Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The impotence of blogging

Dear readers,

I wonder what words on a website can really do. There are so many eloquent, well thought out blogs out there. Some might even spur you into action - like a powerfully shot movie, or a passionately written song. They might jerk the eye full of tears, move the heart and stir emotions. But what can a blog do, really?

In the end, just walking out of a powerful movie is enough to set your emotions back to square one. Walk out of the movie into the cold night air, grab a smoke with some friends, watch the cars go by, the shops all selling their wares - and you realise that already, the magic of the moment is gone. That feeling you felt - yes, I really could do something, I could make a change - is already gone.

I wish I could keep that feeling going for you with this blog. Keep your fire burning so that no amount of walking out into 'normal' life could change your mind.

But how can I, when my posts are cleaner and more polite than my thoughts. While I state the horrible facts on here, I leave out most of my reactions and how angry I am.

It would be a mistake, when reading human rights blogs, to assume that the writer is prim, proper and professional in all aspects. People behind these sites and blogs are just like you - they get passionate, excited, upset, angry, fly off the handle, sometimes go into depression... they are human after all. Sometimes they want to swear and curse in their posts and blow off some steam, sometimes they want to be thankful to God and friends for seeing them through stuff. At the end, thorough editing makes sure that what you end up reading is mostly politically correct and not going to piss any one off too much.

But sometimes I say 'to hell with it' and let it get in - how angry and upset this all makes me. Perhaps my last post was a little angry - and maybe the next few ones will be as well. but can you blame me? No one wants to help.

Be proud of Kuwait for all its achieved - sure. But you wanna be more proud? Go out and DO something. It's YOU that is Kuwait. I mean what is Kuwait besides Kuwaitis?

We all know the truth - a movie, a song, a blog never changed anyone for very long. It just keeps you aware, gives you little bursts of emotion from time to time. It's the sitting in your room, thinking about it, measuring up your life, counting costs, wondering what this world and your life mean, feeling some degree of the suffering - that changes you.

So watch the movies and listen to the songs, and if anything you read here strikes even the littlest note inside of you, then I'm glad - but be changed by the renewing of your mind. That's where it all starts to become reality.

Thanks for all your encouragement and support.


Anonymous said...

Keep doing what you're doing, don't back up, and don't let others intimidate you - like that allegedly patriotic anonymous on your previous post attempted to do.

It's shameful to tell someone to get out if you don't like how it is; it is the dialogue of a discriminating racist.

Keep up the good work.

nabeel said...

Anon (8:01)

thank you so much. i do get angry at abuse here and hence sometimes my responses are knee-jerk and I go a little schizo wondering if I've expressed myself too much.

But I swear it's only because I know Kuwait has been blessed tremendously and has so much potential that can be used for positive things.

Anonymous said...

In this post, I feel I must respond to a couple of seemingly discriminating people who are - sadly - unaware of being so.

To Anonymous @ 8:59 of the previous post:

You say "I was raised with help in the house and was raised to treat them with respect, while I am not blind by the abuse that happens in other households I have never personally seen it."

Never witnessing such abuse does not mean it does not occur; it does occur and on a large scale.

However, not only do I believe that you witnessed such abuse, but also know that you yourself have committed such abuse when you tell Nabeel "If you have a problem living in Kuwait, your solution is simple...leave!"

Isn't that abuse? Abusive, derogatory, and racist language that reflects how unaware you are of your actions and attitude.

Every person has the right to speak up against wrongdoings. If you abide by your discriminating "leave" solution, then you as a foreigner tourist have NO right to fight injustices that occur against you in a foreign land.

According to your principle, if someone were to offend you abroad, you may only either "Like it or leave". That is what is called a racist discourse, where only locals may speak up against injustices, leaving everyone else behind muted and bare of human rights and dignity.

Speaking up against bad behavior is everyone's right, and this should be your newly found principle, which would attain benefit for all, Nabeel's community and ours.

This "take it or leave" Kuwaiti attitude does not work princess, so ditch it while you still have a chance to be just.

Anonymous said...

I wanted to add one crucial point.

I believe we've all made mistakes in regards to our treatment of domestic workers. After all, we have grown up in a country where this type of behavior is widespread.

It is not, however, too late to change. It's crucial, after reading this blog, to learn that we can and will change our behavior, treatment, and attitude towards domestic workers.

This blog made me more aware of how grim the situation is for expatriates. I hope that all others gain the same positive attitude and start acting on it.

elaine hanlon said...

I don't think that blogging is impotent at all. It is people like you who will alert people to the injustices happening to the expat community here in Kuwait. Thank you so much for continuing to write about what is a very difficult and sensitive subject.

nabeel said...

anon at 7:46

That may be true. Perhaps its because its so hard to escape the mindset that everyone is in some sort of 'class' here.

Everyone in the world has stereotypical views of others, and there are theories that most people have a tiny bit of racism deep down inside. And lets face it, sometimes generalisations actually help us understand other cultures better.

But whereas in other countries we are taught to resist racist mindsets and accept cultural differences, here we are taught over and over again that these differences are bad, that others are bad, stupid, arrogant and therefore inferior.

But yes, it is NEVER too late to change. I personally believe that even the worst criminal in the world can because a wonderful and valuable human being. But he or she has to determine that in his or her heart.

Change can happen.

Elaine thank you for your encouragement. Awareness is the key aim of this blog. Change is up to the individual.