Thursday, January 14, 2010

The futileness of hypocrisy

While we condemn the attack on Indians and lately on a Gurudwara in Australia, aren’t we conveniently forgetting that attacks on Churches, Mosques and Temples are routine in our country with hundreds of people dying over these buildings every year?

We protest over Indian students being attacked, while we conveniently forget that Graham Staines and his two sons were burnt alive in our country and thousands of people lose their lives every year in communal and caste clashes.

We condemn racist taunts conveniently forgetting that we attack pubs and beat up women and harass young couples who dare to walk together in broad daylight and impose silly restriction on people due to our inherent intolerant nature!

What a bunch of hypocrites we are!!

We are the most intolerant people in the world, yet we shamelessly raise our voice when an Indian abroad is treated the same way that we treat our fellow countrymen and women everyday!

It is time to introspect and look at ourselves long and hard before we point fingers at others. It is time we set our own house in order before we ask others to clean up their act. Then and only then will we be taken seriously.

We have to remember that we live in an ever shrinking world, where everyone knows what is happening in everyone’s backyard. So let us not call the kettle black and think we can get away with the moral posturing!


Anonymous said...

Do you imply that it is preferable that no one speaks up against attacks on the Indian students?

Karthik Sivaramakrishnan said...

Cannot agree more. Hats off for shouting it from a pedestal (90 followers is a good pedestal :)...)! And brilliantly worded. If I may say this: Please be immodest and put it in best of the week :)

Anonymous said...

Karthik Sivaramakrishnan said...

@Anon 1: No. (@Anjali: Let me save you some trouble)

@Anon 2: An old physics professor of mine once said in one of his more contemplative moods (and I agree): "Indians make three common mistakes: 1) Equating age with wisdom
2) Equating shoddiness with austerity", and the third I forget now.

Anonymous said...

you know i think there is a reason that there is more protests for the aussie attacks than for the internal ones.

assume the case of siblings. now you would obviously have many fights with him/her including physical ones. Now assume you go out to the local playground,just an hour after one such fight, and there some total stranger lightly bumps into your sibling.Then would you not react strongly ????

its somewhat akin to that

Weirdo guy said...

woah.... you are lucky people post anonymously in your blog to make a point.

cuz the only anonymous comments i get on my blog are for japanese porn and viagra.

and i had to disable it :x

silverine said...

Kathik: Thank you and am lol'ing at "and the third I forget now." :))

To reply to your first comment - thank you very much :) And Best of this Week is for fellow bloggers and not for blowing my own trumpet! :p

Anon at 8:18: I afraid the general population is least bothered about these attacks. The people making noises are the media, vested interests and lately one party which has a track record of similar such crime in India. I was talking about them only. They are doing untold damage to relations between the two countries.

Karthik Sivaramakrishnan said...

@Anon 3: That is an impressive parallel :) However, there is a problem. If, as you suggest, the supposed external source of friction is a 'total stranger' then the parallel when completed is a bit more like this: Your sibling doesn't actually go to the playground. Instead, he walks out of your house and into a wealthier 'total stranger's house. Then he stays in their house for several days or months or even years so that he may enjoy their luxuries, lead their lifestyle and may be send back to your home some goodies. Now these wealthy strangers entertain the kid because they realise he does more chores than their own children do. But one fine day, one of their own children knocks him in the face. You would have the audacity to complain to this wealthy and 'total stranger' that he should teach his children manners when your sibling still has healing scars on his face from that knife wound you dealt him a month ago?
In stead, if you had been a good sibling and not quarreled or only had minor quibbles, then you can go and say, "Look Mr. Wealthy Total Stranger, my sibling came to your house to enjoy your luxuries and you entertained him because he used to do more chores than your other kids did. You gained in that your children had to work less and we gained the goodies you have. But we have always treated him with respect in our family and now that he is like one of your own, we expect you to do the same if you wish that your kids can continue to indulge their laziness, kapiche?"

p.s: If anon 1, anon 2, anon 3 are the same, dude, take the hint that those numbers are intended to take a dig at you for posting anonymous comments ;)

Partha Pratim said...

We are the most racist people. Period.

Vimal Gasper said...

Anjali I agree completely with you. We see many a instances every day fuelled by the stories developed by our media.
Karthik: Kudos to you for the strong support to Anjali.

Elizabeth Priya John said...

Good writeup !!
We shouldn't be taken by surprise when this is the kind of reaction we get . Born and bought up in our capital , i know how brash and insensitive young people can behave . What is tolerated here , might not be tolerated other places .

Having said that , i think the attacks , that too in such a bloody manner should be of concern to us all. Guests are not to be treated like that ...only if......

