Go out of your way and meet people
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It s also known as ‘Commons’ and can be the seat of local governments.
Figuring Out A New Country
A new country, new things, new ways and very few things that you are familiar with including so many people you are meeting. This may sound familiar or not so familiar. There are people you know or conversation you have heard about a new person in your area, church, school or workplace.
You are 17, 18, 19, 20 or 30 years old and you want to start a life of your own. Or you are an older person. It could be you have a family. You could even be fortunate and you have all the documentation and a place of abode. Never mind your position or status. This short narrative is for you.
Ask yourself these questions:
1. Are you skilled enough to read, write and understand a language spoken in that country you have come to?
2. Do you know the address to and from your home?
3. Do you have a phone number of a person you can contact in case of ’emergency?’
4.Do you know how to manipulate and operate home appliances in the new home?
5. Are you aware you need to know the various community norms and practices?
6. Are you aware you need to maneuver your way around your community, neighborhood, prayer place, school, market and health facility?
7. Do you now how to get on a bus, or get a curb or taxi?
8.Do you know the political and social delineation of the community you are staying in?
9. What is the name of the city you are staying in or near to?
10. Who are the community leaders you know?
There are different organizations, CSOs and NGOs that help people like you. Also do not overlook the fact that you may have people who hail from a similar country like yours. These may have an organization that you may want to look into. If possible check out the library in you area. It may have resources on supporting a new person in your country.
The library is a good place to have access to internet. You do need a navigation console. The internet is one place you can access information for directions and facilities that can help you. Make a list. You can call it a wish list. Do not worry make it as long as you want to, say in 20 minutes time. After twenty minutes stop and read what you have listed down.
Categorize your wishes. Make sure they fall into these ten major themes:
1. Personal literacy skills
2. Home Orientation and navigation skills
3. Phone compliant
4.Machinery and appliance Operational skills (escalators, automatic exits, credit/debit cards, lights, stoves, computers)
5. Person to person skills
6. Maneuverability skills ( street-wise)
7. Mobility and schedules including weather changes
8.Political and social delineation
9. Geographic Information and skills
10. Community leaders
The ten above skills form basis of your decision to venture out. These themes give you different directional purposes. They are like the solid dash board buttons to press to identify , address and satisfy a given need.
Needs! Talking of needs! What would be the greatest single most satisfaction one needs to get immediately as a person wishing to strike out on their own?
Some would say shelter. Others would say food. Yet others would say clothes and food. I would say all three. I would also quickly add: friends, people or a welcoming unit of persons who are willing to share a space in their home. It could be you have a home already. On this add a church, a school or a community meeting place. Introduce yourself to the people in the community. Get to know them as members of a church you go to. Or if you are not a churchgoer, may be a mosque. If you are not a religious person, look for a library, may be you are into book reading. There are clubs whose mission is to read books among group members or to senior persons. It could even start you off as a volunteer. Engage in activities where you can work with communities. Volunteer work is in many areas: environment, health care, weatherization, checking on senior people, animal care and community clean up initiatives.
A home is crucial. It is a launch-pad for many to think straight and figuring out a new country.As a person living with others, you need to know or develop people-to-people skills: These are very core, dependable and soft skills: You may be living with persons who have perhaps lived their life following a certain pattern. Study it and also engage them in a conversation. Using the same space, ask about your hosts’ plans for the next day. Share with them what you intend to do. Also using this same opportunity, inquire whether they have something they want you to do around the house or home or hostel. If they say they have nothing they have thought about, tell them you are ready to do something once there is any opportunity for a helping hand.If you do have opportunities to jog, walk or do exercises get to understand your environment outside the home. Be like the territorial animal that marks boundaries. But, in your case it will be marking out land-marks. That big clock tower, or that ginormous apartment building on the corner of your street and the main trunk road, most of all get to know the names of the roads and streets. This will help you know the area even batter.Get to know what other things are based on to lead a life.
I have a list for you. This list will inform the way you perceive your new country or plan to lead your life:
1. Insurance: to cover your health needs. There is need for you to be immunized. Without insurance and with the long list of what your country may require one to be immunized against, it could cost you.
