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I miss the days when I could just bury my head in the sand, ignore politics, and let the bozos sort themselves out. But it seems these days that the country that I love, the country that I gave my blood sweat and physical wellbeing to, has a serious sickness. There is something seriously wrong with a very vocal portion of the American population these days and it needs to be addressed. Not by getting all "Hoohah! I'm punching Nazis" but with some serious education.

I have always been a firm believer in the idea that you can't just look at "The Winners' " personal version of history to expect to know the whole story.

Germany didn't just give birth to an entire generation of evil people. The term Nazi was an abbreviation of the word Nazional, meaning nationalist. It was a term coined for people who simply wanted to make a better Germany. Germany had lost the first world war, and they lost it hard. The German government was held almost solely responsible for the reparations of a worldwide conflict. Their military and scientific capabilities were crushed by the weight of "Treaties" and "Embargoes" to the point of being barely functional in a modern society. It was around this time that a man of incredible charisma stepped out into the spotlight and captivated the German people with talks of the failures of the German government and making Germany great again. He singled out minorities claiming they were the reason for the downfall of the German people. The people fell for his silver tongue hook, line, and sinker. They basically destroyed the entire German government and reformed it as a monarchy ruled by a man with a silver tongue and an itchy trigger finger. The German people were roped back into another worldwide war that they were told would undo the wrongs done to them. modern evening dresses

As we all know, Germany ended up losing the war a second time. But this time not only were they held primarily responsible, but they were branded. Every American movie for the next 50+ years would paint these nationalists as cackling evildoers who's only purpose is to get punched by the American hero.

Now don't get me wrong, my purpose here is not to defend Nazis. Rather the opposite, to explain what brought them to that point. A rather terrifying trend that I am seeing in my own country. A silver-tongued "business man" who speaks only in buzzwords and shady absolutes. Leading a country toward a xenophobic and hate filled future.

Over the past year alone, I have seen an exponential rise in politically based bias against the Muslim community. Towards people of color, and people of several walks of life alternative to that of the rich, white, upper class, Christians. And its unsettling. And its not unsettling because of Donald Trump. He is a giant, orange, idiotic, figurehead. It scares me because of the people I see who let it happen, and more so agree with it. I see loved ones, and people I had mentored posting on a daily basis, some of the most hate-filled trash that I have ever seen. And they don't see it as wrong. Why? Because of a lack of education.

People are unsettled by people who are different from them. Xenophobia is natural. Its a self preservation instinct encoded in us to help us survive. That feeling that something is out of the norm keeps people on their toes. But the problem comes in when people don't look past that feeling. They don't bother to learn about other people. They don't want to know why different people eat, sleep, dress, worship, or even love in a way that is different from how they were raised. They just see it as different, and different must be wrong.

When I left for the military, I made a point of exploring almost every other religion I came in contact with. My thoughts were, "How can I know that the religion I was raised with is the 'right' one if I don't learn what the others are teaching?" And you know what I learned? Christianity is not "Right". At least not more so than any other religion I had encountered. In fact, they all taught the same lessons. They all spoke the same message. The only differences were how they went about doing it. How they dressed or what language they prayed in.

Humans are so quick to distrust that they rarely take the time to understand. It baffles me how few people I have talked to that don't understand that Christians, Jews, and Muslims all worship the same deity. The only difference being which teacher they believed told them to do so.

I could go on for hours about the plethora of "hot topics" boiling around the media right now. Many of which strike pretty close to home for me. The government funded bias against the Muslim community, the illogical demonization of the LGBT community, or the media bias the fuels most of our national discourse. But I realize that I am getting a bit longwinded at this point. So I'll leave this with a few words to the few people who bothered to read this far.

Educate yourselves, and educate your children. Don't just listen to what the media wants you to hear. Listen to the words of the politician you don't like. Talk to the minority family that lives next door. Learn. Not just what you want to know, but everything the world has to teach you. You'll be surprised at how much your perspective of the world expands. Love your neighbor as yourself, but moreover, talk to them, it might make that love just a little easier to give.