Drop dead, you cynical journalists…

Posted: September 28, 2013 in Politicians, Politics
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Cynicism is defined as ‘an attitude of scornful or jaded negativity, especially a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of others’. And the people who are defined as cynics are invariably journalists. They look for motives in anything. People look at some of us with disdain, because they honestly believe that things are not as bad as they look. They believe that we should see things as they really are. Unfortunately journalists see hidden meaning in everything that happens.

We are cynical because we think the economy is going from bad to worse. The rest of the world believes that if the economy has hit a trough, it will come out, any day now. There is no need to paint a doomsday picture of the whole thing. It’s been just five years or so. We have a new RBI Governor who is Superman, Batman and Spiderman all rolled into one, presumably wearing psychedelic colour undies, cape and mask. Presumably the last one was a moron who did not know the difference between a rupee and a toupee. This new guy, well he is good looking, so he should do wonders with the economy. So, be positive. That’s what this country might need soon – B Positive.

Journalists are labelled cynical because we fret about the rising fuel prices. The rest of the country believes that journalists need to understand that fuel prices are skyrocketing because global oil prices are also rising. After all, we are now in sync with the rest of the world’s oil markets. When fuel has to be given at a discount to politicians, their drivers, cooks and their relatives living a hand-to-mouth existence in the villages, prices will rise. And don’t forget all those poor farmers who drive Mercs who also avail subsidies. We need to provide for them. After all, someone else has to pay. Why should the tax-paying middle class complain? If they can visit malls and multiplexes every second day why do they need subsidies?

We journalists should also understand that if politics and violence are becoming a common occurrence it is because there is a realignment of forces taking place and there’s nothing to worry about. It’s been happening since 1947, it’s nothing new. It will end once the elections are over and a new government is in place. We journalists worry too much. So, nothing more than a few dozen homes and a few dozen people get killed. It happens all the time. Democracy is safe. It’s all these communal forces, who are at play. They don’t understand secularism. In political terms, secularism is a movement towards the separation of religion and government. Please note – separation NOT interference and favouritism. When youngsters say with disarming honesty that people of Gujarat should all die because they support Narendra Modi instead of Rahul Gandhi, we are supposed to pat them on the back instead of looking shocked.

Ignorant journalists must realise that skirmishes across three of our borders are now an everyday thing. It’s nothing, just politics. Soldiers, who protect our borders, keep us safe, and they will die doing so. They are supposed to die. It’s their destiny. That is why they are paid a handsome salary. So they must die. So when past and present generals squabble over the way the Army is being politicised, don’t get worked up. It happens. There’s nothing to worry about. Oh, and that occasional bomb blast is now a global phenomenon. People die from that too. People die everywhere. They are collateral damage. See what happened in Nairobi. We can’t give them better security, we are a poor nation. We need to spend those crores to improve the security for the politician. After all, they are the future of this nation. And please don’t ask irresponsible questions. Why can’t journalists ask more positive questions? Look at how the security agencies ‘arrested’ so many wanted terrorists.

Look at the way some journalists react to the act of the future prime minister of the country. When he says, “It’s rubbish, tear it up and throw it (the ordinance) away’, journalists should have started a symbolic movement and made a bonfire of the Ordinance. After all, Mahatma Gandhi did that during the Quit India movement, when he burnt British cloth, so why not another Gandhi? Cynical journalists fail to see how the party and the country have been energised by his act. So while some of us journalists think that Rahul Gandhi has reduced to rubble the post of the prime minister, with that one statement, the rest of the world sees the future prime minister taking the bull by the horns. In that one move, he tells the whole world that the Indian prime minister is the Bharat of Ramayan. Can’t we illiterate journalists see the sacrifice the great prime minister has been making this past decade so the real heir to the throne can be anointed soon?

And even in our personal lives we have become so cynical. Everyone around us is good, trusting, sweet. We are the ones with a deep distrust of people. It happens over and over again. We just don’t trust anyone. Just when someone begins to think they can trust us, we do something that negates that trust. Should we journalists put on rose-tinted glasses? It gives us such a wonderful, refreshing perspective of the world.

  1. My dear Sinha — I hope u appreciate the difference between cynicism and skepticism! Peace and love – Joe Pinto.

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