The Life And Legacy Of Malala Yousafzai

Freedom is one of the most basic human urge from the moment of their birth. Freedom is one thing that characterizes the essence and existence of the man (Hor Victorson, 2018). Every individual has their own meaning for freedom. In depth to philosophy,” freedom seems to be not only the presupposition of the good life but also the logical prerequisite for morality and moral responsibility.” According to Immanuel Kant, without freedom there could not be morality and life would hardly be worth living at.

One of the most notable figures from those who fight for their freedom till the very end is Malala Yousafzai, a female education activist who stood up to the Taliban and survived an assassination attack and became the youngest person ever to win the noble peace prize. She was born in 12th of July 1997 in Swat region of Pakistan. Her parents were determined to give her every opportunity starting with education. But in 2007 when Malala was around 10 years old, her home town was taken over by the Talibans. Life under the Talibans were difficult, women were discouraged or deprived from the right to education and even shopping at the local market.

Malala’s father an educator who ran various private schools for girls, attempted to educate girls under the radar. Malala herself developed a stealthy route to school to avoid being caught. Eventually the Taliban officially banned girls from pursuing education altogether. In January 2009, the courteous 12 years Malala started blogging at BBC under the pen name Gul Makai. Her writing was deep, thoughtful and beyond the years of a average 7th grader. The New York Times made a short documentary about her and she publicly campaigned for girls to go to school winning Pakistan’s first national youth peace prize, but this put Malala in the spot light sparking the Taliban to target her.

In October 9 2012 Malala boarded the bus from school, she just finished her physics exam and was busy thinking about her Pakistani studies exam the next day, when a masked gun man boarded the bus and asked for Malala by name and shot her in the head, neck and shoulder and she was just 15 years old then.The bus driver rushed her straight to the hospital. She was in critical condition, they air lifted her to the hospital in Peshawar where they found the bullet was much closed to her brain. It was causing her brain to swell and they needed to get her to a more advanced hospital or she would die. The ruling family of united air of emirates offered their private jet which rushed her to the hospital in the UK.

Meanwhile the Taliban released a statement proudly proclaiming responsibility for shooting the girl who was promoting the western ideas in Swat. She arrived in the UK with critical conditions and woke up 4 weeks later. Her survival empowered her to continue her mission to promote peace and expand education. She started the Malala charity fund and helped build schools. In 2013 she spoke at the UN along with it she even published her first book ‘I am Malala’. Bank Ki Moon the then secretary general of UN pronounced 12th of July i.e. Malala’s birthday as Malala Day in honor of the young leader’s activism to ensure education for all children. She went on to win the world’s children prize and in 2014 at 17 she won the Noble Peace prize. Presently she is studying philosophy, economics and politics in Oxford.

Her life teaches man lessons about what it is like when man is deprived from their freedom, whether the life is still worth living without your freedom? From the book ‘I am Malala’ she says, “life isn’t just about taking oxygen and giving out carbon dioxide.” This tells us that everyone is born with a reason and the will to complete their mission. They aren’t here just for living. They are here to do something be it small or big. The freedom to do something is highlighted here. Malala till the present day has never even once shown rage or anger toward the Taliban who shot her. She has her moral values engraved in her she instead said, “I started thinking about that, and I used to think that the Talib would come, and he would just kill me. But then I said, ‘If he comes, what would you do Malala?’ then I would reply to myself, ‘Malala, just take a shoe and hit him.’But then I said, ‘If you hit a Talib with your shoe, then there would be no difference between you and the Talib. You must not treat others with cruelty and that much harshly, you must fight others but through peace and through dialogue and through education.’ We can conclude from her words that she isn’t a fan of violence but believes in the wisdom and the power of words. We can sense the moral values in her words.

Moreover as we see and as the whole world knows Malala has never given up on her rights and always aimed for her freedom and also helped many to enjoy their rights to education. Her problems were never an obstacle but a stepping stone toward her determination and success. She always looked at her ill situations positively and never let it held her back which helped her grow and achieve her goals. “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.” By Mahatma Gandhi.