To say that empathy is a foreign concept to most Maldivians would not be a lie. It is appalling just how narrow minded even some of my friends are. Politically, I do not care who anyone chooses to vote for. I do not mind whether everyone goes and votes for even the devil himself. I’d question their thinking rationale which made them conclude the devil to be the best choice but then I wouldn’t comment on it.
But what I do have a problem with is people and my friends who refuses to see brutality and injustice when it happens right in front of them. My digestive system has issues and malfunctions when people ridicule what the other person goes through, going so far as to label them cowards in the face of great tyranny and injustice.
February 8th 2012 was one of the worst days of police brutality in the recent Maldivian history. I was appalled at the apathy that some people showed towards the victims of the attacks of the life threatening variety, the picture in my post being one of them. The man depicted in the picture lost three of his fingers to the attack by the police officer (Haveeru reports on this incident one year on), if not for his hand getting in the way, he would certainly have died or would have been rendered into a coma or a vegetative state for the rest of his life. There are people who still think everyone who got beaten up within an inch of their lives that day deserved what they got and had it coming. Enough said.
I have a problem when people root for and become cheerleaders for the bullies instead of condemning the act. And I certainly do have a problem when people judge the other person never knowing what he/she has gone through. Unless you put on their shoes, walk through their life, face the troubling & conflicting times they have had and come out a “winner”, don’t assume that high and mighty attitude and think you are a better person.
Some Maldivians I’m afraid to say, they wouldn’t know injustice until it bitch-slaps them on their face. Or brutality until a baton comes swinging their way. Or the humiliation of being subjected to inhumane torture until they are stripped of every right and poked with a hot iron rod in their nether regions. Or pinched and groped with every intent of humiliating and dehumanizing the person to a level that would continue to give them nightmares for the rest of their lives.
Point being, these people might differ from you in their political visions and aspirations but that certainly doesn’t make them any less human. You are a human too. At least I think we all are. If not for our ability to think, rationalize, feel and show empathy when and where its due; what other aspect differentiates us from becoming mere animals?
What the Jews are doing to the Palestinians ain’t the only injustice that is happening in this world. Its happening right in this country too. When you open your mouth and condemn what the Jews are doing to the Palestinians and laugh on like a hyena when it happens to someone from whom your political opinion differs; yes, that I have a problem with.
And that ends my mini rant for the day. Thanks to everyone who took the time to “listen”.