|R-L,Andew Mwenda & Gace Abaho Sr|
It’s now not a secret, my intellectual friend has officially resigned to have his pen for hire or else he simply doesn’t pay attention to the horrifying realities of the present-day Uganda Police and all there is to the illusion of justice—with false claims that it’s the masses who are bad and not the police; well, videos and pictures if well studied show otherwise. I cannot offer any sound rebuttal if I don’t remind you where it is coming from, see ‘old man’s words’: “Over the past few weeks, the police and its inspector General Kale have been in the eye of the storm. The opposition sees Kayihura, and correctly so, as the biggest stumbling block in their pursuit of power. He has tenaciously blocked their rallies and riots. So they want him removed. They have successfully used social media to demonize him”
What Andrew Mwenda is doing in those words is nothing but being a hypocrite of epic proportions—the direct equivalent of a ‘blinkered horse grazing in a well-ordered island garden; but in a strange way of not looking at the actual importance of new ideas in a terrain so much rugged elsewhere. Because: this blinkered horse deplores the fact that other people take doctrines so seriously. If you don’t do that, we are at the verge of being like the pregnant girl in William Faulkner’s autumn glory—we may not be looking for our fled lover at all, but just traveling for the joyful sheer sake of it”—I know you may want to reach for the feel-good phrase, “Grace isn’t a big deal, just an overnight justice scholar”, I implore you; don’t make that mistake because I am more than meets the eye and you know that so well.
I made twenty seven years two months ago; that surely makes Andrew Mwenda an automatic elder of mine, actually I once held him on a pedestal but I realized that was the worst mistake I ever made. The Japanese often say, “experience is the best teacher but the old ones should not underestimate the strength of the youth”, he has often wanted to paint the youth as uninformed but I will always personally offer myself as a sacrificial lamb to disapprove that impure rhetoric—his premise always begins with the FDC is wrong, how about me that doesn’t even own a card to the party but see they are right?How about he begins listening to his criques?I have time and again challenged him to that and I will still leave this for him if he is to read this rebuttal to the end, the words of Oliver Wendell Sr: “it’s the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen”
These words are going to hurt but I will not hesitate to employ them; Andrew Mwenda as a writer will not have trouble with them I guess. I would get the worst words in the dictionary to describe my friend Andrew but since this is just a battlefield of ideas, I will settle for the easy ones that will help him relate to possibly where he needs to make amends. He is an electronic slave in a huge pile of dirt, in earnest for a person I loved so much, it hurts—once upon a time, the only time he attempted to respond to my rebuttal (that he asked for), he didn’t know the dolt was falling right in my trap; he has since chosen to shut up but only to dismiss every fact there is, that is telling, he is so easy to unhinge. The common playbook of hypocrites always instructs: “keep lying, tell beautiful lies until the gullible ones believe you”, I am out of that league. If there’s not a scam; there’s at least a deception. And the real victims of this political tragicomedy; unfortunately is the common man: if you are looking for someone who fits in this bracket, my signature is appended to it, I am the common man.
|An American kid protesting against Police Brutality|
See this kid; that’s what we talk about when we talk about the real heroes and heroines of our time—remember I am running to be president of the republic of Uganda twenty years from today; the bell is rung and it can’t be unrung.In a continental ongoing justice essay competition I participated in, I wrote somewords on purpose:
“The most sickening part, the top hierarchy is now controlled by those who just say anything to please their boss at the expense of the common man: the direct equivalent of binary polemics, unfortunately the world we live in doesn’t operate in binary polemics, there are a lot of shades of gray. I think it’s only prudent and highly imperative for them to stop pushing micro aggressions every new day with the police brutality, defiled justice system and intermittent corruption in all circles—we are flesh and bone on the inside, on the outside we may have different ideologies and beliefs but let our leaders realize; we ought to live as human siblings: LET JUSTICE BE SERVED”
To choose to wear blinders in a very troubling time is surely to be the real enemy of the people—people that once believed in your intellect until the day you slid in to Cultural Hegemony. I will remind you the words of Antonio Gramsci from his prison Notebooks [p.7-10]:
“Since these various categories of traditional intellectuals [administrators, scholars and scientists, theorists, on-ecclesiastical philosophers etc.] experience through an espirit de corps their uninterrupted historical continuity, and their special qualifications, they thus put themselves forward as autonomous and independent of the dominant social group. Thisself-assessment isn’t without consequences in the ideological and political fields, consequences of wide ranging import. The whole of idealist philosophy can be easily defined with this position assumed by the social complex of intellectuals, and can be defined as the expression of that social utopia by which the intellectuals think of themselves as “independent” [and] autonomous, [and] endowed with a character of their own etc.
