My Republica

Mukesh Baral

The author is Cofounder at Advocacy for Refugee and Immigrant Services for Empowerment (ARISE), a nonprofit organization based in Massachusetts
mukeshbaral@yahoo.com

‘I can’t breathe’ is the cry of a Nepali-American too

Published On: June 19, 2020 12:45 PM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

The streets of the United States of America are swollen with protesters. “I can’t breathe” has become a rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter movement. The #BlackLivesMatter movement started with a murder of Trevon Martin, a 17 year old kid in 2012 in Florida. “I can’t breathe” was hastagged extensively after the murder of Eric Garner in 2014 at the police chokehold in NY. When the murder of George Floyd’s video surfaced, Floyd’s last words on a chokehold of Minneapolis police were: “I can’t breathe.” It has now become a uniting voice against police brutality and racial injustices in the United States, Europe, and other places awoken by the movement.

What do Brahmins actually do?

Published On: April 24, 2020 01:43 PM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

A couple of days back, we were watching a documentary on the Buddha. The narrator was describing how the Buddha challenged the hierarchy based on caste. Since my daughter has no knowledge around the caste system, she was stunned to find that the religion/culture that she was born into divides people up right at birth.

Will Covid-19 make us humane?

Published On: March 23, 2020 10:50 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

There were a very few vehicles on the road. I flew on I-93 and reached Boston downtown in no time. Boston was eerily empty. I pulled my car on the side of the road and rushed to my office building. I wanted to make it quick. I input the codes on the door pad, placed my hand under the self dispensing hand sanitizer, pushed the floor number on the elevator button and took a long sigh of relief when the door opened. There was no one in the elevator, providing all the space for myself. I did not need to worry about the social distancing measure that I had recently come to appreciate. I had not left home for a week and felt uneasy with everything—empty roads, empty elevators, empty office buildings and a mind that had never dealt with so much of safety concern just for getting out of home.

The specter of war

Published On: January 9, 2020 08:15 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Iran has announced that it is withdrawing from the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal. Pulling out of the deal that was constraining its uranium enrichment is a clear sign that Iran is considering acquiring a nuclear weapon. This is a major blow to the nonviolent efforts initiated by the Obama administration to bring Iran’s nuclear-arms pursuit to its end. The assassination of Iran’s top military leader, General Qassem Soleimani, essentially has put the countries on a volatile space.

What are you reading?

Published On: November 24, 2019 09:14 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

We were sipping milk tea from glasses that had shrunk considerably in sizes. When college friends gather, after a long time, there is always a lot to unpack. We were trying to exchange and process everything that had happened since we last met, holding shot sized tea glasses. It felt like sitting in one of those college exams where you must spill everything you learnt in an entire year, coherently in ink, within a couple of hours. Yes, the time too had shrunken like the tea glasses. Everyone was too busy oiling life machines.

China’s insecurities

Published On: October 20, 2019 01:00 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Xi Dada brought hope for Nepal by pushing the narrative of land-linked country, but he also seems to have secured couple of assurances from Nepal which is desperate for economic prosperity

Mummified daughters

Published On: May 9, 2019 01:30 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

The more men required behavioural change to curb their sexual misconducts, the more they found women guilty of inciting sexual urge in them and imposed extra fabric on them

What’s your digital footprint?

Published On: March 16, 2019 02:00 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

We are broadcasting our personal message to the real world and collecting likes, loves, emojis and wishes, instead of doing something meaningful

Torn between two worlds

Published On: January 30, 2019 01:30 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Like all Homo sapiens who migrated around the world, I am split in between the desire of reliving the memory back home and moving on to create new ones in new territories

Movement Nirmala

Published On: December 12, 2018 01:30 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Justice for Nirmala should not end with arresting the perpetrator(s). It should assure other vulnerable girls an environment to enjoy their childhood without fear

Chasing Nepali Dream

Published On: December 1, 2018 12:20 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

A young South Asian, with dark eyebrows, bushy black hair, short but stout built, rushed to serve me. The moment he opened his mouth and spoke few words in English, I knew he was a Nepali. “Chiya lyaunush na hai” (please bring me a cup of tea) I responded in Nepali. His eyes lit up. “A dai, Nepali ho?” It was a statement in question.

To all those fathers

Published On: September 8, 2018 12:15 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Those who do not fulfill their basic fatherly duties do not deserve special treatment on Father’s Day.

Is God dead?

Published On: August 11, 2018 02:00 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

If the question was asked in a philosophy class, I probably would have quoted Fredrick Nietzsche and said God is imaginary creation of human minds

Endangering democracy

Published On: July 12, 2018 01:30 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

King Gyanendra did not have to fire a single bullet to oust democratically elected prime minister. He used democratic institutions to swing his weapon to destroy democratic norms

On refugees, with empathy

Published On: June 16, 2018 12:50 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

We need to teach our kids that they need to stand up against bigoted practices that rip families apart.

Life after near death

Published On: June 2, 2018 12:46 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

A billionaire in a mansion could be poorer, whereas a common man living paycheck to paycheck might be happier.

TPS: Refuge to removal

Published On: May 19, 2018 12:39 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Many Nepali families and their children are living under fear and anxiety. They could be packing their bags to go to their parents’ countries

Keeping the Nepali roots

Published On: May 5, 2018 12:41 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

Life of Nepali language and culture in the US largely depends on our ability to successfully pass it to the next generation.

Howl, for Bhutanese Nepalis

Published On: March 18, 2018 01:30 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

The Bhutanese refugee suicide rate, with 21 in 100,000 according to the recent data, has broken all the records in the US

Teaching children to dream

Published On: February 18, 2018 01:00 AM NPT By: Mukesh Baral

This generation needs a different education with different sets of books and an environment to dream crazy. Are we ready to invest in the generation of spacewalkers?