This page last updated on Sep 29, 2023.
Welcome! If you find yourself here, you’re likely interested in learning more about what we stand for as a business and the issues facing our world that we have a passion for addressing.
We hope in reading this page, you will gain a better understanding of who we are by learning about who we aim to help protect.
We intend to update this page on an ongoing basis, as we continue to better educate ourselves on some of the human injustices present in our society. You can always find this badge within our footer that will lead you here in case you want to check back in as we update.
We want you to know that we share these positions with you not as an announcement of who or what we are against, but in an effort to affirm who and what we are for.
We believe there is power in who we choose to spend money with or whose ideas we choose to amplify, and so we want to be fully transparent with you so you can make an informed choice on whether you’d like to spend money or time with our business.
Ultimately, we desire a world where all humans have an equal opportunity to have their humanity celebrated, to pursue joy, and to be protected from harm. That’s the vision you’re aligning with when you choose to support us.
The issues we hope to address on this page (as a start) are: racial justice, LGBTQ+ equality, and climate justice.
This page was originally published in response to weeks of ongoing protests led by the Black Lives Matter movement, precipitated by the many wrongful deaths of Black people (many at the hands of the police) including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery.
These protests were the catalyst for us to engage in deeper, more meaningful work on anti-racism than we had ever endeavored to do before.
Upon doing that work, it became clear to us that one action we could take in supporting our BIPOC friends would be to unequivocally reject the ideals of white supremacy that still permeate our culture and to take a public stand in solidarity with activists and citizens trying to close the disparities between white and non-white Americans (and people worldwide).
(Ps. You may see us refer to the Black community specifically throughout this page because that community is experiencing a particular kind of centuries-long egregious oppression, but please know it’s also our intention to be inclusive in recognizing many of the inequities that all people of color experience to varying degrees throughout all facets of our society.)
We run an international community and currently reside in Portugal, but our perspective is that of two American citizens. The United States has always said it intends to stand for “liberty and justice for all,” but the current system has largely failed at following through on that promise for Black Americans, Indigenous Americans, and American people of color.
Black Americans specifically have been systemically oppressed through policies like mass incarceration, voter suppression, a biased criminal justice system, housing inequality, income inequality, and unequal treatment in our healthcare system—all vestiges of a society built on a foundation of enslaving African American people.
Here are just a few facts that help support the notion that policies in this country do not protect all people equally and racial discrimination permeates:
We know that as two white Americans, we hold a number of privileges that our fellow BIPOC friends do not. We have knowingly and unknowingly upheld racist ideas and perpetuated racist ideologies in the past, and we have at times been silently complicit in maintaining norms that, at best, make BIPOC feel marginalized and undervalued, and at worst, have proven to be downright fatal.
We are working to educate ourselves better and pursue actions in alignment with the anti-racist values we aim to uphold.
We believe that it’s our responsibility—as members of the racial group with the most power and privilege in perpetuating a system still intimately entangled with the notion of white supremacy—to challenge and help reimagine this unjust societal framework.
We want to know that all people have access to good healthcare, a great education, community safety, financial resources, fair-paying jobs, and, above all, recognition of their equal humanity.
To help work toward that vision of the future, we have set forth some actions we plan to take moving forward, both personally and in our business.
Some of these changes feel small and insignificant, others will take time to achieve, but all of them we feel are ways we can shift our daily lives and behaviors to further the cause of justice and work toward a world where people are not harmed disproportionately for the color of their skin.
We know change first starts with widening our worldview and working to understand what it means to be anti-racist. We also know that doing this work requires us to ask hard questions about ourselves and examine our behavior and beliefs critically.
That's why we're committed to working through at least one anti-racism book, online course or program every quarter to learn from (and pay) the best educators already committed to this work.
The media we consume and the influencers we look to help form our worldview. We want to make sure that’s a worldview that is actively choosing to incorporate BIPOC voices and perspectives.