2. One thing you have to note is; avoid the so called soliciting agents claiming to represent an insurance company. Look for credible insurance companies for services.
3. Wireless/Internet: This may be a combined service with TV, Phone and internet. But, you may have one package you need to pay for regularly.
4. Beware of the internet and telephone-based scam in form of letters and deals promising you gifts but “that before you get the gift you need to send money.”
5. Mortgage: Get to learn about mortgage and owning a house of your own. Read the literature and ask around. Be inquisitive and learn how the real estate performs. This may help you know trends.
6. Education: You may be a graduate or educated up to a certain level from your country. There is a facility in your new country that grades the qualifications from other countries. The best place to start with is a university or high school near you that you feel you want to join. Most cities have community support centers where they give counselling and advice in these matters. Visit such places as part of your learning journey. Many universities have on-line courses. Register for them. Most are free. Those that require a fee will inform you about it. Beware there are also scams here. Many on-line High School Diploma internet based services are suspect. Be very cautious. They are called “Diploma mills”!
7. The Library: Register and be a member of a library near you.
8. Hair cut: Make friends and get to know which hair cut would do a good job with your face, nails and general grooming.
9. In-door sports: There gymnasiums that require a membership fee to be paid. Try them and enroll. It is good (in fact, imperative) to exercise.
10. Clothes: Dress to preserve dignity but also as a code of good conduct. Get to know where particular clothes you need are sold.
11. Energy/Weatherization: Get to know the weather in your new country. Conserve energy and life.
12. Gas and Water: Do you know that there are bills as a result of use of water and gas? Adopt a conservative and judicious approach to their use.
13. Entertainment: The books, radio at home or TV may be the first source of entertainment. Or your source of entertainment could be the conversation at table during dinner or a meal. Share your expectations with your hosts or whoever you may find resourceful. Share your likes and dislikes of various films, novels and plays (drama). Ask and learn if you do not know the different genres. Do you know that there is Rock, rumba, salsa, Cuban, blues, oldies, country, thrillers, opera, tragedies….I could go on and on. Get to learn the genres. You could be adept at the instruments or story-telling. Show off your talents. Get to enjoy the home you are living in.
14. Groceries: Do you know the different kinds of groceries, consumables and foods you have at home? Do you know how they are prepared or used? Get to learn and explore.
15. Membership: There are ‘must be done’ things that connect you to a given community. Is it the way you stand at the side of the road as the car passes you on a narrow road? Is it the wave at the next door person? Do something about how you are perceived once you are out of the home. The homes have large windows; this is what they say about them. ‘Those houses with large ones are so not to allow in cold winds but also to look out and see what is happening down the road.’ They are watch towers. An American man’s house is his watchtower and an Englishman’s house is his castle.
16. Miscellaneous/contingency: Have you ever gone shopping and realized you needed something but it was not budgeted for? Or have you ever gone out and never planned on helping a stray cat get back to its owner, yet you have that bus to catch? That is how tricky life is. Expect surprises. Be stoical
17. Connections: Get connected, make friends, keep friends, join a church or mosque or temple group or some form of social group (you may be atheist for all I know and am not pointing a finger. That is between you and you).
DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT GIVE IN OR GIVE UP: Do you know that I watched my parents die and at a very tender age was left to become the child -head of a house-hold of 13 people? Do you also know I struggled to get them to school and I only read their notes and asked them to be my teachers to compensate for my education? Do you know that am now able to give you these tips confidently? Okay if you ask me I shall tell you the story. But for now, be well.
Fear of fear can derail one
Fear lies in your way to greatness
Life is easy in a new Country: True or False?
Do you agree with the statement: “Life is easy in a new Country.”
- So True
- So False
- It depends
Underlying soft skill
Value and Belief System
Personal literacy skills
Home Orientation and navigation skills
Machinery and appliance Operational skills (escalators, automatic exits, credit/debit cards, lights, stoves, computers).
Person to person skills .
