‘Dear Culture’ looks at lessons from 2020: What did we really learn?

As 2020 draws to a close, the Dear Culture podcast rewinds the tapes with our talented duo, theGrio’s Social Media Director Shana Pinnock and Managing Editor Gerren Keith Gaynor

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From the global pandemic, Megan Thee Stallion’s shooting and the Black Lives Matter movement, to the presidential elections, this year has been action-packed.

As 2020 draws to a close, the Dear Culture podcast rewinds the tapes with our talented duo, theGrio’s Social Media Director Shana Pinnock and Managing Editor Gerren Keith Gaynor.

Looking back at this unprecedented and historical year, our hosts ask: “Dear Culture, as we reflect on 2020, what have we learned?”

“We are still having to emphasize Black women,” says Gaynor to Pinnock. 

Read More: ‘Dear Culture’ examines how to navigate back to school time amid the pandemic

Without a doubt, protecting Black women has been one of the year’s biggest conversations. Pinnock notes that this year shouldn’t be the first time people think about supporting Black women. Whether it was or wasn’t, it was largely the work of Black women remembering and supporting other Black women that ruffled the proverbial feathers.

Gaynor cites that it was primarily Black women who made sure Breonna Taylor’s passing would not fly under the radar and held to the standard of the George Floyd protests. This was the year to remember Black women by name and Pinnock, our sometimes resident-pessimist, saw “more outpouring love and support this year than years past,” giving her “a little bit of optimism” for years to come.

“Are we as Black folks finally learning how powerful we can be?” asks Pinnock to Gaynor.

Gaynor thinks America is finally learning how powerful we are. He adds, “in every facet of America life, Black people were the innovators” and it’s taken centuries for our nation to realize that. In part, the pandemic caused a lot of white Americans to acknowledge the power and suffering of our communities.

Black Lives Matter Protests Continue Around Detroit
Demonstrators protest against police brutality for a second day following a night of confrontations between protesters and riot police on May 30, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan.. (Photo by Matthew Hatcher/Getty Images)

When it came to the election, state to state, county to county, the data shows that Black voters made the difference, especially Black women voters. Gaynor expects such historical precedence will change the political game. 

“It’s going to be real lit in the white house,” jokes Gaynor. 

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With Kamala Harris as vice president and Joe Biden’s Cabinet selections looking more and more diverse everyday, “Black ingenuity is THE culture,” exclaims Pinnock. From politics to Verzuz battles, Black people really made waves this year with joy and creativity from our homes. That alone speaks volumes on how our communities are out here pushing the dial forward. 

Tune in Dear Culture, the smart, reliable Black news podcast. Now streaming on Apple Podcast, Spotify, and Stitcher.

TheGrio is now on Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and Roku. Download theGrio today!

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