“History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.“~~ Martin Luther King Jr
Over the years, Nations have enacted laws criminalising certain offences. Our parliaments are so busy, due to legislation. However, there is one legislation that no parliament has made. Perhaps, the reason for this is because it disguises itself. Since it acts dumb, nobody concentrates on it. This is the new crime! It is not Murder, Theft, Abortion, or even Fraud! It is Silence!
Let’s look at the Holocaust in which about six million Jews died in the concentration camps. As Rabbi Mark Wildes rightly puts it, “We must never forget the hundreds of millions who watched and remained silent. The dozens of governments and heads of state who had the opportunity to intervene, but would not sacrifice military, political or even economic support to save innocent Jewish lives. ” According to him, what was more disturbing was the lack of reaction by members of the Jewish Community – Jews in positions of authority and leadership who failed to act.
“It is not the violence of the few that scares me, it’s the silence of the many.”~~Martin Luther King Jr
When Not To Be Silent
- When Injustice Rules
“Silence against cruelty is the biggest crime in the world, and we do. “~~Junaid Raza
Injustice is the progenitor of Oppression, Terror, and the likes. There are situations in which silence becomes an assent, and a signature to the reign of Injustice in the land. Sometimes we choose to ignore, because it doesn’t directly affect us. We turn a blind eye to what is happening in our immediate environment, because to us, we are not affected. We live in estates and GRAs, and do not concern ourselves with the injustice meted out to ordinary citizens who are not so privileged. We occupy a high position in government, and are entitled to a diplomatic passport to leave the country at will, when we sense danger in the land. In order to escape mob action, we choose to travel by air all the time, forgetting that one day the plane may crash.
We know there is hunger in the land, but still choose to spend millions and billions of our currencies on wrist watches, earrings, inner wears, and even on a foot wear. Of course, something is wrong with us. We know that the roads are dilapidated, but yet, we keep promising, year after year. Even the money for the execution of contracts, we slash it, and use the other half to fund our children’s education overseas. There is an abuse of power, and yet, you say everything is under control. How? In what way? You refuse to speak out, because you don’t want to lose your job. Even the Holy Book says that he who tries to save his life will lose it…
- When there is degradation of our core values
“I agree with Dante, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality. There comes a time when silence becomes betrayal.“~~ Martin Luther King Jr
In our world today, nobody speaks up anymore. There is no integrity! There is no Accountability! We no longer emphasize on moral codes and moral standards. That is the reason some politicians are bold to embezzle funds meant for public projects, and we keep quiet. We buy ripe fruits at the market, without knowing that they were forced to ripen through the application of chemicals such as Calcium Carbide. We fail to speak up because we are major shareholders in such businesses. Nobody says a word, and so we let innocent citizens die through heart failure, liver failure, kidney failure, and even cancer. Is there a greater crime than this?
How about those who repackage expired goods for resale? And those who recycle medical waste like syringes, specimen bottles, etc? How about artisans such as carpenters, bricklayers, electricians, painters, vulcanisers, mechanics, etc, who cheat their customers through price inflation, as well as through the use of substandard materials in their work? Despite the fact that these unethical practices could lead to death, we say nothing, and do nothing. We have seen it all, in the churches, schools, offices, everywhere! In the words of Martin Luther King Jr, “To ignore evil is to become accomplice to it. “
“He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really co-operating with it. “~~Martin Luther King Jr
- When there is hate everywhere
Our youths are losing focus, because they no longer believe in themselves, in their nations, and in their leaders. They believe that their representatives have failed. As a result, they resort to crime, and other social vices.
We live together, but suspect one another. There is hate everywhere, and war of words.
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” ~~Martin Luther King Jr
We must rise to condemn evil, when we sense evil. If we refuse to speak up, the fire that is slowly ravaging the bushes, and other neighborhoods would soon devastate our homelands that there will be no escape.
In the words of Nadezhda Mandelstam, “I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity.”