In pursuit of our petty vested interests, spinning the truth and institutions bashing has become a norm. There are no institutions that have not been discredited or abused. From the Supreme court to the Armed forces, to the Media Houses to the Parliament. Each one has either been labeled as corrupt or bashed for pursuing their agendas.
The irony has been that in case any decision comes in favor of someone or some group then everything is right but if the same court decides against it, then all hell breaks loose, and everyone is labeled corrupt or someone who has sold his soul. The rant starts to scandalize the situation and the institution.
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Can we trust Pakistan’s institutions and politicians?
This practice was initiated by parliamentarians who have been finger-pointing against one another since the beginning. Their mudslinging has ensured that all politicians are now known to be corrupt and immoral. So much so they have been able to make sure the word “politician” has become derogatory and indecent.
The same unbridled bashing is now towards all the major institutions, some are instigated by self-righteous social media journalists and some of this is driven by professional politicians to build their narrative and put all the blame on institutes. In many cases, the full information is not passed on to the audiences and only self-serving tales are spun to build sympathy or animosity. Different tactics are used to deceit the common people and facts never come to the surface.
While they are playing their little games, they forget they are disillusioning the youth. There remains no faith in them about any law, rights, or justice. The youth of the upper and middle class with every passing day has decided to leave the country as every institute is corrupt and there prevails no merit. This results in brain drain as capable and competent youngsters are taking immigration in the west. The talent flies away and mediocrity remains back in the country. While the lower class perceives that the only way to get justice is taking law into their own hands.
The calm that religion used to bring to society is now becoming an explosive volcanic divide in the name of different sects. It appears that everyone is working for the ‘what’s in it for me’ formula. The rat race to create social media followers has surpassed every morality, ethics, and principle. It no longer matters to create sensationalism or melodrama based on lies to have more “likes or views”.
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Are we becoming increasingly polarized as a society?
It is sad to see even the mainstream media coverage of positive and encouraging stories is far lesser than the negative or discouraging stories. There is a very low percentage of stories that talk about success stories or the good any institute has done. The general answer one gets is that negative stories are more sellable. The analytical solution-oriented researched pieces are far and few. The papers are full of generalized biased opinions or writings.
If this trend continues, society will become more and more polarized and no institutions or its officer will be respected or feared. The lawlessness in society will rise and the differentiation between truth and evil will fade away.
At the same time, it is the responsibility of all the jurists, bureaucrats, journalists, and armed officers to have dignified conduct. There should be a complete check and balance in all the organizations and officers whose conduct is not appropriate must be held accountable and they should be taken to task publicly.
Similarly, the defamation law should be tightened and must be used with an iron hand to punish culprits who allege without any evidence. Social media and vlogger defamation should also be appropriately penalized.
While we all have a right to criticize. Our criticism or opinion must be based on facts and should cover all facets of the topic. It is important to understand that before targeted institute bashing, all of us should keep the bigger picture in mind of not shatter the faith of the youth.
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Moied Javeed is a senior telecom executive in Pakistan and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.