country boy travels 206
group photo
ocean view
great wall
market

TRAVEL. EXPLORE. EXPERIENCE.

TRAVEL. EXPLORE. EXPERIENCE.

TRAVEL. EXPLORE. EXPERIENCE.

TRAVEL. EXPLORE. EXPERIENCE.

TRAVEL. EXPLORE. EXPERIENCE.

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Concept Paper – Good Human – Reflections of Travels

I’m reflecting on how we treat people as a whole and different societies. Not from the perspective of right and wrong, but wondering if some common themes and threads bind us together. I’m reminded of a conversation that I had with my driver as we were headed back to the hotel. He worked in South Africa, but he was from Zimbabwe. And he talked about the South Africans and how they treated people from Zimbabwe and other nations, and he said, “What is the difference between us,” “what is the difference a river only separates us. Are we going to let a river separate us, we are the same?” 

That is true; we are all the same. Our values, traditions, and governments have separated us and made us believe that somehow we are different and better than others. Do we need values, practices, government, and norms? I believe so. It is what keeps us from descending into lawlessness; it is what gives us a sense of safety, security, and comfort. However, the dependence on government has made us forget to think. We rely severely on their communication without question. What do I mean? This recent trade war with China has proved one point that we all look after our interest but not necessary for the good of the people. China put out a travel warning advising their people not to come to the United States citing police brutality among African Americans, the number of guns owned by its citizens, and the potential to get killed. Now, of course, we know this has been going on for a while. However, the goal behind the communications was to impact the travel of their citizens to the United States, thereby affecting our economy. Likewise, with our president and his “shit hole countries,” remarks impact the perception of our citizens towards other countries. 

This perception is amplified in how we treat each other. As I was talking to the Japanese man there in South Africa and his perception of the workers, it was the typical colonial thinking. He stated they wanted something for nothing and complained about them being late, but without acknowledging with the system was not designed for them to succeed. The public transportation is not reliable, and they just come out from segregation. I went through the history of our country and reminded him that when we came out of slavery, we were still not yet free. Some laws were established and terrorism against the freed slaves. They told us we were free but did not give us fair wages and opportunities. They convinced us that we were lazy because we didn’t want to work like slaves for scraps. So they told us that we are just going to segregate you, and you can have your communities, but you would not be equal. What did we do, we took that and ran with it. We began to prosper and create a middle class. We had economic power within our community but not equality in our own country. So what did the government and societies do, they changed the rules again and said that you could come work for us and be apart of our community.

All anyone wants to be in life is equal. Have an equal chance and equal opportunity. So what happened was, we took it, but it was anything but equal. If our counterpart needed a high school diploma, we required a bachelor. If they wanted an entry-level trade degree, we required a master’s level trade degree. And what was the thought back then, “well, they are taking our jobs.” Fast forward to now, I have noticed that many of these countries are very young democracies. We have had our freedom for hundreds of years, and we are still trying to get it together. Did you realize we have never had a Native American president? And we took their lands. 

Now I said we took their lands because I’m an American. Although I know my ancestors had nothing to do with taking their country, I’m American. On this visit, even from someone who has lived here for over 60 years believes it is an us and them — making statements, such as “well they” “and them,” indicating that they are not apart of this society. However, they are undoubtedly benefiting from it.