Trauma Example: I Was Racially Profiled

I Was Racially Profiled (Video Link) — (Article)

Part 1 (recorded via Siri): We ended yesterday’s lecture discussing PTSD so I thought I’d share a personal example of racial trauma from December 16th 2020, starting at 8:16pm when a custodian opened my lock office door without consent and stood there looking at me for about 3 minutes while calling the police on me to report a suspicious person. I was on my laptop typing. However, I was typing while being a Black human so that was suspicious.

Part 2 (recorded via Zoom): The perpetrator returned with police at 9pm. I was carded in my own office. Per usual, UCSD-Police handled the situation excellently & at one point in the Zoom recording the two officers seemed to realize that the custodian was the problem.

Hostile Climate

Recovering from the incident has been a longer process than I initially imagined, though I’ve yet to determine whether that’s due to the initial incident or the hostile climate I dealt with through May (based on the corrective action/ protection timeline).

Given that the person who racist profiled was (perhaps still is) a custodian, cues like wheels rolling across the elevator (trashcans), large keychains dangling in proximity of my door (how the custodian who racist profiled me entered my office without consent that night), & loud drops (e.g., dropping trashcans loudly outside my door, and moving trashcans right next to my door for the first time since I entered my office in Spring 2016) became triggers during the hostile climate timeline.


Corrective Actions by UCSD

UC San Diego went above & beyond in helping me cope with those triggers. After I filed an official complaint with the harassment department in February, the locks on my door were changed so that no one on campus except UCSD-Police have a key to my office. They also disabled a secondary door in my office, installed an aperture in my door so I can see who is outside, & put a sign on my door that says “No Custodial Services This Suite” & at this time no custodians are allowed to enter my office until 2023 or whenever I feel a sense of racial safety around them again. Though I have an email account & a mailbox I never received an apology from among the custodians themselves for the December incident; moreover, I dealt with a hostile climate each evening for about half of this year. As such, it’s going to take some time before I’d permit them to enter my office again. Following an interaction with one of the Vice Provosts, the schedule of the custodians was changed such that they were no longer able to just linger on the 5th floor of McGill Hall for hours in the evening.

May 5th Adaptations following May 3rd Trigger: They also disabled a secondary door in my office… & put a sign on my door that says “No Custodial Services This Suite”

Trauma Adaptations

I’ve continued to keep my door closed more than I usually did in 2016–2019, I bought noise canceling headphones for the first time this year & now have 4 (so one is always available if necessary), I have more resources for background ambience/ privacy (including just playing music via speakers while listening to my actual music in my headphones), whenever I see a janitor I simply turn around & take a different hallway to be safe, & Siri is always charged since she was the primary hero in terms of providing video evidence.

Anywho, hopefully this was a helpful example of a trauma experience. And to be clear, I’m not trying to suggest that Racial Trauma is the same thing as having PTSD. Given how that December 16th earthquake impacted me, and the hostile climate of aftershocks that followed, you can imagine how difficult it may be for someone living with clinical PTSD.

You know where I’ll be December 16th at 8:16pm this year.

(Recent Tweet)

(I still have each instance recorded, just in case — this screenshot was taken this morning)

“This morning” now refers to Thursday November 18th

End of Canvas Announcement

Racial Trauma (and Hostile Climate) Timeline

The times police were called on me by a custodian/janitor
December 16th, 2020 (8:16pm) 👮🏻‍♀️
February 2nd (9:47–10:46pm) 👮🏻‍♂️

April 14th (~7:20pm) — Called Supervisor Instead of Police (growth??)
Tweet about Wednesday April 14th incident: “Like the incident last Wednesday around 7:20 with the trashcans placed in the path to my door & the janitor following me to each hallway & calling in his manager to report me.

Video walkthrough of 4.14 incident

May 3rd Trigger (7:08pm) (knocking & disappearing)
This event lead to the “No Custodial Services This Suite” sign being placed on my door. Now none of them have an excuse to approach my workspace.

This was the final overt trigger/event (associated with a custodian/janitor).

As mentioned during lecture, the fact that I didn’t make an official complaint with the university’s harassment & discrimination office until February (2 months later) doesn’t make what happened any less true. Trauma is complex (as I’ve come to realize) & responses to it may not always follow a linear and/or normative framework.

Thankfully Siri still had the full recording in her Cloud & Youtube still had the full video evidence I posted. The fact that I or others don’t report traumatic experiences immediately doesn’t make them any less true.

