(Disclaimer: this is a work of fiction. Learn to take a joke; you’ll live longer.)
LAHORE – Having struggled with upholding the progressive label of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Supremo and three time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif over the past two and a half years, self-doubting liberal Mairaj Bashir, 52, is now dreading the prospect of having to cheer for Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) Chief Fazlur Rehman.
Mairaj Bashir, a professor of social sciences at a leading university, on Wednesday was looking at himself in the bathroom mirror, feeling icky at the political narrative that he is now upholding.
“Mairaj, you overlooked the entire history of Nawaz Sharif, because you felt that he has transformed and is now standing up for all the right things. That was hard to do – and still is,” he said out loud.
“Then you gradually accepted the fact that the Pakistan People’s Party that you long supported was never really secular or liberal despite its claims, and definitely doesn’t do anything deserving of those labels these days. That was hard to do as well,” he added.
“But now your peers ask you to support Fazl-ur-Rehman. Yes, a rabid anti-Semitic, Islamist cleric, who wants to enforce Sharia in the country, just because he is on your side of the fight this time around. I can’t even begin to…”