- Posted October 1, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The written word: Your personal essays
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Whichever way you slice it, for a Pakistani American Muslim, good news in recent times has been a scarce commodity and depending on the level of optimism on any given day, the current situation is suboptimal at best and in a state of rampant chaos at the worse.
With almost daily bombings and targeted killings, Pakistan of today is in a self combust mode and no ones envy. To be in a position where no news becomes the best news coming out of the place, probably most accurately describes the current state of affairs.
Waking up to a government shutdown, America is more polarized than ever before. The only thing we the Americans of today unite behind is “Nothing”, even for our own sake, even if our life depended on it, economy, gun control and health care reform being stark examples. The word on the street is that the America of yesteryears and its ideals, which brought many to these shores, are on the fade, slowly and surely.
The Muslim world is in a league of its own. No other clan, sect or religion, is more divided, more disjointed, in more disarray than we the Muslims. Pretentious of the once upon a time glory, killing and infighting with no end in sight and blaming everyone else but us for our misfortune is the new norm. At times, we seem to belong to a planet of our own, the Lalaland.
Enough of the spoiler side of me and now for the optimist in me, I challenged myself to one word unifying theme and solution to these issues. At the risk of oversimplification, my word is “Intolerance”. The entitlement to being right, my way or the highway approach and the resultant lack of tolerance seem to me the core issue. The next question I asked myself is if I am as tolerant as I expect a Pakistani, an American or a Muslim to be or become. For I can critique all I want but where is the change going to come if not from within myself, for nothing will change unless I become part of that change, for nothing will change unless I change.
The author is a Pakistani American Cardiologist living in Wisconsin, USA. He blogs at www.arifahmadmd.blogspot.com