Globalization Provides A More Comprehensive Understanding of International Relationships

Globalization has become closely related with people’s life under today’s society. Whether it is on the political stage or normal daily life, it has influenced all aspects of our lives. Under the context of this “internet century”, people can get to know about the world with just one screen. People from different countries, cultures, backgrounds and races are all able to be connected to each other. As a result, the advance in technology provides much more opportunities for everyone to have a global mindset. Although some may argue that being a global citizen will cause people to neglect the interest and benefit of their own country, I think being a global citizen makes people become more objective and tolerant when absorbing and selecting information, which further enables people to have a more comprehensive understanding of international relationships.

Being a global citizen can broaden people’s vision and increase people’s awareness of the world. Thanks to my parents who have given me birth in the U.S. and brought me up in China. From the day I was born, I had the identities of the two great nations, which also benefited me from being able to travel around the world since I was young. Today, I have been to 5 continents, more than 30 countries and hundreds of different cities all around the world. These experiences make me appreciate the charm and beauty of this world, and most importantly, give me the sense of being a global citizen and the responsibility that comes along with it.

Having a global mindset enables people to become more tolerant and open-minded towards different ideas and opinions. The exposure to different cultures, races and languages can undoubtedly make people gain more awareness and respect of other people’s ideas. I always love getting to know people and I have friends from all around the world. Many of them are from different countries, backgrounds, and cultures. Talking with these people is a great resource for me to get to know about the world. More importantly, it provides me a much more comprehensive vision towards international political relationships. Of course, everyone has bias, but being able to access information from different people and sides of a story can always get you closer to the truths, especially on a political matter. Getting information from different sources and perspectives rather than only trusting information from one side can make you have a more objective opinion. Although political struggles are frustrating, when you are able to understand and accept opinions that oppose your own ideas, you will have a clearer and better vision on international political relationships. A perfect example would be the US-China relationship.

Living in both China and the United States both for almost 10 years, I am confident to say that I have a good knowledge for both. Without the political struggle, people in both countries are mostly friendly and very curious about each other. However, when it comes to the political stage, things are not that optimistic. The Coronavirus pandemic apparently raised the problems between the two countries into another level.

What Trump is doing during the coronavirus pandemic presents a perfect example of choosing a national identity over the global identity, which also raises the question: wouldn’t it cause people to neglect the interests and benefits and further cause one to become less patriotic towards their own country if they maintain a global mindset? My answer to this question is, they do not contradict each other and they can exist at the same time. Just like how many people still ask me, “do you feel more Chinese or American?” My answer is always, both. The choice is not one or the other and being one does not mean you have to exclude the other. Loving the world does not mean not loving your own country. And Identifying yourself as a global citizen also does not mean you lose the awareness of your own country. On the contrary, I think having a global mindset can make people love their own country even more. When you learn and know more about other countries and cultures, with the comparison and contrast, you will automatically know more about the strength of your own country and culture. Therefore, being a global citizen does not make you less patriotic, but even more patriotic than before. This also means, taking a global responsibility is not contradictory to protecting the interests and benefits of people’s own country. In other words, benefiting the world is equal to benefiting your own country.

Globalization allows different countries to cooperate and compete with each other in a healthy way. Only practicing nationalism and hurting other countries while protecting your own interests is never ideal. Hate, racism and separatism between the two countries and races are the products from Trump’s direct usage of the “Chinese virus” and his new political policies. Trump as a nationalist politician is claiming that he is doing these things for the national interest and benefit. However, using education as a political tool to put restrictions on the Chinese international students and set new policies specifically targeting China is how he practices nationalism. Is it necessary to hurt others while protecting your own interests? Furthermore, Trump chooses to quit the WHO, because he cares about the interests of the United States, but not the world. His “America’s first” is the way he practices nationalism. But nationalism should not be equivalent to separatism and conservatism. Right now is the time that everyone and every country should unite together to conquer our common enemy, the coronavirus. This is the time for countries around the world to work together and practice globalization.

The process of defining myself is not easy and the reality may also directly contradict my beliefs. But it still does change my idea of being a global citizen, and the wish to create beautiful things for this world. I am really happy that I am able to have the sense of being a global citizen, which enabled me to have a global mindset, vision and perspective. I truly believe that globalism and nationalism are not contradictory and they can exist at the same time, because they are just two different ways of understanding the world, which are really based on people’s life experiences. However, globalization has already become inevitable for everyone and all the countries around the world today. More and more people start to identify themselves as global citizens. Instead of only thinking about what I can do for myself, my family and my country, it is really important to think about what we can do for the world, because in the end, we are all human beings.

The Ends of Globalization

Writing 150, Spring 2022