this is my shot at an independent essay. I want to improve my writing and I would appreciate your constructive feedback very much! The grammar and spell checking feature in MS Word is great, but it is no comparison to the valueable advice you can give!

agree or disagree:
Countries should not isolate themselves but instead should engage other countries.

"We will build a wall, a great wall!" is a statement by president elect Donald Trump that shocked the globe. Americans see themselves in a time of mass immigration, high unemployment and uncountable terrorist attacks and thus believe that further isolation from other countries will protect the US. However, I disagree with this notion and I want to adress the benefits of engaging with other countries because working together improves our economies, solves difficult challenges and leads to peace for a number of reasons.

First, while many people argue that isolation protects the economy of a country, history shows the opposite result. For instance, Germany in the eightteenth century was not a single country, but a collection of tiny city states which wanted to protect their own businesses by claiming high tariffs on imported goods. If a shoemaker in Munich wanted to sell a pair of shoes in Hamburg, he would have to pass 22 borders to get there. Accordingly, the shoes with a price of 10 Mark in Munich would cost 137 Mark in Hamburg due to all the accumulated tariffs. Therefore, the protectionism of the governments stifled the flow of goods in Germany and Britain's economy quickly outpaced the German's.

Second, it is important to engage with other countries to solve difficult challenges. The greatest example of a global project is the International Space Station (ISS). The ISS is in operation for more than twenty years and continues to produce exciting results in zero-gravity. Without cross-cultural collaboration this endeavor would not have been possible and, hence, we would not be inspired to look at the sky and try to trace the ISS's movements.

Last but not least, we need to consider that we live in the longest period of peace on this planet. While in the past few centuries, there were always major countries at war with each other, in more recent decades, the people on Earth seem to get along pretty well. A proof by contradiction is North Korea, the most isolated country, where there is no telecommunication or internet allowed. Consequently, North Korea is the global hotspot most predestined for the next war. We can conclude, that isolation leads to misgivings about each other and that our communication across country lines is causing this unprecedented time of peace.

In summary, erecting walls between countries will not benefit anyone. Even president Trump seems to have come to this conclusion, as so far his efforts to start building a wall were rather half-hearted.

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