Understanding Each Other


I just came across “Confessions of a Persian Mom: Addressing Stereotypes, Part 2” by Ilana Siyance Kalati in the Oct. 5 issue of the Great Neck Record, and it is a very nice article!

I grew up and was educated in China and am now living in Great Neck. I have to admit that I might be one of those who holds stereotypes of others from different cultures and backgrounds. Your articles (I read them all) opened my mind.

I wish more residents, including Chinese, Koreans, Latinos and others, just like you in our community, would speak out and communicate with each other more often and more openly. The simple act of introducing their traditions to others and explaining why they do (and don’t do) certain things can help avoid misunderstandings and overcome stereotypes most of the time.

You have done a great job of addressing many things that I myself was afraid to ask. But, the stereotypes continue.

Unfortunately, our kids—who are taking the same trains, walking in the same streets and studying and playing in the same community—are also afraid to ask, sometimes due to the PC environment, other times due to over-politeness and respect.

However, this bothers me, because this is the next generation and we all want them to live in a better world with less misunderstanding and less mistrust.

In my heart, I always believed that we are different, but we actually have more in common. Your articles just prove that again!

By the way, Chinese people drink hot tea in summer, too!

—Lu Dong

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