Positive thinking the key weapon against racism
Racism in its various forms will probably never be eradicated throughout the world, where hatred continues to cast a dark shadow over efforts by people of all races who strive to build an environment in which there is freedom to worship without fear of prosecution, and where no one is considered an outcast for having a different point of view.
It is almost incomprehensible that after so many dark chapters in the struggle to establish true justice for all, our planet is far from being free from that awful blemish of hatred based on skin colour, political persuasion or religious affiliation. In a number of countries, people are still being killed for daring to choose freedom over domination by groups who are so consumed by hatred that they slaughter men, women and children to rule with fear and military power.
It is a disturbing trend within the United States, and other parts of the world, where extremist groups commit terrible crimes against peace-loving people of all races, sending a clear signal that the war against hatred and racism should be a significant concern for all societies that cherish freedom.
Deep scars still exist from the American civil war, where many thousands of Americans perished, fighting each other over having freedom for everyone, including former slaves. It is an issue with some extremist groups in that nation who still advocate white supremacy against the unstoppable diversity that has transformed much of America.
It would seem the historic I Have a Dream speech by the late civil rights leader the Reverend Martin Luther King were seeds that fell mostly on hard ground.
However, the will of really good people to do the right thing, has always been, and will continue to be, a weapon that no extremist group will be able to overcome. Sometimes in the midst of terrorists acts that leave the world numb with shock, it is easy to forget the brave people who, against fearful odds, took on the challenge to bring about change, putting their lives on the line in the process.
Who could forget the three students — two white, one black — who were so brutally murdered in Mississippi by a hate group on the night of June 21, 1964, for simply wanting to improve a voting system that denied blacks their voting rights. Those brave young men gave their lives doing what they felt was right and just, and their sacrifice must never be forgotten.
Much has changed over the years, but there is still work to be done to eradicate racism in its many forms.
In our world today, there are blacks and whites, along with people from different ethnic origins, working well together despite obstacles from some who refuse to embrace growing global diversity.
During a ferocious tornado or storm, people tend to forget completely about skin colour or which political group one supports. What matters most is sticking together for survival. Thinking positive comes into play because that is the ingredient that will rise above petty differences during tough times.
A super example of this occurred last week during heavy flooding in America, where a vehicle overturned with a couple and two infants inside. As water rapidly filled the cabin, the outlook appeared grim. Within seconds, men near by plunged into rising water to help without regard for their own safety. It did not matter who was white or black; lives were in danger, and that was all that mattered.
For the record, diversity made up that rescue group. The positive side to this is that the children, along with the parents, were saved with only seconds to spare. That is the world most people want.
In Bermuda, we need to stay positive despite a number of negative issues that the island is confronted with. In trying to move forward, we must avoid as much as possible confrontation for the sake of confrontation. Any issue, regardless of political sensitivity, should be discussed between groups with a rational and positive approach aimed at doing what is right for the Bermudian people.
Differences of opinion should not be allowed to hinder positive thinking, which usually culminates into positive action. Racism will fade in the face of positive thinking.
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