Vantage point

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Some People!

A few days back I linked to Crystal Blur's blog which had a few humorous posts about the Mahabharat. I got a few mails protesting my endorsement, but creditably, they were all by and large polite. Nothing PMK-Sena-Taliban-ish fortunately. Which was fine.

But recently I came across a blog run by a guy who, very very ironically calls himself Hawkeye. You folks would remember Hawkeye, the irreverent Benjamin Franklin Pierce from the classic sitcom M*A*S*H. This bloke reacted in a manner that is becoming less of Hawkeye and more of the PMK-Sena-Taliban types. First of all, hilariously enough, he titled that post "Female Bloggers", and said he wanted to list some female bloggers he liked. (Reminds me of women's line, or women's compartment, etc...very condescending). He then listed a bunch of female bloggers and wrapped up their descriptions in a few lines each, and then announced that he would list bloggers(sic) he hates. And he launches into a tirade against Crystal Blur, calling her a "stupid little blogger who thinks too much about herself"(playground lingo anyone?).

He shows shades of the PMK-Sena-Taliban breed in so many ways. He proceeds to attack her personally and claims she is ignorant about the Mahabharat. Now even the most devout Hindu offended by what she has written would not level that charge at her. Every chapter shows that she knows the epic quite well. He also bets his property... :).... that Crys does not even know how Rajajai's book looks like. If Crys wants to make a quick buck, she can just leave a description of the book cover on his blog, and claim this guy's property.

He then adds to the hilarity by saying he isn't a prude to give a lecture on sanctity and has done(sic) similar jokes too, but has taken care never to single out a specific religion. He also says that the problem with us Hindus is that we make fun of ourselves, but never "level the playing field" by making fun of everyone equally. You must be rolling on the floor laughing now, right? So the next time you want to satirise anything or make a joke about anything, you should carry a check-list and make sure that your humour is "leveling the playing field".

It is apparently not enough for the guy-who-goes-by-the-name-hawkeye that there do exist spoofs, satires and critiques of other religions too. For him to be mollified, they must all come from just one person. Islam, Christianity and Judaism have been satirised so many times by so many different people. I would recommend that the guy watch a sitcom called South Park.

This guy is, what I call a neo-prude. Neo-prudes aren't completely prudish like the PMK-Taliban-Sena, because of the simple reason that they have been brought up in a bit more liberal setting. So their definitions of what is right and what is wrong are a bit more lax than the zealots. Zealots, when the lines that they have decided are crossed, take umbrage and go on an offensive. They forget that the so called Indian culture is as much anyone else's as it is theirs, and each person has a right to interpret it the way he wants. If you don't agree with someone's interpretation, fine, disagree, but at least respect that person's right to that interpretation. But they won't they will blacken the faces of couples celebrating V-Day, ban Rushdie's books, and torment Khushboo for talking about sex.

A neo-prude is slightly more bearable, because their "lines" are not as tightly drawn as the zealots. But if they are drawn even marginally tighter than yours, they go the same way. They are not boorish and/or influential enough to coerce individuals like the zealots. But they will get all sanctimonious, and make personal attacks, like this guy calling Crys a stupid little blogger, an idiot, and then some more. They will also profess to upholding their version of the Indian culture, and turn their noses up at anyone who crosses that line. Such is the hypocrisy of the neo-prudes. They aren't as dangerous as zealots. But sure are pesky.

This guy, who went through the trouble of coming up with such an obviously-contrived topic for the post, just so that he could attack Crystal Blur, probably needs to be introduced to the wonderful diversity of the blogworld. If Crys makes his neo-prudish blood boil, there are several other blogs he can frequent. After all, Crys has not made any personal attack against him, or anyone else. If she had attacked him personally, I can understand a retaliation. She is just choosing to interpret her heritage, and it is as much hers as it is anyone elses.

Oh yes, one movie I advise the guy to stay away from - Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron!