The Politically Unopinionated.
Democratic. Republican. Dravidian. Leftist. Communist. Liberal. Conservative. I’ve always wondered how sophisticated it would be to use these words in a conversation. An argument over a cup of hot coffee on how one ideology is greater than the other. A discussion on Donald Trump being the biggest mistake or a new ray of hope. A debate on the current political condition in the state of Tamil Nadu.
There’s so much happening in politics and I read about it every day. But, there’s one problem: I don’t understand anything. Most of the political news I know are half-baked, disconnected, highly partial, or I read them through TOI’s notifications.
I still have arguments over a cup of hot coffee. But they are mostly about films, or books, or anything and everything but politics. I wouldn’t have worried about this if not for the sudden trend of people voicing out their opinions in social media. Thanks to Richard Dawkins, memes are the latest newsletters in this country. If you have a meme about something new today, you can be very sure it is the hot topic in the world. Right from NASA’s discovery of habitable planets to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s butt, you have all the information in just five minutes into your Facebook news feed. Meme creators (or MCs as they would like to call themselves) are the new journalists. Facebook or Twitter is your new newspaper.
I would blame my ignorance on the education I had. Not the usual ranting here, though I’d like to do that too. Geography was compulsory, economics was not. History was compulsory, political science was not. Math was compulsory, taxes were not. It’s like I bought a driving license for a car and I’m made to sit on a plane and drive it. I’m asked to manage my taxes, vote for the right party, and own the blame when something wrong happens in the government.
My history teacher taught me that India is a democratic country. Democracy, according to Wikipedia, is a system of government in which the citizens exercise power directly or elect representatives from among themselves to form a governing body, such as a parliament. Democracy is sometimes referred to as “rule of the majority”.
I don’t think a majority of the citizens in Tamil Nadu are happy with the current political scene of the state, or even the country. But, I can’t be sure about that because I don’t understand politics.
I initially thought the introduction of GST or demonetisation was a brave and appreciable move. But with the increased criticism from various economists and renowned administrators, I now feel that the whole country has been fooled. But, I can’t be sure about that because I don’t understand politics.
I was raised to believe that only by cracking entrance exams will I be able to get a better education and afford a more sophisticated life. But suddenly there’s an unfortunate demise because of a national entrance exam and I’m now asked to blame the education system for that. But, deep down, I know it’s not the education system, but the political system that I must hold responsible for. After all, it’s the government that comes up with these educational reforms.
Politics is the new movies. There’s so much drama happening in politics (especially in India) than a 3-hour movie. From 2G scam verdict to an actor entering politics, there’s something sensational happening every other day. ‘Every political party should have an ideology’ I was told. But I guess today’s politics promotes the politicians more than their ideologies, just like a movie where a hero is projected more than the story. But I can’t be sure because I don’t understand politics.
Lastly, I’m to be blamed for my ignorance too because, as a child, I thought it was my parents’ duty to elect the government and not mine. When I turned 18, I was more excited about getting a driver’s license than getting my voter’s ID. By the time I started watching election campaigns or political interviews, everything about politics was completely alien to me.
I have my own take on everything but when it comes to politics I’m still unopinionated.
Is it bad or is it normal to not have an opinion? Please let me know your thoughts in the comments below!