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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Some questions about "occasional" outrages on social media


There in an  outrage going on, people expressing anger on the  the social media over Israel's brutal attack the people of Gaza.This should be helpful for Palestinian cause because it faces structural odds at international political arena due to powerful states interests allied with those of Israel. This directly influence the flow of information about Palestinian cause through the international media outlets. The reporting is highly distorted and skewed to paint a favorable image  or, when it become impossible to do it in the face out Israel's outrageous atrocities, to tone down the intensity of crime committed against Palestinian.

Its encouraging to see so many people raising their voice on the social media for this humanitarian cause. Social media provides a great place to make global networks for popular resistance against the State's tyranny. However, the question that troubles me a lot is that why over a hundred people need to die to make us feel really angry? Why so much carnage has to take place to shake our comforting views about the world around us? Palestinians are living under a constant military occupation. Their social, economic and political lives have been destroyed. Every second they live is a second lived in oppression and tyranny. Why is that only when violence becomes too visible, and perhaps too meaningless, destruction too momentous, and the images too brutal, that we all start protesting, and once the level of violence subsides, the flow of fresh images of maimed bodies stops, the recaps takes place of the headlines and the breaking news, the protest, the outrage stops, to start again, when the onslaught of next episodes of atrocities commence. Does life for Palestinian becomes "normal" between the episodes? Do the political structures and conditions which tyrannizes the civilian population become dismantled? This is just one example among so many. Is it that the atrocities against people have to be substantially large enough to turn the rest of us into mobilized political actors, propagandist and supporters of humanitarian cause?

I am hard pressed to understand the reasons behind this infrequent display of activism. Oppression is not episodic neither is the resistance against it. It may manifest itself in much horrific way at times but its always there, manifesting itself in one way or the other, its always there. Oppression does not follow from any external source, injures and then withers way. It comes from the very structural conditions that we live.
When the structures do not disappear, why does the resistance? If the resistance does disappear once the spectacular images of brutality and mass murder do, then, we really must question the fundamental motivation our resistance is based upon.

Are we the true soldiers who want to stand against ubiquitous injustice, oppression and degradation of human soul? Are we committed to challenge the modern ideas of capitalism, Statism, racism and nationalism, the greatest threats to humanity, and which are responsible for all sorts of violence that we see taking place in the world around. The troubles with the world never go into hibernation. Violence against the people, be it physical, social, economic or political keep unfolding against people everywhere and all the time. The contemporary society organized on capitalist mode of production is inherently violent in nature. The economy it configures does violence against all of us all the time. State, an institution to serve the interest of elite, against all of us, is always omnipresent  threatening our liberties. Israel is not a product of any pre-determined history of ecclesiastical nature to set the stage for the final battle between good and evil as both Jewish and Muslim extremist propagates. Its a product of modern forces of capitalism with certain unique historical features that outlines its formation. Just like Israel is always there doing violence against Palestinian so are other types of Israelis everywhere around the world doing violence against the rest of us.

What i unfortunately see on social media is an outrage not guided by any genuine sense of political purpose
but  rather some compulsive action to market the outrage to a  public who is interested in talking about this topic. The moment violence against Palestinian stop making the headline so  does the  outrage disappears.

One of the fundamental features of capitalist and consumerist society is that how well you can package yourself in the social  market. From social, rather than economic perspective, how much value you can create about yourself by entertaining people with the talks and ideas fashionable in the society.That is, how well you can commodify yourself, and exchange your personality in the society for all sorts of attention, praises and likes. 

 Such resistance is not committed for the liberation of humanity. It does not perceive resistance as a fundamental feature of human existence, just like Faiz says 

Thus always has the world grappled with tyranny
Neither their rituals nor our rebellion is new 

Such outrage and resistance, if it must be called so, is a not a genuine display of solidarity with the oppressed and anger against the oppressor, rather a momentary and impulsive actions inspired by the capitalist and consumerist values, self-marketing into occasional political selling spots  of issues and ideas, set up by the media and "abnormal" and spectacular outburst of  violence, not committed to the people, does not challenge the world and its contradictions, but only and only serve the self interest of retaining a level of social importance and relevance by talking what everyone seems to be talking about. 

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