What Ails Man, and the Solution of Travel

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Travel can be the answer to nearly every problem we face on this planet.

To the shy, the unable to exist comfortably at a party or in a crowded room, go and hitchhike. Stuck in a close space with a stranger, after a few times you’ll be the life of any party.

Racism and prejudice of all kinds. These are the desires of those who cannot appreciate the virtues of exploration, of seeing different sides to an argument, different motivations behind our actions. If you grow up in the city, you are rarely racist. You have played football and kickball and sat in desks alongside other races all your life.

Poverty. Travel removes you from the burdens of homeownership, of paying taxes to a local municipality. It provides the opportunity for new opportunity with each new around the bend.

To the lonely, those desperate to find their place in the world, you have to see the world to find your place. There are always others like you out there, seek them out.

Obesity. While one can certainly travel and still gain weight, in general the act of motion, whether it be via train or foot, up mountains or through cities, involves daily exercise.

Religious intolerance. How can you not question the incentives of your own religion, particularly when that religion extolls the reality of eternal death by fire for non-believers, when you visit China and India, with their nearly billions of people who find solace in another form of worship.

Death. A man on his deathbed who can look back satisfied with his accomplishments can see death as simply the next step into the unknown, rather than fear passing without having yet found satisfaction in his life’s work. Not everyone can be a Nobel Prize winner or rock star or President, some of us must suffer from a lack of less fortune. Travel is the one thing that nearly all of us can do which involves no lotteries, no chance, simply determination.