N S Venkataraman

The incidents of  violence and shooting, resulting in loss of life and injuries to  number of people are now happening too frequently in USA.

The latest unrest was in Charlotte in North Carolina, where state of emergency had to be declared after second night of violent protests over the fatal police shooting of a black man. This was followed by shooting in a mall in Washington where four women were injured. The list of locations where violent incidents have taken place in US during the last few months include Baltimore, Milwaukee, Chicago, NewYork  and  Ferguson Missouri .

Such conditions  should make everyone realise that recent unrest and disturbances in USA which seem to be following a pattern,  cannot anymore be viewed as isolated incidents.

On the other hand, the discerning observers think that the causes are  serious and may be fundamental and can be ignored only at the cost of long term stability and  peace in USA.

Surprise  around the world :

Such frequent violent incidents , particularly those involving the blacks and whites, has justifiably caused considerable surprise and concern not only amongst Americans  but also amongst the millions of friends and admirers of USA around the world.

While USA is universally acknowledged as the mightiest country in the world today considering it’s industrial and technological advancement, military power and financial strength, the recent disturbing incidents in USA make one think that material affluence and scientific advancement can  not, by themselves ,  ensure peace and tranquility in any society.  Obviously, USA is now undergoing tremendous stress conditions of it’s own making.

What cause violence ?

Putting bluntly , the incidents of violence in USA are largely caused by the fact that section of people belonging to different segment of society   have developed suspicion and consequent dislike and hatred for one another,   which are inevitably leading to shootings and unrest.

Where are the people with sober thoughts ? 

What  is conspicuous in the present situation in USA is that  inspite of having excellent centres of learning and having the presence of  many intellectuals who can think dispassionately and provide lofty guidelines to the society, the sober voice of thinking men  are not heard at all. Where is the voice of people ,  who  have the credibility and wisdom to tell the US citizens that US civilization is now moving backwards, as hatred and disharmony are gaining focus and center place  in the society ?

What we hear in USA  today is only the voice of the politicians who are either in power or wanting to get into power and  who are not able to  think beyond their self interests.  They discuss about the disturbing events in USA which gain huge publicity , whatever may be the merits of their utterances and observations, giving an impression as if more sober people have no presence in   USA at all .

While one can blame the politicians and the media to some extent for the present climate of intolerance in USA , the fact also remains that  the people who are not part of the political and administrative system and who are concerned  and have intellectual claims are not asserting themselves adequately and strongly by expressing their voice and dispassionate views and suggestions , which must appear in public domain.

It is necessary to initiate proactive steps to remove the suspicions between the blacks and whites and reassure the blacks , so that they would desist  from violent reactions. At the same time, the whites also need to be counselled and they should understand the ground realities  in USA that  the blacks and whites have to necessarily live together in harmony for all time to come.

Why President Obama is unable to calm down the nation ?

Obviously, the outgoing President Obama,  has failed to conduct  himself like a  statesman ,  as he himself has made number of  counter productive observations  on a few occasions about the relation between the blacks and whites. His  recent speech asking the blacks in USA to vote for Hillary Clinton and his statement that otherwise he would feel let down has driven him to a position, where he cannot  receive the type of respect that an outgoing President should get.

An outgoing President of USA can be  really in a position  to discipline the violent elements in US  society by counselling patience and calling for wisdom. But, then, he  should  not  appear to be someone belonging to a particular political party or representing some section of the society alone.

It would have been very appropriate if President Obama has refrained from campaigning in the Presidential election, remaining as a neutral person and maintaining an image as statesman who can think above political gains.  He has not done this and therefore, USA cannot depend upon President Obama to calm down the nation at this time of unrest.

Voice of wisdom has to be heard

The voice of wisdom in USA has to be heard and the peace lovers and intellectuals with great integrity should come forward and provide sober note.

The media should  understand that it’s job is to provide responsible and constructive criticism and suggestions avoiding vituperative writings against one or the other that cause no good to USA.

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