A Rainbow of People

August 13, 2017

When I was a young mother, I thought my children were the most beautiful and talented young people I had ever met. I marveled at their beauty, the cute things they said, how quickly they learned. Other children might be adorable in their own way, but still—they just couldn’t begin to measure up my two.

 

One day in the park another child threw sand at my son. It wasn’t malicious, just one of those things kids do before they learn sand hurts. I looked at that little girl and saw her uncombed hair and snotty nose. How dare she! I was ready to ream her out.

 

But I Realized Something

 

Then, a realization crept over me.

 

God loved that little girl as much as God loved my son.

 

Really? Could that be true? I swallowed hard before coaching her about sandbox behavior. I spoke in a soft tone, the way I would have wanted another mother to correct my son.

 

The lesson has stuck with me throughout my life. Yes, certain people are special to me. But all people are special to God.

 

My son-in-law, a wise and educated man, once said,

 

“I don’t want my kids to think they are better than anyone else.”

 

 

The Human Desire to Compete

 

It is a struggle for human beings to overcome the need to dominate, to be better, to compete. Every religion instructs us to treat others the way we would like to be treated.

 

I am grieving over the violence in Charlottesville and the message of hate toward non-whites.

 

Do I share some guilt in these actions? Have I done enough to speak out about our common humanity? Have I contributed in any way to these attitudes?

 

Since I am a writer, I choose this medium to say,

 

White Is Not Better

 

White is not better. White is not smarter. White is not prettier.

 

 

 

I admire the beauty of dark people with ebony skin and soft, kinky hair. Asian people are beautiful, with almond-shaped eyes and glossy-black straight hair. Native Americans are blessed with auburn skin and smooth faces.

 

We learned it in Sunday School long ago,

 

“Red and yellow, black and white, all are precious in his sight.”

 


Say the words. Teach your children and grandchildren that the color of one’s skin does not matter and that no color is better than another. Speak out against hate. If we are silent, we are complicit.

 

 

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