From the editor: We are the same

I, with my pale skin and blonde hair, stood there in stark contrast among a crowd of children with beautiful brown skin and dark eyes. I was in Naitolia, Tanzania four years ago working on a story about an MSU partner project with a community to make clean water accessible to its residents. One young boy kept rubbing my arm, and then his own, with a confused look on his face. Finally, he looked up at me with a smile and said, “But, they feel the same. They feel exactly the same. We are the same.”

To this day I still tear up remembering that moment. I love the memory of a purely innocent child realizing that though our skin looked very different, we were very much the same. I only wish that everyone had the same outlook as my young friend in Naitolia. Certainly the world has made strides, but there is much more progress to be made. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

This past Monday, we celebrated MLK Jr. Day to help us all remember the work that still needs to be done to ensure equality. Here on campus, we held a student leadership conference, a march for justice, scholarship dinner, a museum exhibit, performance and a variety of service projects. As MSU president Lou Anna K. Simon says, “We believe that service and involvement in the community are gateways to meaningful engagement with the world.”