24 December 2008

Nationalism of any kind encourages us to balkanise people. It is an ideology that seeks out differences and cries them up; it writes labels on people. Nationalism celebrates our differences but insufficiently notices what we have in common. I think it is, like any ideology that stresses differences, us and them, and disregards commonality, generally undesirable.

Indeed, against the dividing up of people, there is an amazing commonality of life on Earth. Let me end the year with news of this.

This research, to be published in Nature, says that humanbeings and snails use the same genes for telling left from right. Snails. People. Cornish. English. Whatever. Snails. Whatever. People. We’re in this together.

From me and the snails, fraternal season’s greetings.