Growing Up Diverse in Utah

Growing up in Utah, “diversity” meant finding someone in my grade school class who attended the Catholic Church (Which surprised me, because I wasn’t aware that was a Catholic Church anywhere in or around my city, so I assumed they must travel to Salt Lake City to worship). I was told that some people have hatred of “Colored” and “Whites.” I supposed that if I ever met one of these “Colored” I would find out what that was about, and try not to hate them. Perhaps it has to do with separating the laundry? Someone then tried to tell me that the “color” was actually “black” which made even less sense – black is not really a color, is it?

In short, there simply was not a lot of racial diversity in Utah for me to learn from.

Even today, the diversity is still not visible by skin color. It is mostly evident by people who talk really fast and say words like “Hola! ¿Cómo es usted? Múdese de mi manera; juego mi coche estéreo fuertemente.”

Let’s face it … even today, the greatest display of “racial diversity” in Utah happens when the Utah Jazz play a team from out-of-town. And in that venue, the out-of-towners get booed by the home crowd.

I grew up with a vague understanding that Martin Luther translated the Bible into German. I was told that his translation was one of the truest and most-faithful translations, when compared to the original text. Although to be honest, I never read either the original text or Brother Luther’s translation – I have stuck mostly with King James’.

Martin Luther King Jr. took up Martin Sr’s cause of doing good, and told people to treat others nicely.

Though, let’s be honest: I’ve not yet been able to fully grasp the connection of a man in 1483 having a son in 1929. I might be mixed up on a detail somewhere in there. I’ll check Wikipedia later.

I’m pleased to report that in the years since, I’ve started to straighten these things out in my own mind. My work has taken me to South Carolina a few times, where I’ve met some fantastic people with naturally darker-skin (I am told it is natural, anyway – back home people of darker skin go to one of those forbidden business with tanning booths). And I am pleased to report, I have found nothing to hate about any of them (some of them are Democrats, but I still don’t HATE them for that). So I treat them like I would hope to be treated, and things have worked out really well.

I heard some of them even go to a different church than I do (I suppose I’d expect that since 3000 miles is a long way to travel just to come to the same church). But I think most of them believe, as I do, that we are all brothers and sisters of a Heavenly Father, who loves us all.

And that part makes perfect sense to me.

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