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The Role of Civil Society in Global Citizenship

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Date added: 19-04-12


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Global citizenship or globalization is not a modern phenomenon nowadays. Actually, the term globalization was first appeared in the 1930s and widely used by economists and other social scientists by the 1960s. According to Dierks, globalization process includes technological, political, economic, and cultural dimensions that interconnect individual, governments, and firm across national borders (6). Globalization is the worldwide movement toward economic, finance, trade, and communications integration. Moreover, this phenomenon also refers to the transformation in the society, environment, and politic globally, which gives the signs or notices to individuals as well as communities on a universal scale. Therefore, global citizenship is not limited in a local area or in a national territory. Global citizenship has brought many advantages for people all over the world. These effects are to create the international teams of rescuing and financial aid; to diversify the products in the range of prices, qualities, and designs; to be able to easily travel around the world.

There are various external factors that influence global citizenship. Some factors are religions, economics, cultures, and environment. Since thousands of years ago, many missionaries of Buddha, Christian, Catholic, and Islam traveled to the other land far away from their hometown in order to transmit the values and the spirits of their religions. From the second century BC, the Silk Road was formed and developed abundantly from China to West Asia and even reached Europe. This very long road was considered as the biggest trade system in the ancient world, which connected two civilizations between the East and the West. The demand for exchange necessary products, valuable items such as silk, salt, or diamond and innovations like printing techniques, has overcome the country's boundaries. The rivalry stimulates the cooperation among international companies, organization, and governments. This demonstrates cooperation to preserve globalization (Allen 11). Moreover, the cultural differences between countries have attracted a lot of explorers. Each country possesses their own culture of cuisine, communication, and fashion. The curiosity stimulates the people to travel abroad, to exchange, and to learn new things. Furthermore, global warming issues have tightened the distance between countries. Only one country cannot make a big change to save the environment. It has to be the efforts of everyone, every country, from the First World to the Third World.

The author Paul Sherman in the University of Guelph-Humber stated three dimensions that involve being pro-global citizenship, which is awareness, responsibility, and participation. Global citizens aware themselves as a part of the world. They do not belong to one specific area, but they consider themselves as the citizens of the world. According to Madeleine F. Green, an author of NAFSA: Association of International Educators, global citizenship is initially the experience with different countries, peoples, and cultures. Then it creates a connection between the local and the global. Moreover, global citizens usually recognize their responsibilities following the important events and matters in their communities and in the world. International education is put on the priority. Traveling abroad to participate in the educational program has served a pivotal step in the lives of many self-described global citizens (Schattle 15). They take initiative to equip necessary knowledge, skills, and critical thinking to take action and protect their missions on the global scale. The Earth Hour campaign is a proper example of global citizenship. This is an annual worldwide event held by the World Wide Fund for Nature, which appeals every one's cares about our planet and our responsibility to protect it. Another picture of global citizenship is the LGBTQ community. LGBT people have existed in many communities for a long time ago. However, they are just the minorities that do not dare to stand up and gain the equality for themselves. Due to global citizenship, these people connect to each other and organize as a global community. This group becomes bigger and bigger, represents, and fights in order to gain justice for every individual.

While many aspects support the development of the intercontinental connection, there have been several certainly disadvantages of global citizenship. In the trend of globalization, a lot of free trade agreements are established to promote economic development among countries in the world. However, this also become a cause of job losses in developed countries. Big companies have moved their factories to developing countries in order to derive cheap labor. Therefore, they can reduce their product price and be more competitive in the global market. Based on the article of John Rennie Short from the University of Maryland, the living standards of the working class in the First World sloped downward because of losing jobs. Moreover, the globalization also an entry for immigrants to move easily from this country to the other country. This has raised many troubles for the local residents in America and Europe such as criminals, pollution, and unsafe status in politics and society. Jagdish Bhagwati in his book gave an argument that the anti-globalization sentiments on the right extend easily to anti-immigration attitudes because immigration adds to environmental problems (25). Consequently, several authorities of developed countries showed their actions to against globalization. For example, the intense regulations on the immigrant and border security issues of President Donald Trump since he was elected at the end of 2016. The Brexit vote in the United Kingdom and the rise of a nationalism in Europe are also an obvious reaction against global citizenship.

Global citizenship is not a new phenomenon, but it is still a controversial issue that the government and the experts keep discussing nowadays. In my perspective, I see the global citizenship has brought more advantages than its drawbacks. Hence, I am pro global citizenship. In ancient times, battles and wars occurred everywhere. That was also a reason why people traveled around the world. Moreover, because of traveling, Christopher Columbus accidentally discovered the land of the Americas. It means global citizenship is obviously inevitable, and no one can stop it. The only thing that we can do is to develop and shape it in the appropriate way in order to minimize its disadvantages. Due to globalization, people have chances to use quality products with an affordable price. Furthermore, this world is created with a lot of fantastic landscapes, sightseeing, and mysteries. People have the rights to discover it. Besides, global citizenship help people from different sides of the world get closer to each other. Recently, in June 2018, Thailand youth soccer team were trapped in a flooded cave in the north of this country. A search and rescue mission was appropriately established. An extraordinary international operation included hundreds of cave and rescue experts and military force from several countries such as Australia, Britain, Japan, China, Myanmar, Laos, and America. Through this emergency case, we can see the effectivity of cooperation and global citizenship among countries, which showed the consolidation, not the division.

In the future, if the global citizenship trend continues the way it is, the global transactions and trade would be stretched out. Then the world might need to use a single currency and a single central bank: with perfectly functioning markets, there would be no need for currency adjustment (King 10). It seems like the future world might be operated as the model of the European Union. On the other hand, with the development of technologies and artificial intelligence (AI), human life will be more connected with the robots. Every house in every country would be controlled by the AI steward system. Most of the jobs would be lost, so unemployment rate will dramatically increase. Transportation will be more in high technologies such as self-driving cars and flying cars. Space tourism would be opened, and people would travel to the Moon and the other planets more often. Oil and fossils resources would be exhausted, and wars would happen because of the oil rival among countries. The world population would reach 10 billion. Skyscrapers will be built more in the rural areas. If global warming cannot control, people could move to live in the North and South poles. Super hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis would frequently occur. Moreover, many cities and even countries such as Maldives and Netherlands would totally disappear in the world map because the sea level increases.

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