Good Enough To Vote, but..!

As state governments in India pass laws on religious conversion, and political leaders create disharmony by talking about allurement and inducement in changing religions, a poor man who had converted from the religion of his forefathers to that of a so called foreign god, stood in front of a judge in a courtroom somewhere in India wearing a dhoti and a torn, worn out discarded shirt from someone else’s wardrobe.
The judge looked at him sternly and asked, “Did you change your religion out of your own free will?”
“Yes, your honor.”
“Was there any allurement or inducement that made you do so?”
“Yes, your honor!” said the poor man and the courtroom buzzed with excitement.
“What was the inducement offered?” asked the judge peering at the poor villager and getting ready to close the case.
“The promise of an attractive spiritual life and of a God who listens to me!”
“Was there no other inducement?”
“No, your honor, I was not offered any money to change my God, as I was offered by all the candidates in the last elections to change my vote! And your honor?”
“Yes?” asked the judge.
“When political parties offer free TV’s, free electricity, cheap rice, free housing and money in the bank..”
“Yes, yes I know!” said the judge.
“Isn’t that allurement and inducement?”
“I am the one asking the questions!” said the judge.
“I am sorry your honor. And your honor?”
“I told you I am the one…”
“I am a poor man…”
“Yes, I know,” said the judge.
“Poor and uneducated!”
“I know that!”
“Starving and hungry!”
“What are you leading up to?” asked the impatient judge.
“Despite being all this, you have still given me the freedom to vote!”
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“That is the right of every citizen of this country!” said the judge proudly, “and it is my duty to see that no one stops you from exercising this right!”
“Thank you your honor!,” said the poor man and there was a hush in the courtroom as he drew himself to his full height of five feet four inches and said, “If I, your honor, can be trusted with the right to vote a government out of power, then why your honor can’t I the same poor man be trusted to change my religion and my God when I want to, without having to give an explanation to you or any officer in this country? Let me test another god as much as I test a new government! If I am good enough to vote then your honor, I am good enough to choose my faith, isn’t it?”
There was silence in the courtroom as the poor man sat down.


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18 thoughts on “Good Enough To Vote, but..!”

  1. Bob, today’s column is awesome, I am reminded of Solomon’s prayer “Give thy servant therefore an understanding mind to govern thy people, that I may discern between good and evil; for who is able to govern this thy great people”. Bob, God bless you with his wisdom to write such wonderful columns.

  2. As no politician keep his assurance of GARIBI HATAV ,same way no god or faith can do better to human being unless he works for it.Poor people are deceived in the name of god and religion and given faulse assurances and made them to change their faith.Instead they should be advised to work hard to get rid of their worries.

    1. “Taste and see that the Lord is Good” … only after you have voted a political party to power- you can judge if they fulfil your aspirations

  3. Excellent write-up. Hope sense prevails. Just a point I wanted to make: Many call it “freebies,” like free TV, mixer, etc. but I personally see it is as a vital part of the social justice system that delivers welfare schemes. People accuse TN guv specifically of populism, but look at their outstanding growth rates! I think such “freebies” are ways to give back to the tax-payers and at the same time help upgrade the lives of the marginalized. Therefore, this negative understanding about “freebies” should be corrected.

  4. “If I am good enough to vote I am good enough to choose my faith, “is the most valid statement given the prevailing scenario.People should not for get that there is something called right to freedom of religion

    scenario. Hope good

  5. If a man knows about true God who can save the mankind from eternal punishment, as mentioned in RIGVEDA, he will follow that God. Who can stop him. Why states are making laws against our good Constitution?

  6. We can choose our prime minister, but to get our chosen prime minister we need to be among the majority!
    The same criterion applies to our religion too. If not in with the majority…… you know the rest 🙂

  7. Good comparison Bob and I hope all politicians and others interested in religious freedom, truth, tolerance, justice and harmony get to read it… Christians too are involved in getting Jesus Christ elected as Lord and Saviour of people’s lives, but no one wants “rice Christians”, not even God.

  8. Absolutely brilliant , biting yet gracious satire . Bob you’ve out done yourself on a topic that’s sensitive , yet needs it’s hypocrisy to be uncovered .

    1. Sensible.But we also see rich countries offer dole to the have-nots.One may tend to agree that this is inevitable,in the light of rich becoming richer and poor becoming poor.Systemic .

  9. Thank you Bob for handling this crucial topic with sensitivity yet getting the point across emphatically God bless

  10. Excellent.. BOB,
    But how can u target the illiterate / strength of money power motivated & wrong influential powerful people sitting on position.

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