Percentage of Americans with a Passport

Traveling from Panama City out to the Panama Canal you pass a series of industrial areas and lots of roads under construction.  From the highway I took a look out of the car and saw these two little kids playing at a table behind what is probably their parents laundry shop.  I found this photo valuable because so many kids in the USA have absolutely no idea how good their life is.

Here were two kids playing behind a laundry shop next to two huge propane gas containers and only a few feet from a major railroad track hauling freight to and from the Panama Canal each day. It might just be that just as so many kids in the USA are completely oblivious to this kind of life, maybe these two kids in the photo are just as oblivious to any other kind of life.  You are a product of your environment after all.

Only 35% of Americans even have a passport – and this is way up from the 2% in 1989 and the 18% in 2000.  Ultimately if less than a third of your country has ever even stepped across a border how they can possible understand the world that is out there (and a whole host of bigger concepts that flow from that).

I think if more Americans would travel overseas they would not only understand the world much better, they would understand their own country much better as well.

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