Block Island Memoirs
All Quiet on the Western Front

The Power of Diversity


~Alex Chayrigues 

And its effect in my life


We must not only learn to tolerate our differences. We must welcome them as the richness and diversity which can lead to true intelligence

~Albert Einstein 

 At first glance, I am all that is not diverse in this world. I am white, straight male who, having lived in both Newton and then especially in Concord, has had little contact with people of another race while also going to a private all-boys school. I essentially live in a shell of a world in which the differences between me and the  people I interact with on a daily basis is little to none. While my life seems to have no diversity, I try to keep an open mind so as not to be overcome by the ignorance that plagues many with a lack of diversity. 

    While it is minimal, I do have some bits of diversity in my life and I use it to build foundations to make myself a better person. My uncle who suffered a traumatic brain injury because of a car crash that nearly took his life has helped me understand the struggle of being disabled. While I will never know what being disabled is truly like, I can empathize because of his experience. Despite my limited contact with other races, I have found friendships with people of other races and that has most certainly helped me partially understand what it's like to live as a non-white in this country. I have ADHD which definitely is a part of how I learn in everyday life and affects me in ways that not everybody knows about. My contact with females in my life has also helped me understand how to treat and respect women the right way even though I don’t have much contact with females because for the last four years I have gone to an all-boys school. In my family I have been exposed to different worlds, on my dad’s side I have an Irish Catholic grandmother and a Basque grandfather, while on my mom’s side I have an grandfather who is Jewish and a grandmother who is evangelical Christian. The diversity of ethic groups in my family has shown me the lives of four different upbringings and that definitely shapes my world view in at least some sense. It has also shown me the customs and cultures from all around Europe and has exposed me to things that help shape who I am.

    Nobody can choose who they are, you get brought into this world and like everybody you get dealt a hand of cards and you play with what you got. I got dealt a royal flush, the best hand you could ask for. Did I ask for it? No, but I have it and I use that hand to live the best life I can. What I really mean is that nobody can choose which race or gender or parents you get, it just happens. The same way nobody chooses the things in life that makes life diverse.

    But we thrive in diversity because it is what makes us unique as humans and if there was no diversity at all, we would lose the very nature of what it means to be human. Diversity helps people grow because if you only interact with people just like you, you are stuck looking at a mirror of yourself all of the time. The only way to grow as a person is to interact with people who are different and by seeing how they live you learn the way they experience life and you then connect better with others that are not like you.

  We need diversity, because without it we fall victim to the idea that everybody that is unlike us is foreign and we are unable to connect, thus creating a divide in society. One of the greatest things about the human race is our diversity and the power that comes with it.

     Alone we are nothing. It is only when we are together that we have power and peace as humans.



Timmy Smith

Nice essay Alex! It’s awesome that you are so aware of the diversity in your life, and have been able to use it to grow. Your thoughtful writing on the beauty of diversity on the human race caps off a wonderful and insightful essay. Thanks for sharing!

Sam Elliott

Great essay Alex, your words are wise, and I am impressed by your broad vocabulary. You did a good job writing about the diversity in your life, and I really enjoyed reading your essay.

JJ Oldershaw

This is awesome Alex! Your essay is very creative in the sense that you took something that isn’t normally talked about as being diverse, and made it diverse. I’m very sorry to hear that your grandfather suffered such an injury, but as you mention, it has created for you a more diverse life. Thank you for this!

The Fenn Voice

Such a thoughtful and full essay that explores diversity from a variety of angles and perspectives. You incorporate relevant personal details of your family in the world that you live in. You prove to us that diversity is much an inner thing as it is an outer thing.

JP Ward

Good job Alex! This essay is very well written and I appreciate the fact that you were able to recognize and find the diversity in your life even though it may have been hard at first. Nicely done.


I liked how you acknowledge that nobody chooses how they are born, they are put into a role that they do not get to decide on.

David P

This essay stood out to me because you told so much of your personal story and used that as a way to talk about diversity. Good job!

Braeden Moitoso

Great essay Alex, I love how powerful this message of diversity was and how well you got your topic and point across.
Great job

Spencer Harnden

Nice essay churros! I liked that you had a powerful message about diversity that really hit this essay home. It was very well written, and you had a really great conclusion.


Great essay Alex. You did a great showing the power of diversity through the diversity in your life. The conclusion is powerful and is a great way to end the essay. This essay is well written, thoughtful, and powerful. Great job!

Tal Richmond

Great essay! I liked how you added your personal experience with different types of diversity. The conclusion was really strong and left a message that diversity is strong if you embrace it.

Jerry Li

Great essay! I like how you wrote about the diversity in your life. The conclusion is very powerful and sends a strong message. Great Job!

Gabe Fonte

Nice work Alex! I like how you took your life and really got down to how you feel about it. Well done!


Great essay Alex! I loved some of the phrases you used like “ not to be overcome by the ignorance that plagues many with a lack of diversity.” it really gave emphasis to what you were trying to say. Great job!


Great work Alex! I liked how you used many personal examples as a metaphor for diversity and how it affects everyone’s daily life. Great work.


Nice job Alex. Your metaphor about the hand of cards you are dealt was incredible and a good time to use it. Nice work!

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