Burger- A Pakistani Elite
© NMPak | Sean Z

Burger- A Pakistani Elite

For the generalized explanation of this term, we have an imaginary character named “Sameer.” Sameer was born and raised in Lahore but often visits Islamabad as well. He likes to be called “Sam.” He is detached from most of the crisis going in his country and the world because he lives in his tiny bubble and calls it a planet. Despite that, he is well aware of all the celebrity gossips and scandals. His favorite singer is Taylor Swift, and he likes to watch “Keeping up with the Kardashians” in his free time.

In the cocoon, he calls ‘World’ are the things and activities inspired purely by Western Culture. He can speak fluent English, with an unidentified mixture of British, Aussie, and American accent (often called the burger accent), but has a hard time understanding or speaking his own language- the Urdu language.

If the iPhone were launched yesterday, he would have it in his hand the next day, in university, as he gets out of his father’s Porsche, wearing Armani and Gucci. He drinks Murree Brewery three times a day and makes sure everyone on his Snapchat sees it, and for that exact purpose he posts the same picture- driving Benz with a cigarette in one the drink in another hand, with loud rap song in the background-thrice every single day.

The night parties he attends tries very hard to mimic the western nightclubs. There he will get high just by smelling the cherry blossom shoe polish. He likes to call him a leftist and often uses hashtags like “GayLove,” “gay-pride,” and “ISupportLGBT” in his Instagram captions.

Since the day Sam was born, he tried everything to emulate the western culture by eliminating the God-forsaken culture of where he was born. But the things he picked up from the foreign culture transformed him into a cringy and annoying person among the majority of people around him.

As the saying goes, “He that apes another will never be himself”; in his life-long efforts at being someone who he is not, Sameer lost himself, his identity. And instead of being a fashion icon, or a celebrity, he became a “Burger”- Someone who lost himself while trying to find his character in the wrong place. He is neither a Westerner nor is he a Pakistani. He is just a Burger.

Sam is a rich, spoilt, but a lonely burger. He is often approached by people just for the printed papers he has to offer, but at the end of the day, he goes home alone. But Sam teaches us, especially the wannabe burgers, not to be BURGER, and not to lose yourself and deprive yourself of a real human connection. Don’t be like Sam.

Our home was a British Colony for hundreds of years, and a lot of lives were lost, a lot of properties were destroyed to get back what was rightfully ours, to safeguard our culture, from the savages who came as traders and became invaders. So, when Indians finally won against these Western oppressors in 1947, the aim was to get rid of their presence entirely from our land, as well as our brains.

However, we just got independence from land, because our minds are still enslaved by the culture they followed, the language they spoke, and the values they possessed. We value the language and culture of those invaders and frown and look down upon our own language and culture.

Our imaginary character Sam is not an educated or modern elite of Pakistan. On the contrary, he is an arrogant, educated-illiterate person who lives in the dark pit of ignorance. The bubble he regards has his world is no less of than fantasy, just like his own identity. He looks down upon the society that brought him up, gave him the identity and nationality, and gave him representation in the world.

He looks down upon his culture, his values, his language.  He likes to believe that his education and modernization are depicted through the language he speaks, the clothes he wears, and the condescending looks he gives to the people who choose to do otherwise.

Obviously, Sam, like anyone else, has a full right to live his life; however, he wants to live, but the condescension in his tone and the superiority-complex, that he most probably uses to disguise his inferiority-complex of being a lonely soul, in his dealings with others is what makes him a burger, and an abomination.

 Sameer is a hypocrite, and so are you if you believe that our rich historical culture can easily be replaced by your idea of westernized and modern culture without any repercussions. Because anyone who believes that is purely delusional, for a person who leaves his home in pursuit of another home, eventually becomes homeless, without any sight of a way that could take him back.

About Mukarma Jawad

Founder and Operational Director at Taleem-ED. Writer, and Education & Youth Activist, based in Pakistan.

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