Wednesday, December 14, 2016

National Anthem and Patriotism

Patriotism is the desire to see your country as one that promotes the welfare of every citizen irrespective of religious, cultural and other differences.  Patriotism has nothing to do with killing people whose eating habits differ from yours.  Patriotism has nothing to do with playing the national anthem in cinema halls or wearing the national flower on your sleeve. 

The recent order of the Supreme Court of India to play the national anthem in the movie halls before the beginning of each movie actually belittles the anthem by making it a prelude to mere popular entertainment.  Worse, most people who visit the cinema halls are not likely to be in a mood to display their patriotic sentiments; they are there for entertainment.  There will be some latecomers who will be still searching for their seats.  There will be physically handicapped or elderly people who may not find it easy to stand at attention.  There are many practical problems, in short.  What was the need for issuing this order?

Ask them what the SC order means
Is anyone’s patriotism going to be nurtured by listening to the national anthem?  Patriotism should emerge as a natural offshoot of one’s pride in one’s country, its heritage, its achievements, and so on.  India is still struggling with poverty and unemployment, malnutrition and diseases, political corruption and chicanery, and all sorts of other evils.  If I say that dealing with these evils is far more important than arresting people who protest against an irrational court order, do I become antinational?

Going through certain comments on social media such as Facebook, one will naturally wonder why today’s patriots speak the language of savages.  Can love of any kind be enforced ruthlessly?  Seeing today’s patriots, I feel my love for the nation eroding slowly.  I wish I could live in a better country.  Does my wish make me antinational?

I know I’m infinite times more patriotic than these ruffians and hooligans who go around imposing their physical might on others in the name of patriotism.  But they won’t admit it.  Because their patriotism has many axes to grind.

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  1. Sadly, patriotism has become an artificial label than a true feeling.

    1. Artificial, you said it, Kiran. It is a strategy, a ploy, a trick just to hoodwink certain sections of citizens.

  2. Absolutely right Sir. This so-called patriotism is only for the goons to implement under the pretext of the SC order.

    1. All these self-proclaimed patriots should be given compulsory classes in humanism.


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