Are you a SOCIAL CHANGE CRUSADER or CRITIC? Discover and Apply The KHAN Model of Social Change.
Posted by olakunlesoriyan
Our focus today is to draw lessons from the raging successful CNN show – The Truth Alone prevails. The show highlights sensitive and prevalent social issues in India. Season 1 of the show garnered 1.2 billion impressions on the web and it ranked as the most talked about new show on social media all over the world. The response from political powers in India has been amazingly positive. Different changes have been made simply because of the show. It has become a major rallying point for change in India.
Aamir Kahn, the man behind the show is an accomplished Bollywood actor, producer and director. On 30th November 2011, Kahn was appointed as national brand ambassador of UNICEF to promote child nutrition. From his inspiring efforts towards social change, I want us to draw lessons I will call the KAHN Model in considering what our contributions should be towards nation building.
The truth we must face is that arm chair criticism and name calling will not help the progress of our nation. Nelson Mandela in the book – Long Walk to Freedom shows us the way to think. He wrote, “It was during these long and lonely years that my hunger for freedom of my own people became hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man’s freedom is a prisoner of hatred. He is locked behind the bar of prejudice and narrow mindedness. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robed of their humanity. In prison, my anger towards the White decreased but my anger for the system grew. I wanted south Africa to see that I love my enemies while I hate the system that turns us against one another.”
What will empower us to be crusaders of social change and not judges is to understand that the oppressed (the masses) and the oppressor (power centres) are victims and both must experience emancipation. The judge finds the guilty party and declares the punishment. He is not necessarily interested in behavioural transformation. The crusader however is interested both in the offence and the offender. He loves his enemies but hate the system that turn us against each other.
We all need to be crusaders, not judges or critics. The system is the real adversary and the idea that people are the system is not necessarily true. Yes! I say that because the system is a culture and a code of thinking, attitude and behavior, it is unwritten. It doesn’t have a voice but has the capacity to teach and programme everybody. It must be wrestled as an independent entity different from the power centres.
In discussing the KAHN model, KAHN is not a critic but a crusader for social change. KAHN uses his celebrity influence to solve India’s greatest problems. His approach has been to create change through the power of facts, figures, persuasion and participatory ideology. KAHN challenges every citizen of the third world nation to take responsibility for the change we desire in our nations and throws a bigger challenge to celebrities and public figures in our nation to employ their popularity and resources to solve credible and demonstrable social problems, TO NOT JUST ADDRESS THEM BUT SOLVE THEM.
Change is a science that starts with sowing seeds of critical thinking about social issues in the mind of the people and end at achieving social change through mind revolution. Social education always precedes lasting social change anywhere in the world. I therefore urge our celebrities and public figures to give considerable thoughts to this in the New Year.
We can’t be onlookers. We must act peacefully, decently and in order. It is time to take a stand for mature and strategic social change by investing our God-given resources in peaceful, purposeful, compelling and solution-carrying social interventions. I use these words because not all noise can lead to value and not every drive can lead to change except they are qualified by these words. This is how it ought to be. This is the Life.