There is something deeply wrong with the two largest democracies of the world.
Since his inauguration, President Donald Trump has shown that he intends to continue with his rhetoric that he showed during the election campaign -the US’s “war on Islam”, the great wall between the neighbors and sending back “unwanted immigrants”. Now being all the more powerful, he has converted those expressions into actions by signing few presidential orders. His war on Islam has had its repercussions. Lawmakers in England are not willing to let Trump make an official visit. Americans are getting more vocal and showing resentment on the decisions that Donald Trump makes. Hate crimes in the United States on visible minority have been on the rise. The attacks have increased as a handful of Americans have begun to follow Donald Trump’s vision, and consider themselves to be responsible to make that vision a reality. Donald Trump simply views and hence propagates Islam as the cause for radicalism, extremism and terrorism. He continues to project himself as an ignorant and arrogant leader without caring for the opinion of the Americans.
On the other side, yet another democracy has shown that the lack of good governance can leave a lasting impression. In India protest by students appear to be threatening the very fabric of the nation. Any voice that seems to be against the government is being treated as an “attack on the nation”; and the intolerant lots of the government namely in RSS- Hindu nationalist organization with a purported objective to uphold Hindu values and a conservative agenda, and the ABVP its students’ wing come out all guns blazing. Earlier, the fights were limited to TV debates, on the social networking sites, and now the fight is more of physical where some individuals have lost their lives too. It is one thing to oppose someone on ideological grounds, it is quite another to threaten them with violence as it happened last year with Kanhaiya Kumar and lately with Gurmehar Kaur. The police stood by while ABVP goons wreaked havoc on the campus of Ramjas College, this is now common practice in the face of hyper-patriots going on the rampage in various parts of the country. But a threat of rape cannot be taken lightly.
The situation in the two biggest democracies is precarious.
Yet another democracy seems to be taking some lessons from these two countries. A Muslim Member of Parlaiment, Iqra Khalid has moved a motion. M-103 is a non-binding motion introduced in Parliament. The motion urges the government to “condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination.” She may have put forth a sentiment that echos from the core of the heart of Canadians, but the motion doesn’t define “Islamophobia”. However, when she was asked by media in Ottawa, she defined it as “irrational hate of Muslims that leads to discrimination.” Considering all what is happening across United States, the motion appears to have an ability to nurse back to health the sentiments have been hurt within Canada. The hate speeches by President Donald Trump has not only affected the Muslims in United States, but other visibly minority communities too. Sikhs also have been attacked and abused in United States. Her critics say that there is a purposeful misuse of the word-Phobia. As per them, a phobia is generally defined as an “irrational or extreme” fear, not an “irrational hate.” Khalid’s definition immediately links hatred with discrimination, a connection that implies that one’s thoughts or feelings about another group or person, in and of themselves, are somehow discriminatory or inevitably lead to discrimination. If no action is taken, the definition of Phobia may soon have to be changed due to the situation in India and US. Nevertheless, protests have been witnessed for and against the motion outside the parliament, in Toronto too. Yes, there was one shooting incident in Quebec recently, but that should not be neglected and termed as an isolated case. While, the leadership in United States has put an embargo on seven courtiers that are predominately Muslim nations, Canada has accepted thousands of Muslim Syrian refugees and is set to accept more. The motion is designed to ask the government to “recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear” at a time when taxpayers are supporting thousands of Muslim refugees. M-103 needs to be modified to even address all other communities and religious discrimination of any kind. The desired intent should be to understand what is happening at the at the grassroots level and try to tackle the issues that affect Canada’s multiculturalism and diversity. While discussing the Bill, the Parliamentarians must recognize that Liberal democracies allow all communities to follow the tenets of faith. If M-103 only addresses the Muslim, it would be only amount to dividing the Canadians into and sub groups, rather than uniting us behind the liberal democratic ideals that have guided this country for the past 150 years. M-103 should be duly reviewed to extent is preview to avoid the situation becoming akin to the situation in United States, and in India.