The president of Ukraine is no doubt a good leader of his people. He has rallied his people to stand firm in the face of the Russian invasion. In the front of this unprovoked invasion, tens of thousands of Ukrainian citizens were forced to flee their homes, cities, and nation to seek safety in neighboring countries. During this time that racism towards Africans, Indians, and foreigners was taking in full view of the world. These groups of foreigners, especially those of color, were denied safe passage and Ukrainian citizens seeking safe shelter.
This was the moment when President Zelenskyy could have become a great leader! At that moment, had he rallied his fellow Ukrainian citizens to embrace the humanity of all people would have a moment that would define him as a great leader. Greatness, by definition, goes beyond oneself and includes others different from oneself in many ways. President Zelenskyy has yet to speak out publicly against the racist treatment that his state officials receive from Africans, Indians, and foreigners. Therefore, he remains a good leader for his fellow Ukrainian.
There are, without question, millions of great people in Ukraine. President Zelenskyy spoke of the willingness of the Ukrainian people to provide safe harbor for Jews during the second world war. He went on to say his election as president, being a Jew, is a testament to the greatness of the Ukrainian people.
President Zelenskyy perhaps does not fully appreciate that there is a difference that has to be publicly addressed when it comes to physically different foreigners. Jewish Ukrainians were not hindered by their physical appearance when it came time to board buses and trains to escape safely. Only those people of color were restricted and denied transportation, shelter, and food in their greatest time of need.
Mr. President, I live in the United States of America, a “good” country with millions of great people. My country still struggles with racism and has yet to become great. There are times when great American leaders and people stand up and speak out publicly against racism. We must continue to speak out against injustice every day!
Mr. President, I hope you will become a great President!
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