Some things in this world are exceptionally sad. One of the things I find most sad is when colossal mistakes aren't used as a learning experience and are consequently repeated (this applies at both a personal and organisational level). Over the past six years or so that I have been with Laura, people have, on occasion, questioned the value of studying history (something she enjoys). One of the first and most logical arguments she invariably makes is that we should study history even if for no other reason than to avoid repeating past mistakes. In my opinion, that's probably all the justification that's required.
Unfortunately, despite the considerable effort that goes into studying our history and the abundance of freely available information about horrible things that have happened in the past and clearly should be avoided in the future, there are people who just don't get it.
In my own round about way, I'm trying to express my extreme displeasure at hearing about the racial hatred that still exists and has
recently1 come to the headlines in my home town of Toowoomba. Over the past few years (probably nearly a decade) Toowoomba has become home for many Sudanese refugees, some of whom I went to school with (although never really got to know). Recently there has been a hateful and destructive campaign, singling Toowoomba's Sudanese population out and labelling them as anything from thieves to rapists.
Toowoomba is a wonderful place to live; I lived there for most of my life and hope one day to live there again. I'm aware that it is an exceedingly conservative city 2 but the totally irrational extremism evident here is a completely different story.
I'm just so disappointed. Why do we have to revisit such stupidity.