At this point in my life I feel I almost have an equal claim to both the United States and Japan. Okay, not actually equal. But after spending a third of my life in Japan, I have some sort of claim to it. But my point is a similarity between the two. On some level both countries use a fear of the other in their politics. Both countries are guilty of pointing their fingers and saying these people will destroy our way of life. Who those people are might be different, but the idea that some powerful figures promote is that if there are differences present peace is unattainable.
This week I am at camp. My camp life always serves to underscore the absolute absurdity of that line of divisive thinking. This week I am mainly working on a time of five. We are from five different countries spanning four continents. Most of us grew up speaking different languages even if we now communicate in a common one. Although we don’t bring it up that often, religious differences also exist.
As I said, in my two countries powerful figures tell us becoming more multicultural would bring ruin. I can only shake my head at such a notion. There is such a positive bond between my team. Sure, there are cultural differences. But those differences add spice, not alienation. We offer each other friendship and respect. We work together and learn from each other.
When I hear those that spout foolishness I pity them for their ignorance even as I look down in their fear and hatred.
We have so much more we can accomplish by coming together rather than wallowing in divisiveness.