Tuesday, July 27, 2010

It is about power...justice, I mean.

Power is critical in the quest for justice. Yet, power in itself is no virtue. It can be an instrument of oppression, where justice are denied. It can also be a tool to liberate.

I've come to realise that the passion for justice, the adoration of justice, the affirmation that justice is right is not enough. These notions might even be opium to the masses. Of course, we would all affirm the need for a world that is devoid of pain, oppression and violence, a world of justice, but there has to be more. We also need power to make it happen, to make it a living reality, not mere words.

Many a activist for justice would affirm, in the trenches, that the powerfull never give away power. Power-sharing does not follow from an altruism or a deep sense of pity for the wretched of the earth. The commitment to justice assumes a contest over power. It asumes a struggle for power. Often, I hear people wailing about powerstruggles in a particular setting. These complaints often are as a result either of a naive analysis of reality, or of a deliberate denial of reality. Those in power are of course, confortable with naivety and would encourage denial. They would even create a mirage of power and would frantically deny their own collusion in the centralisation of power. I often hear how powerful people use words and phrases as they strive to protect their positions. The alternative is not to play into these delusions, but to see through the fog of propaganda and to push for more power. That is how we come closer to the lofty ideal of justice.
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