Home > Reflections > Not a diversity character

Not a diversity character

I enjoy being
surrounded by
diverse characters
both in fiction and
my personal life.

The diversity is
in the totality,
not the individual.

I am less
comfortable
with individual
diversity characters,
or individual characters
who are individually “diverse.”
The fact of their individual diversity
signifies that there is a normal,
a baseline, and they
are not it.

I, an agnostic woman
with fair skin,
am not a diversity character.
My husband, a Christian
man with darker skin,
is not a diversity character.
Our kids, young
Christians with
skin of shades
in between ours,
are not
diversity characters;

but together, by virtue
of our individual experiences
(including, not exclusively
derived from, those experienced
by virtue of the shades of our skin),
we are a diverse lot.

The diversity is in
the totality, not
the individual.

The creator
who fails to
understand
the distinction
will surely,
inadvertently,
show it, and
in the process
alienate portions
of a population
so more diverse
than the creation
reflects.

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Categories: Reflections Tags: , ,
  1. February 23, 2016 at 7:15 am

    I love this post! Very well written my dear. Kudos!!!💜

  2. February 23, 2016 at 1:01 pm

    “The diversity is in
    the totality, not
    the individual.”

    I’ve never thought of that, but now that you mention it, so true. Puts a different spin on how I’ll use that word in the future. Smart thinking.

    • February 24, 2016 at 3:38 am

      I actually read a couple of things that made me recoil and exclaim to myself something akin to, “Gah! Is that how you think of my husband? Of my kids? Each a token ‘diverse character’? Noooo!”

      The intention was good: striving toward greater inclusion. The baseline assumption troubled me, though, having seen now (from white folks, usually) many, many expressions of the idea diversity resides in non-white people. Nooooo!

      Thank you for your comment. ♡

  3. February 23, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    I’ll have to give this some thought. I’ve been thinking about diversity a lot in terms of personality types. I feel like we’re generally attracted to friends who share similar beliefs and interests but so much of my growth in life came during periods when I was surrounded by differing viewpoints and as a result had to constantly reconcile, justify, or discard my own.

    • February 24, 2016 at 3:47 am

      Thank you for your thought-provoking comment!

      Online, my friends are a less diverse politically than they are offline. Something about that particular kind of discourse can make it feel very ugly when abstracted from a living, breathing human whose good intentions and hopes shine clearer in living color. Offline, there’s more diversity and more candid conversation, save with those I love who have a track record of trying to smite all who disagree!

      Apart from that, one of my favorite things about being online is how much more I’m able to see and understand (on some level). I love the illumination of it, which is–I suspect–a large part of why I so loved the novel I just finished reading. (The other large part was everything else about it.) I’ll probably write a post about it, but man. First I have to be able to find the words, not just the tears!

  4. February 27, 2016 at 5:17 am

    Love this! Yes, this is true always. We are not diverse characters based on something as simple as our outward appearance, this would be far too simple. It is unfortunate this is the first thing we are identified by, all too often wrongly. Our individuality is the make-up of our spirit, our experiences and how we have processed these to become ourselves.

    • March 6, 2016 at 5:53 am

      Everything you said! All of it. I read a fantastic post on a like note yesterday, but did not have the sense to mark it for later return. If I did, I might have shared it here … for your appreciation, if not illumination. 🙂
      *hugs*

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