Graeme G Booth
A (Rekindled) MOVEMENT FOR WORLD CITIZENSHIP
17 Jun 2012
The multiple crisis that mankind faces today puts pressure on the social cohesion of societies. Crisis such as, a dysfunctional and unsustainable economic and monetary system, ecosystem degradation and destruction, multiple conflicts/wars, catastrophic global pollution problems, increasing dysfunctional democracies, culturally bankrupt and vision-less politics, energy and resource depletion, dictatorial corporate domination etc. In varying degrees these destabilising influences raise levels of stress, and put pressure on and cause breakdown in societal cohesion often resulting in political and social reactions based on ignorance and desperation. Reactive movements of extreme ideologies, political populism, religious orthodoxy and fanaticism gain increasing support.
The global crisis strengthen the disenchantment that has been breeding within centrally steered and controlled societies, which either lack democratic principles, or have stagnated. Many of the misguided extremist movements are responses to, and express this lack of true democracy, even if expressed as demands for nationalistic or religious ultra- conservative governance, i.e. non-democratic.
Just as the first photographs of the earth from space helped a whole, mostly western, generation to the understanding that we are all together in the same boat. We need to revitalise this vision of unity and togetherness. World/earth citizenship can be a unifying tool to help lift and activate this awareness. The possibilities of coordinating, promoting and finding accord for such an idea is much greater now with a growing awareness of our collected vulnerability, an explosion of world improving networks and the establishment of new communication channels.
To help unify and heal the earth we need to promote and establish in the minds and consciousness of both the new evolving and old struggling democracies, that's to say all who are seeking, - a common vision, path or meaning and hope for the future.
Not only as an attempt to re-channel the destructive force behind the we /them mentality – that is in much of the thinking and rhetoric, but also to help strengthen and unite the individuals and groups in their rolls and work of healing Mother-Earth. Its come together, or go out together time.
Maybe world-citizenship could be connected to the individuals original citizenship, this to avoid (in some cases) divisions of cultural belonging and to strengthen the most important understanding that to act locally and think globally.
In the long term, the restoration of the earth must happen on a uniquely intergenerational and geographically bases, occurring locally and eventually re-establishing an interconnected network of natural systems that are complex and vital, stabilising the whole planet, nothing less will do. One day hopefully, World citizenship will replace all others, and our connectedness will be to the Earth instead of divided between states, peoples, man and nature. New possibilities of unifying the restoring of the Earth and in the process discovering humanities true roll, of which one is caretaker.
Of course the UN must be one of the many organisations that strongly champions the concept and it could be promoted along with The Earth Charter. But it must stand on its own right and not be incorporated, even though it to is very much a part of a sustainable future!
Of course it is not enough that people declare that they are world citizens. The term must stand for unity, respect and cooperation between all beings who inhabit the earth. Biodiversity, (collaborative) democracy, humanitarian and natures -rights , cooperation instead of domination and control, non-exploitation and place based sustainable economy.
These are some of the key concepts that I feel should be associated and agreed upon for World-citizenship plus a commitment to help heal the earth in what ever capacity the individual. However the wording of the finished formulation secondary, the main thing is that it encompasses a wholeness of a global-citizen, engaging mind-spirit-body and soul (non religious). A love, respect and knowledge of and for the rights of every individual and mother nature, that inspire and invite to grass roots active participation. The idea should appeal to many different groups and movements. A unifying concept that could, if taken on by the many social-networks gather great momentum and force for change.
Graeme Booth 2012 06 13
Ref. Rio UN meeting 1993/BIC Document #93-0614