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Are You Aware? This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Awareness. Most people feel that they are very aware of things going on in today's world. As a student, you're aware of what's expected of you. As an American, you're aware of your basic rights. As a teenager, you're aware of what your limits are. However, there is one "awareness" I think we all have to work on: multi-cultural awareness.

Yes, that's right - multi-cultural awareness. It's a phrase you may or may not hear often. It's basically being aware of the other cultures and ethnicities in our world and respecting them and their differences.

Why do I feel we need to work on this? Because I know that there are a lot of people out there who are not multi-culturally aware, and as a minority, I can honestly tell you that the world would be a much better place if we saw each other as people, not colors or races.

This past year, there has been a lot of racial violence in Eastern Massachusetts. "Racial tension" were words I heard or read about way too often. Many schools and towns were unfortunately publicized for their racial tensions and fights that were "racially motivated." We're seeing each other as colors and not people, and I believe the fights and tensions won't end until we realize that.

Everyone is unique or different - whether it be hair color, SAT scores, tastes in music, or ethnic descent. Someone's ethnicity can differentiate you from the person sitting next to you, and his/her culture should be recognized. But to treat someone differently because they are a different race or religion, or even in another clique at school is wrong, be-cause underneath we're all the same. I think Janet Jackson said it best - "In complete darkness, we are all the same. It is only our knowledge and wisdom that separates us. Don't let your eyes deceive you." As a minority, I'm asking you to help our future make a turn for the better: please learn how to be multi-culturally aware. n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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