Monday, October 1, 2012

Embracing Our Differences

KATE: We are a County of diversity...we have a University town, a cow town, a conservative town, a large town, a rural town...you name it, we pretty much have it in Humboldt County.

I've lived here less than a dozen years, so I'm not just a newcomer, I'm barely a blip on the meter.  I've lived in several other places in the past five decades--in towns smaller than Fortuna and cities bigger than Humboldt County. I love New York City and I love Fortuna.  They are not mutually exclusive. What I struggle with sometimes in Humboldt County is the divisiveness that permeates our collective thinking.  Rather than one area thinking they are "better" than another, why aren't we embracing our differences and celebrating them?

There will be no HUMBOLDT MADE or IMAGINE HUMBOLDT until we are a united Humboldt.  PR and Marketing campaigns that pretend to represent the entire County but only represent a small area are guilty of widening the gaping divide.

Why can't Fortuna be appreciated for what it does well by someone who lives in Arcata?  And vice versa? Why does it feel so often that it's "us" vs. "them?"

Am I generalizing? Heck yeah...but sometimes it feels like the diversity we strive for is only possible if it's something we already like.  Wouldn't it be great if we stopped talking diversity and lived it?

SPENCE:   One way for Humboldt residents to start accepting the differences between citizens would be to stop refering to Arcata as "The People's Republic of Arcata" and to Fortuna as "Fortucky".   

   

2 comments:

beachcomber said...

Amen to that. I agree, Spence with the childish name-calling. There always seems to be an us-and-them mentality when each community really has its strong suits. Perhaps, as with politics, if WE set the example, the masses will follow.

Angeline Schwab said...

Your blog just came up on my Google alert. If you ever want to talk about Humboldt Made, please give a call. (476-4813)We are not exclusive.(We have been in process and under development for a while - so that may give the appearance of exclusivity??) We are building an organization - a business development and membership cooperative.(So much more than a marketing campaign!) What's evolving is participating businesses want to work together to meet their goals, whether it's building a co-packing facility, generating sales out of the area or branding Humboldt. There is a coming together in HM - people on opposites sides of the political spectrum working together. It's refreshing.