In the United States and Britain–two leading democracies others try to emulate their style of democracy, politicians are often pestered to account or answer for what others say or do that may be deemed inappropriate, wrong, unacceptable or simply controversial.
However, this is usually confined to what surrogates say or do, not what everyone in their respective parties says or does that is offending as such.
In some cases, however, it is necessary and appropriately so to demand that a party leader and others within the party take a position respecting what a party member says or does that’s offensive.
For example, when a moron by the name Todd Akin—a member of Congress in the US, said that a woman cannot get pregnant if “legitimately raped,” there was an uproar across the country and the Republican party hierarchy, starting with its presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney threw the man under the bus and have thus far tried to distance themselves from him.
I say thus far because, if the moron survives the onslaught and calls for him to step aside and no longer pursue the US senate seat he seeks, the very same people condemning him will either abandon their condemnation and publicly resume supporting him or they’ll for sure quietly support and cast their votes for him.
That’s the very definition of classic hypocrisy but it’s alive and well not just in the US but everywhere, including Kenya.
This kind of hypocrisy is infuriating, especially when done with such a straight face and convincing zeal and there is little anyone can do to rid us of it other than to call it out when it manifests itself.
When Miguna was accosted in Mombasa the other day in what others are not without basis suggesting it was a staged event to up publicity for Miguna and his book while dragging Raila’s name into the fracas, many on these fora and some on the ground have started demanding that Raila must condemn these “hooliganism” and violence.
Let’s step back and soberly and objectively examine this demand:
Supposing it’s true as others suggest that the Mombasa incident was stage managed to up publicity for Miguna while dragging Raila’s name into the fracas and negatively so, where is the wisdom in demanding that Raila condemn the act and what sense does that make?
On the other hand, supposing this was not stage managed and instead a handful of individuals took it upon themselves to express their displeasure with Miguna for what he has done or is doing, does someone seriously want to say by Raila saying his supporters shouldn’t do that that they therefore wouldn’t do so?
As Americans would say in a clean version of this, “give me a break!!!”
Raila is on record and so is ODM that violence of any kind has no place in politics.
It is therefore hypocrisy of the highest order when anyone demands that Raila and ODM condemn what happened to Miguna in Mombasa when we know for a fact that these very same individuals will not call for such a condemnation if Miguna was being accosted for penning a book contemptuous and critical of their presidential candidate of choice and don’t let them lie to you that they would.
That’s what I find infuriating and annoying about some of this hypocrisy.
I would give credit to many of those engaged in this infuriating and annoying hypocrisy the fact that few of them, if at all, have actually come forth to say or accuse Raila of having orchestrated or approved this acts of “hooliganism” –and I say hooliganism in quotation because one cannot rule out the possibility this was a stage managed event.
To be sure, Miguna in his predictable rant following the Mombasa event issued a statement in which he desperately tried to link Raila to what happened to him but even his own sycophants would find that one hard to believe.
Talking about believing, isn’t it telling that Balala, before disappearing from the stage at the Mombasa event, told Miguna to his face he couldn’t buy all the lies in the book?
I read somewhere Balala said this in Swahili intentionally because Miguna does not understand or speak Swahili so he was clueless what Balala was saying and even nodded in agreement!
We all should commend Balala, however, for speaking the truth on this one.
Back to this infuriating and annoying hypocrisy, no one believes we can ever do away with hypocrisy in political discourse or in general, period but, we certainly must remain guard against it, especially where it has propensity to cause harm.
When Kenyans on these fora who one can rightly assume are more educated and informed than your average voter on the ground start making these preposterous demands that Raila must condemn what happened to Miguna in Mombasa lest he be deemed to have approved it, it’s not only annoyingly hypocritical for the reasons stated above, it’s also disturbing in that it shows how far we are from reaching an elevation in politics where such simplistic albeit annoying hypocrisy has no place.
We can and must do better.
Let Miguna go around the country trashing Raila in the name of promoting his book for sooner than later, he, too, would come to the realization all these efforts are for naught.
In another blog here, Nothing Other Than The Predictable In The So Called Miguna Book Tour, I said the following which is worth repeating:
I said here before and would repeat Raila could not have been more fortunate to have Miguna as the former aide who wrote this book for the man is not only self-destructing before our own eyes, he is also doing a good job in making him the character of interest in connection with his book, not Raila or his other real or perceived enemies.
Napoleon once said never interfere with an enemy while he is in the process of destructing himself and this counsel has been gleefully applied in all kinds of political settings much to the chagrin of those self-destructing.
Miguna is self-destructing there is no need for Raila, ODM or any of his targets to interfere or help him at all.
Let them watch from a distance and even enjoy the charade.
Supporters should also be encouraged to watch from a distance.
They definitely should not do anything that Miguna and his handlers are salivating they do so that they may pounce on it in hopes to revive this dead horse.
When it’s all said and done, however, Miguna would have actually helped Raila get reelected.
If the PM and ODM must mollify the annoying hypocrites demanding that they condemn the act of “hooliganism” in Mombasa, then let them issue a terse one sentence statement to that effect and sit back and watch how the same hypocrites find something else to whine about.
It’s a classic damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation but I would stick with not doing in this case for there is nothing Raila or ODM can say or do about this Miguna drama that is not a magnet to attract even more nonsense and hypocrisy from these naysayers and haters.
I would rather focus on the bigger things in the bigger picture, including preaching a message of peace and unity, ending tribalism and ending corruption and impunity as the PM is currently doing.
Most Kenyans have shown they are ready to receive and accept that message what Miguna and others are doing is a distraction and if there is any condemnation to be had, it’s for these divisive tactics futilely intended to derail Raila’s quest for the presidency which all Kenyans of good faith must condemn.
These vindictive, divisive and hateful tactics against Raila shall fail nonetheless.