Friday, September 4, 2009
Monochromatic, Part Two
Thank you, readers, for your comments about my last post. Between my blog, facebook, and neighborhood conversations, this last post has gotten people talking. Talking well. Not heated. Rational. Respectful. It's been really interesting.
Enough so that I feel the need to expand a bit. To think further.
When Harper made the comment she did about her class being void of "black people" it was obvious that she was shocked by the absence of a color other than white (as our environment back in Evanston was incredibly colorful). However, it has taken me a few days to realize that Harper may only see diversity in terms of the color of one's skin.
As I talked with neighbors about the post, (thanks for reading, and thanks for the parsley), I came to learn that this area does have cultural diversity - maybe not in terms of skin pigmentation, but in terms of ethnic background. Polish, Czech, and Scottish backgrounds abound. However, through the eyes of an 8 year old, there are only white people. To her, this insinuates that everyone is the same.
We are not.
One can not look at another and immediately glean their ethnic background. There are white Africans. There are black Irish - those with unexpected dark hair and eyes.
Can any of us really pinpoint one's heritage from merely glancing at the color of their skin?
How exciting is that?
So, this got me thinking. While I do lament the decrease in the a visual difference that abounds in this small pocket of the human race called Beaver, I still have a lot of culture to seep up.
Diversity is not merely skin deep. Everyone is colorful on the inside.
It comes down to something so elementary. Respect what's on the outside. Respect what's on the inside.
Treat others the way you would want to be treated.
Remember this from the 70's?
Question: What's your ethnic background? I probably can't tell by just looking at you, but I'm interested.