for long our center of discussion remained the system of education being so weak. so weak to obstruct our progress. that it with all its frailties is unable to provide any room for free exchange of ideas. that it is incapable of producing minds of great intellect. that the system is eroded to even carry the burden of critical thinking. that academic freedom as a consequence to the system being so meek and feeble is bound to have its very existence threatened.
so what we did? we firmly believed that the depravity in educational field is what the normal condition looks likes. so the struggle against the depravity against the ailment passed for it being normal. hence we made it the scapegoat. there were a consolation in making it a scapegoat. why your country so backward? lack of education. why no progress in science? lack of education. why so poor? lack of education. why religious extremism? lack of education. why why why. lack of education. lack of education freaking lack of education. like the stone wall concept of dosteovsky. the wall that is blamed because we havent learned to question its existence at first place. because we were not made to think otherwise.
and what happens when you question the wall? it may not be able to break apart but the reasons behind its existence comes in question. and when you know the reasons you know who is responsible. you know at least who should be held accountable.
youll know at least the system is not weak but devised and designed to produce cripple minds. that it is not eroded but conditioned to wear off our creativity. that the system is not by any means incapable or unable but simply unwilling and reluctant to leave any room for academic freedom. that no system is stunted by default unless it is made for that very purpose.
ustaad chomsky calls it the indoctrination of the young. where the sole purpose and function of education is to produce obedient and conformist generation. a generation with no thought of its own. of no creativity of its own. no ideology of its own. or to put simply in more general terms to impose authority. so it is not questioned. and challenged and threatened and thrown off.
because if you let people have their independent thought theyll break away the shackles of enslavement. and subjugation. if people were given chance to question. theyll question your stupidity first. if theyre given freedom to challenge ideas. theyll challenge your conflicted ideology first. if theyre given unrestrained academic freedom theyll make the very base on which the grand power empire is built waver.
look at our own state. from distorted history sketched in curriculum and flawed teaching methodology to the terrible state of infrastructure. from arresting students for peaceful protests to forcing scholars to leave their institutes for their political views underscores the grave reality of the times we are living in. that the price for academic freedom is no less than coercion. we have seen what they did to sabeen. to mashal. to junaid hafeez. we know the people they are after. we know the reason. the pattern. that the tale of people exercising their fundamental rights ends with no happy endings. and that our sacred land is tainted by these tales.
yet the majority of our people. people who still have their conscience intact remain silent. that silence by every sense of it too is political. but since it strengthens the hands of those in power so it makes no difference to them. silence that is either borne out of fear or hopelessness would then acts as the foundation stone to the edifices of injustices towering higher than the moral grounds. and we come again to dostoeveskys stone wall. you know who to blame now.