Improved Communication and dependability
Maneuverability skills ( street-wise)
Mobility and schedules including weather changes
Geographic Information and skills
Ability to identify leaders in community
Tongues of Fire; Lubaga Prelude
‘The letter that King Muteesa (I) wrote to the Queen of England in the 1870’s resulted in present day Uganda.’ This is an oft quoted remark. This letter was penned down during a meeting between King Muteesa and Henry Morton Stanley in Lubaga. The thoughts and spirit of the letter reflected what King Muteesa (I) wanted to address on behalf of Buganda Kingdom. There was genuine desire to improve on the standard of living by the King. His subjects deserved better. This was the motivation behind the letter. The meeting between Muteesa (I) and Henry Morton Stanley at Lubaga explored a way forward for Buganda Kingdom. If one were to understand Buganda Kingdom, one has to also understand major milestones that affected Buganda Kingdom up to 1876. By the time of his death King Muteesa (I) left Buganda Kingdom as the uncontested centre of; trade, commerce, health, hygiene, schooling, Artisanry, a public works system, bark cloth-making, agricultural productivity, salt route, egalitarianism, an awesome heritage rich with courtly customs and an orderly centralised governance system. This was an inheritance passed on to him and as a King he passed it on to the next generation. Continuously reminded of a dire oral Kaggwa prophecy passed down orally from past generations, Buganda searches its true meaning. News of what is going on in Congo, Mombasa, Egypt, Abyssinia-land (Ethiopia), Karagwe, Burundi, Rwanda, Ankole, Bunyoro, Tooro, Kavirondo Gulf and the mid-upper Nile regions is dreary. The world was a cauldron of progressive social change with: industries so hungry for raw-materials; Europeans were seeking more lands in America, Asia and Africa; Judeo-Christian-Arabic religions were clashing with indigenous beliefs in many parts. Asians, Indians and Arabs were key players along the Indian Ocean providing the far advanced sea-faring technology. They had skills in urban designing, construction and economic development. They created an extensive trade link into the interior of Africa. America had tested various industrial-machinery prototypes, had made strides in producing better plant and animal breeds. America was a land of opportunity which Portuguese and Spaniards found and opened to the other Europeans. Eventually America had skilled professionals and was technologically at par with Europe and had an educated citizenry to match. Many Americans sent their goods to Africa and other lands. Trade, the engines and breakthroughs in public health, medicine and science enabled travel over very long distances and food-production in large quantities was possible. Interior Africa that was formerly forbidding was now no longer a challenge to explorers, speculators and missionaries. Africa was in no position to stop the winds of change blowing.
Book I: Prophecy; Right in the eye of God’s Truth
Set in four continents (Africa, Europe, America and Asia) from 1700-1899, takes us through a great black nation Kingdom of Buganda, Indian Sub-continent, USA and Europe. Henry Morton Stanley, Mukaabya Walugembe Muteesa (I) and Patel Shamji are destined to meet in Buganda, Africa. Buganda Kingdom is an emerging center of; trade, commerce, health, obstetrics, gynaecology, hygiene, schooling, Artisanry, a public works system, bark cloth-making, agricultural productivity, salt route, egalitarianism, a powerful and awesome heritage rich with courtly customs and an orderly centralised governance system. Continuously reminded of a dire oral Kaggwa prophecy passed down orally from past generations, Buganda searches its true meaning. It is a storm brewing on the horizons, causing anxiety among Buganda. Peace with Buganda and its neighbours was the cause of emissaries who travelled to and from Congo, Mombasa, Egypt and Abyssinia-land (Ethiopia). Europe is a cauldron of progressive social change with industries so hungry for raw-materials. Asia is providing cheap labour in very big numbers. America has skilled professionals, technologically at par with Europe and an educated citizenry with an insatiable argue to read newspapers. With a 100 year-old experience in Rights and social-justice, America is restless both in its domestic matters and as an emerging international key player. Many Americans are eager to know about Africa. Henry Morton Stanley, of the ‘New York Herald’, unknowingly gives this answer and links all the four continents in a gripping story about Buganda. Unintentionally he also unleashes a cornucopia of human emotions ranging from interest, altruism, greed; land grabbing, conspiracy, danger and intrigue. Through it all Buganda is set on a path to embrace God’s truth.
ABOUT AUTHOR: Thomas Muyunga researches about global Rights.
This little book, called Moratopia, is written for all who want to do something about their oft procrastinated engagement in social justice activities.
