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Sunday, November 19, 2017

Travel Freedom



We have gotten used to freedom of movement. There aren't a lot of places in the world were people can't go. Even if you never travel far, isn't it good to know that you can?

Most citizens of the United States do not have passports. That sounds terrible until you consider how far one can travel in the US. Driving across the US is like driving across Europe. Of course, European citizens have pretty open travel now between European Union members.

All passports are not equal. For example, travel with a US passport is a lot easier than travel with a passport from Iran. Right now I believe the German passport allows access to the most countries without a visa.

We may have reached the peak level for freedom of moment. There are signs that travel is getting more restricted all over the world.

When I was younger going from the US to Canada was no big deal. I barely had to stop the car when crossing the border. Back then a driver's license and copy of my birth certificate were enough documentation and they rarely asked to see them. Now passports are required.

Since the refugee crisis and Brexit, European governments are looking into making border crossings more difficult.

As more countries face difficulties, travel bans will increase. There are plenty of reasons to restrict travel. For example, right now Madagascar is suffering a particularly virulent outbreak of plague. That's a pretty valid reason to tighten restrictions. Borders have been closed to keep out various refugees, everything from those fleeing political upheaval, to economic conditions to climate refugees.

Recently I read a scary Science Fiction story where internal borders were set up in the United States. Regions were completely cut off from each other. Various excuses were given, but the idea was to reduce the population of the country. Picture something like the hurricanes that recently struck the US. Now imagine if the only aid available is what could be mobilized locally. Heavily populated areas with limited agricultural land were starving. Places with disease outbreaks received no aid from outside and descended into anarchy.

Reading that book caused me to look at border restrictions around the world with a more critical eye. Are the reasons, valid or is something sinister going on? Restricting travel out of plague area makes sense. Restriction of aid going into an area would be pretty sinister.

-Sixbears


6 comments:

  1. If the question feels valid, you already know the answer down deep.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I do travel quite a bit and use my passport as identification at the airport. I've been told more than once that soon it will be the only document accepted for ID. Guess passports are a bit more difficult to forge than driver's license.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My NH driver's license is not Real ID compliant so I'm going to have to start carrying my passport everywhere.

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  3. Replies
    1. End Game by Ginger Booth

      https://www.amazon.com/End-Game-Calm-Act-Book-ebook/dp/B014Q2W2QC/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1511112270&sr=8-2&keywords=calm+act+series

      Delete