Who Can You Blame?

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Update: Great. The BJP supports communalism, and the UPA supports casteism.

First there was the announcement of an increase in reservations in the premier educational institutes of our country.

Then there were students protesting the hike in reservations.

As it generally happens in our country, things didn't go very well.

And today there doesn't seem to be much of a solution in the offing.

I've been against reservation in principle, since 1990, which was when I stepped into this country as a student for the first time. My education until then had been in an Indian School in Kuwait, where I'd read the word "caste" only in Social Studies textbooks.

I've asked myself over the years whether pro-reservationists are really all that unreasonable, and whether reservation does achieve anything more than keeping caste-differentiation alive in the minds of our youth, who are the first ones to be affected by it in modern society.

Affirmative Action has good intentions, and reservations are an implementation of that idea, but is it the right implementation?

It has been my belief that Indians as a people, are intelligent. Maybe my belief is just a kind of patriotism. Who knows? Still, I have believed that even if we are not any more intelligent than the people of other nations, we are nonetheless intelligent. And if we are intelligent, then the people we vote to power must be intelligent too. (What are you laughing for?)

Still, more than 50 years after the provision for reservation was made in the constitution, why is it that only a tiny segment of SCs (Scheduled Castes), STs (Scheduled Tribes) and OBCs (Other Backward Castes) have benefited from it?

I'm sure that the number who've benefited can't be large enough, because if it were, that large number of people would be interested in getting rid of the "backward" tag, don't you think?

Going by surveys, at the very least, 29.8% of India's population are OBCs. At the most, the number is 52% - that means there are between 300 to 500 Million people in our country who are considered "Other Backward Castes". That's one in every 20 people on the planet. 50 years after our leaders wrote for us a constitution guaranteeing Equality, this huge number of people in our country are called "Backward".

Aren't our politicians intelligent enough to know when a solution to a problem isn't working? Or do they simply not care?

Who has been voting this chap to power over the years? It's not the first time that he's won an election, right?

The answer seems quite simple. The average Indian, is stupid.

That includes me, of course. And you.

Not The Same Thing

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Yes, yes, I'm alive. Against all expectations to the contrary. I guess you'll need to pray harder.

And we break our silence (No, it's just me. The plural is just for the heck of it) to disagree with a man who is probably the most popular Indian blogger on the planet. As the Tamil saying goes, I think I've got horns on my head. (Yes, I've been in Chennai too long. No, I don't know the Tamil saying itself. I only know what it translates to. Don't ask me to explain. I'm blogging after two full months. I'm supposed to be incoherent.)

Amit Varma's got a post linking to the results of a new scientific study. While I agree with the intent of the post in general, I completely disagree with the title of the post.

Being gay, is not like being left-handed. Which hand you use to write or eat with, isn't dependent on biology. It's more a matter of luck. And, of course, on whether your mother made you hold the pencil in your right hand when you were learning to write.

A left-handed person can learn to write with his/her right hand, if the necessity arises. Right handed people can teach themselves to do things with their left hand. All it takes is practice.

But no amount of practice can turn a gay man (or woman) straight. Or vice-versa.

In fact, I think the biggest problem that people have with homosexuality is the fact that they believe it is like being left-handed. That you can change it if you try hard enough. That it is something that can be fixed if you catch it early enough. That not letting your kids know that there is such a thing as homosexuality, will keep them straight.

Being gay is more like being black. Or brown. Or white. Or yellow. Or red. Except that it's not hereditary. (How could it be?)
You can't change it any more than you can change the colour of your skin.