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>From: Vincent Campbell <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>To: "'email@example.com'" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: RE: future language
>Date: Wed, 1 May 2002 16:35:47 +0100
> <Taliban aside, hearing something apathetic towards loss of cultural
> > diversity on a list about cultural processes is sort of like hearing
> > someone
> > on an entomology list say that it's not all that big a deal if many of
> > world's insect species go extinct. We could learn lots about European
> > derivative culture and extrapolate this to those lost cultures and their
> > language much like we could learn lots about fruitflies and extend these
> > findings (beyond the genetics research if you catch the drift of my
> > sarcasm)
> > to cover what all those uncatalogued insects may have been like.
> > Loss of learning opportunities is less lamentable than that the people
> > affected may have been lost with their unique cultural attributes.
> > an
> > even worse consideration as I'm sure you'd agree given your ethnic
> > cleansing
> > comment above.>
> Fair point, well made. I'm not entirely convinced of the ethics of
>maintaining cultures with dubious practices for the sake of learning about
>cultural evolution, but I see what you mean.
Well, to make some crucial qualifiers to what I've said about diversity
preservation, I'd not lament the loss of cultural practices like female
circumcision, cannabilism, honor crimes or others of that reprehensible ilk.
Here in the U.S. we've managed to eliminate some of our more reprehensible
practices and institutions like slavery and added a couple good ones like
women's suffrage and civil rights though patriarchy and racism have a ways
to go before going extinct. Good riddance when (or if) they do.
But, I still think there's a lot to be learned and even more reasons for the
maximization of diversity, as long as said diversity doesn't involve the
violation of basic human rights.
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