Let’s go out. Let’s have dessert. Let’s continue to live in the fairy-tale dominated world. Let’s not make the conversation serious. Let’s entertain each other. Let’s have fun. Let’s spread happiness and peace. Let’s interact with diverse cultures. Let’s be open minded and abandon war, violence and oppression. Let’s not spread hatred and grief. Let’s stay apolitical and let the politicians do what they do best: deceive and steal the taxpayer’s money. On the occasion of Eid-ul-Adha, I want to express how I feel when my fellow peers, family members and random cool but not-so-politically aware people respond to discussions of political nature. I am a firm believer of the Aristotelian conception of politics: man is a political animal. I adhere to the Aristotelian definition of politics because it appeals to me as the most appropriate understanding of human nature.

Humans are political animals. What differentiates humans and other beings on earth? What do humans do with their gifted traits? They engage in politics. What is politics then? Is it the art of government? If yes, then what is purpose of the institutions created under the banner of government? Government is there to protect its citizens, to provide law and order to society. To prevent chaos from spreading. To provide justice. To provide appropriate answers to those who don’t receive justice, employment, health and education. Those who possess the basic human requirements and indulge in luxuries can’t help but care about the government. But those who don’t have these facilities, spend their time trying to achieve the basic human requirements. And those who achieve the basic needs, strive for more and do so by climbing upwards on the social ladder. That means, those who are engaged in the art of government, continue to govern as they please. They continue to dominate others, to oppress those who ask for rights, to provide answers to the have-nots who are too incompetent to do anything.

Who challenges the power structures in this equation? Isn’t the description of a society, a nation which is too busy sleeping on the present condition? A nation too lazy to wake up in front of the soporiferous speeches of the politicians. A nation which enjoys bashing the politicians just for the sake of it. A nation that encourages the young generation to establish their careers in the corporate sector? A nation that aspires to see their young generation as part of the oppressive class? The class that makes money off of the poor souls hard earned money. The young are asked to top their examinations to become professionals and earn more, regardless of their alliance with the hegemonic structures of the day.

These discussions need to be carried out. The sole reason those ruling us are ruling us is that we don’t consider ourselves dirty enough to be a part of the political process. Those who are part of the legislative process don’t know us. Those who govern us are not one of us. We are not being governed by the ones we have produced. We are being governed by indigenous elites who live according to foreign lifestyles in our poor land.

They were co-opted before the creation of this country. Their fate and our fate was decided the day the white man left this place. We were chosen as the people who will be ruled while those who rule were chosen because they had the means to dominate. If not then they were provided with the means to dominate. We are being ruled by those who will be rich only if this country stays poor. From the structural adjustment programs to the Harvard consultancy teams, from strategic depth to the war on terror, we weren’t asked. The reason why we weren’t asked was that we were too busy creating a better standard of living for ourselves, we were too busy competing with our peers on university examinations, on cars, on prestige, on clothes, on mobile phones, on English accents, on marriage halls and wedding ceremonies.

An average Pakistani needs to initiate these discussions; not for me, not for those who are being oppressed, not for those who die of poverty and hunger, not for those who have been kidnapped from the streets, not for those who work all day and never earn enough to sustain themselves, but for yourself. Because one day, you will understand, that this oppressive cycle will continue to expand and dominate us and one day, it will be on your knot and you will be running after the incompetent judiciary to help you. This needs to be done for Pakistan, for this homeland which promised everything that it couldn’t deliver. We have to make this place capable enough to fulfill all the promises that were made 69 years ago.