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TRUMPING THE TRUTH


First, I am going to ask you some really dumb questions, and in answering them myself, you shall figure they are not as dumb as you might have thought them out to be. To give you a slight preview, considering the world these days is rather ignorant of anything beyond their noses, the condition for minorities is fragile in our country, like anywhere else. We are inconvenienced at nearly every stage of our daily lives, primarily, for the heinous acts committed by some who are severely misinformed. The ideology to keep alive, and preserve, the doctrines supported by the majority community has been such a great influencer to the people in general, that no matter how warm-blooded, or fiercely courageous we are, it is sometimes scary when you are on the road alone, and you suddenly happen to see a set of people; you simply don’t want to meet eyes with them for the dread that your name could possibly evoke any degree of an unpredictable reaction in them. Kindly do not interpret this wrongly. Such behaviour does not demoralise me. It troubles me somewhere, yes, but by a hair’s breath, considering that common sense enlightens me that every majority is also a minority somewhere, and what they do to me, someone will do to them. People of learning are familiar of this sequence of life, and it is those who are alien to such a conviction that actually behave in an unbecoming way. And it was for those reasons that I had kept most consciously away from following the American election, or reading up in detail on the candidates standing for the run for the President of America, although I was perfectly aware that none of them were puritans, just as nobody who ever enters politics is.

Ever since the announcement of Mr Trump being President elect was splashed across the media, I notice how nearly everyone is up in arms, concerned chiefly about the unity of humans, the threat to the diversity of mankind, and the way things may turn out in America, that could consequently modify the rest of the world. So on to my really dumb questions – is he any less wicked than the others we have everywhere? Are his strategies to divide and deport, something we aren’t accustomed to seeing around us already? So what if he is tactless, doesn’t he hold the courage to be what he is, and that is wrong on what counts really? The answer to majority of those queries can be found in the affirmative, and so I ask, what is the actual concern? It was you, the right supporters, who voted him in, and it was you, the left, who stood on weak grounds. If you had been proactive, participated in dialogue, you would not be taking to the streets with – Not My President, today. You could have done something when you had the means to do something, but did you? It is easy to wail, but the power of change, of damage control, was in each one of your hands back then, don’t you forget that. Here is a little lesson. When we are amicably co-existing with hatred and the distrust in our own land of birth. When we are learning and unlearning how to manoeuvre verbal and emotional disgrace. When we are made to feel petty for no fault of ours, what is so hard for Americans to learn to live with an element of restlessness that they are quite responsible to have been the cause of creating over the world? Why shouldn’t we celebrate someone to have put in an appearance to give the people a taste of their own medicine? Lo and behold, in a most delightful way, that day has finally arrived.

Finished with the façade of boldness, which in this instance is quite a manifestation of strength than fear; let us get down to business. When I explored into what he proposes to do in his first hundred days at the office, I was not as perplexed, or worried, as the world is making him (a monster) out to be. Granted, he has some chinks in his armour, but at the outset, he is a brash bloke who is breathing the ‘protectionist’ approach to save the American from what he considers any further doom, and there is nothing wrong with that. Nobody is an authority on such matters; it is, at the end, a matter of perspective. He believes in what he is doing, and he is doing what he likes to do, and since you believed in his agenda you brought him there, so you as well fall in line with what he has to do for you and your safety.

Barak Obama, when elected as the President, had inherited a whole lot of chained wreckage buried deep within the sea. A handful he untangled to keep his image pristine, and for a man restrained by those unavoidable shackles, he was unable to do much. In spite of those hindrances he waged his wars, and was instrumental in propagating factions that the world is crying foul about. Morally, he was a gentleman on whose cloak one could not find a stain, but politics isn’t about stainless morality now is it?

Frank Bruni of the New York Times stated, “After all the lies he told, all the fantasy he indulged in, all the hate he spewed and all the divisions he sharpened, he was rewarded with the highest office in the land.” Ask any Indian, and he or she will convey most crisply how we are accustomed to facing uncertainty. How we have mastered the knack of uncovering some semblance of peace in chaos. But India is not so very important that what happens on her soil could affect the planet as such. Similarly, what happens in America might not affect us so as to cause an earthquake in our lives. We might feel some cracks and ripples, but we will not find our lives toppled or shattered. Be forewarned, that I am, once again, speaking purely based on reviewing the fragments from what people are posting on various channels of communication. Some seem smacked with depression, and some are outraged at what Mr Trump thinks and plans to do. I would like to tell such people that the antidote lies in sitting down and taking a deep breath. Don’t we have enough in our own backyards to deal with than neglect our sleep over America? If and when his overbearingness, or his devious policies reach our shores, I reckon we can then engage with them accordingly. For now one must remember that one cannot but deal with spilt milk in another way than by sponging it from the floor and doing away with the soaked sponge. Time will pass, and we shall survive, just as we have adapted and survived until now.

Mr Trump is not someone I support, or I oppose. Whether I agree or disagree too doesn’t matter. Quite frankly, I have no personal opinion on him. Additionally, he makes no difference to me, as he does not reign over my country. However, as things stand, I discern that everybody appears emotionally charged, but once the hoopla dies down, it will be back to business, just as it has been the case since eons – politics is pure business. Only this time, the American people have chosen just the candidate without any prior political or military experience – a businessman in the truest sense of one’s occupation, and they must have chosen him for the motives they know best.

