I realized that my fellow scholars had forgotten something. The first thing that had shocked us. The diversity of humankind. As I delved back into their history, I saw more evidence of how those differences were even more pronounced then we thought. It was no wonder they were able to consider members of their own species as non-persons!
But how did such an arrangement come to exist? Why hadn’t any one culture or civilization already stamped out their rivals? …And why did no other species have this diversity? I eventually came upon pre-history. I read about how early man had driven his rival and sister species to extinction. My first thoughts were that the others were right.
Then it occurred to me. No other species had closely related species either. No other species was as diverse in form and culture. …As the realization set in I grew terrified. I began this research commenting on how similar the species of the galaxy were. …Humans were similar to us as well. No other species had the diversity in value systems and beliefs the humans did.
What sets the humans apart IS NOT their capacity to turn friends and loved ones into “the Other”. It is their capacity to turn “the Other” into friends and loved ones.
What is truly surprising is not that the humans fight over their differences. It’s that they have differences to fight over.
The species of the galaxy are all very similar. With one exception, they have all brutally stamped out any differences, any variations. These deviations from the norm were destroyed so perfectly our racial memories have forgotten them.
Every species, save Homo sapiens, had long ago perfected the art of genocide.
I wonder if I shall ever sleep again.