Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Global Village

The illustration below, from Dr Philip Harter of Stanford University's School of Medicine, is now widely quoted. He says if we could shrink the earth's population to a village of precisely 100 people, with all the existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look something like the following.

There would be:

  • 57 Asians, 21 Europeans
  • 14 from the Western Hemisphere, both north and south
  • 8 would be Africans
  • 52 would be female, 48 male
  • 30 would be white, 70 non-white
  • 70 would be non-Christian, 30 Christian
  • 89 would be heterosexual, 11 homosexual
  • 6 would possess the entire world's wealth and all 6 would be from USA
  • 80 would live in substandard housing
  • 70 would be unable to read, 50 would suffer from malnutrition
  • one would be near death, one would be near birth
  • one (yes, only one) would have a college education; and
  • one (yes, only one) would own a computer.

Looking at the statistics, we can safely say that we haven't quite arrived. It is a cause for concern when illiteracy and malnutrition are still rampant at this time and age. And the disparity between the haves and the have-nots is one big gaping chasm that seems impossible to bridge..

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