The goal of Use Your Difference to Make a Difference is to strengthen self-awareness, acknowledge biases, connect with others in a meaningful way, and celebrate the differences around us all. Harmful behaviors, whether conscious or unconscious, can lead to social environments that perpetuate—and even intensify—hate and division. Only by acknowledging and understanding these behaviors can we learn to connect—with ourselves, with others, with our world.
Connection is a process that turns differences into mutual understanding. Connection enables us to care for each other and be more empathetic. To be truly connected, we must educate ourselves, choose not to perpetuate systemic bias, and effectively communicate with people with vastly different values, backgrounds, and beliefs. This book is a roadmap for navigating the path towards moral courage, compassion, and accountability. It is within our human nature to protect ourselves and others from harm. Unfortunately, throughout our past and into the present day, we have misidentified groups—whether comprising different religions, ethnicities, language, values, or cultures—as threats to our safety.