There’s a song by Sting I like. It’s not exactly recent – it’s about the Cold War, which ended when I was a toddler. Still, it rings true today.
Sting sings that the propaganda he hears from his leaders doesn’t make sense. The Russians were portrayed as inhuman monsters, lusting after a war with the West so it could destroy freedom and spread misery. They were so desperate they would set the world ablaze in nuclear destruction… if only they had the chance.
He argued that, no, the Russians don’t want to wipe out all life on Earth. They don’t want a war. Russians are humans and humans love their children, so they’d probably prefer peace.
It’s an important lesson.
Our enemies are humans too. They might do terrible acts. Some humans enjoy causing suffering and death. That’s not because they’re mutants, though. On some level – deep down – their motivations would look uncomfortably similar.
But that’s not to say we’re all identical.
Don’t assume everyone sees the world the same way you do. Those common human experiences only make up a small part of us. Even the craziest person’s actions make sense when you understand how they see the world.
They say travel broadens the mind.
I guess it does.
But travel has nothing on this: