It is my hope that you are all doing great wherever you are. I promised to be writing something for you every Friday. Well, last Friday I didn’t. The truth is I didn’t feel inspired enough to write something worth reading. My mama once told me to keep my mouth shut if I couldn’t say something useful. I have m y standards and mostly they are based on inspiration. Inspiration comes and disappears depending on surroundings and situations. God had a better day, and guess what, he showed me something yesterday!
I had just woken up early and was into my daily chores taking out empty water gallons to be collected by the Mkokoteni guy, who returns them later filled with water. See, where I live there is no water running from taps. My better half madam was bathing the young ones getting prepared for church service. Suddenly we hear the mkokoteni guy outside announce…….” wame kata kata mjamaa na mapanga hapo nje ya shule!!!!” (they have just mutilated some guy with machettes outside the school). What? I then ask,…..” saa ngapi?” (what time was that?). ” Sasa hivi” ( Rhight Now!), the guy reples. Damn! I rush out….this is the same school that my kids go to and the spot is the same spot that my kids play daily!
As I was getting near the spot, I see a Police Land Rover vehicle leaving the site and think that they have already picked up the body. I get closer and watch a horrific site of a mutilated young teenager nicknamed “daddy” aged 17 who lived in the neighbouhood. I hear someone announce…..” wame maliza mwengine hapo wayani” ( they have finished another one at the estates backyard thickets.). What! another one? Damn!, before I could even absorb this, another person announces…….”wame choma mwengine hapo Bokole” ( they have burn’t another one in Bokole)!!!! What the effffffff! Bokole is a nearby ghetto hood that is recognised as a HOT SPOT in MOMBASA, for MURDERS, ILLICIT BREWS and DRUGS. There is a huge drug syndicate that runs in this neighbourhood called Bokole. The syndicate has lately cost the lives of so many individuals both directly or indirectly. I will come to that later.
After taking in the shock I start noticing fingers cut from this youngster all over the ground. A security guard comes forward and starts assembling the fingers and throws them at the mutilated victim! Another guy comes forward and pulls the sheet that was lying on the side and places it on-top of the victim. I then ask why the police didn’t pick the victim and someone replied “hawaku mchukuwa sababu jamaa alikuwa bado anahema!” ( they didnt becoz the victim was still breathing!) What? GOD HAVE MERCY ON YOUR CHILDREN!
You see what happened was that the youngster lying dead now had lost both parents. The teenager had no one close that could give him hope in life or any moral advice and support. So the teenager just out of ignorance went into drugs and ended up to be like that. I am not defending the teenager or anything, the truth is, if that boy caught you unaware in a corner in the dark hours of the night, my friend you were dead meat! The whole hypocrisy lies here though, while most people knew the victim and had his background information well, no one, not even the closest of relatives wanted such a burden. So they all watched the youngster deteriorate and guess what? These same people mutilated the youngster coldly as the victim was calling out their names to have mercy on him!
Later In the day I had a show performing at some campaign to help starving victims of famine in TURKANA, NORTHERN KENYA. I arrive at this function and gear up ready to perform. Then we notice that the sound is not friendly enough for a good performance, but since I was coming to back up my sister Amora The Poet, I decide to show some love. So we get on stage and the sound is even worse than I thought! What the EFFFF! and I’m already on stage! my turn reaches and I then decide to tell the DJ to kill the beat coz the people couldn’t hear nothing that we said through the microphone. I talk a few words of teaching and resume to rapping without a beat on. As I am rapping fiercely, I notice some astonishment in the eyes of all that attended……….Men I say to myself ” let me do this thing like crazy, i still have the morning scene fresh up in my head!!!!”, I proceed to delivering some hard hitting lyrics and the MC comes forward to take the mike! I ignore him and continue. The DJ cuts off the microphone but still I proceed hitting even harder without the mic this time, when suddenly, I hear someone shout from the crowd….” WEWE UNA HASIRA SANA WEWE!” ( YOU ARE VERY ANGRY YOU!”). Immediately I hear that, I decide to cut the Rap, not because of what the guy has said, but because I knew I HAD DRIVEN MY POINT HOME!!!!!
Of course I AM! See this, DRUGS, PROSTITUTION, GANGS, CULTS, ALCOHOLISM and all forms of the “social evils”, to me are just COMFORT ZONES FOR THE VICTIMS OF SOCIETY AND POVERTY. Society runs on an Informal Information system! An information system has several components. THE PRIMARY COMPONENTS BEING:
2. DATA ( FACTS SUCH AS NAME, AGE, COLOR, HISTORY, RELIGION etc)
3. PROCEDURES ( CULTURES, CUSTOMS, NORMS, TRADITIONS etc)
Now, people make use of data through various customs, traditions etc, as well as the information available, which in turn allows them to make informed decisions. In any information system therefore there is a point of INPUT and a point of OUTPUT.
What I witnessed yesterday placed me in a ANALYST’S position to analyse our system.