The traditional and vulgarized type of intellectual is given by the man of letters, the philosopher, and the artist. Therefore, journalists who also claim to be men of letters, artists, also regard themselves as “true” intellectuals. In the modern world, technical education closely bound to industrial labor even at the most primitive and unqualified level must form the basis of the new type of intellectual. The mode of being of the new intellectual can no longer consist of eloquence, which is an exterior and momentary mover of feelings and passions, but in active participation in practical life, as instructor [and] organizer, as “permanent persuader”, not just a simple orator”—if you are reading this, you know for certainly this is word salad!
Look, you know I have known you for a while now and paid attention to your work, otherwise I wouldn’t do a witty dig on it—don’t be like the people I keep talking about, like I wrote in the scholarly masterpiece on the quest for freedom and justice [see beginning and the end]:
“ [beginning]—If you ask me, the far-most important thing in writing my legacy for the few or many years I have; if I am to have my name engraved upon the marble of history, it is that I shared with the world something that healed someone other than myself—shaped someone’s outlook from the little smatterings of hope to the audacity of hope, that’s what I am working so hard to do and as I have often said, as long as I have life; nothing will stop me.I love to say I have been blessed by the internet through the years (2) and for so many reasons I don’t just take that for granted, it means I am not chasing after the wind: I am going to get grades way above waving a futile flag, the internet didn’t look for me; I looked for it and I know without a shadow of a doubt ‘we are stronger together’
[The end]—Let me say this rather succinctly: “If you are going to wear blinders just to disagree with raw facts that I present(speaking for myself),you will never able make a point in my world, that’s just sheer ignorance that you are exuding—get back to your drawing board and pick better lenses”.
My dear friend Andrew, you don’t have to take anything personal but of course if you choose to, that’s your call: I want to re-assure you that I love discourse; I love debate and I believe if we open ourselves to debate; if our leaders [and; elders] become accommodative to new ideas however tough they maybe, we will see the change we want to see in the world. For me, I live as a universal citizen, like Thomas Paine; I don’t necessarily have a political party and my religion is doing the good that I can. There’s this letter of Paine to the mayor of Philadelphia before he died; it has often been meaningful to me and guides my writing career entwined with activism and advocacy, read with me:
“My motive and object in all my political works, beginning with common sense, first work I ever published, have to rescue man from tyranny and false systems; and false principles of governments and enable him to be free and establish government for himself; and I have bone my share of danger in Europe and America in every attempt made for this purpose. And my motive and object in all my publications on religious subjects; beginning with the first of the Age of Reason, have to bring man to a right reason that God has him; to impress on him the greatest principles of divine morality, justice; mercy, and a benevolent disposition to all men and to all creatures; and to excite in a spirit of trust, confidence and consolation in his creator, unshackled by the fable and fiction of books, by whatever name they may be called. I am happy in the continual contemplation of what I have done, and I thank God that he gave me the talents for the purpose and fortitude. It will make the continual consolation of my departing hours, whenever they finally alive”.
See, that’s what shapes my life’s work—just like you Andrew, my work has travelled all over the world—we may have different audiences both in number and size but there’s so much we can learn from each other. I think therefore, take these words with love, they come from a good place. May God be with you till we meet again.
-Grace ABAHO Sr, A MEMO TO ANDREW MWENDA ON POLICE BRUTALITY.
PS: Views expressed here are my own and don’t necessarily represent anybody [outside the common plight]; I am the only person answerable.