Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you personified all of the world’s countries and put them into a high school? It isn’t quite as tough to imagine it as one would believe. Countries, after all, behave very much like teenagers. They build friendships, polarize into groups, find foes, gossip endlessly among themselves and are always inquisitive about each other. As with high school, it’s very easy also to categorize them into various groups and stereotypes.
There shall inevitably be the school president; that one person who has the authority to boss over everyone and is considered the one with the most capability in the school. Inevitably too, he isn’t well liked but countries just stick around because he’s popular. USA fits into this role perfectly. He also has a beautiful girlfriend who happens to be much nicer than him and makes being around him less of a pain; meet Canada. There also arises the whole problem of exes and bad histories which the UK fulfills. Not long after his best bud revolted against his bossiness, his girlfriend left him as well, leaving the poor guy in search of new friends on the other part of school. India got along well with him but things fell out pretty quickly.
There is also the European Union, that noisy group of kids who seem to be the best of friends but when one gets into the group they soon realize that things aren’t as good as they seem and the noise ensues from their perennial bickering amongst themselves. Most often, their arguments revolve around who pays for lunch.
The football team looks better. Comprised of some South American Countries, they tend to be good to everyone and along with their cousin Spain, they are generally likable. Being cousins, workout buddies and bffs since the third grade (they hated each other before that), Russia and China have the perfect bromance. Russia turned out to be the more aggressive of the two, constantly picking on the less powerful kids and forcing them to do his homework for him. People like them only because they are loaded with cash and pay for lunch once in a while. China also plans to compete for the post of school president after USA graduates. He seems to be going up the social ladder quite rapidly. His younger brother though is not as well liked. Dropped on his head as a kid, North Korea has some major issues; the major one being a humongous inferiority complex, which propel him to seek attention through any means possible. These usually consist of threats to beat up other people, be it his cousin South Korea or the USA himself. The ‘nerds’ on the other hand, consist of some exceptionally talented and hardworking students who, unfortunately, are constant subjects of several pranks of various other countries. Most of these pranks arise out of jealousy but they do not hinder them in their inexorable march to attain good grades.
Lastly, there is always a group of those really rich kids in every high school. The Gulf Countries serve this role. They come to school in their own customized sports cars and occasionally have their lunch airdropped when they find cafeteria food to be unsuitable to their delicate stomachs. Their cousins however aren’t so lucky and constantly fight among themselves about the most trivial of issues. The last one revolved around who shall get out of the elevator first and resulted in Iraq getting a bloody nose after USA became impatient.
All this chaos requires a very weak school administration of course. The headmaster, Mr. UN, is a rather timid old man who is mostly afraid of bringing the kids to order. He is however, despite his leniency, the only man who can bring a semblance of order to this chaotic high school and prevents things from going overboard.
Countries, as we see, behave very much like teenagers. It is only when we, as teenagers, learn to relate to our counterparts in the international system that we can solve the problems of the world. Or perhaps add our own ones to them.
(photo credit: http://bluestarmaths.com/schools)