Saturday, May 24, 2014

Life Goes On...

One of the saddest points in the trip came when we were in Bonn. One of the HBRS students asked us what we knew about German history. After a moment of silence, one of the Wartburg students finally admitted that it was mostly related to WWII, and that outside of that it still pertains to either WWI or the Cold War era. The disappointment felt by the German student could be felt radiating off her face; she was ashamed of what her country had done, and desperately wished it could be known for more.

That really struck a chord with me. The charred remains of Nazism and Communism was smeared on the streets of Berlin, but I never realized how deeply it stained the hearts of the German people. I hadn't stopped to wonder how horrifying it must be to face that truth. To know that the very land you stood on and the country you call home was such a wicked and evil entity. While Americans look fondly upon the 20th century, with apple pie, baseball and the preservation of democracy, Germans must directly face the shame from that same period.

But, as always, this is only a piece of the story. While it seems that facing the truths from the past may be a difficult process, it makes way for a brighter future. Nothing can be done for what lay behind, but the German people are earnestly trying to burst forward into a new era of prosperity and mirth. Regardless of what has been done, life goes on, simply because life has to go on.

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