Opinion: Diversity will open your mind to difference

Taylor Miksic

Taylor Miksic

Taylor Miksic is a freshman news major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].

Diversity: “the state of being diverse; variety.” This word gets thrown around a lot. You hear all the time how learning about diversity is important.

In fact, high schools and colleges have specific days dedicated to educating about other races and religions.

On Monday there was an awards ceremony at the Kiva to present the Robert G. McGruder Award for diversity from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. The award winner for 2012 is Debra Adams Simmons, the editor of The Plain Dealer in Cleveland.

Adams Simmons gave a moving and entertaining speech saying how honored she was and went on to talk about the kind of man McGruder was and how he “created opportunity where none existed” for many.

McGruder, who passed away in 2002, was the first African American journalist for The Plain Dealer and the first African American editor in 1978.

McGruder is one of many to work through differences to succeed. Although times have changed and being African American is not quite as large of an obstacle, there are still judgmental and racist people in the world.

Today’s biggest fear may very well be Muslims, but if taken the time to learn about the religion, you would see that it is a peaceful religion.

As an Army ROTC cadet, it is beneficial for me to learn about other religions and cultures, because if deployed I would be sent places where there are different ways of doing things.

During an ROTC lab, we were brought to a lecture hall to learn about Islam. The guest speaker was Muslim herself. I learned a lot I didn’t know that could be useful if I ever had to interact with Muslims.

Some may be afraid to learn about something other than what they believe in, but it should not cause fear: It should open your mind. Knowing all the different beliefs could help improve your own. Having diversity days in high school and college is a great start to opening America’s mind to different kinds of people.