Friday, January 03, 2014

2116 : The big slur

There is a part of me that believes that inherently Indians (and I dont mean to berate us desis but unfortunately I have to generalise a bit to get my point across) are inherently slurrish. While it is necessarily not in terms of race or language (both of which we are very accepting), I do feel we are terrible in terms of economic discrimination. This fantastically screwed up feature is hard wired into the most libertine amongst us, and that includes yours truly.

Picture this.

In my office, and I work for this big fat Jewish Bank, the true top of the pops in terms of culture and civility (and I mean that with absolutely no sarcasm at all, but instead in pride and respect). And yet...in this elite place, at the point of exit, the only people who are subject to pat-down searches are blue collared workers....the "janitor" class. While this might be a pragmatic reality, I dont know if its correct in the human spirit, in the spirit of equivalence.

Why do we believe that the blue collars will steal more from the floor, than the tie and suit folks like me. I carry a huge backpack, and safely truck away a laptop or an IP phone without a question...but Mr. Blue Collars shall be apprehended for carrying a pen outside the firm.

I think it reeks of differential level of trust, fundamentally varying only on economic parameters.

Picture another example.

A colleague of ours, who we dont know well - loses his wife, and we all jump in and reach out to him - telling him, "do reach out if we can help"...and I am sure in 9/10 cases we shall actually help if he did reach out for a favor.

Your own domestic maid who helps you scrub your house spanky clean every day, loses her dad, and all we do is chase her up saying "can you come back in a week please?", all the time we are grumbling, "these types are the one who are constantly lying"...."I dont know which dad of hers has died, this is the 6th time I am listening to the same excuse...all looks like a way for her to slack off and take a vacation".

Do we offer her help? Do we offer her money? Do we offer her emotional help?

I hope you get the drift, our trust is based on economic strata and not necessarily based on human goodness. While there is possibly tons of empirical evidence that does suggest blue collars do fib more - you do have to take a step back and wonder if their choices and options force them to take that route? What option does a maid who works 365 days a year have, especially one who has no PF, not health care, no child support and absolutely zero emotional connect with her employer.

I have made my point, and I dont judge others, I judge myself everyday....I know I am accumulating bad karma by the warehouse and it bothers me a lot.




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