Make the world a better place

After an afternoon spent exploring Grenoble I came across the Bibliothèque d’étude et d’information. The sixth floor of the building is a wonderful library complete with solid wooden tables and those tiny library card drawers which makes you feel you’ve stepped back in time 50 years. To bring you back into the present the place was full of people working on laptop computers.
I found a little boulangerie to buy some bread from and was cycling home when I found the Natural History Museum and I knew the Museum of Resistance and Deportation couldn’t be far away. I found it on a little side street in front of a school.
The museum was well designed and of course extremely interesting and it even has information in English and German as well as French which made it easier to understand. It’s a powerful tool of well I suppose propaganda is the right word although it has a pejorative sense which I don’t mean. What I mean to say is that the emotioanl resposone they managed to engenger was effective and the message they got across was painful but also inspirational. You come out feeling like you must do something to make the world a better place and wondering how far you would go to fight for something if your back was against the wall. By the time I got to the top floor I wasn’t feeling too good and the displays about the concentration camps and the sight of a television showing pictures of members of the resistance shot by the Nazis and lying with blood oozing from their heads was too much for me and I had to stagger out feeling sick and lean up against my bike outside. In that respect the museum was remarkably effective but the knowledge that there is so much suffering still in the world makes it too much to bear. I was reminded of an anarchist group I met in a city in Germany – every year they have their annual meeting on the site of a concentration camp to remind themselves what they are fighting against.
Let’s hope that today the British elect a sensible government who will work towards making the world a better place, limit the unnecessary suffering and stop the wars, torture, abuse and exploitation that goes on in our name. If you are still undecided on who to vote for then check out Vote for Policies to find out what you agree with and They Work For You to find out how elected MPs have voted in the past.

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