Sri Lanka, a country with 2500 years of rich history, is increasingly becoming a place where decent people cannot make their home. Apart from those boat people, who should be looked at in a totally different perspective, it will be interesting to find out how many middle class Sri Lankans have left the country during the last two years. Also there’s hardly any doubt that those who returned to the country after the war victory against LTTE are regretting the decision they made,s probably out of impulse.
What has really happened? A match is being played without umpires! We’ve been playing this match for sometime in fact. But earlier we used to have a ruthless third umpire in the North who just dealt out red and green lights, most of the time without being referred to. Now he too is gone but still the match is being played.
Players who get out continue their innings to score centuries, while the ‘retired hurt’ still stay on the field. We have all kinds of chuckers and, ball tampering is a common phenomenon. Nobody gets out to LBWs because it is considered an accepted method against getting bowled. Catchers take catches even beyond the boundary line, but still the batsman is pronounced out! All this happens amid occasional nude fans from the pavilion running into the middle!
Let’s put aside the dramatics. What is apparent is the entire country lacks discipline. This lack of discipline is visible from every layer of the society—from rulers to hawkers, from cricketers to reporters, from doctors to labourers, from teachers to students, from policemen to postmen, motorists to pedestrians, etc.
Let’s ignore the imbecilic acts by our politicians as the more we keep talking about them, they tend to increase. Instead, let’s take the recent showdown of cricketer Lasith Malinga. The videos widely circulated and shared in social media show Malinga showing an unfavourable attitude to a seemingly innocent reporter who asks for a comment from the flamboyant cricketer.
This video clearly showed the depth of the lack of discipline scenario the country is in. It placed Malinga under the severe wrath of the people and media. The way Malinga behaved was not at all acceptable. But had those who criticised Malinga for this incident looked at how certain media personnel behaved when Malinga announced that he was quitting test match cricket due to an incurable knee injury which makes it difficult to prolong his career? Certain media attacked him through very biased reports without taking the real facts into consideration. So can the media expect a very disciplined Malinga when they themselves didn’t have that discipline when they were writing about him? Food for thought for all of us!
It’s not enough to achieve US $ 4000 per capita income by 2015. The society needs to be disciplined if we are to reap benefits from this economic progress. It appears that if we wait for discipline to trickle down the society from the top to bottom—the ideal way—we would be in for an unending wait. No doubt it’ll be a painstaking task to see you trying to be a law abiding citizen while seeing those who should be the protectors of law, acting not giving a dime about law. As always it will be an uphill task we decent citizens have to endure!