|'Be The Change'... an old cliche that carries a world of truth.|
Sunday mornings are surreal. The reality of the new week is just beginning to hit you as you try to hold onto the remnants of the weekend. Sunday mornings are the moments when the weekend’s escapades stop feeling as glorious when you tip out your wallet to see what’s left of your last pay check. For some, Sunday mornings are their only chance to reconnect with family, pets and well...God. For Kenyans, Sunday mornings are the times we wait for that Breaking-News update or that lunch-time bulletin informing us of the latest blast or hopefully, reassuring us that there was none.
You probably think that is a gross exaggeration. I mean, it’s not as if there’s a blast EVERY other Sunday... and no, we don’t wait for it with baited breath. But think about it carefully... When was the last time you were genuinely shocked at the news of such a tragedy? I am willing to bet that it’s been a while. We have grown used to the feeling of helplessness when we hear news of 2, 3, or 10 more lives lost. It no longer fazes us. And we have every right to give in to the hopelessness. We have nowhere to look for help, if the killing of 42 policemen in Baragoi is anything to go by. Our security forces are incapable of protecting us. What’s even worse is the fact that at the slightest provocation, they are willing to turn against us. Look at what happened to the poor residents of Garissa after 3 soldiers were killed by suspected Al-Shabab.
Last Sunday it dawned upon me that every time I think about Kenya... every time I REALLY think about Kenya, it saddens me. It saddens and angers most of us... and in our desperation we resort to desperate measures. Like making angry xenophobic comments about communities that we have lived with for decades... communities that have as much right to be here as anyone else. I was so shocked to see the tribalism and ignorance on my twitter feed last Sunday. How can a supposedly educated person watch youths of a certain community getting battered for a crime no one has proof that they committed and tweet about how right that is? Even go on to add their two-cents worth of hate speech?
It’s sad that the state of our country has turned us into these people. I recently listened to Ingrid Michaelson’s “Keep Breathing” and thought that it ought to be our anthem, seeing as we have lost so much hope and all:
The storm is coming out but I don’t mind,
People are dying, I close my blinds,
All that I know I’m breathing now.
I want to change the world, instead I sleep.
I want to believe in more than you and me.
But all that I know is I’m breathing.
All I can do is keep breathing.
All we can do is keep breathing now...
I am tired of being this person...tired of sitting in the sidelines and watching as my country gets torn apart. I want to do more than just to keep breathing...and I will, in my own small way. By calling out anyone who spreads a lot of tribal BS; by refusing to listen to empty promises and lies from our politicians; by doing my part to build this nation; by making sure no one feeds ignorant tribal ideas in the minds of my younger siblings; by challenging my parent’s misconceptions; by making my vote my voice next year; by asking you to do your own small part.