I feel proud when I see my country’s name on television or read it in the papers. I feel proud when a fellow bhutanese makes a name, leaves a mark somewhere away from home. I feel proud when people treat the country and name with respect. I feel proud and I am not sure why.
When I was younger, ever since I was capable of conscious recollection I remember being taught to be proud of the kira I put on my body, of the flag on the pole, of the pictures of royals in calendars or papers, of the History but was never told why.
“Why should I be proud of the kira I wear?” I asked once, I was told it was because it was unique. I have seen pictures of people from out of Bhutan who wear clothes as we do, I have seen old pictures where the kira isn’t as we know it now. It is not unique, it has evolved overtime and we have become adapted to it.
Why should I be proud of the flag that ever so majestically wavers in the wind? I was explained the significance resembled by the flag but then so does every other country. Each with their own flag each with a special meaning behind it. Why is our any different than theirs? why should I respect ours more than theirs?
History is rich, history is empowering but why does no one answer the doubts we have? why does no one speak of the wrongs that our ancestors might have done? They couldn’t possibly have been flawless or the flaws might not always have laid on the other side. How are we to learn when all we know is half a story, how are we to better when we are taught good gets rewarded with treachery?
If I was born in any other country, was I to disregard the symbolism of our nation? to disprove all mighty said about it?
Why is where we are born supposed to dictate who we are to become? Why is it supposed to decide how we should think and feel?
Why is a child taught he owes his life to the country before it has barely begun? why are we forced to wear the national dress on days we do not want to, to places we do not want to? Why are we forced to stand up to our national anthem while we pay no attention to someone else’s? why are we taught to respect our writing, not to throw it in the bin but burn it, while others are simply trudged upon?
We teach children to value our own by disregarding others’ and we still wonder why we do not live in peace.