Posted by: mydarkestplaces | June 22, 2010

So what if I’m provincial…

I haven’t been that many places.

I’ve never been outside the country – except for Canada. I’ve spent about 99.9% of my life in Northern New England. And, to be honest, for the most part I’m fine with that.

I want to travel. To see parts of the world that are radically different from mine (Russia and Vietnam are tops of travel bucket list).

Many would see this as provincial. Tonight, thinking about it, I find it…reassuring.

Unexpectedly, this stroke of insight came by watching an episode of CSI:NY. The episode centered around the Holocaust, Nazis, Neo-Nazis and the looting – and Black Market auctioning – of European Jews’ belongings. I was watching the episode and thinking of how much I don’t understand hate. There are people and things that I claim to hate (ask me about Jane Fonda or Robert McNamara some time), but my hate doesn’t begin to scratch the surface of the hate exhibited by those extremists.

How does thought one relate to thought two? The community I am a part of in Maine. The community I was and am a part of at St. Lawrence. Despite viewpoints that range from the right to the left and back again, tolerance has always been a key word. My parents, and the other adults in my life, raised me preaching love and respect.

Why would I want to leave a bubble that is safe, (mostly) respectful, and that rarely exposes me to the kind of hate that is often blatantly shown elsewhere?

I guess maybe I am somewhat provincial. But Maine, New England, my life – are safe and filled with love. It’s tough to conceive of leaving a comfort zone that remains intellectually challenging.


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