A Paradox.

A paradox.

Read.

Listen.

Understand. And love.

We’re here. And we care.

*****

“So we were working. Distributing pamphlets and educating people that every child had rights. Also, if you know someone who wants to be educated but circumstances are not letting him/her to do so, you can contact us. We have shelter homes, education centers and health centers. We can help the child out. You could contact us anytime at our toll free number.

But here is where the astounding question came. “But, why should I?”

We were walking through the streets looking for people to talk to and make them aware of the aforementioned things. Make no mistake these were THE under-privileged. They did not have an A.C. Some did not have a fan. Some were alcoholics who beat up their children and wife. Some hadn’t eaten for days. And most just did not care.

At this point we were near this Pay and Use toilet. You need to pay a rupee to use it. This guy in his shoveled and battered shirt asks us this. You could make out he was married. You could make out he did not make enough to support his family.

He told us, “Listen to this story. And please do not get offended.”

He repeated the last sentence twice.

He told us, let’s assume I have four kids. And every single day I am working hard to make ends meet. But it’s not enough. It’s never enough. And every day I have five mouths to feed. I barely make a living. So why not? You say I should let my kids go with you. They will be taken care of, fed, educated. I understand all of that. But what happens to us? Are you saying, us, dying of starvation is fine as long as they get to live happy? Let’s assume all of my children are working because they just have to. For all of us. Together. To survive. What then? Take them away? They are my blood and I am working hard to make sure they get to eat everyday.

So do not come here and tell me to do this and do that. Do something for us too. My hypothetical children are going nowhere. But, I will definitely spread the word around and let others know. We did not say a word. Gave him the pamphlet and we left.

There were two others with me. They’ve been working with this organization for a long long time now. When I asked them about this incident, they told me that I knew nothing. There was only so much they could do.

Think for a moment. Would you let these parents die? Or would you take their kids away. Their own blood. Think about it.

Think about it. Just for one second. And understand.”

*****

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Author: Aitijya Sarkar

You know that bright little star next to the moon? The one you've never really noticed for some reason. That's me.

2 thoughts on “A Paradox.”

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