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Ah, the Oscars. The time of year when an industry gets together to congratulate itself -- and the masses crowd in front of televisions to see what they're wearing. Afterwards, you get a bunch of silly commentary like this one here, although I will spare you any descriptions of the awards themselves, who they went to, who was there with whom, or what they were wearing. No, my topic of blathering is that of division -- and how things won't meaningfully change until the division is gone.

This year, there was an award given to a human being who happened to be black. This human being was talked about for quite a while, all by other black people. I don't even remember what the award was supposed to be for -- because such a huge deal was made about him being black. In fact, I think that's pretty much all I remember from the entire spectacle. Black people got some awards. It sure is a good thing they weren't white, or Hispanic, or Lebanese, or any of the thousands of other races that exist on this planet.

As long as we continue to award division, division will continue to exist. As long as we focus on the skin color of an awardee, there will be plenty of attention based on the color of their skin -- both positive and negative. If you want to reward someone for achievement against adversity, great. If you want to award someone for a great performance, also great. But please, don't spend twenty minutes saying how great it is that someone is black -- and now that this person has done this, other people (but only ones of the same race) can do the same. Obviously it was always possible for someone with the will to achieve it. And please don't interview only people of the same color, as if those are the only people who knew him or knew anything about his struggles.

I really liked all of the close-ups on black people every time a black person got an award. I can just hear the show producer before the show... "Okay, we need to find out where all of the black people are tonight, so we can zoom in on them every time someone else who’s black gets on the stage." I wish we could do the same thing for people with pinky fingers of unusually large girths, big noses, or any other arbitrary characteristic, such as skin color.

The big deal should not be that a black actor has gotten an award, but that a human has overcome the adversity of other humans being unreasonable and still made a go of it, striving for excellence and achieving through that adversity. These people are role models for all humans -- not just for people who happen to have darker skin than others.

Coming in a close second to the skin color spectacle was the September 11 terrorist attack still being played upon. How long are people going to try and milk that -- and why just that one? There was a nice moment of silence for all of the people who died in the New York terrorist attacks over eight months ago. How about all of the people who died in nursing homes? How about the ones who the US have recently killed in Afghanistan?

A comment was made during the speech that, "The world has changed and will never be the same." It never was the same and never will be. Yes, we got attacked, and some people died, but people die all the time. In fact, our country is probably busily killing some innocents right now. I just don't understand how we can all pretend that the imaginary line one lives within somehow dictates the grievousness of a death.

Again, the problem here is division -- that everyone on our side of the ocean, state, county, zip code, or street are better and more worthy, just because of geographic location. As long as we keep telling this sort of drivel to our children -- and to each other over a medium that allows millions of people to view it -- life will continue as it has. The problem is not the television but the message that is being broadcast.

The solution is understanding -- understanding that the people spreading their particular messages aren't wrong, just under a set of assumptions that I don't share, namely this: that there are any meaningful characteristics of a human besides his or her actions.

Do you share those assumptions?

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