Born Free, Bound By Borders

As a kid in the school I had read about this wonderful bird called ‘Arctic Tern’. The life of this bird fascinated me a lot because it is the only species which covers earth from one pole to other, and that too every year! Even we humans with such advanced technology dont travel so much in our lifetime.

Every year this bird travels from its Arctic breeding grounds to the Antarctic ice and back, for about 40000 km!! And hence this bird for me represents the ultimate freedom. Freedom to move whereever you want on this beautiful blue planet, without any kind of dependency on any aircraft or fuel, on your own individual capacity!


An Arctic Tern

But the sad story is that I have no wings and I am a human. Being born in India, if I want to roam about in the Amazon forests or in the African savanna, I need something called a Visa and Passport. Doesnt the earth belong to all? Why should I take permission from somebody to move to some other part of this planet? Does the arctic tern take permission? Or is this a human limitation, a species spoiled by its own intelligence!

We all are born free, but bound by the borders of our country, confined within the limits of our narrow mindsets, arrested by our own restricted thoughts. When humans migrated from Africa to rest of the world, the species in the rest of the world did not ask for any passport or visas, did they? But today you need permissions if you want to climb the himalayas!

Okay but then we also see such behavior in animal kingdom. A lion for instance will not allow other lions to enter into its territory. So then why cant humans follow a similar but much sophisticated approach of nations and borders? May be this is another form of nature’s survival of the fittest strategy, where best of the nations survive in the long run.

Also the borders defined by a lion are permanent. It will never crossover into the territory of a neighboring Lion, and if it ever does, then it simply means WAR with the neighbor! Thank God, we humans atleast have passports and visas, and can move to other countries without having to fight the people there :)

But then again on a closer look we see that a Lion or a Tiger will never occupy a territorial area which is more than what it really needs. On the other hand we have poor countries where people have very little resources compared to what they need, and there are rich countries who have more resources than what they need. We have sparsely populated countries with huge territories, and we have densely populated countries with smaller territorial area! This setup looks a bit unscientific. Doesnt it?

And then, unlike the animal kingdom we have territorial disputes and claims. One set of humans say that once upon a time their ancestors ruled over a region which today they accuse as being occupied by another set of humans, and hence based on historical data, they should get back that region. Well, in that case doesnt the entire planet belong to Africans because that’s were all humans originally came from!

By the end of this century I am sure that humans will have a base on moon, provided their crazy leaders dont press the nuclear buttons before that. Now in that case, how would the lunar territory be divided and distributed between countries of Earth? Will it be based on the percentage of land a country owns on earth? In that case Russia will inherit the largest lunar territory. Or will it be based on who landed on Moon first? In which case Americans will end up with the largest chunk of lunar territory unless and until Indians prove that they landed on moon thousands of years before Americans did, or if Russia proves that in the first place Americans never landed on Moon!

Or will it be based on a country’s technological and economic ability to send its men to moon? In that case only a handful of countries will end up swallowing the entire lunar territory. But it is most likely that the Lion’s rule will be followed to decide who owns how much and what of the Lunar surface. Lion’s Rule? Yes, display of the military might or in the worst case, a WAR!

As of now the outer space is completely free. There are no other countries out there. No passports, no Visas. So this is the right time to make a space trip, to visit the planets, to move even beyond our solar system, like an artcic tern, you can try to become a galactic tern! Tomorrow there will be borders out there too. You wont be able to visit Mars if you dont have an Earth Passport and a Mars Visa!

And now I conclude this bheja fry with a free tip for a free unlimted travel on earth. If you want to enter other countries without any passport or visa, then the best option is to join the army. You dont need a passport/visa for this type of travel. Just join the army, visit exotic places, meet strange people and kill them ;) If you yourself get killed, nice try, better luck next time!

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