Today is Holocaust Memorial Day.
Another dangerous topic: race, nationhood, discrimination and all associated woes.
A moving personal piece here from Michael Rosen to mark the day.
I’ve just listened to all five parts of a lecture (below; confusingly, parts 2 and 5 seem to be swapped): a fascinating rebuttal to the recent rise of big business genetic determinism. (I particularly like that we share 30% of our genes with cabbages – something Terry Pratchett might approve.)
We need to see ourselves are first HUMAN, then part of whatever sub-group – family, work, religion, country – we chose. Note: we choose.
“We live at the interface of multiple determinants.
We are the products of our genetics and our evolutionary processes.
If we want to look at the cause of the Iraq war it’s no good looking at the levels of serotonin in George W Bush’s brain – we need to look at politics.”
Let’s teach people not to look at skin colour, gender, disability or place of origin as a lazy means to discriminate.
Meanwhile, I love it when men I know support women’s rights; “white”* people support “black”* rights and those of us who are fit stand up (that means metaphorically) for those with disabilities. If your campaign against discrimination will not allow your “enemy” to join, how are you different from them?
(*I was searching for a genetics book I read a while ago on just how similar races are – more variation within African populations than bewteen any non-African populations – but I can’t recall the author so struggling for citation, sorry)
An interesting debate regarding this South African inter-racial embrace poster also caught my eye. Back to politics again?