Wednesday, April 29, 2009

From the White Side Looking In

I believe we travel on paths for a reason and I believe people who cross our paths will enlighten us.

Enlightenment does not necessarily deliver warm fuzzies. Enlightenment can be a better understanding knowledge of something that we think we understand, but know nothing of.

I thought I was a realist, who lived in the world with my eyes wide open. What I really am is a middle aged white woman who grew up in a town with only one "other than white" family.

This hometown is quiet and quaint. Politeness surrounded us growing up, or perhaps, pseudo politeness. It could have been an illusion of politeness. Who knew what went on behind closed doors, or what was said in hushed secretive whispers. The illusion remained that it was a safe place to be, whether true or not, with pure good people.

I married young, and dumb, with the illusion that I was in love, to an Air Force boy living overseas.

I was taken out of my hometown, and out in the world with many people, of many colors and heritages .

Again, I had the illusion of "sameness", peace, order and politeness. Military life is very orderly and polite. Polite out of military law, not desire.

Everyone, no matter what their background behaved in an orderly polite robotic way; the illusion of a warm fuzzy Air Force Base where everyone was part of one big family. We are one; black, white, yellow, tan, the same, not different, with the same desires, backgrounds, or were we?

I am now in a new place. Today I live in the real world. It is the world that has many issues that transcend beyond the gender, race or sexual preference lines. Our world has many facets, containing many colors, back rounds, traditions and lifestyles.

It is true that we, as a people, have many common traits. We are all also different in an abundance of ways .

It is not a credit to anyone to not see, or pretend to not see differences I feel enriched to know many many people of vastly differing backgrounds, races and heritages. I openly acknowledge that we are not the same. That doesn't make us good or bad, just different.

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