The Spousal Unit and I recently took a long road trip (11 hours of driving, which I did, but that's another story) to get to Pennsylvania for a family event.
Normally we wouldn't make the effort. This was the SU's niece's wedding and everyone would have understood if we didn't get there -- long trip, expensive, etc. But some other family members wouldn't be there and we thought the fam would be under-represented, so we made the journey. And I'm glad we did.
The Bride is white; the Groom is black. The audience was a mix of all races and creeds, as was the wedding party. The Father of the Bride (FOB) and Mother of the Bride (MOB) are divorced (and that's another story for another time), and not amiably. The MOB had her boyfriend there, which peeved the FOB to no end. Not to be outdone, the FOG (Father of the Groom) and MOG are divorced. The FOG's new wife was there as was the MOG's boyfriend.
Our family is very J C Penney; the Groom's family is very haute couture. I saw women wearing jewels, sheath gowns, high-heeled shoes that defied imagination. And I saw folks in black pants, a pretty blouse and flats (me) with costume jewelry purchased at Target for the occasion.
And you know what? We all got along. There were a few bumps: people didn't adhere to the seating chart for the reception, but we just gently reminded folks that there was assigned seats and no, you can't sit there. We were all forced to mingle and get acquainted, and we did. The Bride and Groom were so obviously happy that it spilled over onto everyone else. I chatted with folks from the deep South who were truly curious about the Midwest and I gave advice to someone seeking publication who was so amazed to meet me -- a published author!
People danced together and forgave small faux pas and were gracious to each other. I think at first we did so because we wanted Their Day to be special, but by the time the dancing got started, we were all truly on the same page. We really aren't that different when you sit down and look at it.
So let's raise a glass to diversity and civility -- it can exist in our world as long as we're willing to reach across the aisle and shake hands.