All that is ‘foreign’, is not gold …
Written by: Omair Alavi
Angrez chalay to gaye, baqyat chor gaye… meaning that the English may have left, but they left behind those who copy them or impersonate them in order to pass as ‘different’. That’s what people in this part of the world think is the shortest way to emerge as the elite, but they are wrong for many reasons. First, they are not looked out as elites but looked down as outsiders. Secondly, by doing so they tend to forget that they are Pakistanis, and not everything that’s green, is bad!
For those living abroad, Pakistan is not just a country but an identity. Eating food that reminds one of home, meeting folks who have just returned from the land of pure or even watching something on TV from Pakistan makes them nostalgic. But back home, most of us don’t realize what we were going through because we were born in a country that was already free, unlike our ancestors. They had to fight for freedom, they had to endure hardships and they managed to carve a better future for us, and we should respect that.
Loving Pakistan is more like loving a relation or a friend. We must, at all costs, think rationally and even if our countrymen treat us like dirt, we should not be angry at the mother, right? That’s why we should not quit using things made in Pakistan just because a handful of people don’t adhere to our quality standard. If the ice cream we ate at a nearby ice cream parlour was not upto our standard, we should not label all ice cream parlours below par, just like we will not like a person because his or her friend was a bully!
It is really shocking to see that Karachi has more fans of English football club Chelsea than there are in Chelsea itself! Similarly, people in US don’t give the importance to their TV shows that people in Pakistan give, making us impersonators of the highest degree. Some blame satellite TV for this domination of the West but I don’t, because I know that we can do away with this West-loving, if we want. We buy anything Pakistani that we need but don’t let others do, because we think they might not like it. We also don’t talk about the Pakistani stuff we use, as we think it might damage our standing, socially.
For what it’s worth, I must say that I love my country. I am also indebted to my ancestors for making this free country a possibility for us in which we can do anything we like. We might not be in the position to give this great land of ours what it needs but by being Pakistani and by supporting (read buying) whatever is produced locally, we can try to pay homage to the motherland. Imported stuff might be better in quality, locally produced stuff might not be upto our standard but not all products are like that. We can search for them and select the one that suits us, just like we do when we search for stuff that’s foreign, right?