Standing Side by Side

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Yes I know this is a post with a lot of words and no pictures. I couldn't help it, feel free to skip at your leisure.

I didn't question the usefulness of a multicultural organization when I first stumbled upon Theta Nu Xi. I would have
to say instead that my first reaction was one of relief; relief to finally find an organization that would work with me and all that made up who I was. There was never a question of me choosing a part of my heritage to honor, of choosing which parent was going to be the one that was allowed to 'represent' me. The beauty inherent in Theta Nu Xi is that it's never about choosing just one thing - it's about being able to choose everything.

What does that mean? It means that the word multicultural is representative of the ability of the organization to welcome, encourage, and support women from all walks of life. I came into this sisterhood knowing intrinsically that the ideas and goals and interests that mattered the most to me would matter to my sisters. That every direction I turned I would find someone who would want to help make positive change in the world - and that the change they believed in would never be directed at one particular group over another.

I would never presume to say that there isn't a place for more culturally specific organizations - that isn't true and I know many people who have found a place for themselves in them. Instead I would say that for the women of Theta Nu Xi the world is too diverse a place to make a decision about what one people should get the focus of their efforts. Instead we are able to co-host with a number of Greek and non-Greek organizations to do the most to benefit our communities, since the diversity of our sisterhood determines the diversity of our programming - if a sister is inspired to do it, then there isn't a reason it can't be done. Our mission allows us that freedom, the freedom to welcome women of all ethnicities, races, cultures, religions, backgrounds, and lifestyles into our ranks, to help them become more than they were before.

I believe that sometimes it's hard to recognize the greatness of a multicultural organization. The uniqueness of maintaining a sisterhood that is dedicated to welcoming those who are different from ourselves. Being multicultural means that not only are you actively engaging those around you, but you are also upholding what makes you who you are. The melting pot is probably one of the most recognized symbol of diversity, but it is not really an accurate comparison because no one is trying to melt someone down to be like everyone else. We stand side by side as examples of our lives and our cultures, and we stand side by side respecting and supporting each other in everything that we hope to accomplish.

Ok. I'll get off my soap box now.

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