Saturday 14 February 2015

Nigeria: Where the afflicted have no respite being cobblestones to the comfortable

Reflections on writings before
Every once in a while, I go over some of my almost 2,500 blogs written over 11 years to check if when I have contributed to the global body of social commentary in my own small corner, whether I have expressed the best of our common humanity.
Especially as we are in the Nigerian electioneering season, I have watched with horror compounded by disgust as heretofore respected members of the press and individuals of seemingly respectable views have hitched their wagons to incredible embellishments, amazing fantasies and outright lies – Propaganda most vile.
Reflections on the times
I have tried as much as possible to ignore many of these infractions that are engendered by the struggle to survive and the willingness to rent out the conscience for a while, to the highest bidder seeing that circumstances are tough and difficult.
It is sad that people are left with no other option than to forfeit principle and honour for temporary reprieve, reputations painstakingly built over time squandered for pecuniary advantage that we are in a race to publish the lies with such fervency that the repetition of those reprehensible untruths would almost eventually begin to sound like the unassailable truth.
Reflections on our state
We are up against an entrenched establishment that has made corruption the norm that no conscience exists to moderate behaviour for the better. Impunity is the default licence of the powerful to pillage without restraint, because the system not only encourages it, but celebrates it as the sign of success and the wealthy returns of divine providence.
This has become both the inspiration and the aspiration of many, the access to great wealth without industry and to absolute power without responsibility or accountability. This is how we reward politics and politicians, the powerful and religious leaders, and the stupendously rich with no audited means wealth in Nigeria that each and every contest for electoral office or position to influence has become a fight to the death.
If not that serious, these people clog the courts with grievance, little and large, buying up legal expertise to intimidate the bench into yielding to their demands.
Reflections on comfort and affliction
In every sphere of life, we have the afflicted and the comfortable, so many of the former and a select number of the latter who vie for the spoils of the commonwealth at the expense of the afflicted without any inkling of consideration or humanity.
It is in this area from politics though religion and our broader community we find that the press, the leaders and individuals have amassed into the absurdity and hence commit the atrocity of comforting the comfortable more by afflicting the afflicted even worse.
As we stand today wondering if there still is that difficult expression of compassion in our humanity and hopefully the last breath of life in our consciences, we should ask ourselves whether in thought or in deed, in good intentions or in real actions, in silence or in expression, by omission or by commission, we comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable, speaking the truth to power and bringing change that really does matter and benefit our greater humanity.
The job of the newspaper is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.” Finley Peter Dunne [Wikipedia]
Will Self on The Purpose of Satire [BBC Radio Four – A Point Of View]

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