I realized I am a Racist!

racist glasses

I write this post with trepidation as I confess to the fact I realized quite recently; that I may perhaps be a racist. I may sound flippant or a trifle impetuous in the manner in which I share this.

But the very nature by which this thought surfaced recently during one of the many nonsensical conversations that keep us entertained at times; was as shocking as the topic itself. I feel a sense of shame not by this realization itself. The very fact that racism still casts a definitive dark shadow in our minds even if not as prevalent.

Let me deal with the white elephant in the room. So going back to the innocent conversation, I realized I do not enjoy drinks that are dark or brown – Whiskey, Brandy, Rum, Coca Cola, Pepsi and such. But I like my colorless or white drinks – Vodka, Gin, White Wine, Sprite, 7-up.

Now this rare insight led to an unintended introspection – Am I subconsciously racist? Do I tend to avoid the beverages of color due to their taste or lack thereof or is there a more sinister reason? Am I being constantly exposed to excesses of xenophobia in the media? Or have we made this topic so sensitive, that even thinking about coloring agents could evoke a sense of guilt?

As you might have figured out by now, that I seem to have lot of time on my hands to introspect and come up with the “beverage color test for racism”. But then the final hours of a weekend accompanied by the spirits of the fairer variety do tend to bring out some profound moments of illumination. So here I was thinking – without any conclusion – about my obvious bias towards the white spirits. Finally, the Vino Blanc made my thoughts go blank and unsatisfied with my self-inquiry I decided to form them into words.

So here I am: confessing this shameful realization that needs further inquiry. Inquire I will as I have my next glass of wine and with courage – I may sip the darker red variety; a small step towards overcoming my prejudice of color.

Side note:
Derelict traditions, irrational superstitions and cumbersome customs have progressively given way to scientific inquests. Even the most rigid religions & patrons of faith have shown some form of malleability if not acceptance, of comportment most abhorred in the earlier days. But for some reason, even today racism holds an unwanted relevance in our lives. One of the many things that makes nature more beautiful, is its wide assortment of colors and hues. The most boring species on the planet are the humans with only a few colors to boast of – and we have issues with those too! I hope we humans are some day ‘color blind’ and embrace humans for the beauty we are.

P.S. I have always loved dark chocolate (80% cocoa or more) and it may be my soul food to recovery. I will accept it as my bitter medicine; so feel free to send them over.

Insane Writings

diagram1  These amazing writings are by a gentleman committed to the Cambridgeshire Asylum (now Fulbourn Hospital) located near Cambridge, England. He spent three years at the asylum for being in a melancholy mood.

The writings are included among other such writings by asylum patients compiled by G. Mackenzie Bacon, medical superintendent in his book.

diagram2These diagrammatic writings are on the two sides of the same paper ensuring he utilized every mm. of the page. There is no clear evidence if these writings were decrypted to make some sense of what he was trying to convey if at all.

It is a fascinating insight into the mind of perhaps a gifted but unrecognized talent, or just plain rambling horseshit, we may never know for sure.

Especially since the gentleman took his own life by drowning at a public spot. Does that say more about the society than him?

Bacon did come upon a letter this gentleman wrote to a medical man who tried to dissuade this type of writing. The excerpt of the letter is given below:

Dear Doctor, To write or not to write, that is the question. Whether tis nobler in the mind to follow the visit of the great ‘Fulbourn’ with ‘chronic melancholy’ expressions of regret (withheld when he was here) that, as the Fates would have it, we were so little prepared to receive him, and to evince my humble desire to do honour to his visit. My Fulbourn star, but an instant seen, like a meteor’s flash, a blank when gone. The dust of ages covering my little sanctum parlour room, the available drapery to greet the Doctor, stowed away through the midst of the regenerating (water and scrubbing – cleanliness next to godliness, political and spiritual) cleansing of a little world. The Great Physician walked, bedimmed by the ‘dark ages’ the long passage of Western Enterprise, leading to the curvatures of rising Eastern morn. The rounded configuration of Lunar (tics) garden’s lives an o’ershadowment on Britannia’s vortex…

Aah! Bless Creative Imagination!

For more such writings and analysis by Bacon you can read a free online copy here: On the Writing of the Insane (1870)

Source: The Public Domain Review

Flog the Rapist!

flog the rapist A question begs to be asked in the light of the increasingly shame-filled incidents of unchecked rapes in the country.

‘Will public flogging make an effective difference to the growing & seemingly unchecked menace of wanton rapists in the capital and other parts of the country?’

These crimes hurt every citizen of this country, as well as the way the world sees us, causing us to hang our heads in shame. Unfortunately the growing rhetoric in favour of capital punishment for rapists does not seem to serve as a deterrent, as evidence suggests otherwise. The steady rise in violent crimes which comes under the purview of IPC Section 302 (death by hanging) seems to suggest perhaps the death penalty may not be the ideal solution at hand.

Interestingly, there are a number of cases where rapists have been sentenced to incarceration with no effect. In fact quite a few convicts have come out on parole to repeat the offense for which they were incarcerated in the first place. So how is incarceration rehabilitating the barbaric mentality of the rapist?

Sentencing a rapist to life imprisonment without parole may seem like a solution; but it I feel that it provides them a way to hide in anonymity having done the dastardly deeds. Rapists are taken to court with their faces covered by black cloth, of course this is to ensure that the falsely accused does not face social stigma if acquitted. But then once a rapist is convicted (which tends to take time in the judicial process) the media has lost much interest and they hardly find their heinous faces publicized to shame. Even when such convicts get parole they simply merge back into the society and those who have served their term may move to another part of the country to regain the cloak of anonymity.

In the US, the law demands that a person convicted of child sex offender & released back into society has to declare his presence when he moves into a neighbourhood.  But do we have any mechanism to monitor such predators or “in-human” species to perhaps warn society in case of a relapse? Why should rapists be provided this dignity of staying anonymous when the victims who have lost much more, do not enjoy this basic right?

Human Right Activists might proclaim the whole idea of jail-time is rehabilitation. But then our jail systems are unfortunately not set-up to be a place of rehabilitation. Meanwhile, rapists are “integrated” back into the society having graduated to commit their sins with newly acquired professional skills that allow them to find loopholes or get away with impunity.

This author believes that if a convicted rapist can be publicly flogged and repeat offenders are branded as ‘Rapist’ on a visible part of the body, it might prove to be a better deterrent. With prisons overflowing and the wait list to the green mile is increasingly longer, flogging & corporal branding could perhaps be the social restraint we may be looking for? What do you think?