It is almost unheard of for Lebanon to act in one unit, one entity and one country. Each citizen would rather identify himself with his religion or political leader than as Lebanese. Many campaigns have urged the Lebanese to look beyond their differences and co-exist as one. To me most have failed, since the setbacks Lebanon experiences on a day to day pace is brought on by the walls it creates for itself. No one is interested in the good of all, not even our politician, the very people responsible for this task.
However, somewhere along the way something like football and World Cup qualifications comes along and this melting pot of religions and political parties come together to cheer on our beloved country. Your BBM is flooded with pictures of the red, green and white flag; expats and locals are urging for the win and cheering the players on. Today, no one cares if you are Shiites, Sunni, Orthodox, Catholic and so on all that matters is that you cheer for Lebanon. Days like these you see our potential as a country to come together and how it is possible to set aside differences.
If only that energy could be harnessed towards making a difference and improving ourselves and mentalities to build the Lebanon we are meant to have. I have never been a fan of football myself, not even during the World Cup, a shame I know. But it wasn’t until today that I truly understood the power it has. Someone once told me football is a universal language and I only believed it today. Something that can bring together a population that is so unstable, so rooted into its personal political agendas is truly, truly remarkable.
I recently read an article by Fadi Bitar called The currency of hope. In his post he says the solution to the Lebanese dilemma is leaving the country. I understand his point of view and all but days like these we regain that little bit of hope and see the potential to better our self as a nation. Now what is left to do is capture that electrifying energy and put it to good use. That though, might take some time.
Leila A is a 20-something contributor to LBC blogs and currently studying abroad. Read her latest thoughts on her blog Living as Leila.