When I was a kid, I learnt from my father to respect every human being. It took me some time though, to realise that the concept of humanity that my father and others of his ilk hold dear, is completely exclusive.
For men like my father, women don’t constitute the catagory of human beings. For upper caste Hindu men and women, Dalits are non humans. For white races, the black people are lifeless slaves.
As I was being forced to respect certain sections of human beings, excluding the vast majority, I became confused, my conscience rebelled against the hypocrisy. It created a rift between me and my father a decade ago that has only widened with time.
All the violence, the injustice and inequality that plagues our world is, I guess, a consequence of this very exclusive concept of humanity. We don’t deter from perpetrating violence against certain sections of people because we don’t consider them humans. We see them as worms fit enough to be trampled underneath the heals of the powerful.
My concept of humanity is all inclusive. It includes men, women, Dalits, whites, people of colour etc. If this creates a rift between me and those who cherish the culture of exclusion, then I don’t give a flipping damn! I don’t care if that person happens to be my father!