a debate with myself

I saw ‘the great debaters’ recently, a brilliant film by Denzel Washington. It’s a story of a debate team in 1930s Texas from a black college who beat the odds to script another underdog epic. The movie with Denzel Washington and Forrest Whitaker (can you ask for anything more) is moving and extremely passionate. For all of you who thought oppression came only in one form and that racism had only an ugly face, you need to see what it all really meant. The movie should help dispel and affirm some of those notions.
But beyond the movie and its higher morals lay something simmering at the bottom that struck me. A simple question: Why do we debate? Is there any value in this verbal battle of minds? Debates are pointless and unproductive..
Where has this exercise taken us? How is a farmer suffering from the drought in India concerned about a debate on government policies and plans to help him? NDTV loves a good debate and so do our national dailies so that young and old minds in this country can ponder, wonder, concur, differ and eventually forget. We have created an educated mass of people who enjoy their debate. I hope we understand that as a collective we make a difference when we are ready to be proactive, not deliver empty verdicts to fill empty minds.
Have debates on moral policing lead to any affirmative action in restoring the rights of a young girl or boy to express themselves? The answer is obvious, but if a cup of tea can go down on a debate, then why not. An opinion is of great value in our country, right from the things we buy to the people we marry but no opinion can change the plight of one who has nothing. The government continues debating bills which take ages to get passed while a majority of them prefer sidelining major issues to bring up ones that interest their constituency or even worse, their pockets. Hypocrisy is inherent in us but apathy is a danger to us all.
Stop speaking. Start doing.

What’s wrong with a country of debaters? What’s wrong with people who have an opinion and who can express this and help make a difference? Do we live like in China or Myanmar where we live in constant fear that our voices will be taken away from us someday?
Opinions lead to solutions and it all begins with a debate. Not every man in this country has the power or opportunity to make a difference but he has his opinion which is stronger than a hollow promise to change the world. When a farmer waits for the rains, the least another man can do is tell our leaders that the farmer cannot be left alone. If this sharing of opinions happens through a debate on national TV then it will surely wake somebody up. A revolution is not always a solution. A country with a debate in their bellies is one that is ready to fight for what is right. Consider it a part of a process.
If there was anymore proof of the worth of a debate then it lies in my opponent’s stand because at the end of the day my opponent realizes that a debate is the first step to pro action and acceptance.
Stop cribbing. Start debating.

the world disappearing

"The arrest, detention, abduction or any other form of deprivation of liberty by agents of the State or by persons, or groups of persons acting with the authorization, support or acquiescence of the State, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty or by concealment of the fate or whereabouts of the disappeared person, which place such a person outside the protection of the law."
Rosendo Radilla was 60 when he was forcibly disappeared in August 1974. A social activist and former mayor of Atoyac municipality, Guerrero state, Mexico, he was last seen in a military barracks, days after he was detained at a roadblock. Fellow detainees reported that he had been tortured
More than 3,000 ethnic Albanians were the victims of enforced disappearances during the armed conflict in Kosovo in 1999. These were at the hands of the Serbian police, paramilitary and military forces. More than 800 Serbs, Roma and others were abducted by armed ethnic Albanian groups. Some 1,900 families in Kosovo and Serbia are still waiting to find out what happened to their relatives.
In the Philippines, over 1,600 people have disappeared since the 1970s, mostly during counter-insurgency operations against left-leaning or secessionist groups.
Sunday 30 August marks the 26th International Day of the Disappeared. Every year, Amnesty International, along with other NGOs, families associations and grassroots groups, remembers the disappeared and demands justice for victims of enforced disappearances through activities and events.
To combat enforced disappearance, in 2006 the UN General Assembly adopted the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance. Once entered into force, the Convention will be an effective way to help prevent enforced disappearances, establish the truth about this crime, punish the perpetrators and provide reparations to the victims and their families

… We live in an imperfect world surrounded by our prejudices and twisted beliefs of how to live it. We need to change our perceptions and understanding of the world that surrounds us because it’s not the same we believe we live in.
Stay informed..Stay aware.