William and Kate have given us something to think about
As much honored as we are to host the #RoyalCouple there are a few points we should ponder on being a nation that was once owned, plundered and divided by the British.
Kate and William are quite possibly the most popular celebrity couple on the internet.
They show a sense of respect to each country they visit by donning their traditional dress. Their arrival has made shalwar kamez and sherwani popular even more so.
Perhaps, we need the validation of the Gora Farangi people with foreign accents to feel pride in our culture and heritage.
We look down upon our own heritage, the customs, the language and in some cases even the cities and the food, up until a foreign blogger or a celebrity endorses it. We take pride in emulating the British or the Americans.
A few years ago a very prominent private school published and sent a letter to the children where one of the points was that speaking in Punjabi is prohibited.
Why? Because these local languages are considered as low class. The language of the backward and conservative people. Even someone with a Punjabi/Sindhi/Saraiki drone is considered uncool and uncouth.
Moreover, those who cannot speak English or who speak English with an odd dialect are considered as low class.
Why? English is not our mother tongue. When our favorite tennis player or footballer from the Spanish league give an interview in broken English they are not considered low class.
The main reason is that the British Raj hangover still pollutes us. What is our heritage? Learning English to compete with the Hindus for jobs in the United India or succumbing to the Mullah lifestyle and avowing anything British which most of the Muslims did pre-partition? We are still confused as a nation.
We don’t take pride in our national language and national dress. Maybe in a few centuries our indigenous languages might be forgotten.
The reason for the extinction of any language is that it was not carried out by the next generation and with time, it died.
Parents don’t speak these languages with their children since they deem them as uncouth. They feel speaking only in English guarantees good grades and success.
Even our national dress is considered in this manner. Although wearing it is a choice of personal preference at least one should not consider it as backward.
The problem is not in speaking in Urdu or Punjabi or Saraiki or whether or not to wear shalwar kameez, the problem lies in frowning down upon these cultural elements. It is a free country we should be all able to choose what to wear and how to talk at least we should value what actually belongs to us.
The high class and low class paradigm is intoxicating every country’s social fabric not only ours. But at least we should be able to love and acknowledge our roots.