A Collective Attitude


Witoubou Newmai


As we know, daunting circumstances which are already huge challenges for our society have become even more challenging today. Various reasons have contributed to this. One has been the collective attitude of our society that does not reflect well on the issue based campaigns the civil society is engaging with.


Very often, our movements against issues appear more to do with the physical aspects while the ‘heart and soul’ participation is missing. And thus, the collective attitude of our society fails to co-ordinate well with the physical aspects of the peoples’ movements. This is one reason why campaigns often die in want of impetus for continuity or sustenance. This trend prompts the question whether our campaigns are driven by urges other than moral.


To cite a case, there have been talks of corruption with ‘abhorrence’ for a long time now. And yet, the level of corruption continues to shoot up. We have reason to be depressed about the manifest lack of co-ordination between the collective attitude and the campaigns. In other words, the collective attitude of the society and its ‘physical’ campaigns/movements are made to confine in two sequestered realms. Our collective societal morality seems to no longer be in a position to take on issues confronting the society.


As our society continues to campaign against, or talk about, corruption with seeming abhorrence, auras and hypes are fortified around recalcitrant and corrupt elements. There is no sign that better shows our hypocrisy. This, perhaps, exploits our moral landscape to the extent that corrupt practices are seen as normal things.


Let us also take a case of campaigns against human rights violations. As commented earlier in this column, our campaigns against human rights violations are akin to treating the sores rather than choosing to treat the disease that caused the sores.


After every incident of atrocity committed by security forces, people see the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) as ‘black’, but in no time do things go back to a usual state of affairs until the next case of human rights violation when the Act is again seen as ‘black’.


We may want to note that when any campaign finds it hard to bring about a conclusive answer to vexed issues, the people behind such a movement are overwhelmed by lethargy. To our society, as it appears, yesterday’s campaign is a shibboleth today.


Not only the cases of campaigns against corruption and human rights violation, whether on issues of environment, drinking water, malaria, dengue, HIV/AIDS or any other issues, our society is a seasonal bird. This trend of our society is an oddly discussed topic.


As for remedial measures, lectures and public discourses on why campaigns seldom sustain in our society need to be encouraged. Dissecting this area would mean embalming the weak joints so as to find better co-ordination between the collective attitude and ‘physical’ campaigns/movements of our society.