At very great cost of course, Berliners learned that walls do not work as proposed by the builders. They fail to keep us free. They fail to defend us from those that we fear. They even mislead us as to the true threat.
Berlin has taken its great big ugly wall down, but has left reminders, to itself, and to posterity of its forty years of tears, madness and sorrow.
It has come together as a vibrant and lively city, celebrating all the pleasures and challenges of civilization. It recognizes the events of the past without overburdening itself with apportioning guilt and blame. There is plenty of that to go around of course. But for those who call Berlin home now, there is a much better future in store.