A Human’s Letter to Boniface Mwangi, the African by Silvester Kwame

The last time, I sat down to write an article, was back in 2009 so forgive me if the flow of the article is a little sketchy. I wrote that article for payment, not out of conviction. This article is a matter of principle, not payment. It is wise that one sees this video http://www.aol.com/article/2015/01/06/an-africans-message-for-america/21125618/ before they go through the article. The video is about a message an African, Boniface Mwangi. Mwangi (activist) tells Americans that ‘Africans’ do not need their help. Carry on if you have seen the video already.

I have mad respect for Boniface Mwangi in light of all he does for this country. My opinion on what he says in this video does not negate that fact. Let me start with the author of the story who captions the story as ‘An African’s Message for America.’ She is just the messenger so I will not shoot her, but I will tase her a little. I hope that the shock wave will send a message to her not to write such shocking titles. Why would she say ‘An African’s Message?’ Is it not possible for a person from America to become an African, if they he or she would move to African, have children and make it his or her their home? Would the generation that follows be part of the people who would send a message to America, the home country of their forebears? She should have just said ‘Boniface Mwangi’s Message to Americans’ because if tomorrow he received citizenship in Europe would the message still be from an African. I will give the author of the story credit though, because she was careful not to say ‘Africans’ Message’ in which case I would not be part of that statistic sending the message.

Okay, now on to my main man Mr. Boniface Mwangi who posed a question to a woman in the video?
“As a woman of color why travel all the way to talk about women in India when you have race issues in your country that affect people like you… blah… and if you speak about it they’ll here you more because you are local?”

I wish that I was in that room to give him an answer. He got lucky because I even think the young woman provided a response that she was not sure. It seems as if Mwangi put her on the spot though he denies it. Her answer is that she thinks that people in other countries are suffering more. Well, that is not entirely true or false since the level of misery per community varies. What they go through in the United States can just be as equally devastating or worse than what people go through in Africa. She is not my topic though since she is noble-hearted, a person, who is in the same room with someone who has a wrongful mentality.

The reason, I would travel to help someone else in Africa, India, Mexico or North Pole, is to promote the spirit of humanity. That is my answer by the way. A neighbor is a person who needs your help and not the person who lives next to you. The person 5 miles from my station is not unique or different from the person situated 100,000 miles from my station. Saying that we should start from home requires that we define what home is. Is it the four walls of the house? Is it your bungalow/mansion? Is it your city or country of origin? I do not think that it is any of the above. Home is the place your heart grows fond of and the place you feel most welcomed. (I cannot believe I just came up with that on my own). The only acceptable view is that the entire world is our home, and we should not help with man-made boundaries. The person born in Africa did not choose Africa as his or her birthplace. Does that mean they should suffer the consequences of that come with it? Does it mean that they should not receive help since America is busy helping those born in America? Mwangi says that the woman does not know any of the people in Africa who she is helping, and they do they know her, seriously? Does Mwangi know everyone he helps? He can only know them if he is selective when helping and as such, only if he is helping the people he knows. We call that strategic connection, by the way, not help.

Imagine that rodents infest room number five in a house of 100 rooms. It can happen if people in that room did not have enough water and so, their level of cleanliness did not match with cleanliness in other people’s rooms. Other people in other rooms had enough water allowing them to keep their room clean and as such, they did not have any rodents. Now, imagine that rodents in room five attracted snakes, forcing these rodents to seek refuge in other rooms. As you would have guessed, the snakes followed suite and snakes soon filled all the rooms in that building. The resulting situation, disastrous, was preventable if only the people in other rooms catered for the needs of those in room five.

What I am trying to say is that the world is our home and each person living in it can get help from anyone who is willing to give it, irrespective of his or her place of origin. I shall go deeper with this and ask Mwangi, a Kenyan, ‘should the Turkana come to the Kikuyu and tell them to help their own in Central?’ People in central have problems such as jiggers among other problems. I ask Mwangi, “Should the Turkana do this when they have no money to pay for school fees?” I do not think so. That mentality nurtures tribalism. What tribe are you? Where is your birthplace? He is bringing it to an international level, and I will have none of it. I will feel satisfied if this article reaches half the audience he received. Mwangi should note that he is a human rights activist, not a Kenyan/Kikuyu/African or East African activist. First, we are humans. Then we gain titles or identities that we choose as labels to describe ourselves. Remember the song ‘We Are the World.’ He needs a different way of saying whether he has issues with issues with humans in America helping humans in Africa. Those funding his organization should look at the basics of human rights. I am sure there is no difference between the person who lives in the north, south, east or the west when it comes to human rights. I rest my case.

You can call Kwame on 765-714-1876 if you have any questions about this article or on some other related issue.


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