Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ovi - The Sad Saga of American Democracy

A sad but true article on American education from Ovi Magazine. This is a clear-headed and biting indictment of the failure of Americans to understand the world in which they live, and to elect leaders who are capable of dealing with the world in an effective manner.

It's essentially an anti-Bush administration piece (although it also is hard on the Democrat-cointrolled Congress), but the deeper implications are that Ameicans really don't comprehend the world and why we need more worldcentric leadership (to which statement I can literally see the conservative readers rolling their eyes).
The Sad Saga of American Democracy
by Dr. Habib Siddiqui
2008-09-10 08:12:31

It is said that Americans are the most schooled and least-educated nation on earth. This is a severe assessment when we reflect upon the fact that most of the best universities of our world are located in the USA, which graduate thousands of brightest minds every year.

Living in an expansive country that is separated by the two great oceans, the in-house prosperity and America's status in the international arena as the most dominant power of our age have not pushed most Americans to have a decent education about the world they live in, or the world that their elected representatives like to shape. In the words of Shaykh Abdalqadir as-Sufi, "Numbed and dumb from media overflow, isolated in a Hollywood fantasy they called 'The American Dream', its people remain cut off from mankind, indifferent both to their suffering and the destruction of the planet."

While the above statement may be contentious and sound too harsh or critical, fact is America matters globally for either good or bad. As much as she is capable of stabilizing global political and economic fault lines, she is equally capable of destabilizing such. It is this acquired international status that bestows extra responsibility upon its citizenry to elect absolutely the best from its candidates in matters of running this country. After all, a bad leader chosen here in the USA can become a world tyrant, much in the likeness of Nimrod and Hulagu Khan, destabilizing the entire world. Suffice it to say that Americans have sometimes failed to elect better candidates for their highest position.

In the past eight years, America seems to have been streaming in the un-chartered waters, probably in the wrong direction. Truly, a closer scrutiny would reveal that there are worrisome signs posted everywhere touching all sectors - economic, political, social and international. That is why an objective analysis is required to understand the major problems faced by America in the aftermath of 9/11 and assess her voyage. Only then apposite measures can be formulated to fix such problems and redirect her in the right direction under right stewardship.

There is no denying that terrorism has become an important phenomenon in our time and needs to be eradicated. Nothing can justify or excuse an act of terrorism, whether it is committed by hate groups, religious or ideological fundamentalists, private militia - or whether it is dressed up as a war of retaliation by a recognized government. As Arundhati Roy had argued, the U.S. bombing of Afghanistan was not revenge for New York and Washington; it was yet another act of terror against the people of the world. It is high time for the human race to dig into its wells of collective wisdom, both ancient and modern, to find a way out of this spiraling morass of terror and brutality that threatens us today.
Read the whole article.

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