Two days ago, a terrorist entered a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, killed five worshipers, and injured many more.
Since 9/11, attacks on Sikhs have increased. They wear turbans. Osama bin Laden wore a turban. Ergo, Sikhs are terrorists.
It would be easy to go into a discourse on how Sikhs and Muslims differ (like, COMPLETELY) but that's not the point. The point is that somehow, we have allowed a culture of hate based on appearance and the primacy of one's personal opinion to take root. It's not widespread - but it's there. Left unchecked, it'll grow.
It's the responsibility of every one of us to fight it. America is not a land of white Christians...it's one of the few places where different races, different cultures, can have the room to live together. To learn from one another. To protect, and be protected by one another.
Japan is over 99% Japanese.
France and Germany have regular race riots, directed against Middle Eastern immigrants.
England supports an uneasy polyglot population a legacy of Empire.
But we have something else...we have a party, a celebration of freedom, to which we've invited representatives from all over the world. Go to your fellow celebrants, and talk to them. Make their experiences part of your heart. Learn from a Sikh about Guru Gobind Singh, and tell him about St. Augustine. Ask your Jewish neighbors about Rabbi Hillel. and tell them about the Quakers.
Let's not blow it.