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Cultural diversity. What to do to make your and my community a better place?

I've had a lot a experiences in my life and a lot of them were because of misunderstanding each other. Some of them because of lack of reason, asking questions, talking, sharing.

The question is - what to do to make the world a better place for everybody?

Am idea worth spreading?

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    Jul 5 2013: I think we have to be willing to put ourselves in a vulnerable position.

    Go out on an inter-cultural limb..............reach out to others.

    Spot a foreigner around you? Start a conversation......why not?

    Just this morning I spoke to a Japanese woman shopping with her baby.
    We had a delightful talk.

    We have to get away from thinking of others as "those people".........we are ALL people.......ALL the same......and different at the same time.

    So, let's get to know each other, and forget cultural divides!
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    Jul 6 2013: I think progressive thinking, openness and an understanding that my culture is not superior to any other but is just one of many can make difference.
    For example, in India counting starts with the little finger, not the thumb. So a parallel of thumbs up in India can be sticking the little finger out. I hope you can imagine how hilariously confusing it can be in the west :) By the same token, showing the thumb in India is still considered as derisive (meaning loser, stupid etc.). That a culture can see this gesture as different and accepting that with respect are the first step to living in a multicultural world intelligently and happily.
    Compassionate understanding, IMO, is the key.
    The idea of otherness is a mutant of prehistoric clan. If anything is truly global today, its not behaving like an westerner in the East or vice verse rather living with the appreciation that cultural differences are interesting stories to read to get to the universal message : we are basically same human being.
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      Jul 6 2013: Thanks, Pabitra.

      Yes, we are all apes :)

      Appreciation, compassion, understanding, caring, these were your points, right?
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        Jul 7 2013: Yes Anna, those are my points.
        About approximately 25 years ago, I took part in a theater workshop where a lady from the US also participated. Now a theater workshop can get pretty intensive where people live almost a camp life and can come pretty close to each other. It was only much later I understood how hard it had been for that lady to cope with us; a rowdy, loud and energetic gang of people.
        This lady was a blonde and very pale complexioned. She used to add a bit too much make-up which as a make up artist I pointed out to her.
        'But am I not too pale for you guys to like?' She said.
        I could realize later that it was not feminine complex. She was trying not to offend our eastern sense of beauty. I think she was being compassionately intelligent.
        I saw a man from Teater Pero (Sweden) suffering extreme discomfort just to learn sitting in lotus position in another workshop.
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          Jul 7 2013: Thanks for your comment, Pabitra.

          Peace and best wishes :)
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    Jul 7 2013: Hi Anna,
    I perceive humans, and the human life experience to be very fascinating, so I have explored every opportunity with curiosity and intent to learn. I've discovered that most people love to share themselves, their/our stories and cultures, so I like to be open to that possibility. I have learned that we are all more the same than different, and it is our differences from which we learn. I would not deny myself that opportunity because I consider it a gift:>)
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    Jul 7 2013: Being aware that others can have different perspective of the same thing as one is seeing or thinking about it before jumping into any conclusion .
  • Jul 6 2013: You are asking what this website is asking.
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      Jul 6 2013: I'mk looking for stories and perspectives. Thanks for your comment.
      • Jul 6 2013: Oh well alright if you want my opinion people now days should start listening to reason and the men who are reason's masters (scientist) instead of listening and creating irrationalities that breed hate and ignorance. Stop listening to your gut and start listening to your head.
      • Jul 6 2013: heart gut same thing as long as it doesn't go against logic there's no problem.
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    Jul 6 2013: I went to an inner city school with a 50% diversity rate. Stereotypes were broken down and instead of viewing my peers as culturally different I was able to view their similarities instead. We were a performing arts school with not a single sports team so there were choir, orchestra, band, art, and acting classes where everyone with similar interests sat in a room and interacted on a daily basis. Exposing children to as many different types of people as possible allows them to form their own opinions based on personal experience as opposed to the opinions of others. It has to be a safe environment where healthy interactions take place. Submerging children in an environment where so many different cultures are cohesively working together means they will be able to adapt much easier as adults to situations in the workplace and elsewhere. A higher level of comfort in communicating and understanding the societal issues that vary in importance between cultures helps breakdown those barriers that prevent us from systematically working together to achieve an optimal beneficial outcome.
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    Jul 7 2013: Did I say good old days in America? Did I wee wee in somebody's wheaties?
    Yes I did.
    Before WWII, there was a lot of " social injustice" in the USA. After the Civil War, many southerners resented former slaves for their loss to the union. This misplaced response festered into a boil on the American backside by the early 1900s, culminated when a group of Eugenicists went so far to suggest sterilization of minorities and those new immigrants who could not properly raise children. In one or two sterilized generations all would be a memory.
    Then came the war. Minorities, immigrants and whites fought together to face a national enemy. Yes, some where in separate combat units and racism was hard to be struck, but homecoming warriors had great respect for their fellow comrades in arms. Truman saw this change coming and integrated the services. Again, wasn't perfect all at once but it was a turning. It was the re-creation of an America that we could all be proud. We had a great renewed American culture. A great stew pot of pieces of many cultures blended together in an unique experience not seen anywhere in the world. That's what I meant.

