As a piece of data, each caste name carries loads of complex information that is immediately perceived and processed by users. It simultaneously speaks of power and powerlessness. It throbs with shame and racist pride. It reveals the history of oppression and the history of resistance. In simple terms, caste names locate the graded inequalities of this society.
So, how can we debate caste without naming the caste location of the debaters?
Let us consider the possibility that the bearers of the words and actions of caste exclusion, humiliation and indignity towards fellow humans are sometimes unaware of the extent to which caste animates their being. They are genuinely puzzled by the sharp reactions from assertive members of the lower castes and outcastes. And therefore are very hurt by the politics of the marginalized communities. My sympathies to them.
But, is it our burden to educate them towards obtaining the skills of civil conversations with fellow citizens? Is it our responsibility to educate them to become aware of the elemental truth about human equality, and that it ought to reflect in their language and actions? The marginalized has to also play a parental role? (Anu Ramdas)