Okay I will give you all a brief rest from my sorrowful postings. I don’t think I will ever be not depressed though really, seems to be my natural state of being for the last 25-30 years with a tiny little break from it in 1994 – 1996 then back to being utterly depressed and without hope whatsoever.
Today while flipping through channels on the radio looing for some music amidst all of the advertisements that seem to pop up all at once (I swear it’s a conspiracy in the radio business to all have adverts run at the same exact time), I ran across a talk radio program and happened to catch the topic question at the right moment. I don’t usually listen to any talk format radio unless it’s an interview with a favorite actor or musician. The question got me thinking though anyways. I love intellectual stimulation as I never really get it like I should. They asked whether or not children should be taught about racism when they are young.
Of course it’s a rather touchy subject no matter who you are. At some point in history, every social group on earth has been a victim of racism. This is not a concept that only cropped up within the past couple of centuries. In a perfect world, we could say nothing to children about racism and hope that it vanishes completely with the death of the previous generation. Unfortunately the world does not work that way. First off, how can you properly teach them history without discussing the reasons why some groups would kill or enslave other groups, or the bigotry that fuels civil unrest much like what happened in the 1950s and ’60s in America, and why some groups are just not treated equally to others? Sadly this permeates human history just as much as war, conquest, exploration, technological advancements, etc. And then of course there are previous generations who still feel the sting of being wronged in their lifetimes due to their ancestral background or skin color and carry with them the pain and hatred. This previous generation can sometimes infect the new generation with their ideas, even if unintentional. It is also in human nature to shun that which is different.
I think racism should be discussed with children. Hiding the truth from them is never a good thing, especially these days when even a 5 year old can surf the web and find anything and everything at their fingertips. Let them know of it’s existence and show them the evils it has brought unto this world. Make sure they understand that it is wrong. Make it a lesson in learning from one’s mistakes, rising above it all, and maybe then it can eventually fade from society.