EDITORIAL:

Unity — it’s something this community could really use.

Chasms are dividing this city that need to be bridged — some shallow, some incredibly deep.

People seem to let the slightest thing divide them — ethnicity, where they live in the city, smoking, politics, socioeconomics. And these are slight things, but we make them big deals.

We are all guilty on some level, on some issue. Even those of us who cry foul need to take a closer look at ourselves. Do you ever have an us-versus-them mentality?

Does it really matter if you live in north Glendale or south? If your name ends in ian, ez, ong or nothing even close? We need to learn to be tolerant of each other and our differences.

Perhaps this us-versus-them attitude, this suspicion of those who are different, is human nature. But plenty of facets of human nature must be overcome.

And so this weekend, let us join as a city and work toward overcoming this. Let’s unify. Let’s celebrate our similarities, which far outweigh our political, social, cultural and economic differences.

On Sunday, the city will hold its seventh Unity Fest — this time in the 300 block of Brand Boulevard downtown.

It is an event meant to bring the entire diverse community together.

The city of Glendale is home to thousands of people of Armenian, Latino, Filipino and Korean descent, among others. And the demographics continue to swing.

According to the last census, the Armenian population in Glendale grew by 10% in the 20th century.

During that time, the number of Latinos in the city declined, but that number has grown again in the early 21st century, as has the number of Asian residents, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Within these groups, dozens of ethnicities and mixed races continue to change the cultural makeup of the city.

So the days of a homogenous community are long gone and never coming back. It is time to embrace that fact. Let’s explore and revel in our differences rather than focus on the negative.

In recent years we, at the paper, have heard complaints following the Unity Fest event — complaints about there being a lack of diversity in the entertainment.

While it doesn’t sound like that will be a problem this year — with the Media City Ballet, Latin-inspired Folklorico Dance Group, the Kultura Philippine Folk Arts, Japanese Taiko drummers and traditional Chinese dragon dancers — that is the wrong attitude to bring.

Go and enjoy the event, and enjoy your neighbors.


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