The Joy Revolution & Marc Cordon present
The Golden Mic Podcast
Ep. 60 We, The Gloriously Unique Outliers
As I spoke with Dr. Nadal, I kept scribbling the “normal” curve. In math, you know that line that starts to rise, peaks, and then slopes down. As Kevin spoke about disrupting societal norms, I kept redrawing the line to understand the concept. I flipped the normal curve on its head. The equation now was a U-shape. It appeared as the people who existed in the Western narrative's historical margins would become the new standard. And in turn, the historically dominant privileged groups would become the deviation.
But that wasn’t what the author of Queering Law & Order and Filipino American Psychology, Second Edition, was talking about as he fluidly and proudly blurred the lines that distinguished his life as a comedian, professor, author, openly gay, Filipino-American and more.
The normal curve vanished.
It brought me back to a scene fifteen years ago in a small doctoral cohort and not sharing the news that my Fil-Am band's new album release literally crashed our band’s website. It wasn't hard to do back then. But during our breaks, I’d call my Filipino-American buddies in sheer elation only to return to the class and sit quietly during the small discussion. And in recalling my own story, it reappeared: the normal curve.
Without density or pretense, Kevin talks about his newest book Queering Law & Order, stories of things that were deemed as criminal, morality-based, or binary. He flows into how forensic psychology pathology-based medical model intersects with criminal justice, often putting the letter of the law over logic. And like running water, he seamlessly turns into his new newest book, Filipino-American Psychology, Second Edition. It's previous iteration took the pressure off so many of us tokenized who were called on to explain, Filipino stuff we couldn't figure out ourselves!
And in a hilarious and poignant closing piece, Kevin talks off the cuff. And it is there the idea of being in an “either/or” world disintegrated. An ampersand appeared. In being in the moment with this fellow human, who has experienced his own set of ups, downs, and all-arounds, no-one person can be a standard. So we're all gloriously unique deviations. It’s not a perfect one, but it’s one that I choose to exist in and look forward to evolving with. It’s a place where I cease my drawing and overthinking for a second and look for the invisible tapestry that separates, made visible, toppling in joy.
These are books that belong on library shelves. Or picked up here:
Dr. Kevin Leo Yabut Nadal is a Professor of Psychology at both John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Graduate Center at the City University of New York. He received his doctorate in counseling psychology from Columbia University in New York City and is one of the leading researchers in understanding the impacts of microaggressions, or subtle forms of discrimination, on the mental and physical health of people of color; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people; and other marginalized groups.
His contributions to research, visibility in the media, and community organizing simply remarkable. https://www.kevinnadal.com/background
PS The last discounted spots for The Joy Revolution's "28 Day Podcast Launch Strategy" are open for weeks 2, 3, 4. Book at www.joyrevolution.com/podcastlaunchaudit. To skip the line, and jump on a call asap text Podcast, Course to 8138670688.