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“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

Ask different people and you’ll find that Nelson Mandela can be somewhat of a polarizing figure. That’s to be expected when you enter the heated world of politics, but the core message that he has above is one that I think we can all agree with.

It may have once been true that tribes were relatively separate, engaging in war to protect what they believed to be theirs. That may still be true to a certain extent today, but more and more, we’re becoming a global village. We’re becoming increasingly multicultural and I believe that’s a good thing.

The United States elected Barack Obama not as its first “black” president, but rather one of its first presidents of mixed ethnic heritage. Yes, we are going to have our differences, but we have to get past these differences if we want to move forward.

Penn Jillette once said that tolerance is condescending. That might be true. It’s not enough simply to “tolerate” your fellow man; even if we disagree with one another, we need to first respect one another. Only then can we transcend race, religion, creed, and political standpoint. Only then can we engage in a dialogue that can bear some real fruit. Only then can we evolve into the type one civilization described by Dr. Michio Kaku. We have much more in common with each other than we have different.

The pen may be mightier than the sword, but love trumps all.