Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Philosophy of 'Rights'

The definition of right and wrong depends upon the perceptions of the perceiver. Why otherwise we would be faced with undesirable incidents that have a massive negative impact on the mass? This forces us to ponder if there is a mass defect in the thinking of the executors of these acts, as well as in that of the incubators of these executors. After all nobody commits oneself to an act without thinking it to be the right one, under the circumstance…the only difference being the fact that they look through the window of their circumstance. Hence they do what they think is right, irrespective of the wrongs it causes. If only they took the time to feel and not think what is right and hence should be their course of action, we would have a scenario which would be hailed as good by all…and not only by them.

The time is ripe when we started doing things because it felt right…and not simply because it is our right, the ‘rights’ that we have been accorded with, courtesy The Constitution of the country. Merely going by them have constituted what, is for everyone to see. 

Using our ‘right to vote’ we vote, and elect our representatives to the Parliament (and Legislative Assembly). But
(i) Do we vote for the ‘right’ person?
(ii) Do we have the option of ‘choosing’ the ‘right’ person?
(iii) Do we vote, simply because it is our ‘right’?
(iv) Do we vote because doing otherwise would label us irresponsible?

Well, I had written a blog on these lines: “Right of Right”,  and I had received flak from a few of the readers...and support too, from some. That is quite natural as each one of us has again, “freedom of speech, the right to expression”. So as I use mine freely, free are others too.

Criticisms are immaterial but not the importance of these questions, which lies in the very fact that it is these people—whom we elect—who act as the incubators of executors; either by ignoring their acts or by justifying their own inefficiency with excuses galore. And this sends out very wrong signals as far as their intentions and sincerity are concerned.

But then we too cannot sit back and keep leveling criticisms at those incubators. Are we not responsible as well, by choosing to use our ‘right to vote’, just because it falls in the purview of our ‘rights’ and thus ‘we need to vote’? Hence it was perplexing to note that few have gone ahead and claimed that failing to vote be labeled as an act of crime. What label they have for those acts of voting that elect criminals?

Well as far as needing to vote is concerned, we do not need to do anything other than be true to our own selves and act in accordance. When we are, we are so to all as well.

It is good to find that now the consciousness is dawning collectively on the mass to utilize this ‘right’, in the right manner. The suggestion forwarded through my blog gets corroboration in an article in The Sunday, Times of India, dated July 17, 2011, in their “Times Life” segment.

The suggestion was and is simple. And it would enable all to make use of the Rule 49-O of the Indian Constitution, whereby one votes, but registers a ‘no-vote’, a protest vote, when one is either deluded with the system or one does not have the option of choosing the ‘right’ person; in absence of such a candidate. A simple incorporation of a “NONE OF THE ABOVE” option in the EVM would serve the purpose. When so many names can be accommodated in the EVM, why cannot another one be?

This single incorporation would herald a fresh introduction to the ‘right to vote’. Simply executing the ‘Philosophy of Rights’ will not allow us to be in the ‘right’. ‘Rights’ turn out to be ‘right’ only when they create the right outcome. ‘Rights’ underused, misused and abused lead to the ‘Wrongs’.

Sushmita Mukherjee,
July 18, 2011