One of the most beautiful realities of the United States of America is our beautiful array of colors. Browns. Dark brown, light brown, medium shades of brown. Varying shades of white. Black hair, blond hair, red hair, brown hair… And you can see these colors in many places as we travel across the country or just throughout the city. Variety. Diversity. To many this diversity of colors, races, ethnic groups is beautiful. 

When we allow our minds to go beyond the surface beauty that our eyes see and take into account that we’re looking at persons who are mind/intelligence;feelings/emotions and able to experience joy, sadness, excitement, anger; spirit who longs to belong, to fit in, to be accepted and embraced, heart that, in most cases, wants to embrace as well as be embraced, and realize that these same attributes belong to everyone regardless of color, or race or ethnicity, we easily come to realize that in our diversity we have much in common. So much in common that even though some cultural differences do exist, that which makes us common pervades. Our humanness.

We know that because cultural differences (diversity) exist, marketers consider cultural facts when trying to effectively market to a specific group. We may be tempted to conclude that that which makes us different is most obvious and significant when it comes to marketing. But although there may be different factors to consider as companies consider their target markets and how to best reach them,  we shouldn’t overlook the other obvious and basic fact that all of the groups are seen as someone to reach.

We know that there are many forms of religion and even within Christianity, there are variations in how we worship. But while these differences exist, we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that peoples of all colors, races, ethnicities find it important to worship, to practice religion.

There is much more that can be said about our commonalities that often trump our differences/diversity but, hopefully, the point is coming across.  

On January 20, 2009, the day of his inauguration, President Barack Obama proclaimed “January 20, 2009, a National Day of Renewal and Reconciliation” and called “upon all of our citizens to serve one another and the common purpose of remaking this Nation of our new century.”

After decades, especially the most recent past, of moving back towards a time of extreme division, it’s important that the people of our nation be reconciled to one another across gender lines, party lines, race lines… It’s clear that the majority of America’s people (along with the majority of our fellow man around the world) celebrate Barack Obama’s rise to the presidency. Those of us who do celebrate should continue to do what many were doing during the campaign. Examine ourselves. We should continue to look deeply into our souls, our minds, our attitudes, our personalities and more and more clearly see who we really are. It’s important that the harmony that began during the campaign doesn’t begin to fade within a few months or even a few years of Mr. Obama’s presidency. We shouldn’t allow continued hard times or a greatly improved situation determine how we respond to each other. In the end, we should not focus primarily on our common circumstances but, rather, our common humanity as we determine whether our embrace of one another will be temporary or lasting.