[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Ash's note - II

            I wrote: However, I do not agree that it is the status quo 
which is 'not helping the minorities'. As far as I can make out, it is 
the reaction of some to the status quo that is not helping the 
minorities.                                                                                                                                     You said: Semantics, 
Ritu. If the status quo did not exist, those reactions might not. 

           Ash, it is not semantics. The difference is fundamental. Let 
me illustrate:                                                                 The 
status quo guarantees my freedom of speech and thought. I avail of this 
freedom by saying that a historical figure of recent past has been 
unnecessarily and unjustifiably revered. A considerable portion of the 
populace does not agree. However, instead of countering my arguments 
with their own points, they lynch me. Ash, I still say that the problem 
is not with the status quo, the problem is with how some react to the 
status quo.                                                                                                                                                             Now, the topic of economic force. Prof. 
Guptara has said,"Any use of economic or physical force to take away or 
limit my freedom is reprehensible." I think that may be construed as 
agreement with your statement. As far as Sanjeev is concerned, I am 
quite sure [although I may be wrong] that he would not say any such 
thing for the simple reason that he does not believe that offering [or 
withholding] of money constitutes force.                                                                                                                                                                                You 
asked: "If I deny you a job, and your family starves to death, is that 
economic force? Instead, if I just kill your family, is that very 
different?"                                                                                                                     Ash, I just don't know if this is economic 
force. As I said in my note, I personally do not consider economic 
inducement to be force. It's hard for me to identify or define a concept 
I do not believe in. That is why I wrote "One point though; we need to 
demarcate the areas and situations where economic inducement is force, 
where the same is not 'force' but just an illegal action, and where it 
is normal and right." The second question I can answer. Yes, it is very 
different if you 'just kill' my family instead of denying me a job. If 
you deny me a job, other options are still open to me. I can try for a 
job elsewhere, so cans other family members; I can hang around 
Gurudwaras or Mandirs, get my hands on langar or prasad; I can beg; I 
can steal. My family and their continued well being is my 
responsibility, not yours. You are not obligated to offer me a job to 
save my family from starvation. You may choose to make that a 
consideration, if YOU so desire. I cannot claim that you consider 
anything other than my merit while processing my job application. If I 
don't get a job and my family starves to death, you are not accountable 
or responsible for it. On the other hand, if you kill my family, then 
and only then you are responsible for their deaths.                                                                                                     " Banks 
that refuse to do business in some neighborhoods are not beating poor 
folks on the head with a stick, they instead simply deprive them of the 
opportunity for economic upliftment."                                                                           Banks are businesses in 
their own right. They have stockholders, trustees, a board of directors 
and account holders. If they refuse to do business in some 
neighborhoods, the reason would be that opening a branch in the same 
areas is not a viable business proposition [poor security, not enough 
customers]. If they overlook normal business considerations to provide 
the poor with the opportunity for economic upliftment, they would soon 
find themselves going out of business.                                                                                                                  "I don't [know] 
why you would tell me that it was wrong, it appears to suggest that I 
had originally extolled the man [Hitler], which isn't true."                                                                                                                    
Ash, it doesn't suggest just any such thing. Examine the context in 
which I have made the statement-" Popular opinion is not necessarily 
'wisdom'. Hitler's anti-Semitic views were popular in Germany in the 
1930s. This did not make those views 'wisdom', Ash." The topic was the 
validity of a particular opinion regardless of how many people hold the 
same. The reference to Hitler was an illustration, not an implication.                                                                                                                                                                  
"But it is reasonable to expect that the majority has rights too, and 
those might be considered too, isn't that right? What happens when the 
rights of one group clash with the rights of another?"                                                                          Since 
the majority means 'majority of individuals', sure, all who comprise it 
have rights. If there is a clash of rights, the individuals concerned 
can avail of the judicial system. One thing we do agree on is that the 
rights belong to individuals and should be applicable equally.                                                                                                                  
"The rights of one person SHOULD NOT contradict the rights of another, 
by creating different groups of persons, we enable the kinds of conflict 
that might otherwise not exist."                                                                                                                                I agree that the right 
of one person should not contradict the rights of another. However, not 
only is the formation of groups a fundamental right [Art.19], it is also 
a natural tendency of men. As long as the rights of each individual are 
protected, formation of groups does not lead to conflict. 


This is a posting to India_Policy Discussion list:  debate@indiapolicy.org
Rules, Procedures, Archives:            http://www.indiapolicy.org/debate/