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Re: Gandhi and Arun Gandhi

On Tue, 19 May 1998, Puneet Singh wrote:

> What equality are we talking about? Are we getting soft and rosy about
> the past? Things have never been and probably ever be equal. 

Per capita incomes were equal till before 1750. That is what I consider a
basic equality across nations. In that sense, Japan and USA are equal. I
am not looking at equality within nations. That we have discussed, is not
quite possible, and we should instead aim to remove poverty.

> Or do we take the moral stand on this, the elite to teach the right
> way of life? Ask the world to disarm, to build a world Tagore described
> as "that heaven of freedom". 

You are right. Asking the world to disarm did not work. Too bad for the
world. We have no choice but to arm, then. Fine.

Do you have any thing to contest with the words in the Manifesto?

> I speak for myself: I'm tired of India having to take the role of the
> moral leader. I am for it if we can use it to better our lives, but if
> it doesnt, I am not for sacrificing our lives for the world to be
> a better place (as per Gandhi, quoted in previous mail). 

We do not have to "sacrifice" our lives. But we must surely work to make
the world a better place. We are going to be the most populous nation in
the world, soon. We need to behave not only responsibly but also
magnanimously. Anyway, apart from this "tussle" over a few words, what do
you wish to add/ subtract from the Manifesto/ Agenda?

> Gandhi has done a lot of good both for India and the world but lets not
> assume everything he believed in is correct or applicable at all times
> or even as if we have the onus to implement them for the world.

No. But let us realize that we would not be here in the USA without the
great work that Gandhi, and his follower, King, did against racial
discrimination across the world. Gandhi is essentially right. You cannot
have democracy if you have violence being exercised by a few. 

The unfortunate truth is that the world repeatedly creates its own Hitlers
and Mussolinis. That is not the time for non-violence but violent
resistence. Non-violence is an ideal, but preparedness and vigilence is a

I think we have expressed sufficiently on this in the Manifesto. Or,
should the 'deterrence' word be re-introduced?