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United We Stand: What "unity" means to our children

What do children think of our world? Are we united? We set out to find out.

CLEVELAND — Ever heard the saying, "kids are smarter than you think?" Well, it's true. Just ask Adleigh Vodicka, Andersen Burkle, Kenan Bishop, and Parker Jackson.

Two boys and two girls: All second graders, and from Northeast Ohio.

I recently did a Zoom call with them to hear their thoughts on the word "unity." 

“Where people get together," said Adeligh.

“When people get together,” said Parker.

“Working together," said Kenan.

"Unity means where people get to gather in rallies or traditions," Andersen explained.

Great, little minds, thinking alike. But, was our country doing a good job at being unified?

“They don't say nice things," said Parker.

“The grownups are black and white. They haven't been getting along so well, not being a community," added Adleigh.

I asked them what and how things should change. And, these amazing kids blew me away when they named words that describe each letter of "unity."

For "U," Andersen picked the word "Unfolding."

For "N," Adleigh picked the word "Nice."

For "I," Andersen came up with "Inspiring."

For "T," Parker picked "Together."

For "Y," Kenan brought it home with "Years together."

It's hard to believe that at such a young age, these kids were open, honest, and stunningly kind. Before we signed off, a few more words of advice from them:

"We should be nice to others and respect others," said Adleigh.

"You can figure out, you can love everybody," said Parker.

"Love is important," said Adleigh.

"Everybody is the same, but different in every way," said Andersen.

And, finally, Kenan shared words that, well, left us all a little speechless.

"Stop. Breathe. Think and forgive."

Thank you, kids. We could all learn from each one of you.