May 8, 2013
Global perspectives forced me to slow down and contemplate the world around me. Contemplate the human rights issues, the cultural challenges, and the historical adversities our world has overcome. The class project gave me a deeper appreciation for the importance of retaining cultural diversity. The class assignments developed compassion in me for victims of human rights violations.
Human rights issues always seemed to be someone else’s problem. As the world becomes more global someone else’s problems are becoming more and more my problem. Before the explosion of mass media outlets (through the internet) I could proclaim, “Ignorance is bliss”. Now the local bingo winner is not the only news. Stories of rape in India, anti-semantic crimes in Germany, grieving relatives separated between North and South Korea are reported within minutes and seconds of their occurrences. Terrorism was a problem in the Middle East not at a Boston marathon. How would our nation be different today if someone attending Dartmouth had noticed Dzhokhar Anzorovich and taken more interest in this Russian migrant with failing grades?
Migrants face many obstacles assimilating. Cultural challenges to assimilate yet retain individuality. Stereotype’s concerning their homeland, race, and religion, ethnocentrism. I myself had misguided notions about French people and their personal hygiene. Thankfully, these notions were exposed as negative stereotype and dispelled. I now feel a responsibility to seek out the truth concerning preconceived ideas. Embracing diversity requires letting go, tolerating, changing.
Learning to change is what has helped us overcome past adversities. At one time nations were independent of each other competing to be the greatest. World leaders have learned the benefit of working together. After World War II, France realized the value of its allies and...