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I was at a church seminar this morning and had the opportunity to talk with a young man who confessed to coming from a "messy, broken background." I nodded my head, understanding and empathizing with his experiences.
I remember having mixed emotions about moving to Washington, DC two years ago. My father, who had lived in the East Coast for at least a decade before moving to California, warned me that not only would I have to get used to a concept known as "seasons," but also, East Coast culture, including the people, was different from the warm utopia of my Golden State.
Within two weeks of moving to Washington, I had made the switch from jeans, flip flops, and a tank top, to the three- piece suit. As I was walking down the infamous K Street, a young woman came up to me, asking me if I "had a minute for the environment." But, before I could respond, she proceeded to comment, "Let me guess where you're from... you look exotic."
I remember attending a progressive/public service-oriented leadership conference two years ago where I had the opportunity to momentarily step out of my San Francisco bubble and interact with other young people around the country. As usual, I engaged in dialogue with other service-oriented idealists about the need to wake up government and inspire action among our less active young counterparts. As the participants and myself got to know each other more, the seem to be quite receptive to, if not in awe of, my Bay Area background. While hailing from "liberal utopia" sat well with my colleagues, many appeared puzzled by my religious affiliation.
"Did you say you were Catholic? Well, you're not like other church people I know."
Deeper & Deeper
I am not an African, I am not an American, I am not white, I am not black, I am not a Michigander, I am not a catholic, I am from no country, I am of no nation. I like to consider myself a global citizen, a person of the world. The constructed boundaries of countries hold no bearing in my mind, I see no lines drawn upon the earth and I believe that no falsely imposed blockade of governments can hold me back. We are all people of this world and being so we all hold the same basic hopes and dreams. Everyone wants enough food to eat, clean water to drink, a shelter to be warm or safe, education for themselves and their children, and most importantly to be loved by one another. There are no boundaries when people care.