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Editor’s Welcome


Our main theme this month is a "world without borders". One idea on the political left appears to be that we should welcome economic migrants, by whatever means they arrive here, as payback time for our colonial past and our culpability for climate change – a sort of reverse colonialism. The simple logic of this argument, based on the ideal of equity, can be difficult to refute. But looking at consequences, unlimited migration on this scale would overwhelm our capacity to cope and it would hit the poorest hardest. Our guest writer Barry Newman suggests that there's a rational and humane alternative.


Most of our writers seem to concur that borders are not only necessary in our human world but an essential precondition for being and becoming human. John Lennon's immortal line "Imagine there's no countries" might work for the comfortable classes but for most of us, borders and boundaries delineate the spaces which make belonging, identity, and community possible. Borderlessness is a dream that would quickly turn into a nightmare.


My brother and I both took degrees in theology at the University of Kent. He became an Anglican clergyman and I didn't. I'm proud to be able to publish an article by him this month on the topic of religious education.


We're saying farewell to our poet-in-residence this month. Alex Williams has been with us from the start and he's written dozens of thought-provoking poems for us on our chosen themes. We will miss him and we send him our very best wishes for the future.


We'll be taking a well-earned break in January and we look forward to seeing you again in February. We wish all of our readers a happy festive season.


If you like our articles, please share them on social media. Humanistically Speaking is a volunteer-produced, passion-fuelled, grassroots humanist magazine and we'd love to reach as many people around the world as possible. Thank you for your encouragement and support!


David Warden






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