This I Believe

Kamal - Irivne, California
Entered on February 15, 2008
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: equality
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From Identity to World ID

Identity was the subject of a conference organized by a group of stateless but mindful students. I was invited because of my studious search of a state identity via biology, medicine, and social advocacy. Persons might be identified as human beings conditioned by their culture and their social relationships. If such persons unify politically and occupy a definite territory they are considered a state or a nation. A nation can exist culturally while its people might be stateless politically. The true stateless people do not identify themselves with the states that can not fulfill their dream and leave their original territory. When they end up in a new territory they might be identified as pilgrims or illegal immigrants depending on their social status. Later they might be identified as colorful people, party people, and average people depending on their heritage, affiliation, and interest. The purpose of this satire is to identify people biologically, socially, and medically.

Biologically speaking, I had described in a previous satire titled “kew in the jungle” how the political behavior of states is similar to the biological behavior of animals after comparing their identifying information. I had noted remarkable analogies between dinosaurs and empires, old mammals and colonial powers, new mammals or birds and certain states or nations, old bears and sheep cloners, new bears and bird trainers, snails and fanatics, turkeys and militarists, elephants and greedy parties, donkeys and ignorant associations, and finally kews and stateless people.

Socially speaking, I had observed a difference between identifying phrases such as Proud R us and proud are those who become us. While one describes self respect, the other is about disrespecting others. Some states respect themselves and others equally, while some feel superior to others. The apartheid or discriminatory identity of a state can be determined by its constitution which might be detected in having one official language and ethnic identity or mixing a state with one religion to homogenize a diverse society.

Medically speaking, identity reminds me of ID, the elements of identifying information such as name, age, gender, ethnicity, marital status, and profession of a person who purposefully seeks medical help. In few examples I try to show how these elements identify a person in need of medical help and relate it to a stateless people in need of political solutions.

Name might be the easiest way to identify a person. However, in medical conditions the name might be weightless. For instance, when we hear that a 70 years old, married, stateless statesman is seeking help for overweight, we suspect who he might be, without knowing about his name. The key identifying information here is the statelessness of the statesman.

Having a profession or a state could be medically more informative than a name. For hearing loss in a rock musician one does not think of the same cause initially if the patient is a librarian. But a stateless person might think everyone has a hearing loss and shout even in a library about discrimination.

Age also gives a good medical hint. As soon as we hear a person seeking help for jaundice is a new born, we rule out chronic alcohol use and rule in blood incompatibility. Regardless of age, there is no known change of skin color due to statelessness, but statelessness might be due to other incompatibilities determined by dominant groups who run the state.

Like age, marital status also provides medical clues. For instance mouth discoloration might be due to immune suppression. If an elderly lady has been in a monogamous relationship for decades and seeks help for mouth discoloration, we worry less about a severe form of immune suppression and more about the impact of dentures. However in a man who freely sleeps around with both genders, mouth discoloration might be due to acquired immune suppression. Statelessness is not known to be related to suppression of immune system but might be due to suppression of ethnic immunity. An evasive, expansive, hypersexual, 60 years old man whose new 25 years old mate can not keep up with his sleepless nights might be manic even in if he has moved up to run a state. A sad, tired, and 50 years old looking woman who is actually 30 years old might be suffering from a depressive mood or an oppressive relationship, even if she states nothing is wrong. There are no known objective studies on how a state expansiveness could lead to oppression, depression, and statelessness.

Gender is another important identifying element. When a sexually active teenager presents with abdominal distention, nausea, and vomiting, we think about something other than pregnancy when we know the teen is a boy. Statelessness might cause anxious abdominal discomfort but not distention, unless the person seeking help is a helpless or stateless victim of an assault or invasion!

Ethnic background or race is also as important as gender in identifying a distress. A 15 years old Caucasian girl who wants to convert or change her ethnicity after talking to her Middle Eastern classmate during Ramadan might be anorexic and not cosmopolitan. Stateless people might accept forced assimilation and conversion in order not to starve or look anorexic. Abdominal pain in black and Chinese patient might be sign of sickle cell anemia in one and alcohol intolerance in the other. The same pain in a young student with an ethnic language in a non-ethnic school might be due to some form of perceived or real discrimination. In case of a stateless student the likelihood of a real discrimination is high.

Since students tend to fight discrimination, the stateless people expect its youth to fight peacefully, to learn form the past, and to become motivated, sophisticated, and determined for making a difference in the future. Once stateless people have their own state identity, its youth continue to fight still peacefully for making our diverse world a stateless but united body that issues all of us one world ID.