Words Kenyan politics and its politicians dominate the TV shows around these parts. It is no secret that corruption is a problem in politics globally, it comes in many guises: nepotism, the old school network, ‘Linked In’, elitism, snobbery, and various other isms. Holding the notion that the tribal affiliations that influence Kenyan politics is somehow an unbridled kind of corruption that must be stamped out to achieve progress is ridiculous. I would submit that if that is your view then you’re being imperialistic, idealistic, chauvinistic, simply ignorant or you have a vested interest of your own in the mix.
It is those vested interests that are at the heart of those who would criticise Kenyan and African politics in the whole. Would a change in the way in which this country is governed, and your own for that matter, improve its outlook, bring prosperity and secure the future for the next generation?, most likely. Do countries prosper from more transparency, readily accountable public servants and better structured governance?, so it would seem.
But let’s not pretend, dear reader, that serving your personal vested interests is necessarily the appropriate path for Kenya. What my experience here has emphasised for me is the power of the spoken word. I mean the words you use to express yourself, to share and set out how you see the past and future. My words are my influence on the decisions yet to be made individually, and corporately. Once they are out they cannot be taken back, they have entered into the tapestry that is the perceptions of those who hear them, directly and indirectly. Isn’t this why when we hear politicians speak we so often doubt their sincerity? That is why interviewers press and press for more forthright answers because we are all desperate to hear what is being thought as opposed to said.
But let’s think about this for a moment, would you really want your thought life to be broadcast? Since starting reading this piece if all your thoughts were set out on a neon banner above your head would they be worthy of being recorded as a contribution to wisdom literature or enter into your nation’s canon of valued thinkers? Don’t we find that those inclined to share their thought life in politics are marginalised into positions as deputies, or end up as pundits, popular but with no serious impact? If establishment figures such as HRH the Duke of Edinburgh share their thoughts they are respectfully ridiculed. The paradox is that we want to hear other people’s thoughts but rightly so, earnestly defend our own.
Now I love my wife deeply. I have access to a well-spring of love which I tap into to love her to the very best of my ability to death us do part, however, rarely will a conversation pass between us without me first processing my thoughts before speaking. Now there are circumstances when our conversations are intuitive, instinctive and come straight from my heart but all of our conversations are simply not like that. We both know the gravity of words, how they can build up or destroy and we want to take care to edify each other so that we can face the future in union.
What’s Jesus’ take on this you say?, thanks for asking, you’re welcome. He said, that whoever looks at a woman in lust has committed adultery with her is his own heart. Wow, now that’s a standard, is it any wonder the religious leaders stirred the mob against him and arranged for his murder? God knows your thought life, something to think about.
How’s this for unambiguous use of words?