First, they used to call them “cow-vigilantes”. As liberal frustration piled up, this term seemed too mild to capture the true magnitude of their outrage. I cannot say for sure which liberal intellectual started using the term “cow-terrorist”, but here is an example from the Deputy Editor of the Huffington Post (India) who had only recently wanted to invent “caste terrorism” to counter “cow terrorism”:
Can you feel the rage? Well, it’s not enough. Those words simply aren’t severe enough. An article in the DailyO has now coined (to my knowledge) an even stronger term.
I’ll keep an eye out for further additions to the political vocabulary. These days, the great Barkha Dutt is also harping on getting the right term for these cow vigilantes (not something too soft like “son of a poor headmaster” I guess):
— barkha dutt (@BDUTT) April 30, 2017
Meanwhile, you can read this blistering article by Anand Ranganathan on selective outrage of both left and right on the holier-than-thou, left-wing website Newslaundry.
It tells the conveniently forgotten story of Farook, a formerly Muslim man who was recently lynched in Coimbatore for turning atheist. The article concludes with the assertion that both left and right wing consist of hypocrites swimming in selective outrage.
In case you are surprised that this would get posted on Newslaundry, you need to understand that’s what left-wing websites do for “balance”; they keep one guy on the team who claims to hate both left and right equally.
Well, at least the “cow-nazis” they are talking about are actual criminals who have been accused of heinous crimes. But how do you explain a similar ratcheting up of the vocabulary used against ordinary Hindus, who can be accused at worst of overcrowding public spaces?
Terror? Whoa! Let alone grown ups, the increasing severity of language with respect to Hindus has not spared even innocent little children:
Even the kids are being bombarded with heavy words like “terror” and “harassment”. The Quint provided us with a helpful illustration to show that no child, no matter how young, innocent and cute, should be spared the sword of liberal bombast when caught participating in a Hindu festival. Fortunately on this issue, OpIndia took the initiative to explain the elite point of view to the right wing.
Meanwhile, the ratcheting up of language against every kind of Hindu (whether an innocent child or a murder accused) has been accompanied by a proportional toning down of language used with respect to groups that the liberals prefer to associate with.
Just a day before May 1, Firstpost, which probably sees itself as a completely mainstream website, published a reminiscence on “feisty Naxalite” Charu Mazumdar:
So who is this feisty Naxalite who was stalked and then subjected to cruel tortures by the Indian state until he died? If you are from Bengal, you have probably heard of this dreaded terrorist, but for others, Firstpost provides a helpful introduction.
Not a terrorist nor a Nazi. Not even a “vigilante”. Just an “ideologue”. An ideologue who espoused “targeted violence”. That doesn’t take away from the fact that he was so cool and “feisty”, does it?
It turns out that softening language towards certain groups in order to cover up crimes is a cool worldwide trend. In certain regions of Africa that correlate with a high population of believers in the one true faith, there was the horrific practice of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). Until now:
It’s now “genital cutting” instead of “Female Genital Mutilation”. The New York Times Health and Science Editor explains what is behind this hot new trend:
Don’t you dare use terms that are “culturally loaded”. Otherwise, it might offend people who are following the “rite” of Female Genital Mutilation. Yes, FGM can be a “rite”, unlike the Kanwariyas who are just undertaking a journey to spread terror. Or the kids spreading terror and harassment on Holi!
That’s the liberal playbook. Be it India or the US.
What the liberals don’t realize is that the people are on to them. In a world that is so closely connected, in a world of instant communication and in a world where the space for airing opinions has been so profoundly democratized. And yes, in a world that is full of inconvenient “trolls”. They can have all the discussions they want, either on Whatsapp or at chintan shivirs in the Swedish Embassy, but good old fashioned hypocrisy doesn’t stand a chance. Take my word for it.
Meanwhile, I have a suggestion for Indian liberals who are shaking with helpless anger against Gau-Rakshaks but just can’t seem to find the right word to express their rage.
Cow vigilantes, Cow terrorists, Cow Nazis…
Hmmm… still not enough, I guess. Not enough to convey the red hot anger boiling inside you.
Wait a minute! Did I say Red?
Why not try calling them “Cow-Commies” or “Cow-Comrades“?
You know, the Communists murdered at least 400 lakh people worldwide. I bet a term like Cow-Commies or Cow-Comrades can sufficiently express just how much you despise the enemies of liberty. Or is “Cow-Comrades” a term that is too “culturally loaded”? Let me know.
Abhishek Banerjee is a math lover who may or not be an Assistant Professor at IISc Bangalore.