The backlash, I gather, is already underway. A Chinese young man was visiting a liquor store to buy himself some cigarettes. A group of white guys asked him if he spoke English. When he smiled at them kindly and ignored them, they followed him to the nearest 7-11 and said that ‘Chinks’ should get out of the country while they still can, because the ‘pure American is finally going to come back’ and chase them out if they aren’t gone by then. The Chinese young man then went on to narrate how the humane clerk at 7-11 asked the bunch of White men to leave. Instead of leaving, the White men burst into laughter and called the clerk ‘Bin-Laden’ and threatened him that they would come back with more ‘pure White people’ and burn him on a cross. The Chinese young man, who was terrified and also afraid, asked them to get the fuck out, and the men go – “Oh, wow, he speaks English!” Follow him to his car and yell again, ‘White Power’ before him as he sits inside and drives away. If that was not hurtful enough, another person recounted an incident when her friend told her that she was at the parking area of a grocery store on the 9th of November. A guy ran up to her and grabbed her by her crotch and said, “How do you like that you liberal bitch!” The lady speculates this slur was caused since she had a prominently visible Bernie sticker on her car.

I am left speechless upon learning of such incidents. Even if one were to pass them off as a knee-jerk reactions, people, some of those people, feel emboldened to make a public display of their core values, simply that those are definitely not the core values we share universally as humans. What such people do not comprehend is that if one tries to single out one particular community and throttle them, it is of no use, because it is not that only that community is suppressed. The currents are felt far and wide, and by one and all. The potency of hatred consumes everything amid its path. But wasn’t this immanent? We, the people, had deserved to be treated like this for being indifferent and uncaring, as we have elected the people currently in the chair, and they, the exiled office bearers, deserved what they got for being haughty and stupid. If wisdom had prevailed over the ones who had any left of it, matters would not have escalated and reached this hopeless juncture the world over. I was reading how Italy is now going the fascist way. France is certain about choosing a right wing forerunner. Germany is in distress. Britain has gone back in time. People, I observe, are essentially fed up of the elites, and when such a feeling engulfs populations, there is bound to be disorder. Not that this disquiet was not evident, the establishments were too blinded, and supremely overconfident to take cognisance when things were still mendable. Anger. Blame. Post-analysis. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t change anything. What’s done is done. Whatever has to be will be. However, what matters is to conceive a manner in how to save humanity that is utterly and terribly at stake in the hands of the Lucifer. There. Here. Everywhere.

This dismal state of affairs prods me to ask some artless questions: have we, as a race, forgotten the capacity and capability of reasoning? Are we so dead to sensitivity that we have abandoned the flicker of analysis from our mental structure? Whatever has happened to humanity? In one breath we claim to be these human beings supporting groups that are vehemently campaigning in eradicating certain creeds, and in the same breath we seem to be struck with a never seen open uproar of preserving one’s affection towards basic human affection and dignity. When I was expressing my anguish with a dear friend and author Rakhshanda Jalil, she was quick to articulate her thoughts on the general trend of the world. “My dear,” she said, “it is the time of zawal, an Urdu word roughly meaning decline and decay. It is a very Islamic theology concept insofar as it talks about disintegration, that holds the promise of renewal.” How true those words ring, don’t they? Though we can only hope we manage to come away slightly less unscathed as we can from the grime of life, considering that is how human nature is: you loathe something when it is new, then in time you will begin to find it oddly accepting, and at the end, it becomes a part of your life, until the cycle repeats.

I leave you with words penned by a dear friend Ethan Rains from America. He is an excellent artist, a prolific writer, a popular actor and a great filmmaker.

Let’s make an extra effort in practicing human decency, treating each other with love and respect, and opening our hearts. We need it now more than ever and it starts with you and me. I am saddened, but weirdly not surprised. Okay…SOME of me is surprised.

We live in a country that grants us many wonderful privileges and at times we have to go so far in the opposite direction to fully awake from a long sleep.

I worked a private event last night and had a conversation with a guy in his early twenties who told me that two guys insulted a friend of his from the LGBT community with red Trump hats at a grocery store. They called him a faggot, laughed about it as if it was okay to exercise some super power that they now so freely had permission to abuse. This is just the tip of the iceberg. And it’s not okay.

Having our differences and being able to exercise our freedom to vote on two separate candidates is okay. It’s our right. But once we treat each other poorly because of the influence of the powers that be, whether we are pro Hillary or pro Trump, immediately reduces our power as the people.

If you listen to Trump’s acceptance speech, his rhetoric has already changed. Understand that behind the curtain there is a lot more happening; at the cost of virtue and the profit of popularity a game is played and played to a major part of a country. Getting caught in the spectacle takes away our voice.

It doesn’t matter who voted for whom – I implore you to be cognisant and respectful. Practice your core values as human beings.

Peace and blessings. Love and light. Respect. Power to the people!

Ethan Rains
Wednesday at 15.03


After reading those words you feel that not everything is lost. If hostility is being poured out on one side, we have hope at the other side of the spectrum. Yes, but from here, it is entirely left to you which one of those sides you would like to embrace.  


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