By definition, a melting pot requires assimilation and cohesion. Two of the dirtiest words in American culture because both require buy-in and letting go, these words are synonymous with sell-out, wannabe and many less desirable terms in many ethnic communities. We live in a country in which regardless of your ethnicity you can choose to worship, live, shop and so much more with only your kind, yet we claim to be a melting pot. The truth is and we all know it, the pot never melted. The majority of people are comfortable in their communities and while we may work together and attend school together, we rarely if ever associate with each other.
My favorite analogy is one I often think of when I attend weddings. I have thought at least since high school possibly longer, that if I were to marry, and only black folk were invited, that would be a sad testament of my life and friendships. Weddings to me show who people are. Weddings show the bonds that they have formed over time, I have always wanted my relationships to be diverse, if we live in a melting pot, they should be…
I am blessed I have always been surrounded by a diverse group of family friends and associates even during my pro black, black and proud phase… Ah, high school. I worship in a relatively diverse congregation that is so full of love it’s overwhelming at first, yet beautiful; it is what God intended. I have tended to work in environments where I was the only one or one of a few but have never felt like a token. I am comfortable in my skin thus comfortable having the hard conversations with those of other ethnicities without becoming offended.
Do we want a melting pot complete with assimilation and cohesion?
Are we willing to educate others, without judging their ignorance?
Are we willing to be held accountable for our ignorance?