The story of dissent.

What better time then now, to discuss this! Dissent- the very essence of democratic societies the world over- wherein each individual has the the given right to lawfully express his/her opinion without fear and without any unwarranted angst being directed towards them for having expressed what they have! Well of course if you do not live in a democratic society, this may not make sense at all- because even the thought of dissent in those clamped down absurd places is enough to put you into existential crisis and in grave danger.

To begin with, why does dissent happen- why do people go against an idea- reasons could be many- some right- some not so right. But when the majority (who can influence, direct or dictate) the way of living of a society go ahead with something important (irrespective whether it is a wise decision or not) not inclusion of all constituents of the society is the first step where the seeds for dissent get sown! Irrespective of what the constituents of a society are- from the point of view of their economic status or religious beliefs, non-inclusion never helped anyone and all societies that have played across this line have eventually found that out sooner or later either through easy ways or difficult times!

The next thing that shapes dissent post non-inclusion is the method of communication adopted to drive the idea- the way it is done- seems so innocent at the first impression- but this aspect when not dealt appropriately can look a great idea absolutely stupid and a very dangerous step look divine! Governments/Rulers across the world have known this for long and have used it to their calculated advantage or unforeseen disadvantage with equal measure to stir up societies and nations to go with an idea that the rulers of the day thought was wise- when the society they governed thought otherwise!

The earlier two paragraphs have told you how dissent stems- irrespective what the idea is- now is the real thing- there are and always will be different manifestations of dissent as a direct response to the idea- the more an idea deviates from core foundation values of a human society- liberty and equal opportunity irrespective of economic and religious disposition- the more direct and stronger will be the reaction! It is an these junctions which I term as “Inflection Points” that the fate of nations and societies gets decided.

As long as there is hope form the core pillars of the society (whether they be media, judiciary, thinkers, luminaries from creative fields) these protests and dissents are able to largely confirm to the universal principles of lawful and peaceful dissent and protest. More interestingly, the more apolitical these protests are , the more powerful they seem to get- they simply do not allow the shades of grey- that come in with political affiliations to snatch away the focus from the core areas of concern to some other political point (which is a very likely event and that is what the state would like to see happen- deflection and implosion of the dissent on it’s own!)

Now the question what happens- beyond this- well friends- to be honest- no one wants things to go beyond the holy “Point of Inflection” for every time that a society or a nation has traversed ahead, it has jeopardized the very fabric of the society under consideration and put it under grave threats both intrinsic and external. That’s a place where none of us must venture or even dream of to be in! Societies where youth are a major force to be reckoned with- are fragile and sensitive- they are “baby adults”- who want to be heard to- explained to and listened to- when they have something to contribute for the larger good of the society.

It’s about time that the world awakens and makes way and mends it’s business in the larger interest of the society, nation and world order in general. People in power can and will always cloak a problem to suit their objectives- there is nothing right and wrong in this- this is politics. But it gets dangerous once it starts to rip off the fabric of societies and begins to take away unique identities that represent these societies and nations by their coercive and arrogant approaches. So what do we do?

The answer to this is being honest- being honest on all sides of a square table (I have mentioned a square table for a reason- because circular tables do not yield anything in these set ups and in fact end up making matters worse!). Societies need to make peace with learnings to tread along a path that is just under the point of inflection- but keep asserting lawfully as allowed to make their voice heard- there will be eventuality be respite-sooner or later and history is replete with multiple examples wherein the deadly cocktail of power and ego has finished off political personalities, parties and ideologies right from their very foundation, as they say Time is the greatest master of us all, as along as we allow Time to take it’s time!

A dissent that’s true is like coal burning underground stays alive for ages- until the objective is achieved- only if it assures the larger good of the society. Oppression like a sledge hammer keeps hitting as long as it is given an external political environment- the day pillars of democracy stand up for what is right for the society- the sledge hammer of oppression will cease to operate!

Until next time- keep speaking- wisely, softly and firmly and stay lawful whichever side of an idea you are, no matter what the provocation! Someone said this, “An Idea whose time has arrived cannot be stopped”, likewise ” A society that is awake can never be destroyed- Stay alive, keep speaking and stay lawful”.

Signing off, until next time- stay safe, stay calm and keep your voice- soft and firm!