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Re: the truth about America....

Please help make the Manifesto better, or accept it, and propagate it!
 Dear Gaurav:
 I address this note specifically to you but it is meant for all my =
friends who have taken part in this debate.  I enjoyed immensely the =
exchange of ideas including the designation of an ass kisser from Dr. =
Subrata Roy.  I however must admit I, see nothing wrong in kissing asses
when they are round and sexy.  The trouble is that most of them are =
smelly and have holes in them.  Thanks to all.
I owe you an apology if my message conveyed an impression that I =
stereotyped Indians based on those unfortunate comments from Vamsi.  Far
from it.  I would seriously hesitate to do that and, as an Indian, I =
would consider that an affront as well.  I believe, no it is my =
conviction, that our mother land is as diverse and enriched in =
intellectual or emotional creativity as this country is and no less =
beautiful.  Why all these intellectual, organizational and emotional =
capital did not translate into an efficient engine of nation-building =
and why our country continues to remain rudderless as a whole, is a =
matter deliberated ad nauseum and ad infinitum by many intellectuals =
like Subrota Roy over the years with no sustainable conclusions.  I know
I am treading on soft turf here as an avalanche of mail would be sent =
forthwith with statistics to prove me wrong but that what's I truly feel
about the status of our country.  Yes, there have been developments but
the parts did not sum up to a whole.  I have some humble comments to =
offer in the matter and perhaps in another time we will anatomize the =
issue together once again.

Unfortunately, my pessimism about us, Indians, being able to work =
together toward a common goal for a sustained length of time and our =
general inability to separate the grain from chaff and see the big =
picture, is based on limited but representative personal experiences.
Over the years, I have been involved in certain community organizations
in administrative capacity and observed first hand how worthwhile =
projects were torpedeod by the constant bickering and back-stabbing  =
name-calling and posturing that took place among its principals.  You =
may recall the recent most shameful events in Chicago India day parade =

saga which were loved by the media.   Most of these people mind you, if
not all, are the cream of our country, cultural ambassadors, prominet =
Indian-Americans, well-educated, accomplished and eminently successful =

financially.  I was appalled to notice as to how education provided so =

little wisdom and vision in these people, how their giant egos clashed =

for silliest things and how finally the baby was flushed with the bath =

water.  If this constitutes the quality of performance by the top =
echelons of our community, in projects, which are primarily =
philanthropic without bottom line concerns,  just consider the feeding =

frenzy that take place when those considerations are involved.  I have =

been so disgusted that I have since dissociated myself from most of =
these associations.  I came to realize that it is just not the cream =
that rises to the top, shit too.  =20

What I wrote so far would perhaps mirror similar experiences of many =
participants of this forum.  What I believe I learnt from America, among
other things, is the ability to look at myself as well with unjaundiced
eye , perform intense self-examination and  realize that I am no less a
failure myself as well in all of this.   I engage lustily in the same =
shit of negative behavior that I publicly abhor and I need to start with
myself first.   I believe this disquiet with myself and the desire to =
purify me first is a gift from America.  We all read about these =
self-evident truths in our school books when we were growing up and =
spoke glowing about the need to cleanse oneself but those were just =
words without conviction, plain and simple posturing. =20

If our collective soul undertakes this inward journey recognizing the =
need to clear our stables first, take a fresh critical look  at =
ourselves before anything and as Jack Welch said begin by curing minor =

evils, neighborhood by neighborhood, one at a time,  we will be =
superstars before long.  Patriotism is a critical ingredient in this =
ruthless self-examination process and as far as I am concerned that is a
gift I received from America.  September 11th produced an electricity in
American air which has glued the nation in one incredible entity.  I and
all the rest of us billion, want desperately to become a nation like =
that where all young Indian motherfuckers in the street smilingly =
sacrifice their life for their country.  That is my prayer for our =

You may recall what the Walrus has said in Alice in Wonderland, "the =
time has come to speak of many things

> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Gaurav Johri" <gjohri@yahoo.com>
> To: <debate@indiapolicy.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, October 23, 2001 6:42 PM
> Subject: Re: the truth about America....
> > =
> > Please help make the Manifesto better, or accept it, and propagate =

> > =
> > I don't understand what is being achieved by US-bashing of the sort
Vamsi is indulging in. Are we seeking comfort in America's imperfections
to hide our own?

But as much as I disagree with Vamsi on his comments about America, =
Priyo, you are guilty of the same wrong which you criticize Vamsi for.

Just as it is unfair to make generalizations about Americans , it is =
equally ridiculous to make the sort of generalizations you make about =
Indians. If your generalization about America does not focus on the =
rabble-rousing on radio talk shows, why should your generalization of =
India focus on the words & deeds of some fanatics? Just as we have to be
about American xenophobic sentiment, why should the same understanding =

not apply when we air our sentiments when we are hurt (as Vamsi is in =
this case)?

When we talk about violence in India when such events take place, it is
important to understand that this is not limited to India and can be =
seen all across Asia and even in parts of Europe. An important thing to
understand here is that almost all such violence is mob driven and =
accompanied by poor law enforcement. It takes minutes to collect 500 =
people in India, try
doing that even in New York and you won't get 20. And quite clearly the
law enforcement machinery in the US is much more effective. One can hark
back to the 60s when there was no difference between the policemen in =
Mississippi and the ones in Mumbai, when both stood on the sidelines as
KKK & Shiv Sena mobs robbed & pillaged.

The basic point is that just because there wasn't widespread violence =
doesn't mean the Americans are a more tolerant people and just - they =
have all kinds of people and it is just a question of who has an upper =

hand at what point in time.  America has journeyed through its own =
trials & tribulations into becoming the country that it is, and so are =

Indians doing it. We need can-do people who have faith & belief in our =

own. We don't need the sort of deprecating remarks you make about =
Indians. It is a
> > gross insult to the large number of Indians (including the likes of
Parivartan) who are part of a daily struggle to make India a better =
place and ,unlike you or me living in the land of nuts & honey, have had
the courage to ask "what they can do for the country and not what the =
country can do for them".



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