AMARILLO, Texas (KVII) — After serving 20 years in the Marines and 12 years in the education field, Carlen Charleston is off to the next mission.
That mission is called “E.R.A.S.E RACE. - The American Unity Movement.”
"E.R.A.S.E." stands for "Erase Race and Strengthen Ethics," and that's exactly what Charleston is planning.
Charleston said most of the cities he's visiting have a history of the racial divide, so he’s meeting with residents and community leaders to discuss ways to prevent history from repeating itself.
“It's kind of a play on Dr. King's words,” he said, “when he said he wanted his children to be judged by the content of their character, not the color of their skin...We want more characters. Let's talk about ethics more than we talk about, you know, skin color.”
Charleston said the process begins with optimism and education about race.
"There are some who are not as much on board, but I think it's my responsibility to bring them on board. I'll do that with the education"
That's very key for people to understand...
The former Marine said the mission to unify the nation happens in two stages. The first stage requires educating and informing the country that there is only one race -- the human race.
“That’s very key for people to understand,” he said “You've got social scientists, geneticists, and those people who've done deep research. They talk about the fact that race is not biological, and it's not real.”
Charleston said he believes that "if you race, it’s always going to create a hierarchy.”
The question is, “Do we go away with that?” and if so, “How will we get along?”
The overall picture Charleston is making is to show the nation that without labeling each other by "race," the nation would be a better, more peaceful place.
The second stage requires the nation to make the effort of integration in our institutions. Charleston said we must also “integrate our personal lives,” just the same.
So far Charleston has toured cities in over 39 states. He plans to build teams in each city that can help further the challenge of unity. You can find out further information by clicking here.