Scream inside the voting booth today

Imlisanen Jamir

It’s Election Day finally!

 

A month long ordeal of uncertainty, hilarious campaign rhetoric, public cynicism; and most tragic of all violence in certain parts of the state, culminate in today’s event.

 

Someone wrote on social media two days before Election Day that given the current state of electoral politics in Nagaland, it is perhaps pertinent to question whether the democratic concept of elections can truly be implemented in an indigenous society like ours.

 

A good question that provides interesting spaces for debate and discussion. But similar to a lot of Naga histrionics, it remains at that.

 

Sadly, for the most part, rants and rhetoric remain the culmination of most of our social, economic and political outrages. And this editorial space is a perfect example of this dreary tendency of ours.

 

And whenever there is action, a lot of it is fuelled by short-sighted, testosterone fuelled fervour, which results in tragic consequences.

 

So perhaps elections really aren’t suited for us. But it’s a day before the polls for crying out loud.

 

Given that there isn’t enough time to develop an entirely new indigenous system to elect representatives in the next 10 hours before the paper goes to print; how about we use something that’s readily available—our enthusiastic penchant for rage.

 

Settle down though! No, don’t protest at the polling stations, or chant slogans or join hands and sing ‘we shall overcome.’ Instead make your vote on Tuesday a primal scream.

 

Go for it. There’s a lot to scream about.It’s always your duty to vote. But there’s more at stake this time.

 

Send a message about the ugliness oozing from our political set-up. From the negativity and baseness to the corrosiveness that has infected our democratic process—scream about that.

 

Shriek and yell against the seeds of fear and hate that have been sown in our communities—communities which are being shackled by endemic corruption.

 

Send a message today to those leaders who have been unable or unwilling to fix our tragic infrastructure. Send a message against corruption and a state culture that is both morally and financially bankrupting us to benefit elected officials and contributors, not citizens.

 

Most importantly, send a message — about negativity, about your anger at being shut out of your government, about your frustration regarding dishonesty and backroom deals, about your demand for transparency, fairness and freedom.

 

Enter the voting booth, and scream.

 

Comments can be sent to imlisanenjamir@gmail.com