8 December 2017Opinion
What’s the difference between an African, European and an Asian skeleton? Absolutely nothing – they are identical. In modern society, we are so divided on anything and everything that I’m surprised we have made it as far as we have.
People hold racist views for arbitrary reasons; whether it be their upbringing, religious views, or belief of certain stereotypes. People are racist. That’s just how it is, and probably how it will always be. We have created barriers as a society that causes us to view each other for our breed, rather than our species, and it has hindered us in many ways throughout history.
Personally, I am able to see the earth as a colossal, organic spaceship flying through space at immense speeds in an endless abyss of blackness. Essentially, apart from turning me into a complete nihilist, holding this view allows me to see us for what we are: humans. Insignificant, tiny humans. I spend a lot of time gazing into the night sky, mesmerised by the sheer expanse of stars and wondering what is out there, in what I describe as a truly “humbling experience”. While doing so, I tend to think of the possibility of extraterrestrial life, and what the aliens would think of us as a species if we were ever contacted by them. Would they laugh at how we have managed to spread hatred and division so extensively?
Apart from space and aliens, I also look at other creatures here on Earth, like dogs and cats. Do bulldogs hold prejudices against chihuahuas? Probably not. You may argue that we are much smarter than dogs, but to that I must ask: If we are so much smarter, why do we value the life of a family pet over the lives of the copious amounts of people living in fear and poverty on the other side of the globe? Why do we fork out thousands of dollars to give a family pet (that essentially serves no purpose other than to keep us company) life-saving surgery, but are reluctant to drop a couple of bucks into a homeless man’s cup? Or to sponsor a child in Africa for a dollar?
It is truly perplexing to try to understand why we operate the way we do.
We get so caught up in our own lives and issues that we tend to forget that other people exist, going through their own trials and tribulations, just fighting to live out a peaceful life. We see the colour of another and immediately begin to label and judge based on what we see. It is truly depressing to think that this is what we are. We have fought wars, slaughtered millions of our own, for what? Rather than living a cohesive life of collaborating to better the lives of all, we are playing a game of divide and conquer. We isolate each other and feel as if we deserve more than someone else because of a genetic difference.
No one can choose where they are born. We do not get to choose our lives, and we cannot change our race or alter history. We have all been placed on this earth for whatever reason, and, whether you believe in creationism or otherwise, there is no changing the fact that we are all human, and must share this world with those different to us, whether we like it or not.
So, I must ask: when you are on your death bed and the light to the other side grows brighter and brighter, will you reflect on your life and remember the moments you were racist? Will you reflect on how you called someone names or denied them assistance or service, smile to yourself and be pleased by that action? Will that be a highlight of your life? Will you be satisfied if you had a chance to change the world and do amazing things but didn’t because you didn’t want to work with someone who had different skin? Will you leave this realm with a smile on your face knowing that you spent your life being bitter, and angry at others because of their genetic makeup?
Maybe you will be, but as your skeleton is lying in that grave, your neighbours are all going to look identical. We are all human – why don’t we start acting like it?