In favour of German is the richness of German culture and the importance of German history in the history of Europe, all of which I find fascinating.
We, in the English speaking world have a distorted view of history, as if all of the kings of England, the 100 years war with France, Napoleon, and the British Empire, the American Revolution, Civil War, and the two world wars (mainly the Western front and the Pacific) are all there is.
German has been the centre of Europe since Charlemagne, its towns were at the forefront of the development of the bourgeoisie, the reformation and subsequent religious wars, including the 30 years war. All of its little princedoms and dukedoms fed the blood lines of Europe’s royal families. Its people fought and farmed and settled in areas like the Baltic, Romania, Russia. The impact on Germany of Napoleon’s invasions, the rise of German nationalism, the German influence on the nationalities of the Austro-Hungarian empire, the rivalry between Austria and Germany, German music, German philosopy, Goethe…and many more reasons make it a fascinating study.
It is also interesting to come into contact with German history on the periphery, Bolzano, Prague, Riga, and I would imagine Sibiu, Romania.
I was listening to Echo Moskvi yesterday and they were talking about the life of Charles IV of Bohemia, whose architectural imprint was left on Prague. He was half-German half-Czech, a polyglot, Czech nationalist, but was also fully involved in the politics of Germany as has been the case of Prague itself.
Learn German and learn about Europe! And read Mark Twain’s description of the language but not that he learned it. It is really not that difficult if you follow the LingQ approach! Mark Twain was one of our first members.