The weather is amazing here on beautiful Vancouver Island. I was in my backyard today and, even in the shade, I was toasty warm. Spring has definitely arrived and I am loving every minute of it!
But today is something more... something vitally important. It is also 'International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination'. It boggles my mind that we still need days like this. When will we ever learn that hate is not the answer? That colour is only skin deep? That no race is superior to another?
This is a quote from the United Nations website:
"Racist extremist movements based on ideologies that seek to promote populist, nationalist agendas are spreading in various parts of the world, fueling racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, often targeting migrants and refugees as well as people of African descent.
In its recent resolution on eliminating racism, the United Nations General Assembly reiterated that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and have the potential to contribute constructively to the development and well-being of their societies. The resolution also emphasized that any doctrine of racial superiority is scientifically false, morally condemnable, socially unjust and dangerous and must be rejected, together with theories that attempt to determine the existence of separate human races." Read more HERE.
As difficult as it is to believe, racism is on the rise - often thinly disguised as nationalism. But what can we possibly do about it? It seems that no matter how educated we have become or how many lessons we can draw from in our world's history, people are still buying into hateful rhetoric. And although it is true we cannot change the whole world, I believe we have a responsibility to do what we can to change our part of it. How we do it will be different for each one of us.
You may argue, "But I am not an activist." Sure, but I wonder, are we limiting that term? One definition of activist is 'person of influence'. We don't have to participate in a publiic march to influence others. We all have something to offer - something that can help make the world a kinder, more inclusive place. Are you doing that already? If so, let us know so we can tell your story and expand your influence to even more people.
Do you want to be a person of influence? Something to ponder on this important day.