Looking for humanity
I turned 50 in 2021. Imagine my surprise when I learned that the Race Relations Act is younger than me (1976). It was only in 2010 that the equality act was created, combining all the anti-discrimination laws that came into being since 1970. Race, disability, gender - change has been slow.
It was less than 50 years ago that it became unlawful to discriminate on grounds of race, colour, nationality (including citizenship), and national or ethnic origin. Less than two generations to combat hundreds of years of misconceptions, bigotry and unconscious bias created through culture and life.
'The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity' -Tolstoy
Call me naïve
Five decades of experiences have taught me that kindness, equality and inclusion are not commonplace, but more the exception to the rule. Survival of the fittest however is often misconstrued. It is not the bully, the oppressor or the powerful that rule unless we let them. Strength is found in community, kindness and resilience.
So call me naïve and let me believe that humans learn from mistakes. Let me trust that our self-awareness, that what makes us human, realises that alone we are nothing. Together, all of us, will choose humanity and the kindness at the heart of it. Let me cling on to this notion and hope that with every generation, kindness and compassion increase. Movements like #blacklivesmatter #metoo #ThingsDisabledPeopleKnow give me hope and strength. Strength to tell the type of story that too often is untold or ignored. Maybe, just maybe it will make a difference.