Status Without Soul
Typical Sri Lankan Mother :Putha these are your choices in life. You can become a doctor, a lawyer, an engineer or an accountant. Otherwise you will either be a politician or a beggar.
This is the sad but true stereotype of Sri Lanka. Not cool right?I mean there is pressure and then there is that.
Sri Lanka has a lot of problems. Economical, political, social and so on but one major issue is the fact that we are a classist society. It’s a fact that we treat people differently based on their status in society and not their character. You get respect for being educated and how big your wallet is. It doesn’t matter if you’re a jerk and treat people badly because they will treat you like God because that’s our way of thinking. I strongly disagree ( emphasis on ‘ strongly disagree’ ). We should judge a person on their manners, how they treat their inferiors and the character they present. They say, ” manners maketh the man” and this holds true for the nation as well. We may not have the best infrastructure but honestly who cares if we have the best people. The kind of people that have mutual respect for one another and give everyone the respect earned by their soul and not their status!
Why? Basic evolution of psychology. Okay I actually made that up but its kind of true. We feel intimidated by our superiors There is no equality in our society due to class-ism. It is in the mindset of the people. A habitual feeling to respect and treat the rich and powerful better. People who are well connected , rich or have an important job are given better benefits, called ‘ Sir ‘ or ‘ Madam ‘, talked to with hands behind backs and generally are respected more. Do you see a plumber and a lawyer having a drink together ? Maybe if the plumber is a part time barman! So what about the poor guy?
Their ignored or treated like dirt. Do we give a second glance to the people who pump petrol, the Three –Wheeler guys who give us directions or just random laymen? No. The land has racial segregation, religious discrimination and corruption. We talk big about solving these things but how do we expect to go anywhere without respect even within those groups.
Let me give you another newsflash. Slavery people! Its not a myth, its fact and it happens. We have our maids who don’t even have an official work status and do we treat them right? You may not see it. Most of us reading this live in the capital or are in that upper status. We know all about rights and humanity but a lot of people don’t . Have you realized how many people called these people their servants. They a given horrible treatment, paltry wages and guess what? They have families too .They have hopes and dreams for them and their friends while they sweep the house or do the laundry while we are indulging in uncountable luxury. Some are treated akin to slaves and it needs to stop if we have but a shred of humanity left.
Why can’t the typical Sri Lankan mother learn to accept their children pursuing something they love . Be it fishery or architecture. As long as it makes them happy what does it matter? It’s a misguided social convention that we need a big job to be popular and better beings, that you are a great person if you are rich, influential and powerful.
We are in the 21st century for god’s sake! We are living I a world that is constantly developing not just in tangible terms but in our mentality as well. Classism is contagious. It sets a bad precedent when people see it being done because then they think it is ok to do so as well. We have to fight it for the soul of the nation. We have to fight it for it is the foundation of equality, discrimination and humanity. We have to rebel against the classist society that is our country and start an era of mutual respect and universal ethics.
We have to destroy the idealism of status without soul!