These attacks are racists ,there is no doubt about it...which should put us all to think ....why only Indians?? There is obviously something wrong that the expats are upto!!

binoy said...

Aaahh ... you took the words out of my mouth.
@Karthik - great explanation.Nobody will say anything after that explanation.
While I feel disturbed at what is going on in Australia, I dont think we are any better if not worst.

India is a great country ... but that doesnt make Indians great automatically.

Gauri Gharpure said...

a very pragmatic point of view. taken with respect ..

Capt. Anup Murthy said...

Completely agree with you. There's not a single wrong thing you wrote in this piece. Time to change our attitudes but since a lot of Indians are so full of themselves, it is difficult to get out of such mindset where we adopt a holier than thou...just look at some of our foul mouthed ex PM's and his political ilk, that's their general attitude, reflects inwards on how racist and clanish a lot of Indians are. Bold article this one, Kudos for that.

Anonymous said...

I was really pissed after i read this post but decided to comment only after i got over it and could be a lil rational,
People have been fighting over religion since forever. each community has been burning down the other community's place of worship through the ages across the world. Its dispicable and no one community/country is more guilty than another for this.
That has nothing to do with racism.
I agree the Indian student might have been brash and loud in public.
But thats no reason to be beaten up.
We see exchange students from middle east, africa everywhere in BLR, do they get beaten up for talking loudly in their languages ?

The commenter who compared the immigrant to a person living in another persons house couldnt be more wrong. did the britishers who migrated to AU live by the indigenous peoples rules ? As immigrants come in, they bring their cultures and habits.

Its a fact that universities in AU,UK,US depend heavily on fees paid by foreign students whose parents invest their entire life's savings in their childrens education. So no one is doing any charity. they need you as much as you need them.

if you sent your kid to a top boarding school thinking he/she would get the best education and your kid gets beaten up, wont you protest ?

Did the parents who sent their kids to AU take part in burning down religious places ?

If you have a problem with a political party then target your post at them. Not at "We".


anishthomas said...

When our media was busy accusing Australians on last year, they nicely ignored a 'small news' about a 19 year old american NGO who were raped and killed in north India.Another thing is we indians are number 1 racist , In this 21st century also majority's mindset aganist minority,low cast or backward people didn't change.Yeahh i agree that aussie government should try there best to prevent these kinda attacks in future.But at the same time we should also change a lot of things

P.S : @ australian attack...I will tell U one main reason for that.Before may be 10 years back most of the indian imigrants in australia and america were skilled professionals like engineers , medical professionalist.Now many of these techies , professionals parents also migrated there and started taking up low payed jobs(and also nanny jobs).And also these students started taking up locals unskilled job like waiter,casher,car washer in the name of part time job.These guys felt like they started loosing there jobs and they are not gonna end up in powerty.Finally there frustations ended up like this.And also i'm told that many of these australian institutions are very low standard compared to indian institutions

Sruti said...

I studied in Australia in the 90's. The north indian students left me so shamefaced! This was inevitable somehow.

silverine said...

At some Anon commenters: Spare yourself the effort of typing nonsense because I am not going to publish your drivel. Thank you kindly!

scorpiogenius said...

You sure have got guts lady, its not everyone who can call a spade a spade. Extremely well written.

I've a few things to say but I'm @ workdesk now. And the comment may be too long so I'm just thinking of putting up a post on this back at mine. But surely, some of the hypocrisy on this matter has hurt me.

Karthik Sivaramakrishnan said...

@Mr. Kumar:
I was really pissed after i read this post but decided to comment only after i got over it and could be a lil rational

Mr. Kumar, tell me, do you believe in the after life? At this moment, I certainly wish to. A quick back of the napkin calculation tells me that if it took 30-odd hours of calming yourself to become this 'rational', we might well need that after life before you make any sense.

p.s: On a more serious note, it seems like you have written in earnestness, and while an opposing standpoint is good for a healthy debate and possible learning by both parties, it is important that one doesn't pass off half-baked opinion as justification. Even more importantly, there must be coherence. Right now, the barrage of questions and justifications suggests the tremendous potential of the monkey that will type shakespeare's works, but hasn't quite got there yet :)

Emmanuel said...

In these kind of serious cases, I think no one is really interested in long term solutions. I think that's the main problem.

And, our intolerance is famous or rather notorious. In these cases the hypocrisy of media is that when they report an incident of harm on foreigners, it's the act by a few rascals here and when the same happen to an Indian, it's that country's fault and term them xenophobic and such! That's simply ridiculous.

