I wonder what life would be in this little dot of an island of ours if we had to live without having to worry about politics; in as much as actually living in a modern democracy where human rights are not only protected, but cherished, and where people would feel free to write and voice their opinions without fear of persecution. I’m 50 now, and reflecting back, I can’t remember a time where these conditions existed here. Nor do I remember a time where in my lifetime that this region, for that matter, has enjoyed relative peace either. I find that I’m holding myself back from writing, for standing up for what I believe should be the norm and when I do write, I censor myself. All because I know – through personal experience – the terror of that 3am banging on the door, the hood, the tight wire-wraps around my wrists, the shoves and insults, the incarceration and the shear terror of realising that all that you’ve stood for, all that you’ve fought for, and all that the moderation you espoused all your life are worth nothing to your jailers and their masters. Their agenda is completely different from yours and they have the tools, all the tools, to ensure that theirs is paramount. So the question remains, why bother? I know I can’t be bothered any more. Not exclusively due to the real fear of the real possibility of incarceration once more, no, but much more importantly because I know that I won’t make a difference and that if I do attempt to do so, then the rest of the country will just continue to trudge along and inexorably and actively try to ignore what’s happening right in front of their eyes just to carry on with their miserable and mundane lives. Future generations shouldn’t be subjected to this. Enough! A solution is required if sustainability is a consideration, and it must be, it should be. A solution is staring everyone in the eye; however, it cannot be enacted without real and courageous political will, both of which are in very short supply at the moment. Realistically, that will has been patently absent for decades, so much so that it has become a de facto standard religiously followed by those in power. Struggles will continue by sincere people in this country and unfortunately some will pay for it with their incarceration while others still will ultimately give their very lives all as a sacrifice to exerting more pressure to wrench those basic rights for everyone to enjoy, and through which future generations can thrive. Some have already realised; however, that life is short and this fight ain’t worth fighting; as such they’ve made exit plans to install themselves in other countries where they feel they might be welcome and in order to allow their children a chance at growing normally. I can’t say I blame them. That’s not an answer for the vast majority of the population though. To them, the only option is to push and continue to push until their demands are met. While they’re doing that, they will continue to eek out a living from the jaws of despair. The end-game can’t be that far ahead. The Bahraini struggle will soon commemorate its hundredth year. To put this in context, the Bahraini story is older than the Palestinian issue.