Gordon Brown, a PhD in history, began his career as a lecturer. He was then the editor of the current affairs at Scotland TV Channel. He believes that the whole world needs to work together on issues like terrorism and social security. Here are excerpts from a speech by Brown on the utility of the Internet.
During the last few years, traumatic incidents of Vietnam, Sudan, Iran and other places came to the world through internet. One thing has been decided by them that we are all part of the same community, no matter where we are in the world. The Internet has opened up the invisible bonds that exist between the human community. Actually, we all have a relationship beyond religion, race and region and that relationship is based on moral sense. This moral sense not only motivates us to understand the pain of others, but also to remove it. This feeling inspires us that if atrocities and atrocities are taking place in any corner of the world, then we all should stand against it and help the needy.
Help with modern communication
Today, in a blink of an eye, we can reach people around the world. Our communication has become very easy. Information from all over the world is within our reach. We have to use these media for human good. It has become easy for us to know and understand people whom we have never met. We have such medium of communication available, with the help of which we can organize people from all over the world sitting at home. We can take joint action on important issues with mutual cooperation. This was not possible a hundred years ago.
We are living in a unique era. Recall the incident two hundred years ago, when there were huge protests in Britain about the trade of slaves. The movement had the full support of the public, but it took a long time of 24 years to happen. Hopefully! In those days, they would have modern media like today. But a lot has changed in the last decade. In 2011, about a million people in the Philippines protested against the corrupt government there by sending a message on mobile and the government had to go. Similarly, during elections in Zimbabwe, it became difficult to rig for the power there, as the public had a mobile phone in their hands, with which they could take pictures of polling stations and send them anywhere. The people of Burma made the world aware of the situation of their country through blogs. Despite all efforts, the power there could not suppress Aung San Suu Kyi’s voice.
Change the world
I believe that modern technology has given us the strength to unite globally. This is the first time that the common people have got the power to change the world. Now a few powerful people cannot arbitrarily decide the foreign policy of their country. While deciding the foreign policy, they have to take care of the feelings of the people, who are connected to the rest of the world through the Internet. The nature of the problems has changed over time. Two hundred years ago we had the issue of getting rid of slavery, 150 years ago in the country like Britain, the issue of the right to education to children was overshadowed, the issue of Right to Vote was echoing in most countries of Europe hundred years ago. Fifty years ago the issue of social security and welfare was hot. During the last fifty-sixty years we have faced problems like racism and gender discrimination. Those people were campaigning on these issues, which had the passion to change the world.
A few years ago, I met Nelson Mandela at an event in London. Mandela said that he has faced all the great challenges. The biggest challenge was to fight apartheid. But now even bigger challenges are ahead: such as poverty and global warming. One country cannot find a solution to these. For this the whole world will have to take initiative. We are members of the first generation that has the capacity to take global initiatives on major issues. Recently we saw the phase of economic recession. Clearly, the solution to this problem was not about the US or Europe alone.
Creating only institutions to solve problems will not help. We have to change people’s behavior and thinking. We have to instill a sense of responsibility and morality among the countries. We must develop a healthy partnership between rich and poor countries. We have to see that the investment in agriculture of poor countries increases, so that their economy can improve, so that countries like Africa do not remain as importers of grain forever. The situation in agriculture improved so that Africa could also export grain. Many countries of the world are struggling with human rights abuses, we have to take initiative in this direction. We are equipped with modern information and communication tools. We should not miss this opportunity. We should unite and raise our voice against these problems. Come, let us all work together for a good cause.