“Good the dance bars were banned, it saved so many families!”
“Nonsense!! all those girls lost their jobs for no fault of theirs.”
” their jobs??!! . .Screw them yaar.. married men were throwing their hard earned money on these girls destroying their own families”
“That’s an emotional response, you think banning will make people any more responsible? They lose control it’s their fault, their problem .. top of this what is the bar’s fault, you really think banning has stopped dance bars? It’s just driven an entire legitimate business underground like with gambling, prostitution, drugs. This has just increased corruption in the police force and corrupted otherwise moral and honest officers because there’s only so many assaults your morality can take…”
“noway those men lose control and get addicted to these dance bars and splurge money on drinks and visits..gambling is also destroying lives as people lose control and gamble their entire wealth away and ruin families”
“exactly.. “their money….their wealth..they earned it”..why would you want govt to play nanny here? It’s for the families and those people to take responsibility and not be stupid about what they do..and again do you really think banning has done anything? NO! again it’s driven the whole legitimate enterprise underground and now mafia controls most of it as the govt, law enforcement none can regulate or monitor it because it doesn’t exist on paper. Legalizing all of it will create jobs, give govt revenue in taxation, govt agencies can regulate it, keeping the mafia out and most of all I don’t even want to give you these justifications. I and many others can control our gambling like we control our drinking, gambling or visits to the brothel and would rather appreciate the govt keeping out of our lives and let us have fun!”
This is a conversation over a few beers I had last week. The line of thinking of my dear friend is along the mai-baap sarkaar ideology where the govt is the guardian of our morals, the well wisher, the caretaker. The citizens? — Fools, to be told what is good for them and what not. This thinking has enabled the govt to pop up in between movies telling us “smoking is bad” the fools we Indians are – monkeys who just ape people on the TV screen with no thinking mind of our own, wonder why I didn’t see any notice telling me not to kill people, cut them, pack them, throw them in the sea during Dexter runs, they’re probably working on that. They are on our cigarette packs telling us they “cause cancer” see bet you didn’t have a clue. And the Indian govt has blocked alcohol and cigarette ads in all media.
Worth mentioning is this whole idea on protecting “the poor innocent victims who are just addicted and can’t help it” has spawned of NGOs haunting McDonald’s, Pepsi, Coca Cola for their “addictive content” causing obesity, thus completely resolving people of all responsibility to their own health and monitoring their own consumption levels, bad eating habits etc.
These being primary functions which any govt must do extremely well some others such as building common infrastructure, financing primary education etc. can be debated (in another post).
There is no rational arguments for the govt to protect our morals, keep us from harming ourselves, tell us how or how not to spend money we earn by our labor, censor movies, books on the premise that it may hurt our feelings, try to set controls on prices, set controls on activities which harm no one physically (through licensing).
If you think this rant is against the govt then you are mistaken.This rant is against the thinking which has enabled successive govts in India to trample individual freedoms and ignore its right functions and duties. To be a developed country doesn’t only mean infrastructure and economic prosperity but a healthy relation between the individual and the state.
If you think it’s politicians who appointed themselves the protectors of our morality that is not true for they only have the powers which we give them and implicitly by where the culture stands. And Indians have always demanded to be ruled then to be governed. Even today middle class Indians demand govt subsidies in fuel, gas, public transport not understanding the economic consequences of these. Every time we put the govt in a position where it can “give” us something, it embeds in the collective psychology that the govt has the power to “give” and “decide” for us.
Most of the time it is just assumed that if the govt is doing something it must be for a reason. Bring up licensing(taxis, alcohol) or time limits to shut down business establishments by 11pm and the response you get is “if govt is doing it there must be some reason” always assuming that if the people in authority are doing something it must be right and not thinking hard enough about it.
The above dear friend is in his 20s, the country is young, 60% below 35yrs of age. We cannot move forward with such regressive ideas any more. We must fight this ideological war and win our individual rights.