Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Relations

How did you spend this past Monday, designated Martin Luther King Day? Was it merely a day off of work, or did you take a moment to ponder what the man (not a saint, flawed) was fighting for? How far we've come, or not? A Facebook friend posted this:


A few months ago I finally gave into the truth (with the help of a brilliant friend) that racism will never be overcome. It is the human's predisposition to be tribal and hang around those similar to ourselves. So we must continue to work for equality and use our resources to prevent violence.


It's hard to disagree with that, though how it grieves me to do so. I see it in myself, in family, in friends. But is it really predisposed? Aren't we blank slates out of the womb? We immediately join our first tribe (parents, siblings), then we're taught that folks of differing color, persuasion, and beliefs are not to be trusted, or "lost", or whatever. The molding is powerful in those early years of maximal brain plasticity. If someone is attacked early on by someone of a specific race, guess how that person will view such people from there on out?

I am increasingly adament against only surrounding myself with clones who share my origins and beliefs. We need to be out among the diversity known as the human race. As long as we barricade ourselves behind literal and figurative barriers, racism will be fed like gasoline to a fire.

That said, we should also just live our lives, reach out, be productive, put ideals into action, and not give so much breath to the topic. I like what Morgan Freeman replied when asked how racism can be stopped.

"Stop talking about it."

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