72nd Independence Day of Sri Lanka — To Celebrate or Not?

When our ancestors fought for freedom, did they know it was going to be misused? It’s a question I always ponder over, and think of what intentions they would have had in mind when they fought so hard to free Sri Lanka from the hands of the British.

I thought they wanted to preserve the country;

Preserve its valuable geography,

Preserve its inevitable ancestry,

Preserve for the future generations what the country holds, from bravery to culture.

When our pioneers chose the colors to create the National flag, did they mean to differentiate and discriminate the people of Sri Lanka?

I thought they presented the colors on one flag to unite the differences, to show we are one, to show we live together as brave lions and lionesses in solidarity;

Not devalue the cultural differences despite the syncretism we hold in every beliefs.

If we share Pathini as a Goddess, then why do we have differences between Tamils and Sinhalese in Sri Lanka?

If we believe in the prophecy of Adam, then why are Christians turned against Muslims in Sri Lanka?

If it’s the complexion that’s causing complication, then are we not aware we bleed the same?

When our leaders fought to establish democracy in the country, choosing the best reforms, protesting for Universal Franchise, so every sane, adult citizen of Sri Lanka can choose their own representative to speak on behalf, did they know the people would misuse it for their selfish interests or the future leaders would take such votes of ignorant citizens for granted?

Did the soldiers leave their families behind and lose their lives in the war-front to watch from heaven, the country turn into a hell to live in?

Of course we are proud,

We are truly proud to be Sri Lankan’s,

The pride to be a part of a multicultural country,

To represent a country that holds a rich history of war, sports, ancestry, kingdoms, politics, economy,

We are all proud to talk of how we gained independence from the British,

How our ancestors United to chase away the European nations that came before,

But are we aware that history repeats?

Are we vigilant that the sparks of the LTTE, JVP,

The racial mobs, the attacks against our own brothers has not seized to light the fire for another war that our soldiers lost lives to put an end for?

Are we aware the lives of the innocents lost in the Easter Attack have not yet rested in peace?

Are we aware our government still has its tricks, its dirty games played under a blanket of good governance?

Are we aware that the loopholes left by the previous regimes are still open?

Are we aware that the racists and extremists have not been washed out of the country but are only taking a rest?

To celebrate or not to celebrate the 72nd Independence Day is a question to ask ourselves,

But to celebrate is to pray for our beautiful Sri Lanka to flourish with prosperity and unity among its children.

We have not yet gained true independence to truly celebrate the pride of having chased away the British.

We are still in the ties of other foreign nations.

Celebrate the little victories, the prides of Sri Lanka who continue to gain a recognizance for the country. Not the fact that we have gained independence! Because we are still dependent. We are still controlled.

True independence shall be celebrated when we are free to move about with no racist comments thrown at minorities,

Shall be celebrated when Media learns its ethics and is freed from the personal interests of dirty politicians.

Shall be celebrated when we establish a government for all, and not for those who sit on the higher strata of the class stratification.

Shall be celebrated when we all learn the importance of people’s power over a group’s empowerment.

Shall be celebrated when we call ourselves “Sri Lankans” and it comes from the bottom of our hearts and not just by words of fake patriotism. 🙏🏻♥️

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