- Sometimes man sometimes woman
- Firmly man always masculine
- Firmly woman always feminine
- Firmly man sometimes feminine
- Firmly woman sometimes masculine
- Sometimes man always masculine
- Sometimes man sometimes masculine
- Sometimes man sometimes feminine
- Sometimes woman always feminine
- Sometimes woman sometimes feminine
- Firmly man sometimes masculine
- Firmly woman sometimes feminine
- Deus’s helper
- Deus’s helper’s Dog, Canine
- The book, the Libri, the Livre, the biblio: Forms of proposals through which grants can be accessed
- Oversee: Another name for the Treasury whose grants can be accessed through proposal-writing.
- The bench-mark: The Society’s declaration of independence and Constitution
- The Straight Code: Rules of managing Society while Deus is gone
- Not-see Broadly: The Society’s only newspaper with two sections; ‘the cover story’ and ‘another development’
- The Values: be systematic in conducting yourself ( Principle); be conscientious and considerate of self ( Personal); Employ learnedness and skills ( Profession); Be driven by the desire to participate (Passion) and; Aspire to set and meet standards (Principal)
- The two dimensional aspirations: To see change ( Revolution) and to see change shared (reform)
- The four touchstone aspirations: Utility; Totality; Morality and; Authority
- Verbs describing persons: Humanness (the degree of difference of similarity in human growth, development and normativity) and human-likeness.
- Diva-humanness: A contraption of diversity in humanness
- Straight diva-humanness: Term for those who walk ahead with straight faces forward
- Slider diva-humanness: Term for those who walk back not only in sport.
- Bar 1: The context in which Authoritarianism is encouraged and upheld. Adherents include people who believe in eugenics, in their superiority because they walk straight ahead and if possible the introduction of laws to weed out lesser humans.
- Bar 2: The tendency to promote Authoritarian totalitarianism
- Bar 3: The tendency to look at all people as human beings whose liberties need to be upheld.
- Bar 4: The tendency to promote Authoritarian utilitarianism
- Bar 5: The tendency to promote Moralitarianism
- Tier 1: Leadership levels of persons 30-79 years
- Tier 2: Leadership levels of persons 17-30 years
- Open chubby 1: A process of reaching the Society leadership without going through a community representative through proposal-writing.
- Open chubby 2: A system of reaching the community leadership without being subject to open meetings. It can be through proposal-writing or letter writing using any of the books.
- ‘See Change’, is a group formed by elite sliders that has promoted visibility of sliders and has the support of many people.
- ‘Change shared’, is a group formed by rural-grass-root based and other disgruntled sliders wishing to have their issues addressed.
- The forms of management: The management styles arising from the touchstone aspirations or a mix of any of them.
a) Utilitarian: Stressing value of practical over aesthetic qualities
b) Totalitarian; of or designating a polity whose main characteristic is considered monolithic unity upheld by authoritarian means.
c) Authoritarian: characterized by or favouring absolute obedience to authority, as against individual freedom.
d) Moralitarian: characterized by or concerned with favouring, promoting, rewarding and judging absolute goodness over any form of badness of human action or character.
The early days of Society
Deus continued instructing the helper in ways to manage Society as an assistant and helper. Deus was a very patient Teacher and Deus’s helper gained the skills slowly but surely. Many times the helper would fail all the sets of activities and they would go all over again until the helper was passably competent.
“There are seven sections in the Straight Code and you must learn to apply all of them equally and carefully,” said Deus to the assistant.
“Remember to encourage as many as possible to learn skills of carrying out their duties and conducting themselves responsibly,” continued Deus as the assistant was placing one foot ahead and looking straight ahead in the style of walking popularised in Society. It would soon be termed the ‘walk of society’.
“One leg forward, straight face ahead with the other leg following in sequence,” went on the assistant before a loud trip followed. Deus rushed to help the assistant and patiently started all over again. Satisfied that the assistant was catching on gradually, Deus introduced the second activity of walking backwards but warned this was only in sport.
