On Consideration

When I was sixteen, I had the opportunity to spend two years at the Lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific. These were revolutionary years for me. The college was founded on principles of internationalism, something about which we learn very little in this country as a rule, and it had lofty ideals: its ultimate goal, as part of the United World College Movement, was to promote world peace. It did this by offering scholarships to students from all over the world, seeking especially to include young people from countries who were enemies, and making them live together for eighteen months of their lives. The idea, put very simply, was that if you live with someone long enough, and get to understand them, their situation, their lives, you will be less likely to want to blow them off the face of the earth.Now I must confess. I was impressed by all the lofty idealism, and the experience of sharing my life with people from every continent of the globe was unique. But it was not this that changed me so fundamentally.You see, when I was sixteen I was sent to a school that had no rules.

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