Let’s eradicate racial profiling and prejudice. That is the whole point of this blog post, ending this atrocious act. I know I’m not the only one with this wishful thinking, hoping the world becomes a more peaceful place to live in. A place where we could be whoever we want to be without any hindrances.
It was late May of this year when I truly felt my ethnicity. I was traveling abroad. I was exploring Japan with my family. We were roaming around their streets and sights. We were eating their food and riding their trains. We were following their social norms like using only the right side of the escalator (the left side was for those who were in a hurry). That was the first time I could actually feel the color of my skin, my almond eyes, and native tongue.
Fast-paced and busy subways, we were tourist taking pictures, at awe of the Tokyo’s city view. The Japanese people are very respectful as well as helpful. When we couldn’t find away or probably looked confused, a Japanese citizen would stop in his/her tracks and help even if they don’t know how to speak English. They didn’t stare or judge; they didn’t make me feel lost. I’m the one who made myself feeling lost.
I got used to the division of color that my subconscious mind made it a default to separate people, not of the same race. I’m not used to diversity. I didn’t give myself an opportunity to talk to people of different culture. I’m surrounded by people who have the same lifestyle. I thought I was open to the idea of loving everyone for who they were but there I was, feeling insecure of myself.
I knew something was wrong. I was unsure of how I should act or say. I have also racially prejudiced them. I assumed what they think of me which was unfair because I don’t, in fact, know them. It was all in my head. I believe all racial prejudice and profiling is, all in our heads. It may seem easier to just assume but we know nothing of who they are and what they’ve been through. Every single person has their own story. We shouldn’t try to make preconceived assumptions of them just because a majority of their race have similar qualities.
You and I are different. Having the same culture does not make us one human being. One culture has many members. We all have our own opinions, values, aspiration, fears, and dreams. No two beings are alike. Rather than nit-picking our differences, why not try and celebrate our own uniqueness. Because that is what we are, unique. Though I do have to admit, having similarities and differences are a blessing. Let’s see both sides. If we didn’t have differences, we’d be like those standard manufactured products. We all might even look the same since difference doesn’t exist. While if the latter is all we have, I doubt that we’d ever get along. So let me rephrase myself. No two beings are identical.
Similarities breeds connection. Differences make good conversations.
It starts from within. Getting rid of division starts from us. You can’t force people to change. You inspire change. You become a model and an advocate. Only when you change will people believe you and what you stand for.
We can make this world a better place. I change the world by changing myself.
Won’t you join me?