The Atlantic

The Case for Getting Rid of Borders—Completely

No defensible moral framework regards foreigners as less deserving of rights than people born in the right place at the right time.
Source: NASA / Reuters

To paraphrase Rousseau, man is born free, yet everywhere he is caged. Barbed-wire, concrete walls, and gun-toting guards confine people to the nation-state of their birth. But why? The argument for open borders is both economic and moral. All people should be free to move about the earth, uncaged by the arbitrary lines known as borders.

Not every place in the world is equally well-suited to mass economic activity. Nature’s bounty

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic2 min readPolitics
When Public Schools Rely on Local Property Taxes: Letters
Readers discuss the phenomenon of school districts being isolated from financial resources in their communities.
The Atlantic4 min readPolitics
Trump Didn’t Make the Storm, but He’s Making It Worse
The president didn’t put any of the globe’s authoritarians in office, but he’s encouraged their worst instincts.
The Atlantic4 min read
Sleater-Kinney Lost Its Chaos Before It Lost Its Drummer
Angry though a bit too orderly, The Center Won’t Hold can’t help but be heard in the context of the beloved punk trio becoming a duo.