Feb. 25, 2017

DIVERSITY vs INCLUSION

Diversity and inclusion are not the same thing. An organization can be diverse without being inclusive. When this happens the old feeling of "the fly in a cup of buttermilk" comes forth.

To be inclusive organizations, groups and schools have to accept cultural differences. These differences must be embraced rather than thwarted. Countries like the United States are not homogeneous. They hav taken in people from different cultures, religions and beliefs. As such it behooves the hosting country to learn about those newly arrived and even those who have lived within their borders without recognition.

The United States has been seen as a melting pot and yet it has also in the past (recent and long-standing) neglected and negated those who do not conform to what is seen as desirable. The United States has decimated the Native People; engaged in slavery; expelled the Chinese; and interred the Japanese and yet it claims to live up to the idea of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." My question is who's life, liberty and happiness?

People have been marginazlized because of race, ethnicity,If gender, disability and sexual orientation. If we live in a country where it's claimed "all men are created equal" then why hasn't this played out in our history? If religuous freedom is guaranteed to all why are some people trying to impose their religious beliefs on everyone.

Inclusion means to me Do NO Harm. How people live; where people live and who they live with should not have to mandated by the government. What we seem to forget is that all of us are immigrants. Some came because they wanted to live free and others were shackled, chained and dragged here to be slaves. However, all now should be able to live freely.

Inclusion means accepting cultural differences and learning about and embracing them. It means finding out the true history of the United States and being appalled at some of its practices.

Inclusion means all are allowed to live without threats, lynchings, or feeling embarrassed because they're culture is different.

So make a plan to learn about others; celebrate their achievements and know we all can be better if allowed to be so.