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Rated: ASR · Column · Cultural · #1003479
My grandmother used to say, "It takes all kinds to make the world go 'round."
As a child, my grandmother used to tell me, "It takes all kinds to make the world go 'round."

Actually, it wasn't so much my grandmother as the grandma on "Family Matters," but the meaning's still the same.

Too often on this campus, I think we've all forgotten the wisdom of Estelle's words. Going from class to class, I hear people talking trash about other people because of their religion, race, sexual preference or ethnicity.

A person is born into a family. At the moment of their conception, their race and ethnicity is cemented and their religion is pretty much set in stone. These are not things that a person can change. Why then do we insult them for being black, Hispanic, Arabic, Irish, Norwegian or German? Why do we mock them because they're Muslim or Jewish?

For a long time, this region has been predominantly white Christians. In recent years, more people have come in that break away from this norm. Fargo Moorhead is becoming a somewhat diverse population. We have all had the chance to meet or talk to people of different ethnicities.

Why then do we still insist upon believing stereotypes against these people? And, even more importantly, why do we insist upon discriminating against and insulting these people?

During my first week of school, I was washing my hands when a girl I didn't know came up to me. She had somehow learned my religion and felt the need to tell me how wrong it was, without beating around the bush.

"You know you're going to burn in hell, right?" she asked me.

I couldn't believe my ears. This person, a perfect stranger, had taken it upon herself to doom a fellow student to eternal damnation.

I'm not saying we need to have a love-in on the library porch, but why can't we find the good in each other instead of forcing our own beliefs?

Next time you have to work with a person of Arabic descent in class, instead of telling them what a shame it is about Osama bin Laden, find out about them - as a person, not an ethnicity.

Can't we all be brothers?

Published 12 December 2002 in "The Advocate," Minnesota State University Moorhead
© Copyright 2005 AliciaWithAY (aliciawithay at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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