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Tuesday, July 26, 2011


When my husband and I were buying our first (and only) family home, diversity of the neighborhood and the school was a primary factor. Our elementary school alone has children from 14 countries, at last count. We had the opportunity to send our children to a private parochial school a few years later, and declined, because I knew the population would not be as diverse. Even my daughter's Barbie collection was a rainbow of ethnicities! We are a global society, now more than ever. I just wish more people realized that.

It is so sad that you have to write an article like this. I am still amazed how ignorant most people are in US against non-caucasion people living in US. I had the worse experience about this when I lived in Texas but Minnesota is not so much better. Here is more diverse than Texas but unless you live in certain neighborhoods that are ethnically mixed, people still live in their own segragated communities. I am not very optimistic that taking your kids to the festivals will help fix this issue. The major suggestion I would give to have as many friends as possible from different backgrounds and keep a close relationship to them. I am pretty close to my non american friends or american friends of non caucation backgrounds..because the boundaries we set with each other are not as strict as american friends. I cannot imagine going to an American family's house without a phone call or an appointment from weeks ago (preferably) but with more ethnic people like latinos, turks, russians..etc invitation is not needed nor preferred. I am yet to understand this need for privacy, or hesitancy to interact with each other, excuses people give to each other..oh i dont have time for this for that...! Time is what you make of it! There is a reason why there are soooooooo many nursing homes in this country. People die lonely here sooo sad! Our neighbors have grankids and 4 years we lived nextdoor I saw them here very few times or a few holidays...VERY SAD! Another sad thing you have to constantly try to stimulate your kids..Have to take them to play dates, here or there..they cannot just step outside and play in the street with other neighborhood kids. Yes there are some neighborhoods that are exception. But generally people are just inside doing whatever, kids playing on the computer. Again no interaction with outside world! Ohh i can just keep on going :) Now I will stop before I completely make no sense LOL

I really value this blog and thank you for writing it. It should make us all look inward and do some critcal thinking. Selin's comments are powerful and wonderful!! I love the suggestion "to have as many friends as possible from different backgrounds and keep a close relationship with them". What better way to teach your kids is there than living it! She is so right about our culture's tendency to privacy and closing ourselves off. I know I am one of them. But my youth was one as she describes, stepping out in the streets and neighborhood and playing all day with kids who were there. Of course, they were all "white" kids like me. Too bad!

I think about this more now than I ever did before since having kids. I hope that they continue to be oblivious to a person's skin color or religion but I know this world will change them, regardless of what I do to influence them. Thankfully, we now live in a more diverse community than we did a year ago but I still ponder how I can best keep their hearts and minds open. Good post.

Great post, Anna. Unfortunately, I think we will have to continue to address this issue for a long time to come. I have one set of grandparents that came from the Phillippines (during the 1940's) and one set of great-grandparents that came from Sweden (early 1900's). While it may seem obvious that my Filipino grandparents dealt with direct discrimination, but my Swedish great-grandparents, AND their children suffered from discrimination. Even at the turn of the century, and through the rest of the century, there has been discrimination against a certain race(s) - although, I have to think that the focus of our discrimination shifts from one group to another. A very sad truth, and I say we must never give up on ourselves, our neighbors and our kids to embrace our differences. Thank you for your thoughtful post!

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