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A Personal Pledge
Although signing this pledge and adhering to its points is strictly voluntary,
we hope you will live by the principles suggested... and encourage others to
do the same.  

Recognizing that peaceful coexistence depends upon mutual respect,
I promise the following:

  • I will not engage in stereotyping people based on their race, religion,
    gender, national origin, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability.
    People should be viewed as the individuals they are, without assuming
    that everyone representing a specific group has the same skill level
    intelligence level, or personality traits.    

  • I will refrain from using slang or disparaging language descriptions
    referring to a person's race, religion, national origin, gender, sexual
    orientation, mental or physical disability.  Even though I may mean no
    disrespect, they might view such words or comments as hurtful.

  • I will not tell jokes that demean or make fun of people because of their
    race, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, mental or
    physical disability. Such jokes told at the expense of an individual or
    group of people show lack of respect and consideration for their feelings.

  • Just as I can choose to follow or disregard my own religious and cultural
    traditions, customs, and beliefs, I will respect the right of others to
    observe (or not observe) their traditions, customs, and beliefs as they
    choose... and I will not prevent or discourage anyone from doing so.

  • If I hear my classmates, friends or family engage in any of these
    activities, I will explain why it's wrong, and ask them to stop.


We must all stand together to defend each other, taking up the fight against
hate. If more people in 1930-1945 Germany did so, 11 million Jews,
Christians, Jehovahs Witnesses, and others might not have perished in the

Rev. Martin Niemoeller, Pastor of German Confessing Church, describes
what can happen if too many people don't take up that fight to defend others.
He spent seven years imprisoned in Dachau Concentration Camp in
Germany during World War II. He speaks about the danger of silence in the
face of the "bully."
"First they came for the Communists, and I did not speak up...
...because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak up...
...because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak up...
...because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Catholics, and I did not speak up...
...because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up
and help in my defense."                – Rev. Martin Niemoeller  

Credit:  Georgia Commission on the Holocaust

        Stand up for those who are different from you.  
          Remember, you're different too... from them.
A day may come when you'll need their help in YOUR defense.

Diversity is all around us - on the bus, in the grocery store, at the
airport...  Some metro-Atlanta schools have students and teachers
representing 100 or more nationalities.  The nature of this great
country is one of inclusiveness. Go back far enough in your own
family tree and you'll probably find immigrants among your own  
To prevent repeating the atrocities of the past, we must do
something different in the present and future.  Speak out to
defend the rights and safety of ALL people, especially those who
may be physically or verbally attacked.
 "The world is such a
dangerous a place to live in, not because of those who do evil,
but because of those who let it happen."        - Albert Einstein
Have respect for others, just as you expect it from them. You'll be a     
better person, and the world of people around you will have more respect
for you when you show a sincere concern for the feelings of others.
Enlighten America
                       brought to you by
B'nai B'rith, metro-Atlanta style
We hope you'll make a copy of this pledge
and keep it with your other important
papers. Make additional copies for your
classmates, friends and family. Do all that
you can to enlighten their minds and hearts.

Hint:  Print in black ink because colors have
a greater tendency to fade.