Children have always been a part of any society. Whether stable or not, children will always be a constant presence everywhere at anytime.
The mere fact that a child is a child makes them special. They represent the present, but are also a symbol of the future.
Way back in Africa, children meant only one thing, power and continuity.
The establishment of any African family whose presence was felt in any given dynasty or kingdom was only determined by the number of children they made.
In other words children were directly proportional to wealth because wealth meant power. No one dared to violet a child because their value was so great.
Due to the constant nurture and close watch of their mothers, children flourished. More importantly the boy child flourished because he was bestowed with other cultural masculine qualities, than the girl child.
Today, the above thesis has faded. Just like an old rugged piece of land, easily depreciated blown away by the wind, children are vulnerable.
Look at Darfur children are vulnerable to disease and hunger. In search of freedom, they run away from home, cross the desert on the way to Ethiopia, prey to Lions and other wild beasts, they are now called the ‘Lost Boys’.
‘Lost Boys’ because the girls never make it through, they are abducted by militia turned into sex slaves.
This is a scenario of girls bearing babies whose fathers are mysterious. Babies recycled in the chain of despair to do exactly what their parents did.
Look at Somalia where children are caught in between firing bullets. It’s not their fault that they are born at a time when everyone appears to have lost it.
They have no clue whatsoever, to the reason of the conflict. When a child is born, instead of being nurtured and taught to count numbers, they are taught to count bullets! Their minds are fed with dangerous propaganda.
Their only dream is to become pirates because it is their only hope of a future existence.
These are just a few case scenarios, but the results are generational. What happened to the value of a child?
They are special are not are they not? The value of a child and the mere fact that it has been abandoned is simply unacceptable.
When we hear ‘Children Rights’, it’s a simple, uncomplicated word that means, let children be children. They have a right to be; heard, listened to, educated, well fed, healthy and loved.
Let a child be a child.