How do we rise above racism towards respect and tolerance in society?
Political movements in certain parts of the world openly expound racist ideas. The dissemination of racist ideas is tolerated in the name of freedom of expression. The Internet is misused to propagate racial hatred. Globalization, which has so much potential to spread prosperity, can also result in economic disparity, cultural homogenization and marginalization of certain countries. We must ensure that globalization contributes to the overall well-being of all people in the world while at the same time respecting the uniqueness of different cultures and traditions.
In any progressive country, tolerance and compassion are core values in society. There should be a development philosophy of “Gross National Happiness” where the individual well-being is the focus of all development initiatives.
Humanity can only make headway if it acknowledges and draws on lessons from the evils of the past, in particular slavery, the slave trade and colonialism. We must acknowledge those crimes, not to twist the knife in the wound, but to better acknowledge that their lethal germs still persist. We are not here to humiliate anyone, but humanity can only take a decisive step forward if the whole truth of history is brought to light. If we want to overcome racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, we must restore the truth regarding the history of people who today find themselves on the bottom of the pile. We are not thinking about any kind of vengeance. Reconciliation not only asks for forgiveness, but also for repentance, sincere repentance. Sincere repentance must be active repentance. The international struggle against racism and racial discrimination requires a sensitive approach. Each voice in the international community must have a say. Debate must be promoted and a universal solution must be found out in peace and harmony.