Let’s begin taking our fate into our own hands. If we truly would like see change in this country, we have to begin doing the little things that can make a significant difference. No longer can we stay quiet when those around us say or do something offensive about any “other.” That ‘other’ can include anything from the n-word or b-word or using rape and gay as slang. If we challenge one another to think differently about these everyday issues, you would see our culture begin to change.
It’s up to you and me to begin helping everyone to recognize what being an other is all about. Really, we are all an other in some capacity, which just means there is something about you that makes you different from the next person. That’s so cool! We all have a difference we can celebrate about ourselves, yet there are many persons who also celebrate that same difference. Take myself for example. I’m a black woman who loves country music. I’m sure there are many black girls who also love country music. There may not be many, but I know I’m not alone.
It’s time we begin celebrating what makes each once of us unique, which will in-turn, teach us to loves ourselves. Thus, appreciating others as well. To quote Disney’s The Sword In The Stone, “Just because you can’t understand something, it doesn’t mean it’s wrong.” Not being able to understand someone’s otherness, should not mean you demean its existence in any way or vice versa. If we were to take on this perspective and make it an ideal, there would have to be a regard for others’ otherness. See what I’m getting at? By no means will we agree on or about every little thing, but what there can be is a mutual respect. I respect you and the life you’re living. We are all trying to survive in this crazy world and when our paths cross, we should high-five one another on how we are somehow making it work.
Our culture has a lot of incorrect messages being perceived as real and truth. How do we change this? We don’t wait for heartbreaking situations to happen that can divide us even more. Instead we use the past as positive ammunition to work towards something better. We change it by talking about our thoughts and opinions without getting loud or cursing. Who is going to want to listen if your point is riddled with offensive language? No one and what good is that? Share what’s on your mind without all that extra stuff.
If people begin to talk, then we also need to really listen. That means not just being quiet and waiting for that person to be finished with whatever he or she is saying—letting it go in one ear and out of the other. Listening means that not only are your ears open, but your mind and heart are as well. You’re listening not only to reply, but also taking something from the conversation that enlightened or taught you. Hear whatever it is that person is truly saying. What they have to say is just as important as what is on your mind.
It’s not all of our faults that we’re like this. We don’t listen well, we use slang words that offend and don’t celebrate our uniqueness. However, the time is right now for us to change our ways. Put politics aside and let’s embrace what makes us different. Think about how boring this world would be if we were all the same. Difference is what makes this life fun! It’s what makes the world around us. For just one second, consider how there would be no need to travel if every part of the world was exactly the same. There would be no reason to travel to Paris to see the Eiffel or London to see Big Ben. Without difference the world is dull. No need to be dull when we were born to be sharp. Iron sharpens iron right?