By: Dina Usanovic
I have recently become increasingly appreciative of my parents’ choice to expose me to multiple cultures as a child. We took yearly family vacations to different places and often traveled to Bosnia to visit family. Witnessing how different cultures lived and seeing traditions that were worlds away from my American traditions was incredibly eye-opening and allowed me to have respect for people that differed from me.
It is important to spread these ideas across the nation. Many children grow up in a bubble, unaware of people who live differently than they do. This often results in close-mindedness when it comes to other cultures. Raising children to be aware and respectful of differences could lead to a much more inclusive nation. This is especially important in the city of Cleveland.
Cleveland was named the most diverse city in Ohio in 2020. While it was named the most diverse city, it was also considered a hyper-segregated city as recently as 2018. Black History Month is incredibly important to a major portion of Cleveland, with African Americans making up the majority of the city at 46.6% of the population. Clevelanders being exposed to and accepting of different cultures is necessary if the city hopes to become less geographically segregated.
Citizens of Cleveland should make an effort to become aware of the incredible amount of diversity found in our city. Celebrating differences leads to a happier, healthier nation (and city) in which everyone feels at home. Take some time to learn about the different cultures found in your city, keep an open mind about people who differ from you, and do your part to create a welcoming environment.