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I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I have been hearing one group of people saying “Maithri won because of North and East votes (Tamil and Muslim votes)” and another group of people trying to prove that Maithri received many Sinhalese votes and did not win because of the Tamil speaking people’s vote. I heard some said that “Gampaha district was won by Maithri because of the Catholic/Christian votes”. Are we still living in a society which is divided by race and religion? Is it logical to argue on the racial or religious lines? Are not Tamils, Muslims and Christians citizens of this country? Does this mean we have to strip off the voting rights of Tamils, Muslims and Christians?

The fact that race and religion played a big part in the election campaigns and how some politicians misled the people with false allegations will always lead to these kinds of statements by the supporters of the candidates. I am troubled by the fact that we are still continuing to talk on race or religious line and try to justify which group elected the new President.

I believe that Sri Lankans elected the new president, not Sinhalese, Tamils or Muslims or Buddhists or Christians. Every single vote mattered. If Sinhalese in the south did not vote, or the Tamils and Muslims in the north and east did not vote, the common candidate would not have won. Each vote was important and everyone played a part in the victory.

It is time for us to move to an era where we will not be divided by the race or religion we belong to, but will be united by the fact that we all belong to the great nation of Sri Lanka and are equal Citizens of our beloved motherland. We must learn to live together as brothers and sisters and love each other unconditionally. We should stop spreading racial and religious divisions and hatred.

I believe that we all are facing the right direction now and all we have to do is to keep walking on this new path under the Leadership of our new President. This is just a start and we have a long way to go. It will not be an easy task for our new President (with different parties with different agendas in his coalition). But the beauty of this so called “unholy coalition” (as accused by the losing candidate and his supporters) is that there will be checks and balances and one party cannot do whatever they want! This is the beauty of our democracy and it is critical for good governance. If JHU, TNA and SLMC can come under one umbrella for a common cause to protect the country, we can say for sure that all of them love our motherland and are proud to call themselves Sri Lankans.

This is an unexpected new opportunity given to all of us to change our society and bring back good governance. Few months back, who would have thought that the Rajapakses could be defeated? But here we are today, with a great opportunity to rebuild the country. We as the Citizens of this motherland should hold our new President accountable for the promises he made. We have a long way to go to change this divided and broken society. But we can do it. We all need to play our part in this change process.

Let us remember what Martin Luther King Jr once said “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that”. Let us not live in the past. Let us create a society which loves one another and respect each other.

  • DT

    This truth must be riverted into every sri lankans head that we allare equal citizen of sri lanka. We need no desparadao’s taking our future again and again…

  • Danusker P

    Thanks for sharing this. I really do like the analysis of your writing

  • Junior Pusswedilla

    Yep correct DT, government can use the state television to spread the ‘propaganda of love and harmony’ 😉

  • hilmi

    citizen of srilanka choose new president as their will so they should support him on his development of the country also we all should think that we are srilankan
    srilanka is a buddhist country but we shall should salute the president and buddhist people they are given all the other religion to practice their religion(muslim .tamil christian & etc) in 2015 will be the prosperous new year tothe people of srilanka

    • Rupesh Hari

      You are as terrible as those who divide the country. The right to practice one’s religion is not one given by the Buddhist or by anyone. It is an inherent right of the muslims, hindus and christians. Don’t be such a racist. You are the problem. You see this country as Sinhalese or Buddhist or whatever the case may be, rather than seeing it as a country of Sri Lankans.

  • Jayalath

    It is not wrong to think who voted you , of course you have voted by almost all Muslims and Tamils which should be admitted by you .but what is wrong with that ..they are srilankan . And even a child would understand the reason . The BBS caused troubles to Muslims and Rajapaksa caused troubles to Tamils ,eventually they took the revenge . But we had to deal with tigers for any cost which is for sure , the credit should directly go to Rajapaksa . But BBS was unwanted and shameful .which upset every body .i do not know who regulates the BBS and the purpose of them ,you can see the result vividly .this is good example to them and you can see today what is happening in FRANCE.therefore I believe that people who fallaciously believe that there problems can be addressed on religious mythologies those who will die from them .you can see that Rajapaksa paid the highest price .who did not understood the rationalism . Same thing will happen to all who terrorise the world name of religion in the future .until those who understand the real enemy among us . My worry is those religious mythological sentiments has hijacked our rational wisdom to realise the truth of life and also it has averted the people’s participation for it .

  • LotusPrins

    Religion is still the greatest divider of people. Most of religion is imaginary because it gives us hope and yet it wields such power and keeps us from uniting. Let it always be a Sri Lankan, nothing less.

  • Gana Santhiran

    well said i am indeed proud to see a sri lankan writing in a manner equalling the thoughtfulness of Martin Luther King in looking at every moves positive outcomes. Sri Lankans take a bow for having taken the positive step to wipe out the midnight of racism to usher in the dawn of unconditional love for peace of mind.

  • Lanka Watch

    This is a well balanced article. If MR dropped the communal line of attack and discussed with TNA and found the solution for immediate problems confronting the Tamils like the NPC , unlawful land grabs, excess of army personnel in N/E ,and eliminated the armed militias of the Trio Devananda, Karua and Pillian of N/E , he could
    have easily won the election as TNA had around 1.2 million voters nation wide but he followed the wrong path of
    braining washing the majority that Tamils are aliens and enemies of the state and misjudged that playing the communal card will win him votes. He never realised that pampering the above trio and their militias was hated by the Tamils and MR must be thanked for giving the opportunity for the Tamils to eliminate these groups from the face of N/E as there will be no more of the trio in N/E and N/E can breath freely .Let this be a lesson for the future leaders not to dabble in communal politics as minorities also can elect a president. As the writer said,let us call
    ourselves Sri Lankans and not Singhalese ,Tamils and Muslims. and march forward with the economy of the
    land in mind . India is a good example of communal harmony and the result is success.