Why??!!

Messages to my dear friend, Monica, as we share our experiences of being a mother, the things we learn from our little girls, everyday and the lessons we learn from life itself.
A Blog-dialogue across continents, countries and oceans of time and space...
(We last met in 2000 A.D, in India.)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Simon says...

I have always felt that one of the biggest weaknesses of being a human is that, often, one feels compelled to given in and follow the 'herd'... Whether out of fear of standing out, or from being unsure of oneself, too many times, too many people give in to this urge. Last year London reeled from the effects and losses of the most reprehensible and vilest of acts committed by so-called 'civilized' people, namely the looting and trashing of businesses, public property and personal belongings. At the time, I thought of times of unrest in India and the subsequent public outrage- evident in images of horrifying attacks, burnings buses, raided stocks, pillaged shops, and hurt humans when the 'masses' gave vent to their mindless outburst and 'protested' some government stand, or another such unfortunate event...

 Yesterday, in the unlikeliest of settings, I saw one of the most glaring examples of this behavioural trait.It was a gloriously sunny day, so I took the children to the park, and watched them frolic, and try out the rides, sharing, playing, chasing other kids around... On and off, they called on me to help them on the merry-go-round or onto a swing and I did, returning to my favourite activity- watching them play! As they weaved in and out on their mechanical scooters, my attention was claimed by a group of nine-ten year olds, playing that popular nursery school game, "Simon says".

There were a few girls and a couple of boys, and the game was going predictably enough, with 'simon' saying "...spin around" and "roll your shoulders"...the group complied, and there were no surprises there. Then, 'Simon" decided to throw in a moral twist into the plot, telling the group, "Simon says....push Elijah", The whole group set upon the one named Elijah, pushing him onto the tarmac, and laughed at his surprised outrage. Simon, then, said "Simon says... kick Elijah" At this point, to be totally honest, a big part of me was all for breaking up this nasty 'game' , but I was held back. Was it he kids' age or the fact that one of the group's parent stood nearby, all eyes and attention, looking after a toddler and also gazing at the group of 'simons', playing nearby. I watched from a distance, uncomfortable and torn-in-two... ready to break up the 'party' come what may, if it went beyond a point...About two years ago, I had broken up just such a group, when they had cornered a five year old...I had realised then, that a group of kids, when they stand against one child, can be ruthless and unforgiving... At the time, an older sibling had taken a cue from me and made them see sense. I had heaved a sigh and turned to my children...

Thankfully, the group broke up, fighting amongst themselves long before the need arose for me to intervene. I was left feeling sad for the loss of an innocent childhood, witnessing an age when youngsters think nothing of pulverizing one of their numbers in the name of a dare, of looting and trashing others' belongings, destroying their lives and defying the Law confident that their 'human-rights' will be stronger than their lawless disregard of authority and judgement, no matter how horribly they trample the 'human rights' of others... Of how we, inadvertently, breed, raise and allow this violence of mind and body...

My heart was struck cold by the playground antics, wondering if, someday, my own child would be a victim of this apathetic hatred and indifference. A cold wave washed over me and I decided to speak to someone about this...soon. Memo to self: Talk...Ask...Scream Out Loud...STOPIT!