Letters To The Editor

“Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul – and sings the tunes without the words – and never stops at all.” – Emily Dickinson

Literature: An invaluable asset for the youth

"There are daggers in men's smiles". This quote was written by William Shakespeare in the 16th Century but it is perhaps even more applicable in the modern 21st century, with deceit and treachery spreading through society like wildfire. In such advance and complex times, ignorance can become a grave problem for the youth. This ignorance, however, can quickly be turned to intellect and awareness with the help of one readily available, yet readily forgotten asset; literature. There is great power in the written word. Unfortunately, literature has taken a back foot in society, being neglected particular by the youth. It seems we have forgotten that the foundations of the philosophy of our very own country was greatly backed by the lessons conversed through literature, by great poets like Allama Iqbal. Similarly, classic literature serves as a powerful means of character development, be it stories such as H.G Wells The Door in the Wall which teaches one the attraction and drive for one's ambitions or the difficulty in finding oneself highlighted by Constantine in Watching for Dolphins. Simple antagonism of ill virtues of greed, lust and pride in literature serves as a subtle yet powerful means of righting the wrong in the growing generations. So, what happens when you are detached from literature? The perspective of the youth remains shallow and their mindsets narrow. In addition, a growing fear is that the youth has become too materialistic, too caught up in monetary possessions. In literature we have Dickens, Alex Le Guma and other renowned authors writing about thinking beyond the restrictions of money and possessions. Such wisdom is required for our youth to have a productive mindset.

Aly Rashid,

Internet trolling

We’ve all seen them. Those annoying, terribly rude comments that people make whenever possible online. Whenever there’s an opportunity to comment, whether through social media outlets, comment sections on blogs or web pages, or the customer feedback portions of a website, some people choose to write awful things for the world to see. These people have a name: trollers. Mostly, teenagers are the victims to online trolling and are targeted due to their gender, physical orientation, race, religion, disability or transgender identity. It is a wake-up call for all of us to play our part in helping create a better space for all, to ensure that everyone can benefit from the opportunities that technology provides for building mutual respect and dialogue, facilitating rights, and empowering everyone to be able to express themselves and be themselves online – whoever they are. The internet is a powerful tool which can have brilliant and virtually limitless benefits, but it must be used sensibly and safely.

Zareen Zulfiqar,

Is public execution effective?

A few days ago, the National Assembly of Pakistan passed a resolution calling for the public hanging of convicted child killers and rapists. Since then, the resolution has been facing a backlash by a few political parties and citizens in general. But I have a mixed opinion regarding this resolution. On one hand, I believe that the public execution of child molesters would spread fear among the rapists and hence, the situation would be controlled. But on the other hand, I believe that public hanging would further aggravate the under-reporting of crimes in these cases. Research has proven that in cases of child abuse a significant majority of the perpetrators are family members or are otherwise known to the victim. In such cases, if there is an introduction of public hanging, victims and their families will become even less likely to report these cases in order to avoid public embarrassment. In this case, justice won’t be served if the very nature of the punishment is both barbaric and ineffective.

Bushra Javed,