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Different is cool.

I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but there is a lot of racial and cultural strife taking place around the world. As a black man who talks about fatherhood, I know this firsthand even in my small corner of cyberspace. However, it’s not all bad. As a matter of fact, I have an idea to help fix the problem (we’ll get to that in a moment).

Fun fact: Did you know that according the Pew Research Center, close to 40% of Americans have never moved away from their hometowns? It’s hard for people to identify with different cultures, races, or ethnicities if you see the same people everyday, right?

The best way to become more accepting and tolerant of people that are different from us are to enter their environments and see how they live. In doing so, we’ll realize that we are all way more similar than we are different.

That’s why I believe so strongly in going on vacations to expose my children to people from all walks of life.

Carnival recently offered to take my family on an 8-day cruise to the western Caribbean, and that did the trick. Our travels took us to Belize, Mahogany Bay, and Cozumel — and we met a lot of interesting people, but it’s not just about those locations.  My family had the opportunity to meet a lot of amazing people from all walks of life on the Carnival Freedom as well.

For example, I met a guy named Nick on the ship and we hit it off instantly. And after chatting, we traded T-shirts on the spot.





I know what you’re thinking: “Why would you do this?”

Because that’s what dudes do, that’s why.

My daughters were feeling daddy’s vibe and wanted to meet different kiddos as well. To that end, I caught this candid photo of them dancing with two girls from different families to the great live music on the ship. Did they care that they didn’t look alike? Nope. They just wanted to have a good time busting a move, and that’s exactly what they did. It was beautiful to witness.


I certainly don’t have the answers to all of the world’s problems, but I feel that one potential fix is to ensure our kids hang out with as many people as possible who may not look like them. Stepping outside of our comfort zones at home is a great way to do that.

Big thanks to Carnival for helping to facilitate that for my family.

This post was created for Away We Go with Carnival, the destination for getting in the getaway state of mind.