While voting in elections is of primary importance to affecting policy change, we also believe that *voting with our dollars* in support of BIPOC business owners is a way we can contribute to what we want to see more of in our world.
Some of you reading that list may say, that’s a lot.
Some of you reading that list may say, that’s not enough.
And the truth is, we think it’s both. Yes, it’s a lot…AND it is not enough. But, it’s a start.
We made this list because we believe these actions are tiny, intentional changes to make in our daily lives that will hopefully combine with tiny, intentional changes that other white business owners are making, and when added up together they can shift the movement toward justice further.
We hope this gives you some ideas of where to start too.
We hope that when you buy from us or support us, you know that you’re supporting a business trying to commit itself to inclusion, justice, and a love of humanity.
If you’re a person of color, we hope you know you are valued in this community, and your voice will be heard. If you ever feel that’s not the case, don’t hesitate to reach out to us and we’ll be ready to listen.
If you’re a white member of our community, we hope you too know you're valued, and you feel you’re in a space that is willing to have the uncomfortable, messy conversations that have been avoided for far too long. We hope you know we’re on this learning/un-learning journey with you.
We know wading into these waters means that conflict will inevitably arise.
We’re not going to get it right all the time. When that situation arises, we’ll do our best to hold space for those disagreements and that discourse, while trying to maintain a level of respect and not allowing for harmful or inflammatory language.
We have created a formal Harm Repair Process that we reiterate with our community each coaching session so everyone knows how and when to offer feedback so we learn and apologize or make things right when needed.
We know we will continue to make missteps due to gaps in our knowledge and the limited lens of our privilege. Our commitment to you is to show up humbly, and open to correction. We will do our very best to practice non-defensiveness, to provide context when needed so you know the people you're learning from are actively engaged in these shared values, to listen even when it’s hard, and to apologize sincerely when we’ve caused harm.
*Please note: It was brought to our attention that some members of the Black community have taken issue with this work, specifically in the co-opting of work from other voices discussing anti-racism without credit. We have read FB post threads and various opinions on this, but since we are not a part of those communities or have not witnessed these criticisms in full context, we hesitate to delete this book from the list. Plus, this post is all about updating and learning in real-time! Instead, we encourage you to do your own research and investigate all works that you consume on these topics, as we intend to do!
We embrace and affirm people of all genders, including those who are non-binary or agender, and we celebrate people across the vast spectrums of gender expressions and sexualities. We think everyone deserves to be seen and loved for who they are, with equal legal rights to marriage, having children (should they choose that), and above all, safety.
As two cisgender, heterosexual people, we are constantly trying to educate ourselves on how to break out of heteronormative patterns and make our LGBTQIA+ members feel fully comfortable and celebrated. Film projects like Disclosure and Suited have helped evolve our understanding of the trans experience and gender-nonconformity, along with the work of gender non-conforming creators like Alok Vaid-Menon.
A few steps we’ve taken just in the way we run WAIM as a coaching program:
We also know that the main way our queer, trans and non-binary friends continue to be most marginalized and oppressed is through discriminatory legislation, so we also only support politicians and legislators who are LGBTQIA+-affirming and fight against such dehumanizing laws.
We ensure that our yearly wealth redistribution is given to organizations that offer resources and support LGBTQIA+ people, like the local San Diego LGBT Community Center.
We trust the scientists when they say climate change is having devastating effects on the environment.
Unfortunately, the deadly consequences of climate change disproportionately harm people who are already at an economic disadvantage, which means protecting the environment isn’t just about protecting our one and only home, but it’s also about fighting for justice and protecting our fellow human beings.
Here are a few things we think about and try to do in our daily lives:
We aren’t perfect. Like most people, convenience sometimes wins out in our hectic daily lives, but we believe making a substantial, whole-hearted effort that isn’t perfect is better than not trying at all.
Again, we support lawmakers who believe in climate change and prioritize climate justice.