Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 7/09/18

“Diversity” seems to be in every other sentence these days. I don’t think we can merely intellectualize diversity, we have to live it, not as some special accommodation or event, but as a way of life. The word traditionally means “exhibiting variety.” That goes beyond skin color, or ethnicity, or physical abilities, or sexual orientation to include thought, and ideas, and talents, and politics.

We’re on our annual sojourn to the Jersey Shore (where real men play kids’ games, seagulls can carry off small dogs, and the beach is sand, not rocks). Taking the kids down the boardwalk, or merely having a cigar on the porch overlooking the ocean, I’m in a sea of diversity (pun intended). We hear, read, and see intolerance all too often, but we don’t so consciously acknowledge the wonderful changes around us. There is a vast assortment of humanity here primarily oriented toward enjoyment.

When I was a kid and (infrequently) was taken to Palisades Amusement Park in Fort Lee, NJ, everyone looked the same. I thought this was the world, the same as my grammar school.

It was a lot better for my kids, and now for our grandchildren. We learn a lot more, and what I especially learn watching people chowing down, playing games, and watching their families is that we’re all much more similar than dissimilar.

When we’re talking about diversity, it’s not a box to check. It is a reality that should be deeply felt and held and valued by all of us. —Ava DuVernay

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