Our current democratic systems were instituted as a protest against privileged, inherited social status, like being born into a royal family; but today, our system is no different. People who hold Western passports are like people belonging to the royal family. The rest are the serfs.
Or you may call it a Global caste system! I thought the caste system in India was looked down upon, whereas Henley & Partners publishes the ranks of the caste system every year proudly. Sure, there are some movements in this caste system, but not much. No Afghani will ever shoot up to the first ranks anytime foreseeable in the near future.
The universally accepted visa regime granting people movement based on their nationality, their birthplace is an unacceptable injustice; what makes it worse is that it is invisible to the majority.
We are all born on this world; and we all have an inalienable natural right to go wherever we wish without the need for papers. I hold this truth to be self-evident. Unfortunately, most people do not. Because that's not what we were brought up with. We are like the kittens in Colin Blakemore and G.F. Cooper experiment who are blind to vertical lines and keep on banging on chair's legs because they've been wearing goggles with horizontal lines since their birth and cannot recognize vertical lines.
Or we are all like Red, the character of Morgan Freeman in Shawshank Redemption who asks permission to go to the bathroom even after he is free... We need to ask permission to move around the world we were born on, we need to ask permission to work to make a living for our families. We have internalized the restrictions on our movements so much that we cannot even think differently, we can't think of ourselves as a free human being. Like Red in prison, “Forty years I been asking permission to piss. I can't squeeze a drop without say-so.”
It's so deeply entrenched in us that we do not question; let alone questioning, we are so shocked at questioning. The thought does not occur to us. On the other hand, it is so ironical and truly sad that we celebrate the fall of the Berlin Wall in a world where new walls and fences are built every day.
With the advent of new technology, there are new global demands today and our political system, which was designed for a different era cannot catch up to meet those demands. The system is showing its age -well at least to me-, and it is obvious that citizenship and belonging needs to be redefined. This is one of the most important tasks at hand for the new century.
To end on a provocative note... We have developed technology to overcome our fear of nature and we've come a long way at it; however, what we need to work on is overcome our fear of one another, another human. -Or should I say another homo sapiens as we so narcissistically call ourselves.- Only and if only then, can we live up to our names and be called Homo Sapiens.