Tolerating Intolerance

Sitting at a small café at London’s central train station, Chris and I were discussing the latest soccer game, Chelsea vs. Bayern München. Of course Chris, being half-Brit, supported Chelsea. I’ve been a die hard Bayern fan my whole life, which explains why I wear my jersey practically everywhere. After a heated argument about which team has a better defense, Chris jockingly exlaimed, “Scheiß Deutscher, du hast keine Ahnung!”

Suddenly, a punk dressed black boots with white laces, sporting a shaved head walked up to our table. With a glare he looked at Chris and then turned to me.

“Verteidige das Volk!” He stamped his heels together and threw his right arm up and with eerie military precision shouted, “Heil Hitler!” across the platform.

Our faces turned red as the entire platform turned to stare at us in disbelief. We set down our drinks, picked up our bags and slowly walked away. On the way out the door, a young woman grabbed my arm. “One man does not speak for an entire nation. You’re welcome to stay.”

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