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Forgotten Compassion Story Of A Black Folk & A Wild Beast

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23rd-Jun-2020       
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Shah Muhammad Shirajis Shadik :
Two catchphrases are suing the attention worldwide at the moment as "I can't breathe" and "Knee on my neck". A black man, named George Floyd, suffocated to death in the American street having his neck under the knee of a white policeman blocking his breath. A similar hatred story was well depicted in the movie "Queen& Slim" which was a Hollywood Blockbuster released in 2019, just a few months before this incident took place. While enjoying the movie, perhaps the viewer did wonder that is this the real scenario that's still relevant to this 21st century's America! But this event has come to all of us as an empirical evidence of those stories.
In the funeral the deceased held in Fiery Memorial of Minneapolis, Al Sharpton Jr., who is an American civil rights activist, black in color, repeatedly commended the demise with a heavy voice uttering that "this is the common story of the black American folks old enough of 401 years" and the white should finally "get their knees off our necks". Barack Obama, the preceding American president expressed his grief on the occasion accusing the justice system of America as "Criminal" that always behaves maddeningly bigotry to the blacks. Those remarks prove that "Uncle Tom's Cabin" is yet a usual chamber in America and there are millions of Uncle Toms walking in the American streets right now. Is it only white-vanity, all of those are befalling for? Or any material share of dividend are causing all these incidents? The answers will be tried to be deducted and correlated with another ruthless story.
An innocent elephant was stuffed with detonated pineapples and thus killed in the Indian state of Kerala with wanton brutality. The animal, having a deep dark agony in its body and mind, surrendered to death waiting days after days in a watery lake till the last tick to come. Public furor did grow worldwide after the autopsy report revealed that it was a kill with a food bomb.
Having a population with almost a cent percent literacy rate, that state has previous scores for killing animals with wanton cruelty on wild beasts to protect their harvests. Elephants are always a beast that is courteous, formidable, and largely useful to human beings but they wander on landscapes nowadays for shrinking feeding grounds. India has roughly 30 thousands wild elephants. But if they were so harmful to those inhabitants, they could have asked for the government's help earlier! But how could the human be so cruel to it? Where does human compassion live nowadays?
In both the stories humans neither did express any compassion for the neighboring humans nor for the animals. The old lessons of being kind and nonviolent to others remain the same old myth leaving spaces for vanity-ghosts. Dominating and enslaving others, through consular or violent channels ever remains the same and in cases, it has horrible upsurges. Mahatma Gandhi's empathetic dogma of "Non-Violence" are proving to be feeble in his own soil either for the animals or for the minority Muslim communities. Again, the racial belief of white supremacy is still more rampant than we assume it from our esteemed social lenses. Why the racial injustice on "niggers" are still so longwinded? The question claims to be addressed.
"Nigger" is a racist slur for the Black people either in America or elsewhere. The term was first used in Colonial America in 1619, by slave trader John Rolfe, and the ever prevailing provocative use of it in literature and movies are further promoting its despotic approach. Sociologists believe that race is a product of "History" in-group levels and Sociologists Herbert Blumer detects Race Relations as "a collective process by which a racial group comes to define or redefine another racial group". Again George Frederickson concluded the relationship as "not so much of a fixed pattern" with less gravity. But it's sad but truth that there are academic evidences that some of the American states, like California, do only want to have White Population in their territory.
Let us go back to the quote of the former nigger president of America which pointed out of having a "criminal justice system in the USA". The US Justice Systems, composed of Law Enforcement Agencies, Courts, and Detaining Authorities are believed to be systematically racist over the centuries. The psychological profiling of the police while recruiting and training them, have footsteps of being run with secret agenda to make themselves think master over the Blacks and the philosophy that's subtly being strapped in the debutants is "Blacks are more criminal-minded". Again, a study published in USA Today on June 9, 2020, shows that in Minneapolis "the police use force against black people seven times more frequently than they do against whites". This data further uncovered the system's true stand.
Although there were series of promises that the police department of the USA will be reformed after plenty of such episodes, nothing was done in the end leaving the hollow abysmal. The current president Donald Trump yet praises the heavily financed police department partially dismissing the presence of such unjust systems, saying that 99.9% of them are "great, great people" and "There won't be dismantling of our police," as New York Times reported on June 8, 2020. Through his controversial tweets and speeches, questions arise that whether he is further contributing to apartheid or not.
It's more a matter of vanity, supremacy, and long engraved-revulsion than any dispute of dividends. In the soil of Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr. Barack Obama and so on, the xenophobic-ghost still does dwell in with heavy health. The civil war lessons are all forgotten including the great speech that told "All men are created equal" by the great president Abraham Lincoln in Gettysburg.
But was the kill of the beast was for vanity as well? No, Not really. But both of it are connected in the same string, the same inhumane ego of no compassion. Although cruelty on animals is nothing new. Queen Victoria's Britain turned a club into a "Royal Society" in the year 1640 which was instituted in the name of "Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals". Cruelty on cattle, pigs, etc. have historical roots worldwide. But it's unlikely to be present in a time when Children both in the USA and in Kerala are taught to have compassion for wildlife and animals in their schools. And in fact, kids do show more compassion and empathy than of us, the matured man or woman. Science has dispersed the differences between a black man and a white man presenting that they both stand on parallel genetic and organic structure, with analogous mental and physical recitals, etc. Animals deserve to have their life in the nature for their inordinate roles in the ecosystems. So, let the slogan be "Black lives matter!" and let the slogan be "Save animals, save humanity!".
(Shirajis Shadik is a lecturer in Public Administration at the University of Barishal and a Social Researcher. Email: shirajisshadik@gmail.com)

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