Society always goes back to its tribal roots. We need to realize that we ALL came from the same mother and father. Call them Adam and Eve or name the pair whatever you like. Archeology traces our ancestors back approximately 6 million years. Our modern form has only had about 200,000 years to evolve into who we are today. Civilization initiated 6,000 years ago with the industrial revolution kicking into gear during the 1800’s. So since we have known each other for millions of years, why can’t we just get along?
There are differences that have partitioned us into subunits. Those differences are color, religion, political affiliation, monetary means, health and gender.
We are all born into this world free from prejudice. If cut, we bleed red. Unless one is fortunate enough to die in your sleep, you get sick, suffer loss of life’s quality, and pass away.
It’s our interactions with others from birth that generates prejudices that sometimes can taint us for the rest of our lives. I was born into a low income, Italian caucasian family that resided in New Jersey. The area consisted of families that came to the U.S. in the early part of the last century from Italy. I never interacted to any significant degree with anyone that wasn’t white and Catholic till I attended college.
Anytime someone moved into the neighborhood that wasn’t part of our specific human specifications, they were forced by violence to leave their home. As I child, I didn’t totally understand although I knew something wasn’t right. My parents told me that we have an unfair advantage over minorities because of the color of our skin. My dad was a deep thinker. I know he was disgusted with our biased society.
Upon starting college in NY, I was one of the only caucasians in student housing. I never experienced discrimination. The school also had one of the highest populations of handicapped students in the nation. I learned how lucky I was to be healthy. Helping others that weren’t so lucky physically and mentally, was just something that everyone did at Long Island University whether that be in the cafeteria, dorm and at class.
My goal is trying to have an open mind and listen. That is not an easy to do because I like to talk. So I have been making an effort to listen more than I talk. I’ve found that the more I listen, the more I understand and learn about others perspectives. Also, I look back to our history as a country, to learn from the mistakes society has made, to contribute to the present.
Let’s think back to President Abraham Lincoln. He was assassinated in his second term by an actor named John Wilkes Booth. he sympathized with the South because he disagreed with the slaves being freed by the passing of Emancipation Proclamation. Vice President, Andrew Johnson, took all that President Lincoln did to stop slavery and did the complete opposite. Almost another century passed before The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed during the President Lyndon B. Johnson Administration.
Here in 2020, over a half century after The Civil Rights Act, another one of the many heinous acts of prejudice resulting in the death of George Floyd residing in Minneapolis. And the many others before Mr. Floyd who have been hurt or killed by the racial injustice that continues to permeate our country. The question remains, what can be done to unite our country?
Readers, I now turn to you, for submitting solutions to Renovating Your Mind. What are ways to bridge the chasm to form quality relationships throughout the world for the good of ALL. Thank you.