Episode 1.03: Neutrality




In episode three, we contemplate the nature of neutrality. Is it even possible—or desirable—to be neutral as a host or facilitator? What are our obligations towards the people in the room?

Together, Tim Merry and Tuesday Ryan-Hart are THE OUTSIDE—systems change and equity facilitators who bring the fresh air necessary to organize movements, organizations, and collaborators forward for progress, surfacing new mindsets for greater participation and shared impact.

1.03 —— SHOW NOTES

  • Tim and Tuesday explore the presumption and delivery of neutrality as facilitators, and its connection to equity. Says Tim: “I will very specifically recommend to people to not take actions that increase the adversity between them. I will leverage my power every single day for something other than that.”

  • The more chaotic and uncertain things become in the world, the more we need to turn to each other. If we’re going to be useful to one another, we need to let go of control—but we also need structure in order to move forward. How do we balance the two?

  • On reimagining systems with equity at the centre: “Creating an arsenal that our grandchildren are going to be like ‘thank you’ for.” —Tim

  • On how we show up as facilitators, especially when our voice is among those amplified over others up by current systems: “Our first inclination is to just disavow the privilege and then just say ‘use it for good.’ But using your privilege for change doesn’t mean you accept the status quo… it’s much more complex and nuanced than that. Also, leveraging doesn’t look the same in every situation.” —Tuesday

  • On how collaborators can be in relationship with an awareness of neutrality and privilege, but carry on despite it: “(You and I) have a lack of fragility… an ability to go back and forth with one another without collapsing. There’s a lot in the lack of fragility.” —Tim

  • Tuesday mentions Nariyyah Waheed’s Salt: “We have all hurt someone tremendously, whether by intent or accident. We have all loved someone tremendously, whether by intent or accident. It is an intrinsic human trait, and a deep responsibility, I think, to be an organ and a blade. But, learning to forgive ourselves and others because we have not chosen wisely is what makes us most human. We make horrible mistakes. It’s how we learn. We breathe love. It’s how we learn. And it is inevitable.”

  • The song of the episode: I Got Cash by Brooklyn Funk Essentials

Subscribe to the podcast now—in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or anywhere else you find podcasts. New episodes will be available every second Tuesday. If you’d like to get in touch with us about something you heard on the show, reach us at podcast@findtheoutside.com.

Find the song we played in today’s show—and every song we’ve played in previous shows—on the playlist. Just search ‘Find the Outside’ on Spotify.


Duration: 40:06
Produced by: Mark Coffin @ Sound Good Studios
Theme music: Gary Blakemore