2016 Orlando Night Club shooting is a classic example of where the world is heading with all it’s hatred and violence. One man, Mr. Omar Mateen, so called Homophobic, gets so powerful and armed, that he single handedly executes a massacre at a Gay Club in Orlando, Florida. And what comes out as his motivation for the action is his hatred and phobia against the LGBT group.
My purpose of writing this post is to understand what triggers such phobias in people. I have a cynophobia ( a fear of dogs). But I consciously know that half of it is my own doing. Once, when very young, I had seen a street dog bite my mother. And then a few month’s later, a Doberman, who was a pet at my relative’s place, attacked me. These back to back incidents in the formative years created a strong impression in my head. But even then – I am fully aware that my phobia is very flexible – I am not scared of the street dogs, that you see loitering around almost everywhere in India, in the day. But the same dogs, when they get ferocious in the night and bark at people passing by, I get scared. I am not scared of cute looking dogs, but I am scared of these two labradors that reside in my building. They haven’t particularly harmed me, but it is their size and their aggression that scares me more than anything else.
All in all, what I am trying to say is ‘phobia’ is all in the mind. One can be conditioned to get out of it. And one can be conditioned to multiply the aversion. I think Omar Mateen was of the later category. There are some members of the LGBT group, enjoying themselves in the confined environment of a club, some hundred miles away from where you are – What the hell is your problem? What the hell is your trigger to go and open firing at them? What was their mistake or wrong doing that compelled you to take such a severe action? Just the mere fact that they were naturally born with different sexual orientations – not necessarily wrong or abnormal – just different from yours… That’s it!
This is where we are doing wrong. I know a cousin of mine, who when first came to Mumbai, and saw two boys walking hand in hand, passed a very nasty comment at them. Why is that our instant reaction? Why haven’t we trained our children to accept everything and everyone the way they are without judging them or passing a comment. Why is it that we are so rigid about everything? Shouldn’t we teach our children to respect everyone – irrespective of their religion or sexual orientation or cast or colour or creed or anything? Is it so difficult I want to ask? The problem is not in the kids, the problem is with the parents! They are themselves so rigid in their head. How will they inculcate positive feelings in their children? Shouldn’t we be more tolerant of the world around us? Shouldn’t we give our kids an open ground to chose what they want to – be it opinions even? And I am sure that the next generation may not necessarily have the same hang ups as the previous generation.
I am affected… And I am disappointed… And I am angry… I want to shout to make these idiots understand how they are so wrong… But you can’t change the world and the way they think with one post, one lecture, one incident… You need to change as a whole – as a society! Be more sensitive towards fellow humans and their sufferings…