“Ashwin is safe” said the transcontinental ‘sms’ that came in at night.
Realized the next day, that Ashwin, my cousin’s son, studies at Virginia Tech, and that he was one of those who was in the hostel that fateful day…
World is small….what happened at Virginia Tech is not a local event…it has ripples all over the world, and in real time….it could just as easily happen anywhere else – considering that the TV is spawning a ‘least common denominator’ kind of culture, worldwide….
Then again, Virginia Tech has teachers and students from many different parts of the world…kind of microcosm of the global campus…It sure would have been a real ideal sort of global village until this crazy event happened….a friend of mine who studied there some years ago, wrote in “….My alma mater……….tranquility and peace that I experienced for two and a half years, walking the drill field, passing Norris Hall and toward the dorm and across to my department, destroyed by this meaningless massacre.”
Another friend from US had this to say about the bizarre-hap:
“This event is a symptom not a cause. Statistically in every country there may be more or less the same percentage of people with the propensity to kill.
However, in the US we have:
1. a declining sense of family and community
2. easy access to material that glorifies violence (dehumanize killing) and porn (dehumanize women)
3. incredibly easy access to lethal killing machines
All of this possibly contributes to events like this.
What is sad is that India risks going down the path of points 1 and 2. In India we are so focused on the West and the gift of globalization that anyone questioning the God of Growth will probably be burned at the stake today. Fortunately we don’t have guns being sold at Big Bazars in Bangalore or we could see events like this in India in a few years…”
But Bangalore is a far cry from the American ‘gun shops’ that they showed on CNN. Just couldnt believe the sight of the ‘gun boutique’….swanky shop, real classy display….of guns of all kinds….real buzz around….vibrant shop, with customers trying out various firearms…like as if they were trying out sunglasses….JHC!
CNN had an interesting discussion on the ‘gun issue’. One of their resident experts on this whole ‘gun lobby’ thing, said that no politician would dare take any steps that will curb free access to firearms….the ‘gun lobby’ is just too influencial, he said….even though the gun owners may be in minority in terms of numbers (say 25%, he said), they do pack a real punch, because they would en-masse vote against any politician who curbs easy access to firearms, just on that one issue alone…whereas the 75% majority, who may not like Guns to be sold as easily as chewing gum, may not vote ‘for’ the politician, based on that issue alone….
This is the story of democracy that is enacted in other parts of the world too….political parties going out of the way to please ‘vote gangs’ at the cost of doing what is right….
There used to be a class of politicians, once upon a time, who were referred to as ‘statesmen’…Wonder where they are….
Once upon a time, ever so long ago, there was a politician whose name was Mohandas Gandhi…He worked for liberating India from British, and was imprisoned many times. In 1942 he called for “Quit India” movement against the British. His wife too joined the protest. He and his wife were jailed….His wife, died in prison….She was 75…This is a real story….
Once upon a time, there were a few politicians such as these….
Once upon a time, there was a concept called ‘Ahimsa’….