Day 9 of the A to Z Challenge is the letter “I”:
I is for Ignorance
I thought the Thesaurus.com listing of synonyms for ignorance was so much more representative of what the word means to me than the simple definition:
benightedness, bewilderment, blindness, callowness, crudeness, darkness, denseness,disregard, dumbness, empty-headedness, fog, half-knowledge, illiteracy, incapacity,incomprehension, innocence, inscience, insensitivity, lack of education, naiveté, nescience, oblivion, obtuseness, philistinism, rawness, sciolism,shallowness, simplicity, unawareness, unconsciousness, uncouthness, unenlightenment,unfamiliarity, unscholarliness, vagueness
The Red Kimono centers around three characters:
- Sachiko Kimura is a nine-year old Japanese American who struggles with the chasm between what it means to be Japanese and what it means to be American.
- Nobu Kimura is her seventeen-year old brother who only wants to be treated as and accepted for the American that he is.
- Terrence Harris is Nobu’s African American friend who not only must deal with racism directed toward him, but racism he feels toward Japanese Americans when his father is killed at Pearl Harbor.
The story of each of these characters begins with ignorance. Through opening their hearts to experience “the other side,” two of these characters will remove the cloak of ignorance. One will not.
Different forms of ignorance still exist around us today. Whether we close our minds to differences in politics, religion, race, sexual orientation, whatever, we all experience it, whether we see it in others or whether it lives inside us. The only way around it is to communicate openly, honestly and respectfully to one another.
What concerns me is, those kinds of communications seem to happen less and less these days.