I then understood that I had been taught that certain neighborhoods were dangerous for me, when in reality I can walk in just about any neighborhood without harm ever coming to me. Yet I was taught to live in fear of crossing boundaries.
After that realization, I decided to work on loving people of all genotypes. I'm aware it’s a kind of a strange aspiration, but for whatever reason it became mine. It helps that I live in a multiracial community--and that my kids attended multiracial schools. Adoring kids is easy for me. And once they've grown up my love for them doesn't go away.
This week I'm visiting New York City, an amazing cross-section of humanity, which has given me a chance to see how I've done on my goal. I'm proud to say I've succeeded. Most of the human faces I pass by remind me of someone I know. In each stranger's face I see someone I feel warmly towards, which makes them less of a stranger in my heart. And that makes the world feel like a safer place. I'm no longer living in fear of a lie. Instead I'm living a life of appreciation--for all of the (not so) strangers around me.