Monday, May 13, 2013

Hypocrites, one and all.

It must be stated at the outset that we do not - NOT - approve of the goings on in Mombasa. Even in the most liberal of democracies or the most laid-back of autocracies, bestiality must be frowned upon and snuffed out before it rages like a prairie fire. What happened in Mombasa, and it has happened before, should not be seen by the fairer of the sexes falling on hard times as a legitimate way to earn a living. The men, and it is always men, who contrive to entrap our children in a life of licentious abandon without considering the imperiling of our children's immortal souls must be found out, prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and hounded out of our country never - EVER - to return.

The moral fabric of this nation is in shreds. We all have had a hand in the sorry state of affairs that we find ourselves in. It is not just the sordid tales of bestiality that prove this to be so - the unquenchable thirst of our elected representatives for the sweet honey that is the Consolidated Fund is a pointer to how low we have sunk. The pursuit of mammon at the cost of our morality has become the raison d'ĂȘtre that is consuming our youth. A year ago, a promising post-graduate student was murdered in unclear circumstances. The rumours surrounding her early passing revolved around illicit narcotics and prostitution. Her name was dragged to the mud. And yet to date no one person has been detained for her death; her parents continue to live their lives not knowing whether their child had fallen victim to gangsters or was a participant in some other sordid tale.

For a decade now, sex-for-grades has been an open secret in our institutions of high learning. Young men and women (yes, men too) are compelled to offer sexual favours to men and women who should know better in order to graduate. It is unclear whether the students deserved the horizontal grades they receive; it is clear that the lesson they take from the Ivory Towers is that one must do what it takes to get ahead in life. It is not enough that you are bright and hardworking; if that fails, shelve your moral qualms and dive into the quagmire. It is the only way that your name will appear in lights and you will be the envy of your peers.

The Roman Catholic Church is among the oldest, most influential and wealthiest organisations in the history of mankind. Yet, in the Twenty-first Century, when not only the soul but the body is at risk, it insists that the moral code it has enforced for millennia is the only code that may apply in our lives. In Kenya, today, it is an open secret that whether one is married or single, in a committed relationship or still searching, sexual libertineness pervades the land. It rare person who has only the one sexual partner. It is there rare person who will take into account the health risks of promiscuity and act accordingly. In the collapse of institutions, including the church, that kept the youth on the straight and narrow, the explosion of sexual abandon has come at a very steep price. It is reported that at least 100,000 persons in Kenya become infected with the Human Immuno-deficiency Virus that sometimes blossoms into full-blown Acquired Immuno-Deficiency Syndrome. This does not take into account the hundreds of thousands more who are stricken with sexually transmitted infections such as syphilis or gonorrhea. Blind to this fact, and blind to the continuing suffering of our youth, the church argues that the use of prophylactics is against God's will! You invite the wrath of the Cardinal and the Archbishop if you use a condom to keep your body safe from infection.

It is with regard to sex that you can tell how low we have fallen. But sex is just one of the areas where we can measure our moral strengths. IN other areas, we are just as condemned. We turn a blind eye to our friends and relatives when they steal; we argue that every one does it and it is the poor sap who will not take a five-fingered discount when the opportunity presents itself. We turn a blind eye to the neighbour who uses violence, whether physical or linguistic, against their family. We argue that what happens behind closed doors is the business of the residents of that house. We celebrate our young when they cheat to pass their exams. We argue that the ends justify the means employed. We are not shy about cutting corners when constructing buildings. And like the proprietor of the ill-fated building that collapsed recently in Bangladesh, we will scurry and hide from the long arm of the law when disaster strikes.

The moral messages we pretend to impart on our children are the empty words that we offer our creator every day we lie, cheat or steal. We should no longer be surprised when our youth, seeking the lucre that comes with being bad, engage in risky acts to make a fast shilling regardless of the risks to their lives or their souls. When we allow anyone and everyone with a fat wallet to get away with murder, we have no business feigning outrage at the immoral acts of those that get caught.

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