Sidenotes (assume direct quotes)

Prior to the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of 1974, single women couldn’t apply for credit cards. Married woman could apply as long as her husband agreed to cosign, giving him access to her line of credit.

Most U.S. women who marry men take their husbands’ last name with ~20% choosing to keep their birth names (Foss et al., 2015; Nagem, 2015). Prior to 1975, US states insisted that a woman assume her husband’s last name on marrying in order to vote, drive, or participate in basic forms of life (Emens, 2007).

Digisexuals (coined by McArthur & Twist, 2016)

— those whose sexuality is experienced via technology (Sarah Young, 2017; Zhydko, 2019)

(more to come)

Smart Vibrator — Lioness (by Suzannah Weiss, 2017)

The Lioness, a smart vibrator that tracks various usage metrics to give you knowledge of your own arousal, with sensors that measure tension (to detect arousal and orgasm), temperature (to track when you put it in and take it out), and motion (to keep track of how you’re moving the toy). It connects to an app, which displays each masturbation session on a chart. You can see your vaginal contractions represented as spikes or as a circle that contracts and expands. You can also tag each session with anything from “five-star” to “drunk” and learn how different outside circumstances impact your sex life.

One felt that her first orgasm per session was so strong it was painful, but the second one was more enjoyable. Her chart showed that the first was very brief, with extremely strong contractions, while the second was longer and less strong. One Lioness software developer, Maggie, told me she has stronger orgasms when she’s stoned, so unsurprisingly, her chart showed stronger contractions during these sessions.

The Lioness is a nicely made vibrator, with a movable head to stimulate the clitoris at the top and an insertable one that reaches deep into the vagina, making orgasms more intense. Like many users I found that my chart matched my subjective experience. It was extremely noisy — instead of one peak like some users have, it had peaks all over — which made sense, because my vagina tends to contract throughout a session rather than just during orgasm. It was validating to see that what seems to be happening in my body is actually happening.

Orgasm Detector & Orgasm Type

Lioness happens to be working on an “orgasm detector,” which can identify where in your chart you orgasmed. It’s not just a question of the strength of your contractions (if that were the case, I’d have orgasmed about a hundred times); it’s a complex combination of frequency, amplitude, and other measures, Lioness cofounder and VP of engineering Anna Lee explained to me.

In addition to identifying my orgasm, Lee did something else the Lioness will hopefully soon be able to do automatically: Tell me what “orgasm type” I have. Based on users’ data, the Lioness team has discovered three main orgasm types, and each woman has the same one every time she orgasms.

Seeing my vaginal contractions on a chart helped me discuss my sexuality with my partner, which Lioness CEO Liz Klinger tells me was a major goal of hers. Hearing my partner point to a chart and say, “Is that your orgasm?” broke down a barrier for us; we hadn’t talked about my satisfaction that openly and frankly before. The fact that it was charted out made it more accessible and allowed for a clinical distance, like looking at a math problem rather than analyzing something so deeply personal.

I spent two weeks masturbating with the Lioness, adding tags like “with partner” and “morning.” The vibrator itself was solid, but as cool as the tracking capability was, I didn’t find much use in it. The things I learned — like that I orgasm more quickly at night and when I’m alone, for example — are things I knew already. And despite knowing it, I’ve never felt the need to use that information. I’m still going to masturbate whenever I feel like it.”

See also Suzannah Weiss, 2018

“There hasn’t been much research on this topic since Kinsey, but I’d venture to bet that women might be even quicker if the data were collected today, given that 53% of American women in one 2009 study had used vibrators, compared to less than 1% in the ’70s (Hite, 1976).

The 20-minute stat creates the perception that women’s orgasms are more difficult & thus “naturalizes the orgasm gap.

Shere Hite (1976) similarly found that 95% of cis women who masturbated “could orgasm easily and regularly, whenever they wanted.”

…When I asked her where the 10–20-minute figure came from she replied: The initial misattribution occurred a number of editions ago, was not caught, and was carried over through subsequent editions.” The real source? Kinsey’s Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, she said. Numerous articles are misattributing Kinsey’s data to Masters and Johnson, who, as far as I can tell, didn’t even study orgasmic timing.”

“In either case, the numbers are based on intercourse — which means we’ve been judging cis women’s orgasmic ability by an activity they don’t even usually orgasm from.

