How mediocracy rules and wins

How mediocracy rules and wins

Why should we live with this? Why do we have to put up with people without a single act of kindness, generosity and tolerance? Why? Is it a crime to be a well-educated and hard-working person in this country? Why do we have to adapt to the ruthless, senseless, ignorant, hungry lives of the so-called “majority?” Do they want to be like this anyway?

My grandparents were pretty religious people. Both of my grandmothers went to the Hajj and were pious even before then. I grew up with their values in Bursa. We were never rich and I never went to private school except for one year before the high school exams. Our relatives were morally good people with true values. They would run their business with honesty and push their kids to go to good schools, get good grades and become respectable figures in the neighborhood.

So then again, I ask myself. Why do people have to suffer every day – pushed and kicked, ignored and harassed in this country? Who brought this madness, this mediocracy, this cruelty? Who changed the DNA of this nation that was taught to be kind and gentle to the less fortunate? Who killed the innocence and the good in us?

Burning with hunger and attention, masses attend the prime minister’s rallies simply to hear him assault his opponents. Women hysterically burst into tears to see him speak. A man calls up a primetime TV channel show on a Ramadan night to ask if “it is OK to get erection and ejaculate while looking at a woman during fasting.” Another man burns his wife with gas and asks while watching with pleasure if she wants more? Is this a freak show or are we slowly losing our minds?

This land has seen worse days, of course, with less morality, less humanity, less God and less belief, less science and less conscience. Yes, less of everything. But those days were days of war, days of foreign invasion; days of cruelty.

This is different. This time, your own brother and sister think you are rotten, ugly and dirty. Your colleague believes you have to be fired so that he/she can get a promotion. Your neighbor thinks you should be killed if you do not yield to him/her while driving.

Mediocracy rules in its own ways. For the poor, its main vehicle with which to excel is anger and sex. For the middle class, it is upward mobility and sex. For the upper class, it is probably just more and more money, as they can get the other one with money anyway.

My grandmothers would probably have been uncomfortable with the image of Michelangelo’s David on television. But may they rest in peace; they would certainly turn it off after hearing the “man with the erection and ejaculation” story. Was theirs a less correct Islam? Were they lesser believers? Were they not good people with God-loving hearts?

Yes, this land has seen worse days, days of betrayal, days of deceit. But none have been like this, where the fight between the good and the ugly has been so striking and the balance so off. We shall survive this, but Islam’s holy name and history may not get out of this darkness for a long time.