A Refugee's Tale
|Ghanian_ECOMOG_troops_embarking_USAF_C-130E enrout monrovia
Stay away form fire. No going to the river at night. Every mother has some words of advice for her child. “The fear of politics is the beginning of wisdom” were my mom’s passing away words.
I grew up in Monrovia. A city neither posh nor poor. Numerous people passed me on daily basis. All in their coffins of different colours. Yes! Politics was the devil’s game. There was no being in between, it was either yes or no. You were either a dictator or a crazy war lord. The scenario was tough. Hence, as kids we could not see beyond our nose. We had our own dream. “I want to leave in a blue coffin with Mickey Mouse on it”. Quite unlike you limousine dreaming kids of North America!
I got to learn about Galileo. From the eyes of a pair of binoculars. Taken (not stolen) from a sleeping man’s pocket. As a kid I thought he was fast asleep. Now I pray for him everyday.
At dawn, I would look at the skies through the hidden bushes. I would see two objects. I knew one was the moon. The second sparked up my flare to roam this earth in quest of knowledge.
“I’ll send you to Toronto” my mum would say whenever I shared my food with my late sister. Toronto was a word constantly on my mind. Say no more. I must visit Toronto.
The Toronto dream finally came true. The Canadians welcome all who seek refuge. Now that I am here I see politics with a different eye. The media brought me face to face with what politics is meant to be.
I disobeyed my mum. I am sorry. Politics is fun. We just don’t know the game back home. You mean he’s president elect? And he is still breathing? Obama’s rise to fame has been very impressive. Initially I branded it scary. The rain falls on everyman’s roof irrespective of colour.
“Change we can all believe in” has its euphonious value but, many of us fear that it might end there. The intelligent usually come up with some slogan or quote to flaunt their affluence. But that’s the past. Big words are nothing but words. Some feel it’s a “cool” way of telling the world you went to the best school. Well, yeah! Going to a good school does not necessarily mean you are intelligent as he who currently occupies the seat, is a product of one of North America’s best. Stirring the ship in the wrong direction has not been funny at all. Its consequences have been grave. The first teaching of any accredited school should be, ascertain the facts before stating them. Telling the world about nukes in Iraq was baseless. An information, which some believe was obtained from a pub.
The president elect does have work to do. In a world full of countries which have lost their confidence in the United States, regaining such confidence is no small task. Obama has proven he has this gift. Being able to push off a far more experienced Hilary and McCain from the top spot is no mare game. Patience and careful scheming is one quality of a good leader. Obama has it all. I must bore you here. Mum was right. Experience must fear the strength of youth. But does he really need to secure the confidence of other nations who are not at war? Pulling out of Iraq might be a solution for securing confidence. But do not forget, the war is still on. It is a pity it started in the first place.
This is not to say McCain was my choice. Agreed, his medals fight on his chest. A war hero! A Prisoner of war or to give it its fancy terminology, POW. Ha! A war prisoner who made no attempt to escape? An Intelligent and a good soldier. How was he captured in the first place? As far as I am concerned, Mandela is the last of the great heroes.
A black US president? Would that mean something for non-American blacks? What is in it for me - a black immigrant living in Canada? I believe, Obama’s winning ticket might have some impact on the life of blacks all over the world. Do I think he will bring some changes for blacks in America? I am not sure. But, there is one thing I am sure of. Obama, as the first black presidential has been an inspiration for my kinds. Truly, we can achieve our goal through hard work and resilience.
Obama made me realize that running away from politics in my own country is not the solution. The solution is persistent hard work. I know back home, it goes as far as costing lives. But we shouldn't give up.
I really have enjoyed the North American Political scenario. I shall convert my status from anonymous in 15 years when I would have rounded up my first degree, obtained my masters and probably my PhD. Politics has been injected into my blood stream by a well organised North America. Or was it the only thing I inherited from my late father? I have watched politics with the same enthusiasm as an Oriental watches Yao Ming on the MBA. I shall return home to win or to accept defeat.
I will raise my victor’s hand if I lose. I will share my property with others who come seeking refuge. People shall own lands as Liberians irrespective of colour. I shall deMUGABEnize my continent.