Do you believe that more developed nations have a responsibility to create a more equitable world? Why or why not?

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Yes, certainly. More developed countries typically have more resources at their disposal. They have a responsibility to improve the rest of the world. There are some selfish reasons for this: for one, it is to these developed countries' benefit that the industrial and environmental efforts of other nations improve. They will benefit from these nations' production of goods and services, and they will obviously benefit from proper global environmental stewardship—they need the cooperation of the rest of the world to improve the global climate and prevent disasters from happening.

In a more altruistic sense, it is up to these developed countries to extend a hand to the nations in need. Their resources have afforded developed nations the possibility of improving lives, ending disease, and limiting unnecessary death from a variety of causes. It is heartless to see these things occurring in other countries and choose to do nothing about it. Therefore, these nations have a responsibility to aid underdeveloped nations.

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In my view, there are certainly times when more developed nations have a responsibility to take action to create a more equitable world.  Moreover, it is also possible to say that it is in the developed nations’ best interests to do so.

Developed nations often do have an obligation to make the world more equitable.  The reason for this is that the more developed nations have often developed themselves by, in part at least, exploiting the less developed nations.  Many of the more developed nations colonized other countries and then, even after decolonization, maintained a neocolonial relationship with their former colonies.  By doing so, they helped to ensure that the less developed countries would have a hard time developing.  In such cases, richer countries clearly do have a responsibility to try to reverse the damage they did in the past and make the world a more equitable place.

Of course, nations, like individual people, are not always motivated by what they ought to do.  Instead, they often act based on what they believe is in their best interest.  I would argue that it is in the best interests of the rich world to create a more equitable world.  A more equitable world would like have less conflict as fewer people would be poor and angry.  A more equitable world would be more economically dynamic as there would be more demand from people around the world who could now afford more goods and services.  In both of these ways, creating a more equitable world would end up helping the developed countries in tangible ways.    

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