There is an intolerable stench emanating from the societal fabric today. A filth in wealth held by a small class of elites who are always in a perpetual contest to gain superiority as they run the world at remote control. Issues like climate change action, and disarmament that could curb threats to the future of the world are kicked under the carpet.
Worst of all, we’ve ignored nature’s generous endowment of one another with inalienable, intrinsic, and inherent worth. It’s human folly! Men have won the ‘Nobel prize’ for living up to the neo-liberalism teachings that say, ‘one must never intrinsically value another. No such thing as human beings. There are resources to be exploited.’
Countless stories of excruciating pain and tears linger in my mind at the memory of several women working at construction sites that are being asked to serve their divine bodies to insatiable men as sacrifices for jobs that earn them two dollars a day. It’s unimaginable that a widow with a child can be fired by her boss at a construction site for failing to have sex with him. A ruthless man, with no remorse, bargains for a woman’s body and adds a condition that it must be unprotected sex for her to retain the job. Is there anything worse than this in modern era? Voices of young women are suffocated as several men are out there predating, scavenging and looting them.
It’s real! It’s happening! But due to the social mass delusions, we are so detached from the world, so disconnected from the actual challenges. What we study in school, what we watch in movies, what we read in books, it is all filtered content intended to stimulate a feeling of what’s happening out there.
The media paints an obscure image of a diminishing patriarchy, but intentionally declines to highlight a sad truth — having more women in high political positions, in the limelight, doesn’t imply that generic, groundwork, women emancipation is achieved. It is a commendable achievement, however, this is just a high percentage of the few elite women representing at the high levels. Still, the vast majority is drowning in misery, extremely susceptible to toxic masculinity. To them, the world and its affirmative action agenda is an imagination.
Our unprecedented wisdom though should be core in raising awareness but never branding us smart, witty and sophisticated academic degree holders with a high sense of entitlement, for shielding a problem rather than deal with it. A blatant trait we have honed over time, opting for quick fixes and here we are conforming to every worldly pleasure, as we, willfully, would rather “facebook” than think about how to solve the world’s greatest challenges and then claim to be enlightened. Isn’t this a sham, dim-witted cruelty parading itself as enlightenment?
We face, seemingly, insurmountable challenges not because we are short of solutions, but we have chosen narcissism, self-destructive greed and reckless spite as we want to take on everything in order to emerge as those little heroes and heroines, to be announced for awards. Pretending to focus on highly televised issues and ignore the roots of actual challenges that are within us! Next to us.
To effect change, we don’t need to turn the world around. We just need to reignite, redefine one person’s life and that will make the world a better place. We should abstain from this belief that the world can only be a better place when we work with huge numbers at the start. Ultimate change starts with oneself and extrapolates to include others.
If anyone has a deep conviction to change the world, our sole duty as the youth, support the woman next door. The one looking around for an opportunity and is being asked to strip in exchange, is one out of hundreds of thousands whose stories of sexual harassment and rape sound self-inflicted but are not. Yet these are the ones we have ordained with the rights to raise future generations as per societal gender roles in parenthood. These women are extremely hardworking and supporting them to run their businesses counts in helping them achieve financial independence. Channel a few coins of your monthly earnings towards financing charities that genuinely do the groundwork of helping women improve their lives. Once we take it upon ourselves to better the life of a woman, we will then gradually make everyone’s better.
The author is a student at the African Leadership University