Mauritius’ Independence celebration day.

The time-honored symbol of the Mauritians’ history and ideals: The Mauritian Flag, Our Flag, owned by the people who stand for basic democratic values, mass participation in politics, free speech and civil liberties.

Since founding the nation, we have more explicitly championed the idea that patriotism means loyalty to a set of principles; ideal principles that not only ask, but demand for dissent, criticism and an actively inquisitive body to challenge those in power who may violate those standards.

And when a group of conscientious citizens activate this patriotic right to voice an opinion, they embody that nation and can live and breathe the true definition of patriotism, regardless to one’s political or social affiliations.

It does not matter how you are going to celebrate your patriotism, with salutes or beer or barbecue or visiting memorials, as long as it is recognized and profoundly appreciated for the value and power it holds as a vehicle for social progress rather than a dogmatic commandment for blind nationalism.

Ultimately, it is these values that define patriotism. And as long as we continue to challenge the betterment of our nation through our association with these philosophies, then together as a nation we can consider ourselves patriotic.

My salutes to the courage of those who made me proud of being a Mauritian and a real patriot: Jameel Peerally, Alain Bertrand, Cederix Babajee, Havish Gokool, Mervyn Anthony, Ally Lazer, Salim Muthy, Sadien Eddy, Jeff Lingaya, Bizlall Jack, Habib Mosaheb, Hector Tuyau, Vassen Kauppaymuthoo, Zaheer Allam, Tan Yan​, Astrid Souchon​ and many more activists who stand for the right rights and causes.

Happy 12th March Mauritius

Anshika Sawaram

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Mauritius’ 46th Independence celebration day, marks the day when the remote Colony of Mauritius obtained its independence from Great Britain in 1968, became a sovereign nation before turning into a Republic in 1992. The Independence Day ended nearly 200 years of British rule of the island. The first prime minister and architect of independence at that time was the late Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, leader of the Labour Party. On the 12th March 1968, then the British Governor General of Mauritius, Sir John Shaw Rennie, handed the four-coloured flag to SSR. The Mauritian nation was born.

However today, Celebrating our Independence Day seems to be dealt with, with a very low sense of patriotism…

Each time 12th of March rings, four coloured flags flower at each angle and corner of the island… AMAZINGLY though, it is still heartbreaking to see how we all react vis-a-vis our native’s situation; living, social, economical…

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Fifty Shades of Grey a story of troubling and influential fantasy.

I waited for the “Fifty Shades of Grey” crase to come to a reasonable point to urge one to give it a healthy thought.

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What is a fantasy?
From Freud to Ludacris, it’s been an elusive idea, suggesting both an escape from reality and an expression of hidden desire. In culture, fantasy works like a mirror: It reflects who we are, but it also shapes what we become.

But the Fifty Shades of Grey movie is a troubling and influential fantasy targeting a large mainstream set of women. It’s incredibly straight: Ana and Christian stick to maximally traditional versions of femininity and masculinity. The BDSM (Bondage, Discipline/Dominance, Submission/Sadism and Masochism) play and fetishes are related to mental issues where we normally refer BDSM as a new standard for hot—which Fifty Shades is helping it become—. Fifty Shades eroticizes sexual violence, but without any of the emotional maturity and communication required to make it safe.

Right now there is an interesting tension between the mainstreaming of S&M (Submission/Sadism and Masochism) that Fifty Shades represents and also the mainstream horror at rape culture. There’s an increasing vigilance against rape culture on the one hand and the easy acceptance of pornographic S&M on the other.
Sadly, mainstream culture has come to look more and more like pornography and this can be reflected on the way people project their sexuality on social media, imitating gestures and facial expressions from porn. “If you look at somebody’s Facebook page, or selfie culture—the way people are presenting themselves for cameras is much more sexualized than it once was,” she said.

BDSM and S&M inevitably represents and propagates violence against women—largely because it dehumanize them.
“Women in pornography are turned on by being put down and feel pain as pleasure. We want it; we beg for it; we get it,” MacKinnon wrote in her 1988 book, Feminism Unmodified. But this comes at the cost of seeing women as real people, she said: “Only when self-respect is accepted as human does debasement become sexy and female; only when avoidance of pain is accepted as human does torture become sexy and female.”

Sexuality, which has historically been rooted in power dynamics, and perhaps sexist power dynamics—have those instincts or preferences been eradicated by our new understanding of equality? And if not, what is to be done with them?
This is not an easy question, but the answer offered by Fifty Shades is insufficient. It’s one thing to explore power dynamics; it’s another to use power to manipulate and control your partner.

In a 2000 paper, the legal scholar Robin West wrote that “the ethic of consent, applied even-handedly, may indeed increase the amount of happiness in the world, but women will not be the beneficiaries.”

The rather inescapable fact is that much of the misery women endure is fully “consensual.” … Put affirmatively, the conditions which create our misery—unwanted pregnancies, violent and abusive marriages, sexual harassment on the job—are often traceable to acts of consent. Women—somewhat uniquely—consent to their misery. An ethical standard which ties value to the act of consent by presumptively assuming that people consent to their circumstances so as to bring about their own happiness—and by so doing thereby create value—leaves these miserable consensual relationships beyond criticism.

And even when people have a sophisticated understanding of sex, movies offer little to model healthy sexual encounters beyond the threshold of consent.

It’s one thing to ensure that all sex is legal, and that everyone is free to have sex based on their rights as individuals. It’s another to have a culture that encourages people, and particularly young adults, to seek out sexual encounters that are emotionally constructive and based on affirmative values of mutual respect, dignity, and care. As Catharine MacKinnon wrote in 1988, “It is not that life and art imitate each other; in sexuality, they are each other.”

In an interview, Esther Perel, a sex therapist and the author of Mating in Captivity, said, “I find it amazing that this country at this point is going to spill quantities of ink talking about Fifty Shades, when it doesn’t even have a basic education on sex. It’s like you’re introducing alcohol to people who haven’t had any water in years.”

But that’s exactly why it’s so important to pay attention to the Fifty Shades fantasy.
I seriously recommend one to read this “A psychiatrist’s letter to young people about Fifty Shades of Grey”