Language Lizard LLC, a company that supports educators working with linguistically and ethnically diverse students, launched a non-partisan Celebrate Diversity campaign today in response to the increase in hate crimes and racist incidents since the election.
Anneke Forzani, President of Language Lizard, says: “It is clear that some of the rhetoric during this campaign encouraged an ignorance about various ethnic groups and religions. It also empowered white-supremacists and gave a voice to those who exploit minorities.” This is evidenced by the more than 200 complaints of hate crimes counted by the Southern Poverty Law Center since November 8th.
Building on the quote by Nelson Mandela that “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” Language Lizard is calling on people to use their knowledge to educate children and adults about different cultures and religions. “We need to show them the beauty of a diverse society; the strength we derive when we all work together to solve problems. We need to support those who are struggling and fearful, and show them that they are valued, appreciated and heard,” says Ms. Forzani.
As part of the campaign, Language Lizard shares articles and resources for educators and parents such as: 10 Tips on Celebrating Diversity this Winter Season; Teaching Tolerance in Turbulent Times; 5 Fun and Easy Ways to Celebrate Diversity; Understanding and Appreciating Cultural Differences: Tips and Lesson Plan. The company also encourages people to share their own suggestions and experiences in educating others about diverse religions and cultures. It asks for input on how others are supporting those who are fearful and anxious about their future.
Ideas can be shared on the Language Lizard blog, or via Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #CelebrateDiversity. People should also post their images of diversity on Instagram and share their videos about diversity on YouTube. Those who need encouragement can look at the images and ideas that others have shared using #CelebrateDiversity on social media.
As author T.H. White wrote, “I can imagine nothing more terrifying than an Eternity filled with men who were all the same. The only thing which has made life bearable… has been the diversity of creatures on the surface of the globe.”
To learn more about the #CelebrateDiversity campaign, and to post ideas and thoughts on the topic, visit the Language Lizard blog.
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