    Now the question begs... just when did the golden old days exist? I thought I made that clear... from the end of WWII to the age of Aquarius.... my golden days... 1945 to 1960.

    To bad so many of you never knew that brief period.
    And don't tell me about the restricted bus and lunch rooms; those were on the way out. President Johnson was an just an astute politician like all politicians who knew how to lead from behind.
    • Jul 18 2013: could not agree more - how many history books state that the battle of san juan hill, african american soldiers were with the rough riders? (side note: believe Theodore Roosevelt put up 5 for the medal of honor). General of the Army John Pershing was called Black Jack because of his support of African American troops. He finally had to bow and obey the orders of Woodrow Wilson remove African American soldiers from the Army.
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    Jul 7 2013: A lot has been made of the cultural diversity of the USA.
    It used to be based on the French ideal of "all for one and one for all" In fact the national slogan was "One nation, under God". Well, that "American culture" a melting pot of many cultures in an harmonious blend became more individualized during the "Age of Aquarius."
    This period in recent American history were the social norm was focused on the individual, doing their own thing, doing what feels good. People grouped around various ethic, linguistic, social, financial, religious, racial cultures and quickly assumed an "us verses them" new American culture.
    I long for the good old days when we Americans regardless of race, creed, national origin, were just Americans.
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        Jul 7 2013: Oh, come on.

        I don't know where you are from and what you have experienced, but the so-called good old Texas-days are over. Please ask me questions if anything in this comment is uncomfortable to you. Please see my other comments as well.

        I wish you and everybody well.

        Peace,

        Anna
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        Jul 7 2013: Sorry, I probably misunderstood something.

        I will ask for a clarification.

        Could everybody clarify?

        Thx, TD!
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      Jul 7 2013: Hi Mike,

      What I long for is this:

      - that in a melting pot everybody will have their say and that it's all going to be fine for everybody

      just to add a thing:

      - sometimes I feel like Eurotrash - but I know I'm not that, I'm a good person, American, Euro or whatever
      - I wish you and all other commenters well
      - thank you for your comment

      Best wishes.
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        Jul 7 2013: I had a college professor in a bilingual education course I took a looooong time ago who called America a "salad".......lots of ingredients(people,cultures) all coming together to make a wonderful dish........verses a melting pot, where all ingredients melt and blend into one.

        I like her view of America.
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          Jul 7 2013: Thanks, Mary.

          Please see and review my other comments, especially the ones on Dalai Lama.

          Best wishes.
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        Jul 7 2013: Anna,
        No culture is about anyone having their say. Culture is about coming together in common experiences, sharing common goals.

        You have addressed what I find so discomforting.
        "Everybody has their say and wants what they want...." Selfishness? Greed? What I want and what makes me feel good?
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      Jul 7 2013: Hey Mike,
      While there certainly are some Americans who have an ""us verses them" attitude, I perceive that we are evolving beyond that paradigm, and many of us are genuinely connecting with each other.

      You say you..."... long for the good old days when we Americans regardless of race, creed, national origin, were just Americans."

      We can look way back to the good old days in 1776, when a group of men who owned hundreds of slaves, signed a document, which said all men are free. Those same men, according to law at the time "owned" their wives because wives were considered "property" of the husband. Are those the good ol' days you refer to Mike?

      Do you remember the good ol' days when slavery was perfectly acceptable? Do you remember in the 1960s, when there were still drinking fountains for whites, and separate drinking fountains for blacks? Do you remember when whites and blacks were required to sit in different sections of the bus? That was only about 50 years ago. Are those the good old days you refer to?
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        Jul 7 2013: Yes, Colleen,

        Recently, there was a terrible disaster in the town of West, Texas, A number of Texans from across the state and even some honorary Texans that live in other states went out of their way to help these people raise the barn so to speak.
        You say some Americans have an "attitude" of 'us verse them'... I am beginning to think that is most Americans... I guess I can Google the groups and list the membership, I kind of did that for another conversation and the numbers began to look like it would be a lot easier to do the negative.
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          Jul 8 2013: Mike,
          You were the one, who wrote, in your previous comment....." People grouped around various ethic, linguistic, social, financial, religious, racial cultures and quickly assumed an "us verses them" new American culture."

          I do not agree that we have a "new American culture", which divides "us verses them". I see most people coming together and learning from the past that "us verses them" doesn't work very well.

          BTW, I am very aware of the disaster in the town of West, Texas. My son in law was one of the first responders.

          The topic question is:
          "Cultural diversity. What to do to make your and my community a better place?"
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        Jul 8 2013: Hi Colleen,
        You see the culture glass half full, I see it half empty.
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          Jul 8 2013: You're right Mike...I see cultural diversity as a gift....an opportunity for all of us to learn more about each other:>)
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