Learning from Obama’s saner advice and Trump’s madness | Vidya Bhushan Rawat
Former US President Barak Obama was here for participating at summit organised by a newspaper and also spoke to what he termed as ‘future leaders’ at the #townhall gathering. Speaking about India, Prime Minister and other issues, Obama mentioned clearly that wonderful work done by Dr Man Mohan Singh during the meltdown period of the global economy as well as his saner advice to Prime Minister Narendra Modi that India should not be divided on sectarian line. Many of us still remember the speech that President Obama made in Delhi during his state visit when he spoke to celebrate diversity and how religious intolerance is dangerous. The emphasis that Muslims in India have been proud of being Indian and have been living here for centuries unlike the cases of other countries is to be understood in the right spirit.
There are a lot of similarities between the American and Indian ‘leadership’. Both the mahapurush love to speak on twitter and have been speaking anything. Both love to tweet fastest on ”Islamic terrorism” and both are quick to ássert’ as their nationalism. Both want to tame the media and make it spineless. Our ‘leader’ has succeeded while American leader is facing the toughest scrutiny from their media. In India, the corrupt cronies of media houses not only meekly surrendered but are prostrating to the ‘leader’ and some of his close friends. Not only this, they have been expert in converting non issues into the major issues of the nation while shamelessly choosing to ignore major issues that confront our nation. Rather, they have become cheerleaders of their masters absolutely abdicating their moral ethical responsibilities of being observer to government’s act and protecting the rights of the people unlike their American counterparts who are standing with their head high and trying to protect the United States from the religious rights and white supremacists whose abuses and vilification of minorities, immigrants are being considered as a threat to America’s unity and integrity.
Just imagine if President Donald Trump had tweeted ‘India First” and giving some videos about India abusing Muslims and warning the Hindus about the possible dangers of Islam in India. What would have happened? I can bet, the corrupt cronies and their pets in the media would have made our life a hell. We would have seen Havans and celebrations in the streets thanking to Trump for his ‘speaking” the truth which the ‘seculars’ never did. We would have been watching why Hindus are being targeted all the time kind of campaign. Wait and listen to what happened to Donald Trump’s idiotic retweeting of ‘British First’ videos. Donald Trump was not only condemned out rightly by the British media but the Prime Minister Teresa May and not just once but it had a full debate in the British Parliament where leaders across the party lines condemned Donald Trump. His state visit to UK is in limbo now and perhaps being cancelled. It is not that the British media and the political parties across the spectrum rejected Trump’s dangerous ways but the US media as well as political parties including Donald Trump’s own friends have been feeling highly uncomfortable with his eccentricities. In fact one of the US dailies yesterday wrote that Donald Trump is mentally unstable given his ways of courting controversies and putting his foot in mouth. Trump has been deliberately instigating the far right groups in UK and Europe, using the insecurities in their societies about Islamic terrorism but fortunately the governments and people there knows it well that counter reactions would be dangerous for their own societies. Whatever be the case, we can still say that despite, all their weaknesses, the western world so far did not become reactive even in the most difficult times in recent years and they consider people like Trump as real threat to their democracies. With his own National Security Adviser Michael Flynn admitting guilty related to Russian scandal, it is clear that Donald Trump will face tough time in the coming days in the United States.
I dont know whether, we would have guts to speak up to him if he had done so but as I mentioned, we have become more than interested in falling in line ignoring the dangerous signals that his acts have done. That is why, it is important for India and its leadership to listen to President Obama’s saner advice. A country, which has big history and can really be model for others. How will our societies ready to reconcile the historical wrongs when we are so proud of everything that has happened in the past ? We dont have learning lessons. Our leader of opposition has to show his ‘Janeu’ to prove his ‘Hinduness’ and diversity and dissents are always considered as a threat to dominant narratives.
In UK, Prince Harry is schedule to marry Meghan Markel, his bi-racial American girl friend. This is the first time a UK Royal would be marrying a non white girl. There have been racial reactions in many of the newspapers as hidden racism in the British society which is too class conscious but by and large the reactions have welcomed it. I was just wondering whether we will ever have such kind of marriages. Our political leaders of all varieties get exposed on these issues. Most of the marriages are with in their castes even when they will shout a lot for elimination of caste. The girl should be fair looking, more white than the snow white and slim is well known. Whether we have a king or a rikshawallah, racism is inherent in our thoughts and actions when choosing partners and marriages are concern. How can such society become secular and democratic where our children do not have right to chose their partners.
President Obama spoke on so many things in India. I have an issue with him and hope he would become. He should take up caste discrimination issues at the international level. In Europe and America, things are changing. The marriages are not sacrosanct and huge number of people of inter-racial marriages. Nobody is going to go for an honoured killing if there are such marriages but India is going from bad to worst. Our children are being fed with absolutely gory stories about others so that they dont go beyond their caste. Even inside the caste, there are numerous castes. Our politicians and so called intellectuals as well as public activists have no interest to eliminate it. Obama did not speak a sentence on this huge discrimination in India. President Obama, you are sensible, you can make an issue truly international. Racial and caste discriminations are important issues. West is learning and implementing it at their own level because they are definitely much more enlightened than us and they are duly worried about possibilities of such enlightenment fading away with the emergence of the likes of Donald Trump but what about us who have worst. In the west, their institutional and constitutional mechanism will save them from have dictator and fascists ruling them but will it be possible for us. In United States, a president cant have more than two terms but there is no such prohibition in India for any leaders and we can end up having ‘democratic’ dictators for years and years. President Obama’s advises are saner regarding our diversity and about taking minorities along with them but he should move ahead and also raise the caste discrimination and untouchability at all level. We need some one to show mirror to our political class and President Barak Obama can do that. Indian leadership, media and opinion makers can learn a lot of lessons from the West. I know our deshbhakti wake up if some one speak to us about our weaknesses but then societies which does not introspect and reevaluate their strengthen and weaknesses, they never grow and ultimately become detrimental to their own people.