The only part I disagree in this post is that I don't think we are the most intolerant. Rest is in sync with what I too thought about these attacks. Nice Thoughts!

phoenix said...

"I was really pissed after i read this post but decided to comment only after i got over it and could be a lil rational"

@Kumar, I think you should have waited a lil bit longer! Your "lil rational" comment was an example of extreme irrationality.

silverine said...

Weirdo guy: I get these Jap/Korean spam too. Since I have comment moderation, I reject it. Enabling Word verification helps. I suggest you do the same. Thank you for dropping by. Enjoyed reading your blog. :)

Partha: Very true!

Vimal: Our media is set to spoil our relations with many countries I see. I think we should leave it to the FM to sort it out with the Aussies authorities. Screaming our faces blue is not going to help matters.

Elizabeth: Our capital does produce some capital specimens :p Plenty of them here in Blr whining about being in 'Madras' etc etc.

Binoy: The IT boom gave us here in the South a taste of what Indian racism is all about. :)

Gauri: Thank you and welcome to my blog! :)

Capt Anup: Exactly! This holier than thou attitude is harming our image and a lot of Indians settled abroad for years will bear the brunt of some people's antics here in India.

Anon: You comment is so stupid that I feel stupid replying to it! Whether the attacks are racist or not is for the Aus cops to find out. My post has nothing to do with it. If you do not understand a post here, it is better to leave it alone instead of putting your foot in your mouth! And FYI foreign students in India are a cultured and respected lot and they never abuse the hospitality given to them. They finish their studies and leave the way they came.

Anish: That 19 year old girl is not the only one, there are so many foreign girls getting raped in India. So many foreigners get mugged and robbed and the cops do not even register an FIR. Do we see the Aussie media calling us racist or tainting the whole country with the same brush? We burnt three of their people alive, but Australia showed utmost restraint and let the Indian law take its own course instead of attacking us from ever available platform! I wish our people learn from this, especially when we are so keen in settling in their country. Reg jobs I agree that we are taking their jobs and when we top that with bad behavior it will naturally anger them.

Sruti: I am hearing that from so many people settled there, so there must be something.

Scorpiogenius: Looking forward to your post! :)

Emmanuel: Thank you! For a country whose collective dream is to settle abroad, we are acting like fools!

SophieMol said...

on behalf of all the DOC "fans", let me give you our excuse, which perhaps all our hypocritic countrymen can borrow - we are better than the taliban.. gee!

Mind Curry said...

brilliant thoughts and excellent writing as always, silverine..

if you dont treat yourself right and with respect, nobody else is going to respect or value you. similarly, as long as we treat fellow indians like crap, thats what we are going to get from the rest of the world! i think our politicians and religious leaders need some education first.

Mind Curry said...

for example, lets take the people who beat up non-maharashtrians in maharashtra, and worse some of our leaders and thought-gurus try to justify pathetic is that?

$$ said...

Bang on! Very well said...


Jeseem said...

Some of the news articles coming out of Australia are overblown. Like 3 indians being refused entry into a bar. Lots of people are refused entry, maybe 'cause of what they are wearing or the crowd in the bar. Other places, there is definitely racialism. But all places, people are uncomfortable with others they don't know. Act like a bangalorite in a small town and date girls, you will get the stares.
The same way, we as Indians stand out when in other cultures and people there react to it. In short, expect some racialism. Ofcourse if someone beats you up or robs you, there's no excuse. But atleast the cops help you. Something that doesn't happen in India. Indians first definitely need to learn to live in multi-cultural environment, first among different states and then different countries. And then they can have all this hue-cry over racialism

Santhanu Nair said...

Correcting self before correcting others never happens in India, including myself.

Balagopal said...

I do not know if the conduct of Indian youngsters is actually inviting attacks. But regarding our own hypocrisy I want to add something. I agree in India lot of attack happens to Indians and non-Indians based on religion/caste/regionalism etc, but majority(including media) in India treat this as injustice and is condemned by the Government; cases are filed and a few are jailed. Is this the case in Australia - do they officially admit racial attacks ?


Anonymous said...

Is Australia exporting "Fair & Lovely" to India? If Indians cry racism, there is nothing more hypocritical.

Have read the same point made in this post in several others. But the mobs have attacked those too, without rationally thinking they ought to clean their own, before jumping to slander others.


ajay said...

Hats off to you! And very well written. As always a pleasure to note the "right" tone of the write up! Keep it up...

mathew said...

new post here please!! it aint usual to see this zone not having any action!!:)

Usha said...

we, as a community, like finger-pointing too much, that it should be declared our national sport.

Pointing fingers at what other people do wrong is like more fun that cleaning up our act.