Why can't we all be friends?
This bridge crosses the Rhine River, which serves as a border between France and Germany. Rivers, mountain ranges, and other natural landmarks have served as dividing lines between people groups as long as governments have been known to exist. To what extent is it positive or negative that humanity has created such staunch borders among themselves?
Separation among people groups has created a great diversity of cultures and languages in the world. This displays the creativity and individuality of humans, which in turn displays the creativity and uniqueness of God. Humanity’s lack of homogeneity allows a broader reflection of the image of God. It also allows people to learn from each other when cultures collide, because each culture has perfected different trades, customs, sciences, and so on.
But such separation is not always constructive. Often separation, which at best creates uniqueness and diversity, instead creates animosity and supremacy. History shows that when contrasting civilizations collide at the borders, often each side believes itself to be the superior culture and animosity is born. This hostility often ends in small fights or all-out war.
Perhaps the worst part of this repeated scenario is that it turns a potential win-win situation into a lose-lose situation. Sure, wars typically end with a winner, and that winning side will obtain war spoils like a new piece of land, or people to make into slaves, etc. But in the end, they are really not winners at all, for the world they inhabit is now worse off than it was before. The best world would be one in which people lived at peace with one another, learning from each other, and sharing the world we’ve been given. Borders are not an inherently detrimental to the improvement of humanity, but they become so when our borders are marked by hostility and fighting.