Photo Friday: Social Inclusion

So many candles, Auschwitz photo blur , Hall of Remembrance View Holocaust Day 19133 on

This is the second Photo Friday in a row devoted to diversity. It’s in the tag line of the blog, and it’s what I’ve been experiencing lately…:)

The opposite of social networking is social exclusion. This week was my first time learning about the holocaust as an adult, and I noticed how the designers of the US Holocaust museum emphasized one of the greatest harms that a society can perpetrate on its citizens (in this case, my ancestors) – exclusion, via public humiliation, boycotts, denial of the right to conduct business, etc. When you go to the museum, it’s easy to understand how this makes other human beings feel. You don’t have to ask them, you can just stand in the same room and hear them weeping….

The rest of the week overwhelmed with examples of the opposite. There was the Latina Style 50 reception (@LatinaStyleMag), where I heard the quote, “Look around you, this is diversity in living color.” Then there was the Capital Area Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (@DCLGBTBIZ), followed by the National Society of Hispanic MBAs (@NSHMBA), hosted by SiriusXM Radio (@SiriusXM), which incidentally has an Inclusion Council. Finally, there was Walk with a, Bike with A Doc (which will get its own post), where we exploded the myths about bicycling with Washington Area Bicyclist Association (@WABADC) and Black Women Bike DC (@BWBDC), chief among them that women, and women of color don’t bike (they do).

I put together images from the above events below. They show the similarity of engagement and celebration of achievements for these vulnerable populations.

I also started the week with a conversation with another physician who, like me, grew up in a multi-lingual, multi-cultural household. I am so happy to have had that experience because it allows me to appreciate and admire social inclusion whenever I see it (as an example, we were told “You don’t have to be Latino, you don’t have to have an MBA to join NSHMBA”).

In 2013, sadly, the organizations that continue to discriminate by excluding minorities or by making discrimination optional are now excluding themselves from society, becoming minorities by their own choice. Fortunately, this is a choice, and time is on the side of those who include. If you’ve ever felt social exclusion, you know it’s something you never wish upon any other human.

Love always wins.

Ted Eytan, MD