For the past few days, I have butted heads with friends and loved ones about this, and prayed for the courage to write a post worthy of what I truly believe. Infact, I have enough worked on several drafts.
Today, I stumbled onto the MadKenyanWoman's realm, and lo and behold, there it was. The truth.
Here it is: Enough!
I post below a few paragraphs that immediately resonated with me, because this is exactly what I was telling my friends at the bar on Saturday, before they chose to walk away from me and avoid me all night.
"How have we produced this population of Kenyans so estranged, so alienated from a sense of collective hope and a progressive trajectory that they are willing to burn to the ground this national edifice we call our home? I begin to suspect that it might have something to do with the ways in which we treat our people as if they are disposable nappies....first we crap all over them and then we throw them away. Or, first we work them up with visions and dreams of a utopia denied them only by the holding of office by the ‘the other side’ then we slyly make insinuations of how much easier life would be without ‘them’ and then we give them a little nudge and say “oh look, there goes one of them now. And who left this panga lying about in the open like that, all nice and shiny and sharp?”
And then we exclaim in shocked horror: oh goodness, me! However could this have happened? Oh please, please, well, gracious me, whatever shall we do?
On the other hand, whatever can Kikuyus think we are about, saying complacently that “we” won the election when even Europeans who can count are quite able to figure out the implications of votes which add up to fifty thousand and are transmuted into seventy thousand by some mysterious Kikuyu alchemy? It boggles the mind, the sheer bare-faced effrontery of fraud meant to thwart the popular will and carried out in naked defiance of international observers and Kenyan media. We may not have universal education yet, but a good number of Kenyans can count for themselves with a fair degree of confidence in their own tallies. What on earth do the people of Central Province mean, dancing about in the streets like that with joy, when it is evident to anyone who believes in this country that uchawi numbers are self-evidently not a cause for celebration?
There’s hubris, and then there’s Central Province. I am fairly sure that it didn’t help matters. No one has won here, folks. We are all our own victims and our own oppressors—and some of us are guiltier than others.
The drunken man in a bar in a PNU stronghold who leeringly raised his glass to me in celebration of the government being “ours as usual” should, as he nurses the inevitable (and I hope excruciating) hang-over, ingest with his Panadol the human costs of maintaining the feudal principality of Kikuyustan--especially when other people would rather live in Kenya. Where does he think he will flee to, when the flames of discontent spread, as they inevitably will unless we come to our senses?
Amongst the many things that should stop the down-swing of that upraised panga is the fact that our neighbours in the region are deeply inconvenienced by our violent naval-gazing proclivities. It will probably serve us right to be in the position of receiving humanitarian assistance from countries we have regarded with pitying superiority up to now. Perhaps we will then understand that refugees are not lazy people on the dole; they are innocents trying to save their own lives.
Enough. If we are to sink with the ship, let us at least not pretend that all along we thought it was only a spring shower that was brewing, and not a furious tempest. Self-truth is a good platform to stand on and from which to survey this mess and decide what to do next. Enough pretence.We cannot bleat on endlessly about the wonders of our economic growth when most Kenyans have yet to see the evidence of such growth. We cannot leave people out in the cold whilst we luxuriate in the warmth of our riches and then, to add further insult, disingenuously ask them why they don’t come into the light of the fire when we know we’ve barred all the possible means of access beforehand."
In the end, truth and justice are the only pillars for true healing and reconciliation.
Let us all embrace the truth.