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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pakistan Bashing: Our Favourite Pastime

You get a few Pakistani families gathered for lunch or dinner, here in the US and there you have it. A perfect afternoon or evening in ruins, as someone will take a seemingly straight forward discussion to a unabashed, full scale, Pakistan bashing rampage.

You have your usual start from the current political situation, or any event at hand and soon you will notice the discussion turning into a major heated debate on the Pakistan Resolution and the major blemishes committed by the founding fathers.

No one is denying that a debate is necessary on almost any and everything to enhance understanding and resolve the discourse. But the constructive criticism often turns into ludicrous and base less rhetoric. This speaks a lot about our decaying mental state, where some of us associate all ills of the world to only one place, you guessed it, Pakistan.

Pakistan may not be the most tolerant, or most educated or the most technologically advanced country of the world. Yet it is a home for millions of people and not all those millions of people are Taliban sympathisers or ruthless beasts. The fact is a great majority of our people abhor the misguided and inhumane lifestyle, being imposed on them by these cowardly creatures.

The Pakistani people here in the US, occasionally tend to forget that they have made it to the US, based on the education and learning which was provided to them by Pakistan. The education may have not been so "advanced", but most of us get into prestigious learning or professional institutions, here in the US, based on that "impoverished mode of Pakistani education." We tend to excel in almost all walks of life here in the US, based on that "murky foundation."

Undoubtedly, Pakistan has a myriad of problems, some of those were inherited from the days of its independence and some were created by its leaders, who ruled with or without people's consent. It may not be the best country of the world. Despite all the odds, some inherited and some self created, it is a place which has fine poets, great artists, unparalleled educators and commendable philanthropists.

Its not all doom and gloom that often our media, electronic or print, tends to portray. Some of our friends here tend to criticise the inception and the idea of our nation. To them, I have always said, not all ideas are perfect. Even if for the sake of argument, the "two nation theory", was flawed, it is pretty much said and done. The Pakistan, whatever it is, no matter how flawed it is, it is our identity, it is the home of our elders. There is an anti Pakistani element, constantly disseminating lies, half truths and severe misconceptions. Agreed, that we have flaws and we have a lot of way to go and grow. The "Islamisation Project", of Zia has done the greatest harm to our country. All of this is true, but to call it worst place on the face of earth is a far cry.

As patriots it is our right to express our constructive criticism, but it should be meaningful criticism. Just hollow ignorant rants or completely down playing our national existence is not the smartest move on any one's part. Pakistan may be lagging behind in a lot of areas, when compared to India. But the question that remains unanswered most of the time is, "why compare it to India to begin with?."

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