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Smithsonian Racism Exhibit Promotes Reflection

Sep 23, 2011 | By Matthew Shuster

This past Wednesday, the NETWORK staff ventured to the National Museum of Natural History to visit the new exhibit on racism, entitled, “Race: Are We So Different.” The exhibit, developed by the American Anthropological Association, presented race in an interesting manner as it not only provided historical and modern cultural information on race, but scientific and psychological as well. It included fascinating, but revealing interactive portions such as a game where the visitor must guess a person’s ethnicity based solely on their voice recordings – reminding the visitor that racism stems from prejudice not just based on skin color, but also from the sounds that we produce to communicate

Scientifically, the exhibit demonstrates biological proof within the study of genetics and artifacts to emphasize the point that race is a manmade, fallible classification system, most often used by wealthier, powerful groups to enact unfair and blatantly unjust policies to increase the gap between the haves and the have-nots. My favorite stop of the exhibit was about the history of racism and housing in the United States in relation to the wealth gap.

We here at NETWORK aim to educate the public, as well as the business and political leaders of our country about the imperative necessity in these harsh economic times to promote policies based on love and acceptance instead of racial ignorance that will allow people without much to have a chance to increase their income based on hard work and ambition. Here is a link to the exhibit’s website: http://www.mnh.si.edu/exhibits/race/. I recommend it! Maybe some of the Super Committee members will stop by for some inspiration? We could only hope.

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