“One leg back, torso straight, followed with the second leg. One leg back, torso straight, followed with the next leg,” went on the assistant and then there was a loud clatter as tins and empty buckets flew in all directions. The assistant hurried to get off the ground, but not before Deus appeared. Patiently as ever, the assistant was taken through the paces until the back-walk gait was superbly held.
“Are you going somewhere? I see you have packed and your walking staff is leaning on the door,” enquired the helper.
“Yes, am leaving you for sometime but will be back. Look after Society and guide it well,” said Deus.
“In Society there are humans, animals and nature. Learn, observe, value and encourage the humans. Show attention to the animals and value nature. That way Society will live on longer and happily. I have taken all measures to train you well so do not be afraid. Teach with patience, judge with caution, rebuke softly, encourage loudly, do not be clouded by anger, seek to observe, give attention, share the little, build capacity, empower the young and welcome the helpless. Do not curse in anger for the person or relatives or community to which the curse is directed will all die. Do not use the powers you now have in vain,” warned Deus. As soon as these words were spoken, Deus disappeared.
“Dear people of Society it has been so many years now since we had been given the two sets of Society-logues: the benchmark and the Straight Code. Once again as we have always done at every end of month, let us go through the ‘Straight Code,’” he said in a loud voice before a hushed team of leaders. The assistant took the Society leaders through a compulsory 2 hour long recollection of the Straight Code. The assistant first asked ‘firmly man always masculine’ to go through all the 7 entries without looking at the code book. In a very strong, loud voice and a face beaming so brightly and proudly, ‘Firmly man always masculine’ said all the seven quickly, by rote. ‘Firmly man always masculine’ said out-loud each point dramatically by banging on the elegant table and as soon as he was through he was cheered by all members. Many of the members stood in ovation. The team of members who cheered him loudly were also members of a private club that ascribed to authoritarian and totalitarian tendencies. They privately called themselves the Bar 1 and 2 Club. The assistant then turned to ‘Firmly woman always feminine’ who also went through the seven entries by rote. As is usual in the Society leadership, ‘Firmly woman always feminine’ was cheered by so many who ascribed to the Bar 5 Club. These ones believed in, and at all times promoted through talks and trainings, moral aptitude. They aspired for a society characterized by or were much concerned with favouring, promoting, rewarding and judging absolute goodness over any form of badness of human action or character. They too walked straight and in order to keep their heads facing ahead avoided any form of make up or plaiting of hair. They reasoned it would divert their concentration and purpose to walk straight with head facing forward. They believed in the aspirations of the ‘Straight diva-humanness’. They never broke any of the codes otherwise they would be called ‘sliders’. They even never walked backwards, not even in sport. The assistant was very happy that the Society leadership was showing the best example. The Society leadership in fact paid lip service to all the Straight code but whenever the assistant was around they went through the motions and appeared so scrupulous. All the procedures at the Society meeting hall were reported in the ‘Not-see broadly’ Newspaper. It was important to not fault in speech or diction. All members went through the Straight code and the meeting was dispersed in the name of Deus. The assistant told them that it was proper that all continue remembering to start of end all proceedings in the name of Deus. Two very big copper plates were placed in the lobbies to the Society meeting Hall. They were 12 feet in size and 5 feet wide. They proclaimed in big letters the Straight code:
- Religion is the task of putting what is covered in the benchmark into practice.
- All forms of walking have to be straight ahead.
- All forms of walking backwards are discouraged.
- All forms of walking backwards can only be considered in sport.
- All science is materialistic
- All materialistic acts are abomination
- Always use ‘in the name of’ when beginning or ending a task
Deus’s assistant left them discussing amongst themselves and walking one foot forward and another following, with head raised and looking straight ahead, repeatedly, got home. The day had ended successfully. After a while, there was a knock. Deus wondered who it could be at that hour. It had been an extremely long day, even for the assistant! Canine needed to be fed and put to bed in a very warm and comfortable cushion by the side of the warm fire hearth. The assistant went to answer the door of the grand house on top of the hill.
“I come to you with so much fear but I know you are the only one I could turn to. I have no place to sleep,” said the ‘sometimes man sometimes woman’ person, pleadingly, peering through the half opened door. This person was invoking Section III, Article one of the Benchmark (see back of book). The assistant looked at this reject on the door step. The assistant entertained a secret glee every time Society talked of ridding itself of these kinds of people. The assistant could not make this known and could not share it with anyone except perhaps Canine knew. The assistant used to talk aloud in the grand house which they shared with Canine.
