And what are your values?

The recent post about Bangladeshis having sex seems to have attracted a lot of attention. This should not surprise anyone. However, I probably expected most people to ostracize me, rather than to promote the piece through social media. I have been left positively impressed, to say the least, with the response I’ve gotten so far. I truly believe that most people are able to see logic and have not closed their minds to other possibilities, contrary to what a handful of people would like for the rest of the world to believe.

But for every positive feedback, there was either a comment that disagreed vehemently or told me that my ‘ultra modern’ opinions were unwanted. I don’t mind either. There is beauty in a wide-range of opinions and thoughts, even if I may not agree with you.

But what really got me thinking was how an irrefutable argument for anything that requires one to think outside the box is moral values, closely followed by religion, Islam and a whole spectrum of similar jargon.

What I then started to wonder was, what are these incredibly fragile values that are continuously at the risk of of being corrupted? I can’t speak for anyone else but myself, but I’d like to think that most of my peers and I were raised with a pretty decent set of values. We were taught the ability to tell right from wrong. We were told to keep our eyes and ears open, make an effort to understand, dig deeper when we didn’t necessarily agree and decide for ourselves what makes sense. And above else, respect others, embrace diversity, do what you are meant to do with passion & integrity and do no harm. We’ve turned out pretty alright.

Those extolling the virtues of these moral values mystify me. Do not question, they say. How do we expect to evolve as human beings firstly and collectively as a society, if we don’t question? I’m convinced that if I asked for these moral values to be defined, I’d be clobbered in the head with those same repetitive jargon that make little sense to anyone. After all, are these the same moral values that say don’t talk about sex, but it’s quite all right to watch Devdas take a tumble with Paro on the silver screen of Bollywood, and feel tickled in all the right places, as part of wholesome family time, or take your daughters out to buy Sunny Leone dresses for Eid?

To be quite honest, the rest of us are getting quite bored with you drawing associations between openly talking about a human bodily functions to incest, fornication like donkeys, and proposals around getting people married off early in life to avoid promiscuity. Surely, sex cannot be the only source of moral disintegration, resulting in the eventual collapse of human civilization. Why do we not hear you stand up against injustice? Why do you not speak up against unethical behavior? We sure have a lot of those in Bangladesh for you to throw your weight behind. You won’t say a word in the face of abuse, you won’t do a damn thing when you witness unfairness, but suddenly, all your senses are offended as soon as someone speaks of sex.

If these values you speak of are so easily wavered and even muddled, perhaps you need to work out what they actually are. If these fragile children (the same individuals that are adults when talking in the context of sexual maturity and ‘ripe’ for marriage, but children in the context of those likely to be corrupted by the sight of condoms) are so easily led astray, maybe the parents aren’t doing enough to ensure that their children are actually equipped with the values they need to get through life.

What do you stand for? Let’s talk again when you’ve actually figured it out.

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