The World Is A Very Small Place

For about 10 years now I’ve been a member of an international online group – The International High IQ Society. In fact, for most of my tenure, I’ve been an Admin on their forums. I mention all that to set the proper context – I’ve had a lot of interactions through the years with people from all over the world. While I’ve learned much about cultural differences, how the United States is viewed around the globe, etc., I think the main thing I’ve learned is that people all over the world really are the same; same needs, same troubles, same desires.  Indeed, its made me realize that the world is really a very small place. Which leads me to a bit of a rambling thought.

Technology is a truly astounding thing. I’m not a well-traveled person, globally-speaking, but via the internet and instant access to the news, other media, and people around the globe, I’ve learned much. Centuries ago it could take weeks or months to deliver information or supplies from one point to another, whereas now the same thing is instantaneous or near-instantaneous. We are much more capable of learning about other cultures, if not via high-speed travel, then from a connection to the internet or phone. The point of my ramble is this: even as modern society is slowly (or quickly) homogenizing the world, the differences that do remain seem even greater fodder for battles, skirmishes…war. At least in the grand scheme of things. I wonder why this has to be so. We have all the tools to make for better understanding between nations, yet we never seem to be able to get there. Thanks to technology, we are gaining greater understanding on a human level, person by person. I’ve enjoyed discussions that include members from almost every continent. Ultimately, we all have the same needs and the same desires. Yet that same technology that allows me to connect with someone in a foreign land that I’ll likely never meet also allows for new weapons, new threats, and new wars.

Additionally, for all of our wonderful technology and connections, there is still far too much famine, basic health inadequacies, persecutions, human rights abuses – the list goes on and on. We can now see it, not just read about it and keep it at arm’s length. I now KNOW people in areas that have poor living standards and other problems. Yet…how much has really changed?

*Sigh*

I think the hippies of the 60s and 70s had the right idea.