of my Blackness at such a young age. You know, Blackness was always a negative thing growing up, it always had a negative connotation. So I tried to distance myself from it as much as I could, only because of those negative connotations attached to it, you know, but at the same time, you know, I've never, and I've said this many, on many occasions, like I've never felt so visible, growing up in New Zealand because of my Blackness, but at the same time, I've never felt so invisible about my Blackness because, you know, Black migration in itself is a relatively new phenomenon to New Zealand. So, before the 1990s, there really wasn't any Black people in Aotearoa, you know, there's still an unofficial rule if we see another Black person in New Zealand, we nod our head, you know, to wave at them, even if we don't know each other even if we never met or never connected and I think that comes down to the shared experience, this idea that, you know, what we're seeing is a similar struggle. So I guess we're always wanting to be seen, or just, you know, our experiences valued. And I think we've always looked to Black American culture in one way or another in terms of the social justice movement, or even in terms of things like, you know, pop culture and identity and stuff like that, that's always had a significant influence on us. And, and, you know, for me, I'd always been aware about the Black Lives Matter movement, but obviously, with the events of last year, following the murder of George Floyd in Minnesota, that was the last straw, I think, was the last straw for a lot of us, but um, that video was, was very hard, hard to watch. And when we realized that we needed to do something, and we needed to act, so initially, we didn't know how to go about that. And we were in the middle of a pandemic. And I'd been in Wellington, you know, it wasn't located in Auckland, which is our biggest city, which is where the largest Black population lives. So they were able to mobilize quickly, while we were still in somewhat of a lockdown in that first initial phase. And, you know, seeing my community respond in such significant numbers was, it was just it was, it was really inspiring. And, and, and I think, a couple of weeks later, for us, it was an opportunity to be able to do something in the capital, which is what we had done. And I'm really proud that we had 20,000 people turn up, probably one of the largest protests that had happened in Wellington over the last decade. So that in itself was something to be immensely proud of, for me personally, but um, that's really how my involvement came around in terms of being connected to the Black Lives Matter situation and whatnot. And I, you know, I think being in that process, or organizing at that level was probably one of the most stressful things I've been involved in.

Kelli Swazey:  17:14 
How was it stressful for you? Just the, you know, the organizing part of it, or the response?

Guled Mire:  17:22 
The organizing bit, but also, I think, how do you bring the rest of the country to mobilize on such an issue like that, when we ourselves as a country, have not had nuanced conversations about Blackness? Or what it means to be Black in Aotearoa, alongside Indigenous perspectives, and Pacific perspectives? And how do you bring all of these in? And how do you bring all of these sometimes conflicting perspectives and, and realize that all of our struggles, are rooted with one another? You know, there's a lot of ignorance and a lot of camps and a lot of, you know, spaces. So I felt like I was navigating that with my own Black community, but at the same time, you know, so people being like, oh, but this is a Black Lives Matter thing. Like, why do we need a Maori or Pacific perspective like this, you know, this, this our time, we've been invisible for such a long ... and then, you know, trying to, like, I guess, educate Maori and Pacific perspectives on actually, why this is important to include Black people. You know, and, and, and especially when, when a movement like this actually was started by Black people, you know, genuinely and how do you not hijack the movement and ensure you uphold its integrity? So there was there was, there was a lot of that. So, you know, we chose I chose to ignore it, like in terms of some of because I look, it's not my fault, we've never had those discussions. So my focus was on, we just need to come together and send a strong message out. But at some point in time, we do need to come together and actually have these nuanced discussions. So that's, that, for me is why it was it was hard. I mean, the logistics side of it was one thing, but I felt really well supported in terms of the team that I had, and was able to trust them to deliver the work that I expected of them to deliver. But it was just more around navigating all of these complexities that were just there on the horizon that had not been tackled.

Kelli Swazey:  19:29 
I think this is what we're seeing around the Asia Pacific. As you said, the Black Lives Matter movement has gone global to some degree. And there's been this sort of call for racial justice and the recognition of systemic racism worldwide. But in the Asia Pacific, different nations have had different ways of of engaging with Black Lives Matter and different approaches. So sometimes it's addressing colorism or colonialism or discrimination, you know, in a post colonial sense. And there also have been these difficult conversations about the existence of racism in the Asia Pacific. So for instance, here in Indonesia, you'll hear people say often Oh, well, there's no racism in Indonesia, you know. And then you talk to someone from West Papua who says, well, I experienced racism every day in Indonesia as as a Black person living in Indonesia, as an Indonesian citizen who is marginalized. So I think that this movement in the Asia Pacific has brought up a lot of these difficult conversations around different kinds of identities. And as you say, how can those identities connect and find solidarity for the issues that people are all suffering in these these communities? And yet, at the same time, you know, keep that seed of recognition for this is about what what Black people experienced around the world, that global aspect of it as well. It is complicated, and they are really difficult, and I think very emotional conversations for people, things that oftentimes in Asia don't get spoken about openly in public.

