Privileged Saints, and Poor Scum

I remember the last time I got caught in the middle of a riot, or a hangama if you will. The Huz and I had to make a quick stop in Saddar's Bhori Bazaar for some desi clothing, to send across to my sister for her daughter. We decided not to travel by car, and opted for a rickshaw instead, simply because it's completely stupid to travel to Saddar in a car, and expect to find parking.  

Anyway, we were in a shop which sells a ton of eastern wear, when we heard the gun shots, or as a Karachite would call it 'firing.' Before all of us even had a chance to freeze, the shop shutters had come down, and were locked from the inside. 'Fikr nahi karo baji, thori der main khatam ho jai ga' (Don't worry sister, this will end soon) said the very calm shopkeeper, to a middle aged woman, who like me was rooted to the spot, with a look of absolute terror on her face. Two minutes later, the shutter was back up, and they began herding us out the door. 'Walk fast, and get out of the area' was all they said. Outside it was chaos, as literally hundreds of people scrambled past shops, or darted through the narrow lanes, trying to get away from the mob of men, coming at us with machine guns. Old ladies were being helped along, terrified young women were being shoved or escorted through the mob, by random young men, all unspoken rules of not touching women forgotten. And, they were all poor young men. What we shamefully call 'street urchins' - The cobblers, the tailors, the cart walas. The uneducated, and so called 'uncouth' of our nation. 

It took me back to the time there was a bomb explosion at my work place. And, how a Rickshaw wala grabbed me and started shoving me towards the main road, because he thought there might be another blast. Or the rest of them who without thought jumped into the horrific rubble, and began to search for bodies, while the suited ones stood at a distance and watched.

The last few days, I've been watching the riots in England. But, more than that, the reactions by people remain more interesting. If the kids on those city streets are wrecking whatever they can, it can be slightly compared to some of the wrecking we see taking place in Karachi. The looting? Not so much, but hey it could happen. 

However, the reactions from many people are more or less the same. Because ultimately people are the same everywhere, aren't they? Specially the privileged. God, they love to bash the poor, don't they? And, blame them for everything.

Bad parenting
Gaming addictions
Facebook obsessions
Greed
A sense of entitlement
Disrespect for authority

I wonder how many of them realize, they could be speaking about their own pampered little angels? 

A single mother working as a maid at three or four places, is in essence neglecting her duties as a parent, according to a lot of them. But, these same career men and women, spending late hours at the office, while their kids are babysat by hired help, and/or expensive toys, are actually "working damn hard" to give their kids a good life. 

I suppose the poor man who can't afford to pay his kid's school fees on time, is the one who threatens his son's teacher for daring to discipline him? Um I think not. It's mostly you know, those 'well educated' and 'polished' mothers and fathers who storm into the principal's office and yell their perfectly coiffed heads off, about how traumatized their precious angel was, because he was given a detention.  

Oh, and while we're at it, your 'educated' kids could benefit with some extra spelling, and grammar coaching, no matter how cool they think they come across on Twitter & Facebook.

Where was I? Yes, it's the poor kid's parents who are never aware, or don't care where their kids are every evening. Those poor bastards are the only ones out there indulging in drugs, and early teenage sex, and all those other immoral things civilized society knows only happens in the ghettos.

Poor kids want everything for free, the greedy little snots. My kid earned his X-box, Wii, PSP, and iPad. And, because we sit together every night, as "a family" and eat dinner, my daughter doesn't stand a chance of ever getting knocked up at 15, and having a baby. 


Well, that and, really expensive, private abortion clinics.


I've never seen greed in the eyes of a poor child, only hunger. I've never seen disrespect there either, only survival. But, I've seen plenty of it in the eyes of more pampered, and privileged kids.

So, if the parents of those would take a moment, and stop being such fucking hypocrites, get off their high horses, and stop congratulating themselves so much... it would be nice. A little surprising, but nice all the same.

The only difference between your child and theirs? A safety net. Can you in all honesty say, that net will always be there?

Think it over.


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3 comments:

Carolyn Ann said...

My Mom tells of when a teacher yelled at her for coming to school in ballet slippers - it was winter and the only footwear she had. My Granddad, a really big bloke, took the teacher to the side and "advised" him of the need to not be judgmental.

She also tells of the time when their neighbor started walloping his daughter with a leather belt. My Granddad apparently jumped over the garden fence and walloped him! Apparently the man never laid another hand on his daughter. (Considering the size and strength of my Granddad - he was a coal miner - I'm not sure the man would have been capable of laying a hand on anything!)

I'm not sure why your anecdotes brought those to mind.

Carolyn Ann said...

Oh, sorry! I'm really, really glad nothing happened to you in those experiences! :-)

grsalam said...

Its very easy to work hard and still be there for the kids, in my opinion. When my elder siblings were younger, my dad was away on business trips all the time for weeks on end- we were in semi-dire straits at the time. But even when I was little I remember that he'd always bring back tons of presents for us, and he'd send postcards to us as well. It broke my heart to read them, I couldn't even understand the words because he had tried to cram sheets worth of words on one single postcard. And when he wasn't away, he'd be there at night, tucking us in, or teaching me to overcome my lisp in our nightly study times, etc. On the other hand, my cousins keep like, three maids for their kids, one maid per kid. They don't work, they're housewives, but they'd rather be shopping for designer lawn. In fact I even get the feeling that one of the kids might be hyperactive, but I don't think they pay much attention to them, sigh.