An Unpatriotic Song

Aren’t you sick of being told what to love and who to revere? I most certainly am!

I recently read a small article that a friend of mine recommended to me. The Diary of a Social Butterfly tells a short story of Pakistani woman’s attempt to persuade her husband from leaving Pakistan, which he describes as a nation of “ravening beasts”. Her words may thrill the crowd of sinfully optimistic banner-wavers,  but had no effect on me whatsoever. Her argument relies on piquing the reader’s emotions, but shows not an iota of logic or practical thinking.

There are many things we go around saying, not because we truly mean them, but because we feel that they’re the right things to so. “I love my country” happens to be one of them.

One mustn’t allow the accident of his birth to chose his allegiances for him. Merely evacuating one’s mother’s uterus within Pakistani territory, does not oblige one to love Pakistan, praise Jinnah and scowl at India. Same goes for any human born in any country.

The hell with patriotism. I believe in choosing my own allegiances…my own heroes. We are first and foremost the sons and daughters of planet Earth, the significance of our citizenships is only secondary. If at any point in our lives, our need to do what is right for mankind as a whole, clashes with our need to respect our national policies or the general attitude of the nation, it’s imperative that we choose the former.

Stop defending that which is stupid, just because it may somehow make you look bad in extension. Humanity is doomed unless it learns to set aside its petty national and religious differences and work as a single unit. Denounce what is wrong, and embrace what is right, regardless of whether it is local or foreign in origin.

I feel deeply upset when an Indian starts to rant about our mistakes and incapabilities, but I have learned to remain quiet and accept scorn where it is due. I encourage non-Pakistanis to do the same when their respective countries are places under a microscope.

We must let go of our inordinate pride and bow our heads in shame. The first step to our rehabilitation is in admitting to ourselves that we have indeed failed miserably as a nation. Stop consoling yourself with daft self-serving ideas like, “the developed world may have their scientific and financial achievements, but we have our great religious convictions and our awesome culture so it’s okay!”.

No! Stop that! Don’t try to balance things out just for the sake it. Admit that we’re worse than they are in every, I repeat, every aspect, and that we need to learn from them ways we can get back on our feet. USA or European countries are far from perfect, but make no mistakes, they are far better than us.

Husband of the social butterfly… godspeed, I say to you! Leave this crumbling, mullah-infested wreck of Jinnah’s dream and migrate to a land where your capabilities will be recognized and valued. Do not waste your sweat and talent on people who don’t want to make use of it. Leave them to their mindless nara-bazis and let social darwinism take care of it all.

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  1. Stop consoling yourself with daft self-serving ideas like, “the developed world may have their scientific and financial achievements, but we have our great religious convictions and our awesome culture so it’s okay!”.

    Hahaa. So true. Although that serves as a basis for why I Want to stay back in this country and perhaps be one of those instigating intellectuals who push people into accepting their faults and getting off their backsides and making a change. Social darwinism may cure us, but it will be a long and painful process and I would like to perhaps rectify things in society a teeny bit before nature does. I have an affection for the place that I’ve been for the past decade, irrational though that tie may be. And of course its not limited by coutnry borders – I have never been able to understand people’s obsessions with nationalism. Its a round world.

    • Uzma
    • October 28th, 2011

    In your ‘about me’ page, u wrote: This blog offers precisely that. Words. Simple, honest words that may fail to fully convince the reader or sway the devout, but will elucidate the other side of the story to them – the side that is routinely filtered out of the regular news that reaches their ears.

    Maybe that’s why some people, despite having the opportunity to leave choose to ‘waste’ their sweat here in Pakistan—so that they can throw light on the other side of the story. I couldn’t agree with you more that we are first the sons and daughters of planet Earth but isn’t that all the more reason to appreciate people who want to help out in the worse off parts of Earth, such as Pakistan?

    I didn’t particularly like the article you were referring to but if she wants to continue with work at charity schools, clinics and water purification plants then whats wrong with that? When she says she wept for us, I think she made it clear that she admits there is a lot wrong with our society and that is all the more reason that rather than being forced out she wants to fight back for her right to stay in a place that she considers to be just as much her home on Earth as anyone else’s. By the way, why do you identify yourself as a ‘Lone PAKISTANI liberal’?

    • I have nothing but admiration for those who choose to remain in Pakistan out of patriotism, than to go abroad to a country that can offer them much more wealth and fame.

      I was willing to offer the same sacrifice once, until Pakistan slammed it’s door shut in my face and told me that it didn’t need a gay-friendly Atheist to lend a helping hand. In fact, most of them would take a collective breath of relief if I were to pack up my suitcase and fly my godless ass to Stockholm.

      Why should I spend more energy for less benefits, and still live a life of disgrace, when a developed nation is willing to accept me with open arms and offer me respect for my services? A country where I’ll be provided the means to make a much greater impact on science, and humanity in extension, than I could ever do here in Pakistan?

    • Danish
    • September 18th, 2012

    This is the most awesome idea ever: To hell with patriotism 🙂

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