Monday, November 26, 2012
Making friends among the Nazis
So I've been looking over Jonathan Larson's book Making Friends Among the Taliban. I wondered how it would work if someone published a book titled Making Friends Among the Nazis. Maybe in today's climate, it would be OK. After all, time heals all wounds, and perhaps people are starting to look past the one dimensional monster portrayal of the Nazi phenomenon and are wanting to delve into what turned perfectly good, thoughtful and well meaning people into the epitome of evil in the 20th century. I'd be fine with that. I'm one who believes in the complexities of history, and feels that our tendency to paint with ridiculously broad brushstrokes does a disservices to what we can learn from those who came before. As long as we are in an age where we can buddy up with the Nazis, or the KKK, and it is as acceptable as making friends with the Taliban, I'd say we've turned some sort of corner, and perhaps it's for the better. If not, however, and if the immediate reaction is 'how dare you! That's entirely different!', then I also think we've turned a corner, but one that is far, far worse than where we were to begin with.