Global Viewpoints

Throughout this course, I have learned that the term “Global Citizenship” can take on many meanings. The research and discussions that our class has participated in helped me understand this. Each global issue can broaden our sense of the world and makes us a lot more knowledgeable and accepting. Hearing Buika’s story takes you to a different side of the world, looking through a different ”lens”. Even the debate about homosexuality and gay marriage can influence your outlook on global issues- even if you feel that it is only a big debate in America. I have learned a lot through the three weeks that we have been exploring Global Citizenship, and it has definitely changed my outlook on the world; to be a global citizen, you must put aside pre-formed biases and look at the “big picture”.

Growing up in America, as in many countries, we are often encouraged to see the world from the American perspective. However, being a global citizen means that you have to overcome these biases. The “Global” perspective rather than the “National” perspective needs to be adopted to become a successful globally competent person. In a general sense, this seems simple. But once you begin to comprehend the discipline it takes to become a global citizen, things change. You are required to shed all of your pre-determined prejudices and fears that have been with you since who-knows-when. A nationalistic standpoint when it comes to international debates, issues, trade, wars, etc. is not global citizenship. Global citizenship implies that you defend issues that will improve the world as a whole, as opposed to thinking only on a national level.

Through our discussions and videos from all over the world, especially John Lennon’s “Imagine”, I have learned so much. The blog posts about homosexuality and gay marriage were really interesting, because I didn’t know that it was a big issue in other parts of the world as well. Watching Chak de! India was also a great way to experience a culture other than our own. After watching the movie and listening to segments from NPR, I have come to realize that India is going through struggles at the same rate as we are. They might not be dealing with the exact same issues as us, but they do have a lot of things to work out. India is a rich, vibrant culture. Through a very important aspect of the society, cinema (and food), as well as the selections from an American who went to live in India (NPR), I began to appreciate and comprehend this immense culture. The society of our two countries is very different, but our struggles are somewhat similar; we need to work together to stay leaders in the global economy. Finally, we studied a little bit about civil discourse and how it has affected the country, looking at various talks and about the shootings in Arizona and it made me realize that civil discourse is very important if we, as a country, want to make any progress.

Global Citizenship has helped me become interested in global issues and ways to solve them. In the future, I will remember that my perspective is definitely not the only one, and it is important to pay attention to others’ viewpoints in order to be a competent global citizen.

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