“The reason we think of men as being more orgasmic involves the ubiquity of ‘sex’ being defined as ‘intercourse,’” sexologist Carol Queen, PhD tells me. “Intercourse doesn’t offer sufficient clitoral stimulation for most women to allow for efficient, easy orgasm.”

Lisa Wade (2006): 90% of cis women orgasmed when their last sexual encounter included oral and manual sex, and another found that 92% did when they engaged in oral, self-stimulation, and intercourse. “The idea that women would have different rates of orgasm depending on what kinds of stimulation that they give their bodies seems almost so obvious that it’s stupid to say out loud,” says Wade. “But we have to do that because the assumption is that women’s bodies are bad at having orgasms.”

The clitoris is frequently omitted from medical textbooks, much like women’s 4-minute orgasm figure.”

Clitoris & Education — Chalmers & Jones, 2016

“Theories relating to women’s bodies that likely encouraged and sustained censorship of the clitoris. For instance, there was Freud’s now defunct theory that clitoral stimulation was a sign of sexual immaturity and neurosis. Women were also taught not to enjoy sex; women had sex for reproductive purposes, while men had sex for pleasure.”

Interminority Marriages — Fox & Guglielmo, 2012

As previously stated, interracial marriage was legal. It just wasn’t legal for someone White to marry someone non-White.

“In many parts of the Midwest and especially the Southwest, “whites only” signs barred Mexicans from movie theaters, dance halls, parks, swimming pools, beaches, barber shops and beauty parlors, drugstores, bowling alleys, restaurants, and cemeteries (Taylor 1928, pp. 83–94; 1930, pp. 416–21; 1934, pp. 250–55; Kibbe 1946, pp. 208–12; Rangel and Acala 1972; Reisler 1976, pp. 140–41; Camarillo 1979, pp. 192–93; Foley 1997; Haney-Lo´pez 1998; Valdes 2000, pp. 62–63; Donato 2003).

In Indiana, where white-black marriages were illegal, the courts validated a marriage between a Mexican woman and a black man.

In California, on the other hand, county clerks sometimes refused to issue licenses to Mexicans and blacks who wanted to marry but had no problem issuing such licenses to Mexicans and South Asians, even though the state’s miscegenation law prohibited marriages between whites and Asians (Hollinger 2003).

Out of the roughly 7,000 Mexican heads of household who were racially categorized as white instead of Mexican, 46% were married to Anglos, 41% to other white Mexicans, and only 3% to individuals racially categorized as Mexican (author calculation, IPUMS). Were these Mexicans categorized as white because they married Anglos? Or could they marry Anglos because they were racially categorized as white? Either case suggests the importance of white-nonwhite categorization for intermarriage.”

California is the most integrated and interracial state, though white-Asian segregation is much less pronounced compared to white-black segregation

By Patrick Collins (UT-San Antonio) #Roadrunners

“Spurred by the recent legalization of divorce in Mexico following the 1910 revolution, an exodus of single Mexican women began making its way into the United States. Many of these women were taken directly to El Paso — which at the time held the highest concentration of Punjabi immigrants in Texas — aboard a train that connected the town with Mexico City.

The Punjabi-Mexican families embodied an intriguing meld of cultures. “The kids had these fascinating names like Jose Akbar Singh,” remembered Hardgrove. The wives became adept at cooking delightful fusion dishes like curried tamales, and the men learned to speak Spanish, which helped them communicate with the farmworkers who were often hired to help cultivate their land. The children inherited the religion of their mothers and grew up Catholic. The Sikhs practiced in their traditional gurdwaras (place of worship), Hindus erected temples, and mosques were built by the Muslims, with the buildings functioning both as places of worship and as community centers for the thriving Punjabi-Mexican population.

Obvious differences like language and religion aside, one of the most interesting features of the Punjabi- Mexican union is how well the cultures came together.”

Interminority Prejudice — Burson & Godfrey, 2018

— An emerging body of literature has acknowledged the lack of empirical work and theory on intergroup processes among minority groups, advocating for more research on this topic (Al Ramiah, Hewstone, Little, & Lang, 2014; Glasford & Calcagno, 2012; Hindriks, Verkuyten, & Coenders, 2014; Philip, Mahalingam, & Sellers, 2010; Richeson & Craig, 2011; White, Schmitt, & Langer, 2006).

