BANGALORE, India, 5 January 2018
There was a time when accusation of discordance, unity-destroyer, is limited to covert Taiwan fund receiver and Dogyal association. But nowadays, everybody seems a discord-sower (སྤྱི་ཚོགས་དཀྲུགས་མཁན་ ), in some way. Discordancy, disunity-creator, is the most popular accusation, the most prevailing practice in the exile Tibetan community nowadays, which perhaps works even more effectively than “Paracetamol” and “A”- KaNaktok (in playing card), in indicting and silencing any political opponents who may disagree with one’s own version of truth and opinion.
Nowadays, you agree with something: you become a discord-sower, a wolf who creates disunity among Tibetans! You disagree with something: again you become a discord-sower, a rat who creates social disharmony! Post a comment in Facebook, in support or against the content, PT, LS, Lukar Jam. whatever, you attract an instant anti-nation accusation, quicker than two minute Maggi noodle, of being a deadly unity-destroyer python, or a China-pleaser dog, leaving both animals in shock as to how they incarnated in human form so quickly! There is no chance of escape, and it’s very difficult to exonerate oneself if once indicted.
Everybody is armed with this powerful charge nowadays, off-line or online, ready to slap against whoever disagrees with their version of truth, sometime in His Holiness’ name and sometime in Lam Uma’s, and so on; Rangzen, and even whole Tibet, sometime, carrying as a shield. The versions of truth to which everything has to conform is solely determined by personal like or dislike of your post readers, and not the universal truth governed by principles of justice. Therefore, there are innumerable varying truths on same subject floating in each head reading a post. Some time, even multiple truths runs within one head on same subject, depending on the fluctuation of opinion up and down from time to time. Consequently, leaves no chance of not violating some or other truth no matter how prudent you are. Anything that doesn’t appeal to the eyes of one’s own version of judgemental opinion, like or dislike, becomes a potential unity-destroying evil at first hand. It is the version of how one wants to see society look and how one wants society to run accordingly. Nothing to do with actual universal truth!
And who is not a unity-destroyer? No one! Except for His Holiness and Samdong Rinpoche, all are unity-destroyers in some way. You post a “Comment” or hit a “Like” in Facebook, you are already a deadly unity-destroying villain. difficult to overcome even by Bollywood’s best action hero, Akshey Kumar, and a China-pleaser dancing up till heavenly realms, better than angels.
His Holiness, Umey Lam, CTA, and Rangzen are some front shields employed as justifying tools to cover the actual personal interest behind and make the whole scene look like the condemnation is for social cause, and not out of personal dislike. A condemner skilfully redirects a post that they dislike to any of those aforementioned shields and links thereto by establishing a relationship invented by the condemner themself which explains how the post or comment runs against social interest, which actually serves their own interest.
Recently, I posted a comment in Facebook against a post, wherein ex-North America chief representative Penpa Tsering was honoured with a gratitude ceremony in USA, organised and hosted by several associations there, expressing my agreement with the event. There came a kickback attack instantly, minutes after, from a critic, angrily lashing out at me saying, “You dog, don’t create disunity in society and so forth …” I tried convincing him by putting forward my arguments and explanations, fallacious or logical. But no way, there was no chance at all; he wasn’t listening at all, leave alone convincing! And he went on …”you dog…dog …dog”. Someone, who seems sharing similar political view like mine, rushed to my defence all of a sudden from a side, and he lashed at him, at my critic, at once with “pig”, saying, “You pig shut up…don’t create disunity, and so on..”, almost the same charge I have been indicted with, but this time the role has been shifted to “pig”, not “dog”, as in my case before. He, my critic, went silent, and thanks to his good luck he didn’t show up again. Otherwise I was, next, readily armed with “rat”, the most common in my room, to slap at him, having learnt that animal metaphors work better than any resonated argument for countering political opponents.
All these animals — dog, pig, wolf, rat — are super busy in Facebook nowadays, engaged in some or other counter-arguments. Wolf and dog seem having highest demand among all, former for countering a leader and later for countering their loyal supporters.
But animals of higher status in their kingdom, like lion, elephant, tiger and peacock, are left alone. And they are severely discriminated against, as none of them has ever been considered recruiting for any metamorphic role for countering any disagreeing political argument on social media, predominantly Facebook.
All I am trying to say here is that demeaning a fellow Tibetan of our own blood on social media with all possible worst abusive language just because they hold a different or opposing political view is just self-insulting before the world on an open platform, and nothing! Holding a different or opposing political view doesn’t make someone a lesser Tibetan. For instance, a common thing that both PT and LS supporters share is that both are patriot Tibetans who love their nation dearly and proudly. A flat fact! Differences in ideologies and political standing are necessary for democracy, a good sign, without which it lose its essence. Then only the progress in thought and political education is possible through integrity, an another precious democratic value. Growing intolerance to different and opposing thoughts of others constitute bigotry which spoils the whole beauty and essence of democracy.
We must not forget that the world around us is watching us! Most of us have non-Tibetan friends in Facebook list, and commenting an abusive slander against a fellow Tibetan in connection with any political issue gets noticed by those non-Tibetan friends also. And some, if not all, may think that a lot of internal conflict and clashes exists within this small handful Tibetan exile community, despite having a greater cause to fight for unitedly. We can condemn, protest, disagree, debate. and discuss any socio-political issues, even bitterly also if required, but not slandering each other!
As citizens of an exile democratic government, but whose land is ruled by the world’s most tyrannical dictatorial regime, extra responsibility rests on our shoulders to show the world, especially to our host country, India, and western supporters, that we are politically competent and mature enough, and capable of playing a constructive role in bringing China into mainstream democratic world. For this, going in a civilised manner on social media is important.
An important essence of democracy is respecting and accepting the view of the majority. If something is the choice of the majority, a responsible and politically educated citizen must embrace and accept it respectfully, even if it is against his personal choice. That’s the beauty of democracy! That’s what makes democracy sacred and unique from rest! And we Tibetan are, I believe, exceptionally capable of upholding this value, Buddhism being an excellent background support.
Unless the intended recipient of your comment has committed a heinous inhumane crime like rape, murder, etc. which makes them deserving of such abusive denigrating language, we must always refrain from using such language if its just for different and opposing political views. This is important to uphold our own dignity on an open platform like Facebook, which is freely accessible to the rest of the world.
At the end the choice is ours, whether to go in a civilised manner on social media and treat fellow Tibetans respectfully while disagreeing, or continue showing world our abusive Mahabharata war of slapping each other’s pets, dog, pig, wolf, etc. on one another’s face while confronting any disagreeing zombies on social networks.
Or, is this my piece also a unity destroying rubbish which needs to be thrown away by slapping any pets, dog or pig?
But I prefer “Cat” to drive away rats out of my room!
About the author
Kunchok Gyatso, LLM, is a corporate lawyer working as an in-house legal counsel, based at Bangalore. He can be reached at [email protected]
More articles by Kunchok Gyatso on Tibet Sun.