Get ready for the most adorable lesson on human rights you’ve ever seen.
Staceyann Chin is a spoken-word poet, performance artist, and LGBT activist who happens to be the mother of a darling little girl named Zuri. To teach her daughter how to be the youngest (and most adorable) political activist around, Staceyann started a YouTube series called “Living Room Protest” in which she and Zuri talk about everything from consent to #NoJusticeNoPeace.
Staceyann has been published in the likes of the New York Times and the Washington Post, and has been on TV shows like 60 Minutes, Oprah, and Def Poetry Jam, so she knows a thing or two about how to express herself.
And Staceyann isn’t the only star of “Living Room Protest.” Her daughter Zuri compliments her eloquence perfectly, with charmingly jumbled sentences, cute gestures, and serious enthusiasm. My favorite moment of the series so far is when Staceyann is teaching her daughter about consent, and Zuri asks her if she can touch her. After her mom says yes, Zuri reaches over and wiggles her finger on her mom’s palm, saying “tickle tickle tickle!” (Equally precious is at the end of the first video on #NoJusticeNoPeace, when Zuri warns everyone, “Don’t do it again!”)
Staceyann is half Jamaican and half Chinese, and has shared her struggles growing up as a gay person in Jamaica. In her New York Times article “Paradise of Lies,” she reflects on her upbringing and said she “vowed that when I moved again, I would only tell the truth, regardless of cost.” And it did cost her, as she faced homophobia, sexual assault, and more.
It’s clear that her history has informed StaceyAnn’s raising of Zuri. Instead of hiding the harsh realities of the world, Zuri is growing up educated and empowered. She is learning about respect and how to express herself at a young age. And StaceyAnn is teaching her in a really cool way that we can all appreciate — especially with Zuri’s endearing explanations.
This isn’t the first cool thing Staceyann has done in raising Zuri. When Staceyann was pregnant, she wrote an open letter to her unborn daughter in the Huffington Post. She wrote, “Hope has returned to my heart. I am able to see miracles in the mundane, that there is celebration to be discovered with even the smallest of victories. And each day I wake up breathing, with you fluttering inside me, I am grateful, and seeking ways to pay the feeling forward.”
These videos are that celebration of the small things in life, Zuri represents all of our hopes in the face of the world’s tragedies, and it is so incredibly awesome that Staceyann chose to use video to pay that warm fuzzy feeling forward to all the rest of us.