Friday, January 18, 2008

what moulds a patriotic lawmaker?

Certainly not a patriotic front member or a lawyer, that should be said up front. Lawyers don't make good lawmakers and patriotic front members are an unpatriotic breed seeped in prejudice.

I notice that so many politicians are lawyers. I feel it is time that we either say no lawyers should go into politics, because the track record by itself should be a testament to their failure in guiding this country in what one could even remotely call the right direction. We either have lawyers or Johnny come lately in government. We also have professional politicians who should also be canned from politics, the President being one. He has been in politics so long he is the consummate insider able to soothe the ruffled feathers of his enemy, but that's all. His grasp of the deepest issues afflicting the people, his reliance on sycophants and henchman who play into his weaknesses traps him from being true to himself and is just a hostage to fortune. I am not commenting on his personable nature which I am sure is beyond blemish, but his track record and ability to address the ills of the nation effectively, rather than in Chinthana pronouncements is at best ineffective and at worst destructive.

The moral fabric of society needs leadership of an unblemished character at the top who sets an example. Even the man who is stealing coconuts, (half the coconuts sold in Colombo are stolen) justifies it saying if the people at the top can steal, whats wrong with me stealing a little to feed my family. That in essence is the problem. The war is an excuse. The generals given the proper tools and no interference can will battles, but winning the hearts and minds of the people is only possible for a true leader of the nation having the interests of all the citizens of this country, wherever they happen to be at present. Be they those who had to flee oppression, go to the middle east so that they can feed their extended families, or those who are in uncleared areas who are also under tyranny from both sides, trying to flee from LTTE on the one and being branded as sympathizers on the other with nowhere to turn.

A true patriot is one who can unite this deeply divided country, where mistrust is the order of the day. Even in my little village neighbors, sometimes brothers mistrust each other so it is not just a Tamil Sinhala fight, it is fight for forgiveness, humility, rebuilding breaking down barriers that have been created due to mistrust. If this is done, LTTE will fall without a fight, as they will not have any fighters left and the hardcore can then be just snipered out, mostly by their own and not having to waste the blood of heroes the sacrifice that has to be borne by the families who are left behind once they are gone.

The word patriot is so abused by the unpatriotic to brand patriots as such, that people are in fear of speaking up for justice and common sense, and a sense of what is right and wrong. The examples that are set today for young people is very bad. They are the future, on whose shoulders peace has to be built.It cannot be done until hatred is extinguished and an olive branch extended.This is all that is needed, as the rest of the world is breaking down barriers and we insist on building more.

Those with a modicum of English knowledge are streaking away from the pack in terms of opportunities in life, and those who don't are only painfully aware of this fact.No one dares admit this for fear of I don't know who, but they are doing a great injustice by creating a bigger class distinction greater than Tamil, Sinhala conflict. So lets own up to the problem and look at a way to solve them

From my perspective, the two biggest problems to progress and greater opportunity for all to improve themselves, especially the youth is the lack of English knowledge and thereby access to the Internet with all its levelling of class barriers, and the alcohol dependence of a great section of our population with nothing being done to prevent youth from following in the footsteps of their fathers.

A patriotic is lawmaker therefore is one whose roots are firmly on terra firma, understanding how one has to live on one's own hard work, and the real hardships that are faced by 95% of the people. He needs common sense to tackle the problems which only seem insurmountable because we try to use a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Above all he needs charisma, which exudes humility and not prone to making bombastic promises. He needs to think global and act local so that everyone is given an opportunity to succeed without prejudice. The education of the youth on moral and ethical values should be an integral part of the curriculum from a young age and he needs above all to live so that it is an example for others to follow. There are people of this character and they should take a leadership role rather than not even try due to the current status quo.

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