Monday, July 10, 2017

Germany impressionism.

So, I'm in Berlin and have been for the last 48-hours, having arrived Saturday morning with my wife.

As I said in my previous post, I wasn't quite sure how I would respond to being in Germany. One part of me was fearful that I'd be consumed by anger and hate for the nation's genocidal past. Another part was wondering if I'd feel somewhat like the prodigal son, returning to a homeland no one in my family has lived in for 100 years.

My feelings have been more later than former. The Germans have done a great job of acknowledging their past. You can hardly walk a block without seeing some memorial or another to the holocaust. Yesterday, in fact, we traveled to Oranienberg, to the Concentration Camp Sachenhausen. 

I had never been to a camp before, and Sachenhausen--in the Yelp-i-zation of everything--isn't one of the must-sees like Dachau, Treblinka or, of course, Auschwitz-Birkenau.

But, man, if we did half as much to memorialize America's Native-American and African-American genocides, we would be a better nation for it, and probably Trumpless, to boot.

Anyway, all this to say, good job to a national sense of shame, contrition, guilt and the need for compensation.

It doesn't make up for what happened, so long but so near ago.

But it's better than pretending the past never happened.

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