by Kazzandra Ysabel Baysa
Blue walls, blue floors, blue ceilings; blue skies, blue grass, blue everything.
It was monochromatic as far as my eyes could see. I stretch my white legs and take one step forward, I take another, and another as I look around. It was beautiful, the unity, the oneness of everything. I spot a blue wall and walk towards it, extending my white hand to touch an object unfamiliar to my senses. It felt strong, solid, and it smudged my hands with its color.
It was strange, to have a part of you tainted differently – but it was also exhilarating to become one with a world I woke up to, to join the harmony and feel the belongingness. I bring my hands together, spreading the color to my arms, my face, my body, until finally.
I became blue.
And I trudge on, farther and farther as I become engulfed in my world. I found more people of my own hue. I found more shades of my own paint. Cerulean, midnight, and cadet; aquamarine, teal, denim. Until my figure that was once small and plain became covered with every shade of what I call home, until I became anew as a citizen of our blue world.
But I was wrong, this is not a blue world.
A hand, a strange hand waves from across the distance. Far from where I am now, past a border I once thought was inexistent.
Somewhere that wasn’t blue. Somewhere that was different.
I gasp, in shock and awe. We are not alone. There is merely a thin line between blue and different. What is it like past that border, what is it like past blue?
What is it like past home?
Dreadful? Toxic? Dangerous?
I smile as footsteps echo behind me, and I start walking myself. After all, just because things are different, just because they are unknown, just because they are unfamiliar – does not mean they are dangerous.
And all it takes to get rid of unfamiliarity is open-mindedness, understanding, and communication. An ethic of care for the world.
For others this is just a quote from Philanthropist Hannah Arendt, but this very quote defines what it means to be a global citizen. To dedicate oneself not just to one’s city, or country, to not only be aware of the news in nearby provinces but also to every single place all around the globe. To every single living and non-living thing all around the home we call Earth.
“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
Home is not just within the four walls where we take our rest. Neighbors aren’t just those fellow citizens that live a few blocks away from where you reside. There may be well over a hundred flags in this world, different religions and beliefs, different cultures and traditions – but we are all under the same moon and sun. For home is our shared planet, and all are neighbors for all are citizens.
Regardless of their skin color, regardless of their gender and orientation. Regardless of their status, regardless of their occupation.
Why is 88% of performance reviews for women contain critical feedback while only 59% of men were criticized? Why is 78% of black and minority ethnic people excluded from the decision-making in their profession? Why is 59% of the LGBTQ still insulted in their workplace?
Is ethnocentrism bound to help in upholding each and every person’s role in the society when all it does is cause irreversible depression, PTSD, and anxiety?
One does not need oppressive ethnocentrism when each and every one of us has liberated uniqueness ready to make a difference. Why will you believe in one’s superiority when each color is too perfectly imperfect to count as a minority?
Because the world is polychromatic. And you cannot say that only one color is beautiful, as each and every color in our Earth has varied strengths, pros and cons.
Because, yes I was wrong, this is not a blue world. It is red, orange, yellow, green, violet, and everything in between.
I stretch my patched legs and take one step forward, I take another, and another as I look around. It was beautiful, the variety, the pattern of everything. It was strange, to have a part of you tainted differently – but it was also exhilarating to understand the uniqueness of the world I woke up to. I raise my blue hand as my smudges of yellow and orange glimmer in the sunlight.
I became a rainbow.
Many other patched people approach me as we laugh and join hands of different colors. There are still others out there, those that believe that we live in a one-sided world. And we shall move towards them and show them the beauty of being born to one color, and adapting to others as we grow.
Because what good is trampling on other shades and hues? What good is proving only one is superior when we can combine our strengths and become our own rainbow palette?
Remember, each and every color in our Earth is gorgeous. So why must we compete and dominate when we can unite as we create?