More grease falls off the Oxcart Axel
Thailand’s old veteran of state persecution, an engaged Buddhist and advocate of Thainess, octogenarian Sulak Sivaraksa seemingly filled in an hour or two extra with a pandering piece of pro-junta (synonymous in the Thainess mind with pro-Thai) narrative about something he titled “Roundup.” When I finished the short piece I discovered that I was still waiting for the roundup. So, having made an error the day before in a word I thought I knew the meaning of, I went to the helpful online dictionary to see what it defined as roundup. “the act or process of gathering together animals (such as cattle) by circling around them in vehicles or on horses : the act or process of finding and gathering together people or things of the same kind: a brief statement of the most important information.”
Now I image that Ajarn (means master in Thai) Sulak probably was aiming toward the latter definition, but given the reality of the moment, with repression at gun-point and imminent threat of prison an overwhelming threat, I also kind of think that the first definition – “the act or process of gathering together animals (such as cattle) by circling around them in vehicles or on horses” might be more fitting. But for current purposes a bit of editing is needed, so the following definition results: “the act or process of gathering everyone together by circling around them in tanks, police cars and motorcycles driven by people with guns.”
So that might be THE roundup that Ajarn Sulak neglected to focus on when he sat down at his computer and began typing lofty thoughts about ancient Siamese culture and present necessities that were rightly addressed, in his 81 year-old isolated mind, by eclipsing freedom – somehow a noble cause using noble methods.
As a septuagenarian myself, I can appreciate some distance between my values and those of the younger generation, including our kids. But to deprive our children, grandchildren, family, friends, strangers and all people across the land of freedom and any semblance of democracy because your wizened old mind has decided that our values are now too far afield, is beyond the scope of your moral duty. Advocating that this is fine, as Ajarn Sulak and others have done, is also unethical. Condoning the methodology used from November 2013 in Thai society and body politic until today is irrational and illogical, replete with one invalid syllogism after another. But if you are either in power literally holding the gun, or someone who enjoys that kind of reminder to others of who they really need to be, then this dictatorship rationale is not unpleasant to you.
Recently, in another shocker, Anand Panyarachun, born six months before Sulak, has now told us that Thailand needs to close itself off from progressive thinking and regress in peace (peace form outside, fear from within), until things can be restored to the old ways. And these people call themselves Buddhists…
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