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What's lost when a language disappears? Consider this analogy: Language is to humans as the ocean is to the planet. Simple. No language, no people. Or, looked at another way, how strange would it be if there were just one fish in the ocean?
To those who argue that biodiversity is a tempest in a teacup, the loss of language no doubt seems entirely inconsequential. That view seems too narrow to merit any consideration. If you wore blinders that limited your range of vision to a just a few degrees either side, what would you see? More importantly, what would you not see?