Yes, you read the title correctly.
I am against patriotism.
This must have provoked some of you but let me explain.
Let’s begin with “What is patriotism?”
Patriotism is the feeling of devotion or love towards one’s motherland. It is sometimes also referred to as “Nationalism.” The core concept of patriotism is great and I’m with it.
If we want to work for the well-being of our society, we can’t do it at once. First of all, individuals should bring change within themselves. Secondly, families should start changing themselves, then communities, and finally the society changes. Similarly, Earth is where we live in and it is our sole responsibility to take good care of it. But one or just a particular group of people can’t take guardianship of each and every part of this world. So, every nation is provided with a responsibility to take charge of the land within their territory.
For that, again, we have to begin with individuals. Here, patriotism brings us together, unites us. But where the problem arises is when patriotism morphs into vain pride or nationalism, and it happens so quickly that we won’t even be able to notice it sometimes. We often mistook it for patriotism.
“We should love our country and take care of it.” This is patriotism. “We should only love our country and take care of it only.” “My country is the best.” This is vain pride or nationalism. Here, a huge problem arises because this feeling towards one’s country can bring conflicts and misunderstandings with other countries. Many people believe that one of the major causes of World War I was nationalism.
So, we should believe in internationalism rather than patriotism. Don’t get me wrong. Patriotism is a very positive thing. To all intents and purposes, it unites us, but there is a high risk that patriotism will morph into vain pride. And in the 21st century, just looking only after your nation is not enough. No, it is not! We are at the peak of science and technology. Many new things are being tested and invented. That is why just taking care of your own country is not enough.
Okay, let me explain why.
Let’s take an example. Let’s suppose North Korea is testing a massive hydrogen bomb which is ten times more effective than the Tsar Bomba. Now, will that explosion not affect other countries? Of course, it will. If South Korea only “takes care of its territory,” isn’t there a possibility that the explosion will damage South Korea? Surely there is.
Let’s take another, more practical example. Let’s say that China is producing a lot of industrial gaseous wastes. If China’s neighboring countries like Bhutan, India, Nepal, and so on only “take care of themselves,” won’t the pollution from China be hazardous to them? It surely will turn out to be dangerous for other countries.
The feeling of “My motherland is the best” or nationalism should not be the ideal belief of people. Instead, we should work together to build a base for internationalism and look at the world as a single unit rather than just looking it into one’s homeland and working for the advancement of that country only.
This will help all the countries, even the under-developed ones, by bringing all countries on the same page. Because we all are living on the same planet and we should protect it together.
To develop the world, just developing the USA into heaven is not enough. To develop the whole of humankind, we should develop Burundi as well.
The idea of ‘internationalism’ will undoubtedly help nations come together to solve many other problems such as low GDP, poverty, racism, and many more. Because internationalism forms only when all countries come together and thus will not only help a single nation but the orb as a whole.
If the truth be told, adopting internationalism, we will be able to look at the whole world as a single country and the countries will just be lands divided by imaginary borders.
This will also help to bring the feeling of universal brotherhood with ease.
In the 21st century, we should focus more on internationalism than just patriotism because no matter where we live, all our homes reside on the same planet.
The writer, a 17-year-old student from Nepal who sometimes thinks himself an ‘over-thinker,’ is currently planning to do engineering and has a rooted interest in writing.