July 19, 2010

Our Nawab Mentality

I witnessed a very unusual sight at Nestle today. An audit team for Switzerland was here to, well audit stuff. They were all seated in the conference room and were listening intently to anything that was being thrown at them. When the conference was over, the whole staff of the local office filed out of the conference room. And then, a man from the Swiss team went back into the conference room and turned off the lights.

Such is the innate nature of Pakistanis. No doubt the local staff thought that the tea-boy would turn off the lights, but it is such tiny things that make all the difference in the world when it comes to defining us. This one act on the part of the ‘goras’ is enough to define them. It shows that they are self less, humble, hard working and have the virtue of caring for everything that they earn and that allows them to earn. And this nature of the infidel West shows in their smallest actions. They go to a gas station and have to fill up the tanks themselves. No one in the West shows off or yells at the policemen that they are the sons of Army officers. No one in the West depends on others to get jobs, or internships or anything. Their accountability system might not be perfect but let’s face it, Pakistan’s justice and accountability system doesn’t even compare.

We on the other hand are infused with the “my birthright” mentality from the start. We drive on the roads like it belongs to us and no one else; we speak of ourselves as if there is no greater person in the world than us. We feel ashamed of doing our own work. We feel degraded if a policeman dares to stop us and then we don’t rest until we have humiliated him so completely that he feels he is little more than a useless, worthless piece of human flesh. Our classes are set and defined and we never let anyone transgress those lines. We are disgusted by the poor people who come to work in our homes so much so that we have defined separate utensils for them to eat and drink from, because it is beneath our dignity to share our own use utensils with the working class.

There is so much contrast between us and them. No doubt once again the fickle minded will say the West is trying to enslave us. The fact of the matter is our antics have let the West enslave us. Look at the difference between us and them and think; are they not just better than us? Now don’t think I’m degrading us. I’m just trying to show Pakistanis the picture as it is so that we can change the way we think, and look at the society because we need change. In the yester eras, we were humble, pious, honest, truthful and hardworking. Consequently we were ruling the world. Today, the West is an embodiment of hard work, independence and humbleness and consequently, they are ruling the world. Today we are deceitful, spiteful, mean, dishonest, devious and fraudulent and yet we refuse to acknowledge our demons; we are more content in believing that our problems, all sorts of problems emanate from the West. When will we realize that something’s are our own problems and we, us, ourselves, have to fix them?

The fact of the matter is that our religion also tells us to do the same. Be honest, hardworking, truthful, trustworthy. Face your problems and tackle them head on and then leave the results to the Almighty. We on the other hand blame the West for turning us into thieves, crooks, unfair crazies, and then we start supplicating Allah to help us. The West may have created and spread immorality but it is a shame on us that we let them exploit us. We should’ve been strong enough, and intelligent enough to realize what they were trying to do to us. But we weren’t. Now though instead of bickering and simmering, let us change our ways and mend our fences. Let us work together in an honest, open environment to usher Pakistan into the golden age.