“What are you doing here?” asked Deus’s assistant again, as if from a trance.
“I need a place to stay,” said ‘sometimes man sometimes woman.’
“Is this a lodge or motel?” asked the assistant.
“No it is not, but I came to you knowing you are our leader. I have spent nights in the open, am so hungry, thirsty and so cold,” replied ‘sometimes man sometimes woman.’
“Look, you, ‘sometimes man sometimes woman’; you have come at a wrong time. Am about to feed Canine and get her to bed! I cannot help you. Am so busy. Sorry,” said the assistant as the door clicked shut with a very loud bang in the face of ‘sometimes man sometimes woman’ person.
Insight into Society
‘Sometimes man sometimes woman’ came out of the house that was located at the other side of the urban settlements, far away from the main well planned city dwellings. The road to the home belonging to ‘Sometimes man sometimes woman’ was filled with potholes and in some parts water pipes were bursting open to let out water gushing down the nearby valley or to the sides of the road. ‘Sometimes man sometimes woman’ with 22 others of the same human-likeness formed an organisation called ‘Change shared.’ Through the organisation they were able to share experiences about their ‘slider-diva-humanness’. They were colloquially termed ‘sliders’ by so many people who ridiculed them and considered them not of a straight diva-humanness. They were even ridiculed by other sliders. A case in point was when they had wanted to partner with another more popular and established Organisation called ‘See change.’ They wanted to address the following needs among sliders: need for employment opportunities; establishing special literacy classes for many who dropped out of school; starting small businesses; need for regular health-care services; need for regular meetings held in a circuit format to avoid people making long distances and there by exposing themselves to effects of visibility; initiate a recognition and reward system for long serving leaders and; establishment of a leadership structure where long-served leaders gave way to others to serve as well. This was unheard of! It bordered on a coup! They were ridiculed and shunned by people from “See change’ who felt removal from leadership positions was a blow to their own daily existence. Ambition among people of ‘slider’ persuasion was discouraged. It was seen as competition. Most especially it would deprive established leadership of the trappings that came to them and the funds that enabled them afford extremely expensive lifestyles and apartments in the most prized side of the urban center. The dichotomy of arguments showed up as: enjoyment of liberties and freedoms on one side and; the consolidation of lifestyle for the leaders. The liberties’ side did not have powerful connections to argue their cases effectively and were beleaguered often by the high lifestyle consolidation team which as much as possible ensured it was only select names and presentable faces that became the poster faces of the slider community.
‘Firmly man always masculine’ and ‘firmly woman always feminine’ represented power in Society and had members in every branch of management. They were the law makers, society’s rich and elite. They lived in splendid houses spread over hill-tops in walled off perimeters. Even those who could not afford the hill-tops and were on the lower slopes were living in planned urbanised areas. Garbage was picked, water mains never broke or if they did, were repaired on time. They walked forward and had their heads looking straight ahead. They drummed this, like the daily prayer, in the heads of their servants, employees and taught this to their children. They endeavoured to take their children to the schools where all the Straight code was upheld as well as the bench-marks. They were seen with communities that denounced anyone who walked in a sliding way (not straight and with head facing ahead). They introduced and maintained exclusive member-only clubs such as: The Utilitarian club: Stressing value of practical over aesthetic qualities. The Totalitarian club; of or designating a polity whose main characteristic is considered monolithic unity upheld by authoritarian means. The Authoritarian club: characterized by or favouring absolute obedience to authority, as against individual freedom. The Moralitarian club: characterized by or concerned with favouring, promoting, rewarding and judging absolute goodness over any form of badness of human action or character. At grass-roots they formed lower level clubs which they called ‘bars’. These bars, as they were popularly referred to, engaged in all sorts of activities from: charitable works, canvassing for votes during elections to evicting persons known for not walking straight ahead with faces looking forward. The bigger clubs had accumulated records as follows:
Club Bar 1 with a mission statement, ‘context in which Authoritarianism is encouraged and upheld’ had adherents including people who believed in eugenics and in their superiority because they walked straight ahead. They were lobbying for laws making it possible to weed out lesser humans (especially the sliders). Club Bar 1 had provided support to children, mother, elderly, fathers, disabled persons in various regions that had faced hunger and famine. This had made them popular and many people had joined. Through presented appeals in form of proposals they had an ambitious goal to provide housing to many poor members and to establish schools and social services to complement those of Society. They joined hands with several other clubs to address common matters that were brought to their attention.
