Monday, November 13, 2017

New Law: You can be jailed for criticizing Kuwait

Ok, I don't how what the scale on "criticizing" is.  Can you criticize people?  Environment?  What?  The Kuwait constitution states

"Article 36:  Freedom of opinion and of scientific research shall be guaranteed. Every person shall have the right to express and propagate his opinion .verbally, in writing or otherwise, in accordance with the conditions and procedures specified by law"

So I guess the last part now applies to this new law, but how is it quantified?

Kuwait was built on diversity and different perspectives.  People didn't drop from the sky or pop up from the sand; they came here from different places.  They made it a country full of nomadic herders, pearl divers, traders, fishermen.  Now, people have different trades, but they are coming from different places with different backgrounds and different perspectives and calling it home.

I've lived in Kuwait for 22 years.  I wouldn't have stayed if I didn't love it. I wouldn't have moved here for a lower-paying job (true story).   Actually, I wouldn't have made Kuwait my priority in 1990 and 91. I wouldn't have helped Kuwaiti friends - then or now.  Prior to coming here, I was pretty vocal about how much I like Kuwait and promoting it to others.  My family got a little tired of hearing me talk about it.  Kuwait has been second home to me for a very long time.  I left my family, a job, my friends, my possessions, to come here in 1996 because I fell in love with this country.

But... like my first home... no place is without issues.  If you can't talk about issues and have it termed as "criticism" how does anyone address them?  How do different perspectives help a country in bettering itself?  

Some might add that that isn't my job.  Or yours.  Or any other individuals.  But individuals make up a country.  

"If you hate it so much, go home."  

Who says that you have to hate an entire country to hate specific things that are happening in it?  I hate pollution.  I hate it in the US. I hate it in Kuwait. I hate animal abuse.  I hate violence.  I hate poverty.  I hate hunger.  I hate homelessness or unfairness or or or....  Is that criticism or a voice to educate others on what is happening and how to resolve it?

No country, no person, no thing is perfect.  To what extent is "criticism"?

1 comment:

xmido said...

I hate racism. Toward anyone. Expat or Kuwaiti. We live in a world without borders except artificial. I lived her as long as any Kuwaiti if not even more. Go home doesnt work on me because Kuwait is my home. When people ask me where you from in my country. I don't even know because I didn't live in my country. My parents did not me. I noticed in the quake news, they use expats when it is something negative and use resident when they are trying to be nice. Like insuring safety of Kuwaitis and residents during the quake. They didn't say expat.