Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Showing the love

Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Please light a candle to show your support for the innocent and brave souls who gave their life away. Or if you happen to possess a weblog or two, please change its template to something white. Or perhaps, wear a white shirt for an hour to show that you care. And in the meantime, sign the petition to stop terrorism as well as an open letter. If we collect a billion signatures, we will show to the terrorists that they have not harmed us. Divided we fall; true, but we are anything but divided. We want to show to the terrorists through our peace marches and our open letters that they have wasted their effort in attacking us.

So what if they continue to attack one part after another.

Let us tweet about it, showing how frustrated we are, let us have the marches and maybe even an anti terrorism beerfest (after all isn't it about staying united and the media attention here? Promoting the fact that we're united even during terror strikes repeadtedly).

Aditya puts it rather succintly here on Patrix's blog
All that these people want is to get a sense of satisfaction about having done something post-attacks however useless the activity might be.

But then looking back, I ask myself. Don't we all want to feel responsible about it and do something? So what if its a tweet up? The final act of communiating out our thoughts isn't lost is it? So what if we're buying a million candles (and this way also increasing the revenue of the wax industry)?

Look, at the end of the day we all need a reason. Many of us do not know how to contribute to this situation. One reason might be because most of us have never experienced it. Being a Kashmiri, I still don't know about the perils and fear my people have faced. Sure I have heard of it, but have never felt it. 

Last summer I was involved in a startup called YoFa. At that time it's motto was Think, Speak, Do. It was about Youth Activism. However, it never specified how much of each should be done. That was left to the person concerned. Similarly, maybe some people want to show their activism through speaking a lot, hence the tweeting, facebooking, endless blogging, some want to think, and some want to do.  

But then there is a fourth activity which was never mentioned in YoFa but which has a role to play. And that's "follow". There are many amongst us, who will move on (or already have) and who have absolutely no idea about how to contribute. So we Retweet, we share links and quote others and so on. And I don't think this wrong. I remember someone once telling me, "if you don't know what to do, follow the crowd". And barring few situations, it hold true. It certainly holds true in this case.

I guess this is what most of the people who go on these candle marches and wear those white shirts also believe in. But as long as it isn't harming anyone, let each one do his own.

Sure if you WANT to go ahead and urge the politicians and ask them to step down, do that as well. 

P.S: YoFa has now transformed into something cooler. They now send people on 10 day road trips to NGOs and become agents of social change. Check their latest initiative Grassroutes



nice read!

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Rishabh Kaul

hey zoram.

I prefer share this.

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