I was appalled by the contrast shown by fate yesterday, when I went to the Exhibition in Nampally. I mean, I saw people spending(literally throwing away) huge amounts of money for trivial satisfactions and a few inches from them stood little kids who were trying to earn a few rupees by selling little toys and candy floss. The sight was so moving that I almost wept out of disgust for this so very cruel, savage world of ours.
And there were little kids who worked as domestic workers, who were brought so that they could carry shopping bags. Screw all those people. How can you buy your child an over-priced ice-cream worth 50 bucks(which the little kid would surely waste) whereas on the other hand you have this another kid, almost your kid's age, who gets paid 50 bucks for a whole months hard work?
I hated myself for whatever I saw but I just didn't do anything. Maybe I could have done at least a trivial amount of brain-washing to those owners but I was too nervous and shy and probably, even scared, to do that. I am so very ashamed of myself for my inability to act.
But, why is it that one kid gets to spend more amount of money in a day than another kid, who is almost his age, is paid the same amount for a year's hard work? Is it fate? Maybe it is. But can't we do something against fate to give that child an equal chance for pursuing his dream, to fight for his freedom and to yell at the world that he is not responsible for his birth. Most of those kids, who are either beggars or work as labourers, do so because of their economic backwardness. Children in overpopulated families, with meagre wages, cannot even be fed properly. Then from where can they get a chance to pursue their education? Illiteracy of parents, lack of exposure and corrupt politicians are the predominant reasons for child labour. People don't realise that their illiterate children would be in the same position 20 years down the line and they in turn would again send their children to work, instead of schools. And the people we elect turn out to be illiterate themselves to understand the importance of education. And even if they were heavily learned, they would be busy making money for themselves. Anyways, lets not blame anyone. It is also because of the inability of us that there exists so much of a gap between children.
Lets not think at it from a social perspective. When a little kid comes to you for alms, either you shun him away or pity him and give him a rupee or two. But it is not pity that the child requires. He wants a chance. And we can't give it to him. We are very busy, aren't we?. Why is it that you have two different responses when your kid breaks a costly vase and your "servant" breaks the same vase? I know what most of you would be thinking right now...What can I do about it? How can I, one man/woman, change the habit of an entire sleeping nation? A nation which has the second highest stats for child labour in the world.
And, I also know that you have the answer for it. Maybe you can't go help out somebody else, some kid you spot on the road(I can't blame you...I can't do it either) but at least make sure that you don't employ little kids or don't let those people you know employ them. Spend a little of your time and money to sponsor a street child's education in your neighbourhood. And, most importantly, stop giving alms to beggars in some distant dream of washing away all your sins in exchange for a few bucks. Discourage children from begging because there is a huge chain of people working behind them, as it is evident from everyday news and movies.
Don't pity them. They don't need it. Just give them a fighting chance.