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let's change! PDF Print Email

The other day I was reading a story on the face book about an incident in United States. A young child aged 3 years was visiting a zoo and accidently fell inside the enclosure of the gorillas. There was lot of commotion outside the enclosure with every one sure that the child will be torn apart by the gorillas. Just then a mother gorilla picked up the child as if its own baby and put it in front of the gate of the enclosure and then stood guard, ensuring that none of the other gorillas harm the child. The child escaped with just a broken arm. One of the many wonderful stories reflecting the humanity that exists even within the animals.

We do use the word "Humanity" quite often and obviously the word is derived from HUMAN so I decided to look it up in the dictionary. The word Humanity is defined as a "condition of being human" and as "Sympathy and kindness towards other people".  And here is the story of an animal showing this trait which we humans have largely lost. When was the last time we actually helped someone just because we were capable of extending help and there was nothing we could get in return? there was no quid pro qua? When was the last time we acted instead of just discussing the sorry state of affairs in all realms of life?

The other day I was interacting with some college students and one girl told me how one day she experienced an incidence of sexual harassment in a bus which had other 60 odd passengers, but when she protested no one came forward to denounce the behavior of this man and extend a helping hand for this young girl.

This is just one incidence of total apathy that exists in the society today. Be it the accident victims left unattended on the road, a child lost on the streets, a young girl crying for help, to name the few. This lack of inter-dependence and alienation in the society  has increased our dependence on all government bodies including the police and we now think that panacea of all that ails the society is with the police.

In the wake of the December incident of brutal rape of a young girl in Delhi, there were lots of protests. To be frank, these protests were infect a ray of hope to me personally that all is not lost and we still have our conscious alive. And many of my colleagues wanted to protest too, but against the gruesome act because even though used to seeing all kinds of crimes day in and day out, it was way beyond the definition of gruesome.  Of course the violence and lawlessness was indeed deplorable but the fact that people came forward in support was admirable and when the society stood together and demanded justice for the women folk, it came at an alarming pace with a new legislation, greater focus on safety and security of women and gender sensitization, gender friendly procedures to name the few. However, if we want a sustainable change in how we want our women to be treated in the society, it has to come from within the society. The externally imposed rules and regulations based on fear of punishment rather than the respect for the law cannot bring in required change in many years to come.

While we contemplate the social changes, we have to remember that we have to be the change we want to see. So let's start with you and me and make a commitment to ourselves that we will not be a mute spectator of the atrocities committed on another, then and then only there will be a change.