Rumor has it that NGM will soon launch another local language edition — this one in Arabic.
We imagine that will mean more cheetah stories in National Geographic, and fewer articles such as Architect of Freedom: Thomas Jefferson (NGM, February 1976).
Put another way: The Arabic-speaking world…
… is not known as a citadel of freedom and democracy:
In Saudi Arabia, for instance, Article 6 of the Basic Law says: “ Citizens are to pay allegiance to the King in accordance with the holy Koran and the tradition of the Prophet, in submission and obedience, in times of ease and difficulty, fortune and adversity.”
That lack of freedom may be a good fit for a Society whose mission is “to inspire people to care about the planet.” But in this new post-national [Geographic] Society, Thomas Jefferson’s patriotism and political ideals — celebrated in that 1976 NGM story — have sadly become far too parochial.
Our take-away: This devolution — from National to International Geographic Society — is ultimately a bum deal for us all.