Guled Mire:  20:54 
Yeah, absolutely. And also, you know, how do we even talk about anti-blackness that comes from other oppressed groups? You know, so things that are really deeply, deeply uncomfortable discussions that we had not unpacked. You know, you know, for me, yes, I've experienced a heck of a lot of discrimination and racism. Heck yeah it's been from ignorant white people, but it's also being from Indigenous people. And it's also being from, you know, Pacific peoples. And I think a lot, that's the way in which racism works and operates is that, you know, it gets us becoming racist to one another, essentially, right. So, um, those were, you know, issues that had not been addressed. So all of a sudden, we're just going to go out there and be like, yeah, we're one, you know, so, um, I, I, I must admit, I was kind of eating me up a bit, because I just found myself on multiple occasions, trying to explain to people, this isn't some kind of minority oppression Olympics, you know, this is about us coming together, about us having our collective voice. But understanding that there are some tensions that we all need to work down and sit down on and discuss and actually find a way forward around that, because without it, we're not going to get the progress that we all would like to see, for us to witness so that that was hard, you know, I think I'm grateful for, right, you know, those basic basic principles which guided our decision and the way we navigated that, firstly, we can talk about, you know, racism towards black people and, you know, in New Zealand without necessarily addressing the various forms of racism that exists towards Indigenous people whose land we live on, you know, so, for us, that was a no brainer. For us. It was like, okay, that's definitely that aspect has to be involved in this, you know, movement. You know, even though they might not necessarily consider them to be Black, you know, Maori people don't consider themselves to be Black. Pacific people don't consider themselves to be Black, you know, but there's that shared understanding or around, you know, a shared sense of oppress oppression, right. So, we decided just to focus in on that, not to start worrying about the semantics around, okay, you're not Black, but you know, identify as Black and stuff like them. And we recognize that that's a broader set of conversations that we need to have. And, you know, it speaks to the root causes of so many other issues and divisions that exist within society. You know, often because Indigenous groups are not consulted, even in policy development. So when we talk about things like refugee resettlement, like we're going to increase refugee numbers, you often find a bit of backlash from some of these groups being like, oh, but how can we resettle some of these people for not looking after our own, and, and I think that, you know, partly it goes down to not engaging or including them in that process, bringing them along. It doesn't have to be an either or, right, and recognizing that, but um, that for us was a way of kind of understanding how to how to go about it was that by coming at it from a point of working around our, I guess, shared sense of oppression, it created a sense of unity, which we could all come together around.  But um, you know, since then we've been having dialogue and conversations about okay, how to enhance relationships between Black people and Maori people when all other oppressed groups in in Aotearoa New Zealand so we don't have to find ourselves in responding to a tragedy and just kind of being like, okay, we need to just ignore and put aside all of the semantics so we can, you know, focus on mobilizing, which is what matters now. But um, Yeah, we recognize the issues that that it sparked for us. And that's something that we've, discussions that we've been having in the background and working with other communities to be able to, I guess, build those bridges

Kelli Swazey:  25:12 
And your point that you make about, you know, this, these shared oppressions, and then the way in which those are played against each other systemically, in order to drive wedges between communities, I think is so essential at this moment. And you know, we're seeing the same thing in the United States as well, right? We're having this these issues of anti-Asian discrimination and the stop Asian Hate Movement. And again, there is this tension between, you know, Black Americans and Asian Americans, and you have a lot of Asian American scholars saying, and this is something that's been engineered to, to drive a wedge in communities and to continue this legacy of discrimination and racism. And so it's so amazing to hear you talk about these discussions and the kind of cooperation and collaboration that we're building between communities in Aotearoa New Zealand, and how important that might be for the future of the region, if this becomes a model for other places as well.

Guled Mire:  26:06 
Oh, I mean, it's, it's, it's long overdue, you know, I feel like it's, you know, for example, even when we were resettled into New Zealand, nobody ever really thought, okay, we're going to put these communities into like low socio economic backgrounds, how do we like build relationship between these two communities, so there isn't, they're not starting from, I don't know, cultural misunderstandings. I mean, there were incidents growing up, you know, I just remember all the fights and things that would happen, and it's just like, it's nobody even thought about that. Do you know, so I feel like, it's, it's, it's a gap that has been left for us that we have no choice to be able to, to, to pick up on it. Because, and again, it doesn't surprise me that nobody ever thought about it, because it was never in the interest. Right. It was always in the interest for us to be kinda, you know, at each other, and, you know, whatever, being racist each other and stuff like that. Because it kept us distracted and kept us focused on on each other, as opposed to the meaningful things that matters and realizing that actually, our unity is our strength. So it's long overdue.

Kelli Swazey:  27:19 
And you are now at Cornell University on a Fulbright scholarship, studying public policy. Yeah, is really motivated you to do exactly what you're saying is that, you know, people from your community, and from other communities that have been historically marginalized have to have a voice in creating public policy and being part of how the nation is shaped in a policy and sort of legal sort of sense. I'm curious what your experience has been like at Cornell, coming from New Zealand in that context, now studying public policy, and I think you'd mentioned critical race studies, in the US at this moment when the US is having such a reckoning about their own history of racism and discrimination.

