Can you acquire learned wisdom from the awful reality of racism?
I believe you can. Every one of us can become wiser, and less inclined to see, verbalize, or create differences in the only real ‘race’ we have on this planet …the Human Race.
Pretty much all the ‘isms’ we hear about on the news and social media are born out of fear. Fear grabs hold of you when you don’t understand something, or you don’t give considerate thought to something before forming an opinion and sharing it. Or, fear can rise when something, or someone, is different from that which you are accustomed to.
Think about this for a minute. If nothing new came along, or if someone new didn’t come into your life, wouldn’t you be bored silly after awhile? Indeed, if nothing new had ever come along, we’d still be living in caves.
What I find interesting of late are all the advertisements for Ancestry.ca. Each ad shows people who have been surprised to discover that they are not entirely who they had believed they were in terms of what part of the world their ancestors originated. We all have blood running through our veins that is the sum total of all our relatives who came before us, down through thousands of years.
Do you ever wonder about your own ancestry? You may have been told family stories about your predecessors and where they came from, but the memories only go so far back. Yet the blood-line continues to mingle. What if, somewhere back along your family tree, someone from a different ethnicity or race was introduced into your genealogy. In reality, you may not know for certain – without a DNA test – who were some of your ancestors.
There are now about 7.6 billion people living on our big blue ball. Unless you are an identical twin, there is no one else who looks exactly like you. Never was, and never will be. I suspect that in your personal circle of family, friends and acquaintances you don’t normally refer to someone by their race or ethnicity. Rather, I imagine, you call them by name or identify them by your relationship to them.
What if (one of my favourite questions) we wipe the slate clean, and stop referring to other people by their colour, race, or ethnicity? What if we simply call individuals by their name? What if we identify the woman wearing the purple jacket, instead of the black woman? What if we direct attention to the guy wearing the blue plaid shirt, instead of the Asian guy? Think a moment, instead of doing what you’ve always done. And, if you know the person’s name, use it.
All 7.6 billion of us bleed red blood. We all need to eat and drink and breathe in order to survive. And we all crave love and connection, and the desire to express our uniqueness. In truth, we are all more the same than we are different.
Acceptance of another doesn’t mean you have to agree with them on everything, or even on anything. Acceptance is simply allowing the other person to ‘be’, and not discounting or despising them for it, when you don’t even know them.
You are different from everyone else. You are unique. So are all the other 7,599,999,999 billion people living and breathing the same air as you on this planet.
It’s time to end racism. (Photo by: Geralt)