Thursday, July 31, 2008

How To Make Unknown Quantities into Known Quantities?

Recently I posted a blog that asked, “Are People Really Racist Or Just Scared Of The Unknown Quantity?” To which I received a couple of rather different responses. Here I will share the first and later, in another post, will share the other. Both add interesting insights into a very complex matter, that I can only touch on in my blogs, so thanks to all for your input into my thoughts and blogs.

Anyway here is the first and I quote, “Hi Walter, Well I think I am in a position to comment on your little article and I have to agree with you because most people no matter who or what they are, turn out to be just like us in most respects. As you can imagine I have a lot to do with Chinese people and find them to be extremely nice people, (of course the fact that they are Christians helps a lot) but generally speaking they are terrific.

I will give you a better example. Years ago when I was working for an English company here in Melbourne, we had a young German fellow start work with us. He was very reserved and everybody said he was a hard-nosed Kraut. I actually went out of my way to befriend him and used to go and sit with him for lunch. He turned out to be an extremely nice, but sensitive young man. He was frightened that being in an English company he would be looked down on by the other workers, (a hang over from WWII) and hence the reason for his withdrawal from the rest. We are still friends to this day but unfortunately I seldom see or hear from him because he bought a farm up near Wangaratta and he is kept very busy.

If I had not taken the trouble to make the first move and let him know that he could be my friend, he would probably have gone on being lonely and dissatisfied with his job, but he blossomed and became a good worker for the company. ****”

This is just a reminder that a person’s actions and motivations, may not necessarily be the same as we judge them and like this German, instead of being proud or arrogant and just another hard nosed "Kraut", was in fact a rather timid, shy and intimidated person and was only withdrawing into his shell as a form of protection and self-preservation.

That is not to say that one won’t occasionally come across some genuine hard-nosed “Krauts” of all races and nationalities, but that we should always judge each person individually and not collectively. And also that we should always do our best to get to know the true “Inner” person before we do judge too. What say you”? Either to my friend or to me?

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