I have been witness to many movements and many campaigns that involve rights of those concerned. Human rights, animal rights, women’s rights, child rights, minority rights, prisoner’s rights, right to freedom, right to education, right to potable water, right to fight, right to eat, right to sleep, rights of the aged, rights of the marginalised, rights of refugees and war victims, rights of these and rights of those, rights of the left and rights of the right, etc,etc.
The list is endless. It is not my intention to mock those who are suffering and those whose rights have beendeprived but I at times wonderwhy the activists and concerned souls who are serving the deprived don’t want to delve into their own duties and the duties & responsibilities of those whoserights they seem to support, uphold and protect.
For after all, rights and duties are the two sides of the same coin, just as remembering and forgetting are The problem has assumed such epic proportions in the West that parents are even scared to punish their own children for fear of invoking the wrath of the child rights activists who seem to forget that in the long run a certain amount of discipline is good forthe children whose rights they appear to support and vouch for. I therefore presume they have never heard of the saying “spare the rod and spoil the child”.
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The lack of discipline, respect and values may all be attributed to this forgetfulness of duties. I am completely in favour of animal rights and protecting the natural environment of animals but let me tell you about a champion of the environment and animal rights whom I had the misfortune of meeting during my sojourn in Chennai. The person in question is an illustrious personality with undisputable credentials but if you were ever to walk into the office of the aforementioned you will find that the way the staff there are treated is worse than the way animal haters would treat an animal.
This person has completely forgotten that it is not only ourduty to protect animals but it isalso our duty not to treat humans like animals. Not only do we have to take care of theenvironment at large but we should also realize that we should provide an ideal environment for our subordinates to work, grow and flourish. I’m not talking merely of the physical environment but also of the environment wherein the individual employee is treated humanely so that he or she realizes that it is their duty to work harder and serve better.
I am also a firm believer in the right of children to good and quality education but I do believe that it is also the duty of these children who are provided this quality educationto treat their teachers, parents and the general publicwith respect and love. I believe in the rights of the aged but I cannot simply acceptor forgive those aged who during their better and younger days failed to fulfill their duties as a parent and therefore do not obtain the love or respect of their children who then disown them and abandon them to their ownends.
I believe in the rights of war victims and refugees but I alsobelieve that it is the duty of such victims and refugees to ensure that they respect their aggressors and also respect the laws of the host country that provided refuge rather than turning into a fifth column within the host country. I believe in the right of all to uninterrupted supply of potable water but I also believe that it is the duty of allto ensure that they do not pollute the water source and damage the water table. I believe in the rights of minorities but I also believe that it is the duty of the said minorities to treat their majority brethren with love and respect.
I believe in my right to believe in a lot of things but also believe that it is my duty to fulfill a lot of responsibilities. Therefore my dear friends may I beseech each and everyone of you who may chance upon this post to obtain and enjoy your rights with a senseof duty and responsibility for as I mentioned earlier rights and duties are two sides of the same coin. If only each one of us were to enjoy our rights with a sense of responsibility and duty, the world would certainly be a better place to live in.
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