Skeptical of Open Borders? There's a Drug for That

Or, because it’s just a really fabulous headline from Metro UK, “This nasal spray could cure you of your burning hatred of refugees.”

The gist is that Oxytocin, a hormone closely associated with maternal instincts and childbirth, can be very effective in causing even the most hardened anti-immigration meanie to relax and find the joy in open borders. From Metro UK:


Researchers at University Hospital Bonn found that a nasal spray containing the so-called ‘cuddle hormone’ Oxytocin could increase the amount people donated to refugees by up to 74% in a series of experiments.

Oxytocin is known to play a key role in the bond formed between mother and child, and in the relative strength of romantic attachment. Now researchers from the University Hospital Bonn have discovered that it can make Westerners a little more open to migrants, at least insofar as they became more generous with donations with a dash of the hormone and a little peer pressure.

“The combined enhancement of oxytocin and peer influence could diminish selfish motives,” said Professor Rene Hurlemann from the department of psychiatry.

“Given the right circumstances, oxytocin may help promote the acceptance and integration of migrants into Western cultures.”

The suggestion that Westerners should be given drugs to make them more welcoming to foreigners is likely to be hugely controversial.

Uh, yeah, ya think?


Because here’s the thing: an artificial loosening of inhibitions about a situation isn’t necessarily a good thing. Sometimes people are skeptical of a situation because — stone cold sober — something tells them they should be; whether because they sense it is dangerous or financially irresponsible or discourteous and not equitable or whatever else makes people hesitate.

Is it a good idea to dull those senses with happy spray?

Anyway, Germany might want to address some of the negatives of their already welcoming posture regarding migrants in their country before convincing the rest of the world to loosen up a little.


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