The Case for Pakistan: Why I Believe in the Promise of this Nation

With recent events, I think it is safe to say that we are all feeling a little overwhelmed with the enormity of the challenges that the women and minorities of this country face every day. In such circumstances, it can be hard to remember why we should care about a country whose morals seem so thoroughly rotten to the core. I guess this is where I would say something like “While those things are no doubt horrible, here’s why we should love this country:” But doing that not only minimizes the systematic disenfranchisement and oppression that our women and minorities face every day, it is essentially just a way for us to jerk ourselves off while ignoring the problems that more than half the people in this country face every day.

“Hope -- Hope in the face of difficulty. Hope in the face of uncertainty. The audacity of hope! In the end, that is God’s greatest gift to us...A belief in things not seen. A belief that there are better days ahead.” — Barack Obama

And indeed, that is the belief that I hold. That I will die for. Maybe that’s because I’m a straight, Sunni male. Whatever the reason, I believe that there are better days ahead for this nation. Our generation is more progressive and well-educated than any before us. We are more tolerant, more accepting of other people’s beliefs and better equipped to deal with the challenges of the future than any of our predecessors. Although the vast majority is still conservative and hates everything they don’t understand, literacy and tolerance are directly proportional.

Change does not happen overnight, change does not come by itself, change comes when individuals gather around an idea so firmly that the status-quo trembles and gives in lest it is destroyed. And when I see around me, I see a youth that is ready to fight, not only for their own rights but for the rights of those who are oppressed and maligned by the system.

I believe in the promise of this youth and I believe in the founding principles of this state. The belief that all people living here deserve equal rights, that no one has the right to judge another for their religious beliefs, that the state is there to protect the rights of the people living in it, not to create some fanatic’s idea of a theocratic utopia. A state for Muslims where each citizen is free to choose their own path in life, where women are free to decide whether they want to wear a burqa or a t-shirt and shorts.

If we are to change the way this country is run right now we must be willing to make sustained efforts, posting something on your IG story whenever something terrible happens will not solve anything. Long term change comes when we refuse to give up when we don’t just raise our voice for an issue for a week but continue to do it, every day — using every resource at our disposal. This is true not just for fighting against oppression and misogyny but against the evils of nepotism, corruption, economic injustice, illiteracy and extremism.

“If the world is going to have any of the things most of us value - like justice and order - we’re going to have to put them there ourselves. Because otherwise, those things wouldn’t exist.” — Hank Green.

We have already come very far from where we were 75 years ago. My grandfather grew up ploughing fields with oxen and studying by the light of a lantern at night while people in the developed world were discovering the joys of modern technology such as landlines, cars and electricity. Now I have access to almost everything that a kid in the US or Western Europe has access to. And that progress is not insignificant. Life expectancy has risen from 31 years in 1945 to 67 in 2020. Literacy rates have gone up every year and with the end of the menace of terrorism and foreign involvement in the region, I feel that the future of this great nation of ours is promising.



18 year old Pakistani with some thoughts that I'm going to try to put into words.

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18 year old Pakistani with some thoughts that I'm going to try to put into words.