BLOG BY NOONLIGHT
As a means of settling disputes between two men, duels in America and Europe ended in the late 19th century. These to-the-death contests were usually organized at noon and there are many theories as to why this was the case. In a duel by swords or by pistols, “somebody got to die” as the late rapper Notorious B.I.G. sang in one of his songs though he certainly was not referencing ‘gentlemen’ duels but Eastside-Westside gangster confrontations which were far more deadly and quite unlike the primly organized high noon encounters of the distant past, totally without rules of engagement. In the pre 20th century duels, it did not always turn out that “if I go, you got to go” also like my boy Notorious sang in reference to his huge sack of beef with 2Pac Shakur. No , no, no. If I go, you may not go but indeed survive the duel while my family sheds their tears and start preparing for my funeral. Oh and by the way, many are close to renouncing all admiration for the snoop dogs (poop dogs?), Dr Dres, and Eminem’s of the world because of what they perceive as their surprisingly narcissistic disconnections with the reality. In the current epic war in America between the right and left, the entire culture around rap music seems to have have revealed itself to be nothing but a magic shadow show of courage and manliness. If you are just joining us for the very first time, this daily blog posts fresh editions exactly at noon everyday. Don’t click that other link.
In today’s fight, we look at the conflict between what we say about public office holders indoors and how we react when we see them in person. Yesterday, 12th October, 2017 in Enugu, the motorcade of the Executive Governor of Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, popoularly known as gburugburu, was ecstatically cheered by crowds as he waded through traffic in the Nike area. Shouts of ‘gburugburu! Second tenure! Rent the air as the governor got down from his black jeep and walked towards Nike Local Government Headquarters for the official endorsement of his candidate for the upcoming LGA elections in Enugu state. People in restaurants stopped eating their food just to come out and catch a glimpse of the governor. People in beer parlours did the same by covering their drinks and stepping out to bellow their own versions of ‘gburugburu!’ In it all, there was an attitude of not mere admiration but awe and worship. Our public servants in Nigeria have become gods that are not to blame.
We criticize them in the beer parlours, in the privacy of our homes and on social media but when we see them in the flesh, we bow down and worship. We insult them in private non stop because of their corruption and selfishness but when they show up in person, we melt under the glory of their money and power. When absent, they are crooks but when present, they are gods that are not to blame. No wonder revolution in Nigeria remains in a state of suspended animation even after decades of unimaginable social and economic oppression.
ICONS FOR 2019
The content to be published in this segment of Political Monitor is still ‘on the pipeline.’ Don’t feel discouraged by our use of this well known phrase of government because we know that when public office holders are asked about service delivery on essential projects and respond with the now famous expression that deliverables are still on the pipeline, it usually means that such projects will remain nothing but pipe dreams. We however boldly deploy this expression as a strategy for breaking the jinx. Stay with us and don’t click that other link. An interview with someone who means to keep it real is coming right up.