It is not just that looking at a photo like this one inspires you beyond belief, and gives one a sense of the enormous potential of one world — or even that a photo like this one just seems so natural. I have decided to love the world, because the world is me, and I am she.
Thanks to my friends at African Ancestry, a few years back I took a DNA test and "discovered" my own ancestry. To my pleasant surprise, I was 71% Cameroon (in Africa), and actually from the same village as my mentor and friend Quincy Jones (what is the likelihood of that…), 26% European, and the rest of Indian, Asian and "other." That meant to me, that if I somehow found a way to hate white folk, I would be hating myself. If I found a way to hate Asians, Indians or anyone else for that matter — I was again hating myself. It dawned on me that most everyone on the planet — you included — are of "mixed race" — and that this fact made racism and discrimination base on race the silliest thing imaginable.
It also made me chuckle. No longer would I have to prepare a moral speech for say the Grandmaster of the Klu Klux Klan. I could simply give him a DNA test and await the results. The likelihood that he has some measure of Black blood running through his veins is extremely high, and my guess is that he would just lose his mind from there (smile).
One other interesting fact; approximately 99% of all DNA in the world is precisely the same. That's right. More than 99%. Less than 1% addresses things like hair, eye color, skin and the other physical asthetics we obsess about.
We really are all in this together. And that is why I call myself a global citizen, and why I have decided to just love everyone.
Okay, let's go…
John Hope Bryant is a thought leader, founder, chairman and CEO of Operation HOPE and Bryant Group Companies, Inc. Magazine/CEO READ bestselling business author of LOVE LEADERSHIP: The New Way to Lead in a Fear-Based World (Jossey-Bass) the only African-American bestselling business author in America, and is chairman of the Subcommittee for the Under-Served and Community Empowerment for the U.S. President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability, for President Barack Obama. Mr. Bryant is the co-founder of the Gallup-HOPE Index, the only national research poll on youth financial dignity and youth economic energy in the U.S. He is also a co-founder of Global Dignity with HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and Professor Pekka Himanen of Finland. Global Dignity is affiliated with the Forum of Young Global Leaders and the World Economic Forum. Mr. Bryant serves on the board of directors of Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation, an NYSE Euronext publicly traded company, and a division of $54 billion Ares Capital.