Seeing beyond color

When I was a kid, I had a friend who couldn’t tell the difference between blue and green, red, orange, yellow or world was a simple, soft array of black and white hues. Literally.Now, many years later, I walk the streets of Burlington in a pink shirt, trying to ignore the sneers and name-calling from the kids holding the corner down as I think back to second grade and my friend’s colorless world.Since when did color define us?Okay, that might be a loaded question, considering how large a role color has played in our history, but when did it become a crime for a male to wear a pink shirt without getting accosted for wearing a “feminine” color?Color goes much, much further than my wardrobe and yours, though.Just look toward the White House with our first black president living in it, who elected a brown-skinned woman to sit on our highest court.None of these color statements I’m using are meant to sound obligatory or degrading, since these are the words spun into a colorful web by the American mass media.Honestly, it makes me sick how much color plays a role in our lives today — decades after the Civil Rights movement.We use color to define and further divide ourselves into separate social classes and races, when, really, we’re all part of the same race.The human race.Sure, having our first black president is a milestone — something our parents thought they would never see.But the question, “What would a black president or Hispanic judge do differently from a white one?” is completely ridiculous.Why does it matter what color our elected officials are? Should they all not serve the American people equally, no matter what color we or they are?And are we not all equals as defined by the Constitution?Imagine if one day we discovered a race of human beings who were blue. Would we treat them as a lower class?Or would they instead treat us as the inferior race?It’s not as a far-fetched a question as you would be first led on to believe.Much like social class, color is an imaginary concept we’ve placed upon ourselves to segregate, derogate and incapacitate us from ever progressing as a species.Until we can all treat each other as true equals, we will be no better than savage animals.As this year progresses, I hope all of you can look beyond color, don’t buy the hype and be colorblind like my friend.As for me? I still plan to wear pink for a long time.