Below are some of the leading sources of data for our Society’s Information System:
1 – School: The school system grabs the young ones, these days from as young as two years old, in a class called “BABY CLASS”. So from two years to maturity the school system shapes the thinking of the young ones. In school, people are taught and then examined after a while, the environment is always competitive and so the culture of competing against co-operating is instilled through our education system. After one fails to compete effectively and either drop out or fail the exam, society views such people as failures in life. The person himself feels like one, because all along we were told go to school so that we can have better lives in the future. In my own experience, I went to a missionary sponsored High school sponsored by the Baptist mission. My headmaster was an American called Mr. Basham, Mrs. Basham was our biology teacher! She was kind of cute and when it reached the topic on Reproduction!………men were we attentive! My history teacher was an American as well called Mr. Hix, Mrs. Hix taught us Christian Religious Education. In school people were rewarded monetarily if they did well. The person that came first up-to the person that came fifth out of three streams of classes was monetarily rewarded. So I guess you get a picture of where I am coming from. When someone fails to complete school and has no moral support or faith, they loose hope and trouble begins. Graduates who also fail to secure jobs after completing University are sometimes frustrated and end up in alcoholism, gangs, cults, drugs, prostitution etc, so the sword actually cuts on both sides!
Here is where the COMFORT ZONE comes in because from a young age these individuals have just been shown one way and they couldn’t make it through that way. So they seek the comfort zone as a way to escape from reality or simply to make a living. A thug is trying to make a living and so is a prostitute! The School system clearly lacks the ingredient of instilling the culture of hope and humanity to the young ones from an early age up-to University! A MANDATORY subject called UBINADAMU ( HUMANITY ) is very important, and should be considered for introduction into our schools. For such a subject to be successful, school should also abolish the numbering of students and use a grading system instead so as to reduce this competing culture. The syllabuses should be reviewed to introduce more teamwork approach in handling various activities in every class! Stop giving the students everything……i.e a teacher gives out facts then also goes ahead to give the same students the advantages and disadvantages based on the facts……I propose a system whereby emphasis will simply be based on facts and then it is in these group discussions that the learners come up with the advantages and disadvantages to display their independent understanding of the facts! This will clearly bread a generation of thinkers who can solve problems and get themselves out of various situations in a positive way without losing the essential ingredient called HOPE. Nowadays people just read to pass exams and don’t want to learn anything, they cheat just to pass exams and receive certificates so that they are “fixed” somewhere. You see this is where we are going wrong. Even adults will behave in a negative way sometimes, because they too were brainwashed and don’t know the reality or they fear it. At one time a colleague told me that I hadn’t formed a network with the senior people that matter in the institutions and that I only complained because I had no godfather. Well, my learned friend was actually ignorant of the fact that I HAVE GOD THE FATHER AND NOT A GODFATHER!
2 – Media: Some of our media are not helping either. You see the media is a machinery mostly of the rich and mighty who will SUBCONSCIOUSLY shape your thinking and perceptions without you even realizing so as to suit their specific interests. When you hear a lie repeated many tines it begins to sound like truth. Now, that is what is happening. The reports we always see and hear are mostly based on negativity. They copy the way the western media are doing. Some sections believe that bad news sells and so they focus on feeding us with negative reporting forcing us to live like animals killing all mistrust and faith in us. Daily we only hear rapes, robberies, murders, etc and good news rarely features. News that can open the minds and thinking of individuals is never reported. Things are worse these days. While growing up, there was alot of trust among neighbors, I remember we could be allowed sleep overs. Nowadays people just greet each others as neighbors in the day but at night you don’t trust that same neighbor that lent you sugar or stuff and so in the plot everyone sleeps inside their homes with secured and tightly locked doors! Cultures, norms and practices are also dying out subconsciously as everyone is trying to copy what the west does , as seen on TV and in Movies, so as to fit in the Elites Bracket.
The media should make it a priority to instill humanity in individuals since they have the power to reach a wider majority of people that they can shape positively for the purposes of posterity. Instead of featuring those violent movies and boring soap operas every time, the media can come up with more reality stories and documentaries aimed at inspiring and instilling hope to the masses! By the way why do you keep on showing us people who only brag about how expensive they videos were, or how they cruise along towns in they fancy cars…..If these people have all of that why give them airplay while we have people crying out genuine problems in the slums and want to better their lives positively through HIPHOP….WHY IS COMMON SENSE NOT SO COMMON HERE?
What I witnessed yesterday was an OUTPUT from of our system. There is a common phrase among the IT people that the computer is an INTELLIGENT FOOL and that If you feed it with garbage, then it will output garbage , GARBAGE IN, GARBAGE OUT. Even the police are the way they are because of the same situations. We inherited a system that was built on a foundation of colonialism and therefore the continuity. Currently, it seems, that Police training is supposed to make the police view a normal citizen as a very ignorant individual, hence the way the police treat citizens. So instead of everyone including those hypocrites by the name of politicians begin pointing their fingers at the youth and society in general, saying that they are crazy they should first begin by changing themselves. How do you plant Maize and expect to harvest Beans? A responsible youth comes as a result of a responsible society, and this is only achievable if the primary input into our society’s informal information system, is from responsible sources. Have a good one!