Interminority relations are increasingly relevant. As the United States grows in diversity, more intergroup contact occurs among minority groups, making it important to understand processes among these groups (Richeson & Craig, 2011). Many countries, cities, and neighborhoods are experiencing demographic shifts toward a majority–minority composition, such that racial and ethnic minority groups cumulatively outnumber the majority group, making an understanding of multigroup processes beyond the Black–White dichotomy both relevant and timely (Al Ramiah et al., 2014; Hindriks et al., 2014). In addition to expanding the psychological literature, understanding drivers of interminority conflict and solidarity will aid policymakers interested in improving intergroup relations and activists and community groups interested in coalition building.

Altruism, Sex, & Gender (temporary placement)

Men give out of self-interest whereas women give based on empathy for others (Lilly Family School of Philanthropy),

Corporations have a higher Corporate Social Responsibility score when their chairperson has a female sibling (Sumit Agrawal et al., 2021).

Democratic CEOs (based on political contributions) increase the proportion of women in the executive suite by 20–60% when they replace companies’ Republican CEOs (Alma Cohen et al., 2021).

Parents are more likely to lie to their sons than to their daughters (Haye and Carver, 2014) & parents model honesty more to their daughters and are more likely to lie in front of their sons (Houser et al., 2016).

Boys tend to lie more than girls (Gervais et al., 2000; Maggian and Villeval, 2014; Bucciol and Piovesan, 2011) and that girls are more altruistic than boys (List and Samak, 2013).

Daughters are more likely to be socialized as caretakers (Eagly, 2009). Thus, “parents who give may be taking additional actions, whether they mean to or not, that signal more strongly to their daughters that giving is a form of caretaking.

There is some evidence that parents may invest in sons differently than in daughters. Studies have shown that sons benefit more than daughters in areas such as nutrition (Das Dupta, 1987), healthcare (Ganatra & Hirve, 1994), vaccination rates (Borooah, 2004), and breastfeeding (Barcelllos et al., 2014). Parents may also raise their sons to embrace risk more compared with their daughters; some studies find that mothers and daughters often share risk preferences, but this is not the case for mothers and sons (Alan et al., 2017)” (Debra Mesch et al., 2018).

Banks whose CEOs have a first-born daughter are greener, “provide loans with lower spread, fewer financial covenants, and less likely to require collateral, for borrowers with better corporate social responsibility performance” (Tao Chen et al., 2021).

Chinese business owners raising sons have a longer investment horizon, especially those in patriarchal regions (Xia Wang et al., 2021).

“Nationally, the majority of participants in giving circles are women (81%; see Bearman, 2007).

As their children age, parents emphasize prosocial behavior more with daughters than sons (Power & Shanks, 1989).

Stukas et al. (1999) find evidence that parental modeling has a stronger effect on girls’ altruistic self-image, suggesting perhaps a stronger effect on girls’ prosocial behavior. The role model association is much stronger for daughters (Mark Ottoni-Wilhelm et al., 2011).

Both daughters and sons perceive their mothers as encouraging prosocial behavior and empathy (more than they perceive their fathers doing so), daughters perceive their mothers as encouraging prosocial behavior and empathy somewhat more so than do sons (McDevitt et al., 1991).

Those whose (one) child is a daughter give 30% larger amounts to educational institutions and 31% larger amounts to organizations that help people with basic needs (compared to people whose (one) child is a son.”

- Debra Mesch et al., 2015

“Women have been shown to have better social awareness and be more loving than males (Andreoni and Vesterlund, 2011; Schwartz and Rubel, 2005; DellaVigna et al., 2013; Adams and Funk, 2012).

Unmarried couples are more likely to marry if they expect a first-born son (Dahl & Moretti, 2008).

Women Give (Mesch et al., 2015): “Having had sons or daughters make a difference in how parents behave (Lundberg & Rose, 2002). For example, people with daughters are more likely to support liberal political parties in general (Oswald & Powdthavee, 2010) and liberal reproductive policies in particular (Washington, 2008). CEOs with daughters spend more on corporate social responsibility and run companies rated higher for measures of diversity and employee relations as well as environmental concerns (Cronqvist & Yu, 2015). Although men with children work more hours, the effect is larger for sons than it is for daughters (Lundberg & Rose, 2002).”

I'm passionate about making a tangible difference in the lives of others, & that's something I have the opportunity to do a professor & researcher.