Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Voting YES or NO - You are responsible for your Choice


"When evil men plot, good men must plan. When evil men burn and bomb, good men must build and bind. When evil men shout ugly words of hatred, good men must commit themselves to the glories of love. Where evil men would seek to perpetuate an unjust status quo, good men must seek to bring into being a real order of justice" - Rev. Martin Luther King, Jnr.


These words by the late Rev. Martin Luther King, sink deep when you think of the task ahead of us. We have a draft of the proposed constitution that the AG is publishing in readiness of the referendum to be held in three or so months time. Both YES and NO camps have set base and each is doing what they do best - using all means necessary to sway the vote to their favour. The interesting difference this time is that the 2005 YES and NO leaders are both on the YES side and this has very key implications. Its a good thing that they agree on this matter. One hopes that they agree for the same reasons and hopefully those reasons are for the good of the country and not just selfish as has been the case for most of our fellow citizens in leadership positions.
I have gone under for the last 19 days since my last post and have been thinking deeply on this matter-The proposed Constitution of Kenya.
What concerns me most is why I will vote whichever way? Why will you vote YES? Why will you vote NO? It has beceme common to hear many a kenyan blame this or that leader for the matters affecting them even when they (citizen) have the power to sort things out. Thus many will vote either way, simply because their spiritual or political leader has said that is the best way to go. It is this suspension of personal intellect and responsibility that greatly disturbs me. This blog asserts that the only way to move this country forward is by having every man and woman take responsibility of their own choice. We must take the voters card, vote in the referendum and elections with the full commitment to stand by our choice. We cannot blame any one for the outcome of the choice we make.
I urge us to read and compare the various drafts while considering why certain clauses have been changed from one version to another leading to what the AG will publish. Having considered it personally, make a decision that you are willing to stand by to posterity. Remember, that history will surely judge us for every choice we make.
Let us seek to "bring a true order of justice"(Martin Luther) and make Kenya the country of choice. Do not allow yourself to suspend your thinking and play along with others. This blog will endeavour to arouse our consciousness on matters of national building of which the constitution is key. This will be by encouraging personal responsibility towards the same.
In Service to God and My Country.
ARMS

3 comments:

  1. I couldn't agree more after much diliberations. However, my concerns are twofold; the first which is now inevitable is the insistent show of inconsiderate remarks by both teams. It would have been more prudent to do all that was necessary to stop taking this nation into a referendum that can easily have us pitied against one another so soon.

    The second is ditto to your comments. The fundamental reason we are in this place as a nation is abdication of personal responsibility stemming from the mwananchi all the way to the politician who still requests "serikali itusaidie" while in power.

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  2. Hello ARM. I have been reading you for a few days now, thanks to a good friend who directed me your way. I read your sentiments above with keen interest because they came at a time when I was thinking along the same lines, but focusing more on corporate, as opposed to personal responsibility and intellect. I have three comments to make: First, I cannot for a moment dare ask my grandmother, grandfather, uncles and other relatives and friends to read the draft and make their own informed choices. They, like the other 27% of Kenyans are illiterate. Secondly, I am increasingly becoming aware of the fact that choices, decisions and opinions are formed through a process that includes personal understanding of the subject matter and influence of other peoples understanding of the same. It is therefore a negotiated process. That is why people change their minds, when something, or someone else introduces other 'truths'. We therefore seem to vote according to what we know, which is a sum total of original knowledge and influence from others. Our friends who cannot acquire knowledge by themselves for one reason or the other get to make these decisions based on transfer of knowledge from those they trust, or those who are in a position to impart. My third point related to the nature of politics - its a game of numbers and the political animal is a strange being. All that matters is a win for them; not for the country and not for posterity. The case of the draft constitution exemplifies this beyond imagination. Was it so difficult to lead the process to the level where the direction was clear enough for the citizenry to follow? I think not. we are in disarray because the political class want us to be right here! The reason why bad policies and leaders exist is because my vote, as an educated, patriotic, exposed, concerned young Kenyan, who has read the draft, prayed about it, sought advice from experts count as much the the vote of an illiterate, easily manipulated, ignorant drunkard who doesn't care for this country!

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  3. Mutuota and Zito. I resonate with your thoughts and share your feeling about the helplessness that Kenyans feel. We have a duty to educate those among us and even indicate what we think is best for this country. But lets leave the decision to individuals to make at the point of the ballot. More so in a country that is becoming more and more literate...even though there are concerns of literate persons who are functionally illiterate. Having said that, I am one person who has decided to do civic education and am using all avenues possible. Lets do our part for history will hold us accountable. Lets keep the spirit up.

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