Stories published in June, 2017

We need to teach our children ‘how’ to think rather than ‘what’ to think

Education, much like everything else in the field of human knowledge, is rooted to philosophy. The curriculum texts, teaching pedagogies and school structures all reflect a particular philosophical premise. Be it the idealist school or the existentialist one, the pragmatist theorists or those who seek to use education for social change in the critical paradigm, education is about ‘wide-awakeness’. Today in education, a crucial issue facing us is the need to find ways of educating young persons to sensitivity, potency, social consciousness and a healthy citizenship ethos. In my journey so far as a teacher, I have been particularly impressed with three schools of philosophy: the idealist, pragmatist, ...

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With no tabdeeli in sight and given the recent recruits, I no longer support PTI or the “great” Imran Khan

A couple of days ago, I caught sight of a headline which shook me to the core of my political conscience. What struck me was the hypocrisy it carefully concealed and the pretentious outlook it rendered. It read that, “Former Sher-e-Punjab Ghulam Mustafa Khar joins PTI.” Attached with it was a photo with a glowering Imran Khan, sitting across Khar on his magnificent couch. Ghulam Mustafa Khar called on Chairman Imran Khan at Chairman's Sectt in Islamabad to announce his support for Pakistan Tehreek-e-insaf. ‎Posted by Imran Khan (official) on‎ יום שני 24 אפריל 2017 Up until a couple of months ago, I used to identify myself as a Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf ...

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While boys remain boys, girls become immoral and should be slut-shamed

Apart from trolling, social media also has the power of setting standards for women on the internet. By acting as moral warriors on social media, these stooges of patriarchy continue to perpetuate their misogyny by slut-shaming successful independent women; something that they can’t do at their home, workplace and/or any civilised social setting. With the rise of social media, these blabbermouths, with their prejudices concealed under the mask of culture and mannerism, mock, stigmatise and pass derogatory remarks on women. …And the worst affected are celebrities, especially Bollywood actresses. Recently, when Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Berlin, she was criticised for dressing indecently and showing her ...

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Pulling out of the Paris climate agreement may be Donald Trump’s only success story

In the cold and grey Washington, the news cycle has been eternally hot lately. The fire refuses to simmer down. The breathtaking pace at which events occur makes it tough to keep up with the war of words from the movers and shakers in a town where, post November 9, 2016, things have been constantly on the edge. While it is safe to say that all politicians are born actors and blatant liars, Donald Trump’s White House has legitimised the art of lying and given an official seal of approval to “alternative facts” – a term that essentially masks any untrue statement ...

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The Mummy is nothing new or special, but it works well enough for what it is

Never has intellectual property been a more valuable asset in Hollywood than it is today. In the age of franchise blockbusters, any almost marketable property can now be rebranded for 21st century audiences with a big enough movie star and sleek looking visual effects. Over the last decade, all major studios have found their personal cash-cow which they can milk through a connected universe of characters and films. Disney has the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Warner Bros have the DC Extended Universe, while Paramount has the much reviled Transformers series. Universal Studios is the latest to join the club with The Mummy, which is set to be ...

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It is about time British Muslims proved their loyalty to Britain

In the wake of the recent London attack, nearly 500 imams refused to offer funeral prayers for the terrorists responsible for the atrocity that took numerous innocent lives. While the British public was coming to terms with the tragedy in Manchester, only a couple of weeks ago, they woke up to another inhumane attack. And sadly enough, it was done in the name of Islam once again. The Muslim community in Britain has long been facing struggles in the name of culture and religion; they have been facing ethnic divides within the community itself, identity dilemmas and growing levels of anti-social behaviour amongst their youth. The two tragic events that ...

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If you want to survive in Pakistan, don’t stop at the red light!

A few years back, I stopped at a red light and my car was hit in the rear by a taxi driver. A crowd soon gathered and a traffic policeman came over and blamed me for the accident. “You’re not supposed to stop at traffic signals, even if the light is red,” he said. “You should slow down, look left and right and go across without getting hit, or hitting another car.” “But what about the traffic rules?” I protested. He laughed contemptuously. “Rules are made to be broken. If everyone followed the rules, the country would collapse.” By this time, the crowd was baying for ...

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Will ‘Voldemort: Origins of the Heir’ answer the questions we’ve been asking about Tom Riddle?

Voldemort: Origins of the Heir is a fan film that has set social media abuzz and could be the Voldemort film that we’ve always wanted to watch. The trailer, released by the production company Tryangle, received more than two million views in just 48 hours. The official website of the film says that the idea was inspired by reading the sixth book in the Harry Potter series. The book made them wonder: “What made Tom Marvolo Riddle become Voldemort? What happened in those years, and what really went down at Hogwarts when he came back? There are some clues in the books which have not been transposed ...

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Betting on Pakistan after #PakvsInd was a madman’s bet, but our team is predictably unpredictable for a reason

When the eighth ranked cricket team met the top ranked cricket team, there was little doubt about the outcome of the game. Being optimistic after Pakistan’s appalling performance in its last match against India was surely a madman’s bet, but team Pakistan is predictably unpredictable for a reason. Wahab Riaz went off the field with a twisted ankle. Photo: AFP In a match where everything (except Imad Wasim’s laser sunglasses) was different about the Pakistan team, South Africa was defeated by 19 runs through the Duckworth/Lewis Method (D/LS) in 27 overs. Was this down to the performance of ...

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It wasn’t state facilitation but years of political neglect that turned FATA into an extremist stronghold

Whilst our civilian rulers have borne significant calumny for their dismal governance since the return of the democratic regime in 2008, there remain some feathers in the cap they can yet point to when juxtaposed with their military counterparts. Take the 18th Constitutional amendment for example. Since independence, successive military regimes have sought to consolidate power in the centre, perpetrating a phantom federation which in turn fuelled discontent and separatist-ism throughout the smaller provinces. The unitary propensity of the establishment also played a vital role in the East Pakistan debacle in 1971. The 18th amendment represented a break from this past, bringing about an inclusive administrative system by ...

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