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We Are All Innocent, Nobody Is Guilty!

This article was first published by Pratap Antony in the on 20th November, 2015
You can read more of Pratap Antony's diverse writings at Pratap Antony: Passive activist/Active pacifist writer on ecology and environment, compassion and humanity, dogs, social justice, music and dance - Management Ideas and Issues -

It is amazing how we take sides in a conflict between politicians and people of conscience!
A greater number of people believe politicians and take their side. A smaller number empathise with people of conscience. This dichotomy of views is unfathomable when it seems so obvious whose words to trust and believe.
What’s even more amazing is when people who know each other well for years, argue, and take umbrage at criticism of the political party for whom they have cast their vote, and fall out. It is as if their fondness for the political party supercedes friendship. Loyalty to a political party, however abstract it is, appears to be paramount, and takes precedence over a friendship built over years.
This loyalty to politicians and political parties is inexplicable. We all have our reasons to believe what we believe, and some of us love politicians, while others tolerate politicians as a necessary evil. So we have to understand that everyone has a right to our beliefs - and no one is guilty. Everyone is innocent. Politicians are innocent, and so are we, the people who take their word.
We all understand what politicians really are. We have all experienced being betrayed, lied to and cheated. We have all heard politicians’ promises that have not been kept. Politicians handle peoples’ (our) mandate by falling in love with themselves (we have all seen how overbearing they become). They then use their cunning, craftiness and deceit to obtain greater power, money and influence to themselves.
Yet, politicians belonging to all political parties all over the world are innocent, because they are by-and-large, bereft of moral standards, and so, are not liable, or accountable to moral judgements.
Politicians are innocent because they do not have a coherent thought, or idea of what is right and wrong, or, a conception of what is human dignity. They apparently have no sense of direction or a moral compass to envision a just society.
Politicians are innocent because they are amoral.
Most politicians cannot be accused of being intellectual, or for that matter being well-read; or having a broad vision. They are innocent of an open mind, broad-based knowledge, or wisdom.
To politicians, winning an election is the ultimate goal. In their view, electoral victory is a validation of peoples ‘love’ for them, and so, becomes a ‘permit’ for politicians to act in ways that appear to have the people’s approval, but to thinkers, the acts they indulge in are unconscionable, immoral and painfully unprincipled.
In general, politicians do not have to be learned or knowledgeable to be elected. They only have to appear to be so.
Politicians do not have to be wise, intelligent, or have a conscience to be elected. They only have to be cunning, shrewd and opportunistic.
Politicians do not need to be farsighted or have a vision for the nation to be elected. They only need to make empty promises in a believable manner. And often, even an elected ‘prime’ leader of ministers cannot plead guilty to possessing sagacity, learning or vision, nor, plead guilty, to having the depth of knowledge, or width of intellect to minister to the nation.
Winning elections do not make politicians clever. It only makes them clever politicians!
Of course there are exceptions to every rule, and there are some politicians who do mean what they say and try to serve their electorate honestly. There are politicians who are well endowed intellectually and have a grounding in morality and ethics. These sincere politicians, though small in number, occur infrequently across all parties, in all countries in the world. And we are thankful to them for honestly serving the people.
Trouble is, it takes time, if ever it does, for everyone of us, ‘we the people’, to realise that a politicians’ low cunning is not high intelligence. This is because we are all innocent.
We, the people, are not guilty. Because we do not see how the authorities use craftiness, verbal trickery and self righteous indignation to sway the common people.
We, the people, are innocent, because we do not, or cannot see justice being subverted by the elected government, or, the politicians acting out of their callous disregard for all but themselves; we do not see how authorities abuse their office and their official positions to stoke their naked greed for power, which they wield without an iota of conscience about how it affects the lives of others..., us, the common people.
We, the people, are innocent, so we do not see how politicians vilify, condemn, denigrate and conduct an intensive, systematic witch-hunt directed against thinkers and conscientious objectors: the intellectuals, dissidents and truth-seekers; people of principle and knowledge, who voice intelligent dissent, and who engage with the authorities, oppose wrongful acts and take a moral and principled stand.
We are innocent. Because we prefer to listen to and believe the politician rather than the intellectuals. We prefer to believe politicians empty talk, over eminent artists, filmakers, painters, photographers performers, writers, historians, scientists and environmentalists.
We are innocent because we cannot tell the difference between dishonest rhetoric and honest dissent.
We are innocent. Because we are swayed by the words of politicians, because politicians are practised in making speeches and influencing people. It is their profession!
Human rights activists, and social justice activists, civil liberties and civil rights activists who have a different, more holistic and kinder view of what’s right and what’s wrong are targetted and framed by politicians who attempt to destroy their credibility, slander them, dehumanise them, jail them and kill them, while they pervert and distort the truth and lead the common man astray.
It is logical therefore for us to stand beside conscientious objectors, writers, artists, environmentalists, voluntary and non-profit social service organisations who stand up for peaceful co-existence, while seeking justice, harmony and liberty for all to whom these freedoms are denied, and exercise our freedom of conscience - peacefully, responsibly, humbly and conscientiously.