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Beware the children!

Beware the children!
March 20
07:57 2018

Political parties have a responsibility to ban wayward cubs from social media and send them to army-led boot camps to learn self-restraint

The Social Podium is a citizen to the core. As such, it will not behave like those who always feel compelled to declare their political affiliation before making certain comments.

You see, people have been beaten into submission by political bouncers. The disempowered feel guilty about commenting on the affairs of their countries because political guards have a bad habit of wrongfully accusing citizens without substance. Whenever a citizen shows politicians their blemishes, such a citizen is often accused of playing for the other team. The Social Podium believes this is first degree political bullying. It’s the same as accusing citizens of xenophobia when they genuinely complain about expatriate inclinations. Don’t be bullied!

So, with that out of the way, here is the matter: This past week the country’s stress limit was tested in a way that must have bothered all patriots. A young man, at least from the sound of his voice, went on a Hutu-style campaign against journalists and those who criticize his party. I read a bit of what he said, including declaring his availability to indulge in this heinous election-winning strategy. But having apologised, the Social Podium can only give the young man some take home notes.

The notes, however, are delivered to the adults of the movement as genuine advice from a patriot to fellow patriots. After such a red face moment, the party is best advised to revisit their archives and see if they could be misinterpreted by their hungry cubs to mean open season on dissenters.

Time to eat

At this point in the republic, a lot of people believe they know because they have been told that party elders are eating. If there is any question, it would be “how much they will eat before they stop.” If you watch the NatGeo Wild channel, you will know that all predators, given a chance, will put up a fight to protect their kill. Lions are particularly fierce when faced with the prospect of losing their kill. You will also know that in the jungle, eating comes after hunting, and cubs inevitably take part in the hunt as they grow older.

And the ever-eager cubs are on occasion responsible for unsuccessful hunts because they pretend too quickly to understand the role of their parents. In trying to emulate them, they usually spoil the show, prolonging a hunger spell for the entire pride. This is normal in lion land and it’s all part of the panthera syllabus. However, unlike in the pride lands, political parties have the option to ban wayward cubs from social media and send them to the army-led boot camp, just to learn self-restraint.

Fake accounts in defence

I don’t think the young man was born after the 2014 general elections, and I believe he became very much aware of how slippery the political soil has become for the ‘red army.’ He most importantly must have been there when the call to create fake Facebook accounts to defend the party was made by the elders. He must also have been there when one elder threatened a pastor with banishment from praying at government gatherings. The pastor’s crime was his anti-government prayers or something like that. The message in these two incidents must have been very clear to the keen-eared: Threaten my livelihood and I will fight you with everything.

A few deaths here and there

This one is for the record books. Yet another elderly pronouncement was made years ago that with its credentials, the Republic’s image could not be tainted by a few deaths. I don’t like interpreting people’s words, but this one was too tempting. It actually sounded like our “good global image” was enough insurance to allow us to cause or at least permit a few people to be killed by whatever kills people. Mind you, this was when there was an outcry about extra-judicial killings and their likelihood to tarnish the country’s good reputation.

These words, dear forgetful citizen, were uttered by party elders. To be fair to the young man who found himself apologizing, he must have taken this as party culture and probably trusted the party to be fascinated by his ‘joke!’ This to the Young Turk was the party script, which he just took up a few decibels without realising the Richter scale impact of his call to arms. Luckily for him, forgiveness in our society is still a value that is accorded the remorseful.

My reason for jogging the readers’ memory about the above past events is not to put the dear old party in a bad light. Rather, it is to highlight the need for elders to guard their speech, especially in the presence of children. Otherwise, the party may find itself hard pressed to defend itself against attacks, well-placed or ill-conceived. As of the young man, I am sure by now he knows that jokes make people laugh.

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