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Friday, December 14, 2007

Bullets for that bubble-gum

The grisly inauguration of ‘gun-culture’ in India having been formally completed over a twelve year old’s body, the country is all abuzz with shock and consternation in no time.

But, didn’t we see it coming?

My answer is yes. We should have.

Moreover, if we fail to stem the rot with immediate effect ‘campus killings’ might get glamorized in no time in the coming future. Children fed on graphic images of blood and gore from a very tender age grow up to believe in the apparent acceptance of it in real society. Too much time spent on the virtual world of computers give them an entirely false impression about the ‘real’ world outside. Hence, when provocation, however minuscule, coupled with the juvenile indifference to restriction cloud their senses they choose violence as the form of apt retribution. Aiding these abettors in crime are factors like negligence and lack of attention from the parents’ end which slowly make the child attention-hungry. A chance to make the world stop and take note of you is but an extremely attractive proposition in those circumstances.

One incident of Abhishek Tyagi should act as an eye-opener to all of us before our university, college and school campuses become infested with psychopathic killers on the prowl. What’s most disturbing is the fact that the offender is said to have acted out of fear of his own life, owing to a previous death-threat by the victim to him.

Bullies are not a novel concept to schools and school-goers. Hence, the fact that a mere threat was perceived to be ‘real’ in nature and that the boy really thought that the victim could actually deliver on his threat is the point of measured consideration. Two twelve year olds taking a ‘death-threat’ seriously and acting upon it in a pre-emptive manner is something that the society as a whole must deliberate upon with grave concern.

Are guns becoming too easily available? Well, if you talk of Bihar, Jharkhand, UP (and lately our own Nandigram) the answer is “yes”. But by meaning ‘availability to the urban populace who apparently have no use of it’ one would say “yes” at the risk of being labeled an outright alarmist. So, should every parent wait till there are more reports of kids getting shot by their friends before they trash that ‘Resident Evil’ or ‘God of War’ cd? The answer is anybody’s call.

But, the future in case of unrestricted exposure of children to violence does seem gloomy from here. Our indulgent eye might be met with terrifying images when, five years from now, a DU or a CU campus might see a depressed maniac or a disgruntled lover on the rampage. Only this time there might not be a petty revolver in his hand. He might be wielding a blood-thirsty Kalashnikov, fully loaded.

And he might not turn out to be as saintly as our own Sanju baba.

Photo: from


ad libber said...

Might? Did you just write might? The only difference between this incident and what happens almost daily in a certain unnamed college is that arms are not involved in the latter. People are grown ups. Hence more responsible. Hence let go just before the death blow.

We are so close its scary.

Students politics next month. God save the world.

BTW, could there just be a little itsy bitsy chance that this was an RDB inspiration? Should we look a bit closer home?

WHAT'S IN A NAME ? said...

Hello Ritika,
I don't believe this episode involving three school boys could be RDB inspired because they actually killed one of their peers. In a film which promoted male-bonding to the hilt I think there was hardly any scope for such misinterpretation. But, you do have a point, I can see. That taking up the law in one's own hands has been endorsed in the said film is undeniable. But, I think the sensibilities of the subjects concerned in this case were not honed to 'get' that.

And regarding the 'students politics' thing. Well, nothing much can be done unless and until our mainstream political parties detach themselves from campus affairs. Students must understand and exercise politics. But, gun-totting and intimidating hapless professors on unjust demands just because you enjoy political patronage is singularly shameful and regressive.
I would dearly like to hear more from you on this.
Adios till then.

ad libber said...

Hmmm...point taken

smart primate said...

Pretty valid point raised here, but don't you think our society as a whole is going to the dogs?

This incident got highlighted because there was this shocking event of a 12- year old killing his classmate. But there are thousands of incidents of violence which keep happening all around us. People are just waiting to go up in arms and take on a fight at the slightest provocation.

In a country which proclaims Gandhiji, the beacon of non-violence, as the 'father of the nation', there are a surprisingly large number of people going in the completely opposite direction. Naturally, someone growing up in this environment would start to think likewise. This does not, for a moment, mean that what the boy did is pardonable. But when you said that we need to treat this incident as an eye-opener, it should be applicable as much to ourselves personally as it does to the guardians of the millions of kids in this country.

WHAT'S IN A NAME ? said...

# smart primate- yes, things are deteriorating. But, we all complain and do nothing. Road rages end up in bloody fist-fights for no reason. People have forgotten the 'kiss/smile n forget' philosophy. Children are quickly picking up the cue, and parents were never any less bothered. Things can only change with a concerted effort ton everybody's part. Pausing and pondering is the first step in that direction.

Antigone said...

The brave new world has scary new toys to amuse itself with. Its sad and its bewildering when you consider the status quo. The particular incident that initiated this stream of thought[ Bullets for that bubble-gum] isn't exactly an anomaly if you take into your calculation the rising aggression in the community. The lexicon of the gun is coming home ...but it is most disturbing to find twelve year olds picking up this language of violence.

But after all is said and nothing really done, I would like to put a casual question to anyone who would like to answer. *How* do you become the involved observer and weed out this growing unrest in the society? Pausing and pondering is fine for all those who see the need to pause and ponder. But most people I find are mere cogs in the wheels of angst and strike blindly. What antidote to this irrational anger[Cf."Road rages end up in bloody fist-fights for no reason"]?

I like this blog of yours and do check the link I sent in an offliner :)

WHAT'S IN A NAME ? said...

1. Good and glad, that you like this blog of mine.

2. Answers to your questions will follow in the next posts.

Macadamia The Nut said...

Children are so much more violent these days. My little cousins make me want to run away and hide at times.

ArSENik said...

As I have said in the comments section of other blogs, gun control is a real toughie when it comes to democracies. I mean if you really outlawed guns, it wouldn't really be a democracy then in the true sense, would it? But then again, democracies, like non-democracies, have their fair share of idiots. Maybe they should legalize gun ownership, but have security check for guns in all public places (including schools). Think of the many more jobs this would create. Of course, you might say the whole checking thing is anti-democratic, but hell that's a different controversy in itself.

Blaming RDB or any computer games would be wrong simply because filmmakers and game developers should have the freedom to create whatever they want. Give them R-ratings and enforce these.

PS: Just playing the Devil's Advocate, that's all.

WHAT'S IN A NAME ? said...

# macademia- Yes. These are sign of things to come.

# arsenik- Right, you are. Not to have guns in hands of cadres in rural Bengal, having unarmed party functionaries run rigging in polls in UP and Bihar will be a real shame. There should be no gun-control. We are a Real Democracy.

Noisy Autist said...


It's inevitable. population makes society complex. and complex society needs violence to cope. let me quote Dylan - "somewhere in a distance seven new people born." we shudnt take these words as cynicism but as words of hope.

And "resident evil" just rocks. F-ing awesome game.