We're a conflicted bunch. Always have been and, if history is any indication, always will be.
Life is fueled by drama – drama between nations, between neighbours, between siblings. The belief that we’ll all one day get along is absurd. Unless we program all newborns to eradicate from the cerebellum Jealousy, Hostility, Prejudice and the mother of all negativity, Fear, we’ll be coveting thy neighbour’s wife and getting even for it for-freakin'-ever. Whatever forever may be.
Even “peaceful” nations such as Canada can’t maintain a dispute-less order. Quebec has a been a constant thorn in the sides of legislators trying to develop a sense of unity and national pride – or, as the Quebecois see it, Anglophone Canada has been a prick in their ass while they try to develop their own national/cultural identity. Our nation was built on this conflict. Just as Europe’s foundation was built on one tribe tackling another. We’re slaves not only to our genetics, but to our history as well.
It will take something cataclysmic – like a race of superior alien beings threatening a nuclear strike – for us all to buck up, set aside our differences and work together to overcome this new obstacle facing us all on Planet Earth. Like in the Watchmen. Not the movie, the book. Read it! And read Bertrand Russell as well. He knows the score.
In any case, as it stands now, this pettiness we’re dealing with in racism and xenophobia and on and on and on is mere sibling squabbling on a very large scale. Humans (men especially) have a difficult time letting their influences, biases and pride subside to see the larger picture. We’ve developed in a particular way that doesn’t allow for us to take the Other into account. What is different is to be feared, and what is to be feared is to be overthrown, subdued or destroyed.
The bottom line is that humanity probably isn’t capable of harmony. On top of that, world peace would be boring. The arts would be banal. Journalism would be non-existent. Sport would involve a lot more hugging. Anything breeding conflict would be outlawed, which is exactly why it wouldn’t work. The act of Outlawing anything is an act of conflict in and of itself.
As Bertrand Russell once wrote: “[…]Evolution progressed to the point at which it has generated Neros, Genghis Khans, and Hitlers. This, however, I believe is a passing nightmare; in time the earth will become again incapable of supporting life, and peace will return.”
And maybe he’s right. World peace is possible as long as we’re not around.