Yesterday in my cab on my way to the Amn El Dawla in Nozha, my sister and I got into a huge discussion with our taxi driver about the country, politics, etc. Usually these discussions (which happen quite often with me) are positive, but this time, it wasn’t. He was angry that people were still fighting, still protesting, and still demanding. His arguments were all the same as all the naysayers.
First of all, it was shortsighted. “I need to work, I want to eat, my family this, and my family that.” While these are very valid concerns, especially for a father and husband, it is unfortunately very shortsighted. He has managed to forget all the troubles of before the revolution and now mourn the loss of whatever he really has lost (which I am not quite sure of). He complains of traffic stopping his work, and less customers, and then some non-specific complaints. Yet he also told me that before the revolution he had once had his own company but somehow ended up a taxi driver (also before the revolution). When I asked him why that didn’t concern him, he blew the question off. Shortsighted much? Forgetful a bit as well.
Secondly, he had some negative attitude to the youth. “You, you, what do you guys know.” “Were you alive for these past years?” My answer…we are looking forward sir, to our children, our homes… But still, we were the young ignorant ones.
Thirdly, he kept saying that the building has come down, now we rebuild. He also kept asking how we could do this to our father. *Gag* And thats when I felt my nerves pumping hot blood. “He is not our father, he is here to serve us.” It was sad to think that he actually believed that and believed that any real change has already occurred. What has happened to us? That we believe anything that is told us? If we are to spend any type of fighting or effort or struggle about which minister takes what, it should be for the ministry of education. Because for that very reason the whole country has slipped away into ignorance.
I’m sure we have all had these conversations over the past month or so. But we must keep on keeping on. But we need to spend this time with everyone we know, speaking and discussing and maybe even fighting. This is the time that we speak out and freely. The country is not used to political freedom and awareness and it is natural that there will be a sloppy vomit of it all, but we need to keep mopping it up, and keep refining and keep pushing.