Glen T. Martin on the need for a Federation of the Earth

Alamgir Khan
Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Dr. Glen T. Martin and Alamgir Khan in conversation


The dream for a world state in place of today’s multiple states based on nationalities that are in conflict with one another is very old. Many people thought about this. There is in fact no alternative to establishing a world government for abolition of wars and military conflicts among nations across the globe. The most famous dreamer of such a state from the recent past is Martin Luther King Jr., who in his 1967 article entitled ‘The World House’ wrote, ‘We have inherited a large house, a great “world house” in which we have to live together—black and white, Easterner and Westerner, Gentile and Jew, Catholic and Protestant,  Moslem and Hindu—a family unduly separated in ideas, culture and interest, who, because we can never again live apart, must learn somehow to live with each other in peace.’


This great dream by a great American thinker and activist still remains as a dream only. Yet, the efforts to make it happen are going on by various people in many places in the world. One such effort is the World Constitution and Parliament Association (WCPA), which campaigns for a Federation of the Earth. Dr. Glen T. Martin, Professor of Philosophy, Radford University, Virginia, the USA, is President of this organization, which envisions a world of peace, justice, prosperity, and sustainability for all humankind.


The World Constitution says in the preamble, “Conscious that Humanity is One despite the existence of diverse nations, races, creeds, ideologies and cultures and that the principle of unity in diversity is the basis for a new age when war shall be outlawed and peace prevail; when the earth’s total resources shall be equitably used for human welfare; and when basic human rights and responsibilities shall be shared by all without discrimination.”


WCPA President Glen T. Martin came to Bangladesh several times including his visit in 2008 and in November this year. I had an opportunity to spend my time on 26 November with him discussing various issues concerning this campaign and others. He said, “The constitution was drafted in 1972 and finalized in 1991 and so far has been translated into 16 languages.” According to Mr. Martin, the Constitution divides the world into 1 thousand electoral districts, because the world has 7 billion people and 7 million people makes a district. The people of an electoral district can ratify the constitution by voting, and  governments can ratify it through a referendum of their people. Not any single country, however, has ratified this constitution yet because of possible threats from powerful countries, he said.


The WCPA campaigners also do not try to have a single country to ratify it. They have talked with about two dozen countries for it and encourage them to get together and then ratify it jointly because it is safer. Though no ratification of the earth constitution yet, they have formed 30 Chapters in 24 countries so far. In recent years, the movement has got a new momentum because of the collapse of the global political and ecological order. Many people in the world now see hope nowhere except in such an initiative of making a new world based on a global democratic governance.


The Bangladesh Chapter started with Dr. Mujibur Rahman in the leadership of the campaign. After his death several years ago, Mr. Mahbubul Islam, once a leader in the movements of students and youths, is leading this campaign now in the country. Being enquired about this campaign, Mr. Islam informed me that they talked with many distinguished people like politicians, lawmakers, lawyers, doctors, teachers and also with students, civil society members and ordinary people in Bangladesh; all of them appreciated such a campaign and felt the need for it in today’s world. Mr. Mahbubul Islam said, “It is very difficult to translate this dream into reality, true. Yet, such a constitution and federation is urgent nowadays. The only solution to the wars, conflicts, power struggles prevailing across the globe is a federation of the earth. Only a world constitution can ensure world peace now and tomorrow. There is no alternative to it.”

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