Guled Mire:  28:02 
Yeah, yeah. You know, it's, it's, it's a really interesting time to be in America. You know, I just, I have to remind myself on so many occasions that I'm Black in America, I'm not Black in New Zealand anymore. Like, I always have to remind myself that because that extra level of my mom called me just today, actually, and she says she  had heard about the shooting that had happened, she came to check up on me asked me how I was I said, "mom, that happened in Midwest, it's so far away. And she said, I don't care, you're still in that same crazy country, you know, so, you know, it's, and it just made me think, wow, like, can you imagine being a parent, like a Black parent who has to like, raise a child here until like, I guess, I don't know what conversations they must have with their child. That's how my mother is talking to me all the way from New Zealand after just one incident. And, and in many ways, it's kind of real, because I've never, as a Black man in New Zealand have had to, like, I don't know, during my evening strolls or something, take off my hoodie, you know, because I felt like, that was asking to be shot. Do you know, like, the thought of that even having to go through your head? To me, this would never happen in New Zealand, but I have to force myself to think in these ways. So um, it's, it's really scary. And in many ways, it really really is. It's, it's, it's, it's terrifying. You know, you never know if that could happen to you, you know, in some ways, I'm like, I'm so glad I don't drive, you know, because, but then again, it's like actually, that doesn't mean to say I'm still fully immune from it, you know, becoming potentially a victim of something like that, God forbid. But um, it's, it's scary in multiple ways. And I think it just kind of goes to show that, yeah, it can happen to anybody really. But I think also the other thing the other thing about just being Black in America right now is I feel visible. You know, I talked about being invisible in New Zealand. But I'm, I'm allowed to be Black as ridiculous and as crazy as it sounds. And that I feel like it's something that New Zealand is so backwards in, you know, I just just even just interacting with other Black people, like, it's just, it's so refreshing. It really is. And, you know, I can never obviously claim that African American Experience, never. But it's just, there's just something about just having your Blackness acknowledged. But then it's just refreshing about being in this part of the States. So I guess, yeah, it's, it's a dark perspective is something dark initially, but it's, you know, for me, anyways, there's a bit of an upside, there's a bit of a plus side to it. And, and, and I don't know, if that feeling of having my Blackness, you know, acknowledged is something that I feel like will still be there, by the time I return to New Zealand, to be honest with you.

Kelli Swazey:  31:09 
Yeah, I think that being seen is really powerful. And that feeling of being seen as what what many people are seeking to have that feeling, at the same time as the kind of anxiety that you're experiencing must be pretty wild, as you're, you know, there on a Fulbright, you know, just as a scholar and studying. And you're also wrestling with all of these other issues that are related to what you're studying, but also just related to who you are as a person, and the context that you're in. So I think I would like to ask you as our final question, given what you've experienced, do you have any advice or anything to say to other Fulbrighters? Who, you know, come maybe from New Zealand, from the Black community like you or other Fulbrighters who are struggling with these issues of identity?

Guled Mire:  31:55 
I think that's a really good question. I mean, you know, I think for me, I never really had any other Black Fulbrighters that I go to be like, okay, tell me about your experience. How do you even prepare yourself mentally to move to a place like America while  being Black? You know, that isn't I never really had any, anybody I could go to around some of that, some of that stuff. And that advice. I mean, I felt well supported in other ways. But um, I think, you know, the process in itself has kind of shown me that it's, it's, it's obviously an excellent experience to take up and that you know, if anybody's listening to this and is really interested in that Fulbright experience, I'm, I definitely would take you, I will encourage you to go for it to pursue it wherever you are, to seek more information from it. Just even being on this journey and receiving a Fulbright I've had, so many other young people from my community come up to me and tell me, okay, they now realize theres such an opportunities within reach, that this is something that they too, can do and can go for, with, you know, to me indicates that it was made to them as though that it was something that was out of sight, you know, was not within, within their limits, which has been a similar experience for me in terms of the education system. You know, I think just to reach out to others who may even remotely have a similar experience. So if you don't know, a Black person, maybe even talking to an Indigenous person helps, you know, asking them about their perspective and how that was like, I think I think all of those go a long way. But also, if you're Black, and you're listening to this, and you want to go for a Fulbright, and you know, you have received one and you want some advice around what it's like to move to the States around that reach out to me, you know, I'm happy to have a discussion, you can find me anywhere on social media, on Twitter anywhere, you know, even sure details can be provided, you know, with this podcast, but I think talking to others is probably the best way to go about it. And I think what I'm learning now is definitely things that will continue to go on to inform a lot of my work, both professionally and personally. And I'm excited for the next year and the months to come as well.

Kelli Swazey:  34:14 
Well, thanks Guled. I want to thank you for all the work that you're doing and your bravery and your willingness to talk about all these personal things with us today.

Guled Mire:  34:21 
See you soon, eh, thank you so much.