Club Bar 2, with the mission statement ‘to promote Authoritarian totalitarianism’ had lobbied Society leaders and with so much funds and enticements sponsored various bills that if passed would make Society a Totalitarian State. In order not to be left out Club bar 5 with the mission statement, ‘to promote Moralitarianism’ joined hands with Club 1, 2 and 4. Together they formed the ‘Total grip on government coalition’. They had 3 demands which they wanted to put into action.
Demand 1: Speedy passage into laws that will make Society the model of morals and Utopia. They called this state the ‘Moratopia’. Every one now dreamed of the Moratopia. Breaking news and all broadcasting media showed the benefits of Moratopia. It was the nirvana, the promised-land that would flow with honey. There was a disclaimer: All is possible only of the sliders are gone by all means. This last point was left to anyone’s imagination.
Calls for caution were made by Club Bar 4 on this last point with its nihilistic overtones but they fell on deaf ears. There were secret meetings to lure club bar 4 to join the coalition. Means used included; threats, exposure and business sabotage. In the long run club bar 4 joined the ‘Total grip on government coalition-TGGC.’ The TGGC became the most powerful lobby in Society. It was able to sway Society people towards their case.
Demand 2: To establish straight walk cameras at every point in Society.
Demand 3: To report all persons known to ‘slide’ or those who even talk to sliders by way of greeting, providing Tender loving care or even behold them with respect.
Society was in state of emergency. The TGGC provided means for people to engage in sponsored trainings and camps to renew allegiance to Straight Code and the Bench-mark. People took up arms and formed vigilante-groups. They were involved in patrolling and searching for ‘straight walk defaulters’. They called themselves the ‘3-D club’ and always proclaimed they represented the sword that would cut off the rotting parts of Society. They claimed they were doing all their work on behalf of the TGGC and were to be paid handsomely. All the young people without work joined these 3-D clubs. Day and night, they were heard sharpening machetes and other killing instruments. ‘This is a call to battle’ became the rallying call.
Not-see-broadly, January 2rd 000000
COVER STORY: TGGC GIVES SOCIETY LEADERSHIP ULTIMATUM, OR ELSE…
Leaders of TGGC have marked the new year’s day with calls to Society leaders to put into law, through speedy passage of, the bills that address the 3 demands dubbed the ‘3-D’. More than 1 million young people without work have joined what are known as 3-D Clubs. In flushing out ‘sliders’ they hope to strike two birds with one stone: get a hefty daily allowance and at the same time be seen to get ‘sliders’ out of Society. It should be remembered, Society has one of the world’s biggest number of well read young people without work. This is seen as an employment opportunity, albeit clandestinely.
The TGGC leaders who attended the New Year’s meeting put copies of the exquisitely bound bench-mark, the supreme law of Society, on fire. In the bright fames the books cringed and curled, as if in protest, until they were black chars of their former words that had made Society a peaceful entity. We see today, the beginnings of what happened in Nazi Germany or Soviet Union during the regimes of Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin or Rwanda during the genocide.
The TGGC is using the oft said threats, calling a vote of no confidence in all the elected Society leaders. They called on sliders to change their ways, repent their sinful acts and walk ahead with heads facing straight ahead.
‘The leaders of Society seem to condone sliding. There is sound, fury and delays. Delays in meeting our 3-D agenda are unacceptable,’ said the public relations officer of TGGC.
“ Even the ones keeping silent about ‘sliding’ or not doing anything about it, are actually ‘sliders’ too by inaction, omission and commission,’ continued the officer form TGGC.
“Passing into law what will make all people in Society walk straight ahead should be made a priority by end of this month. This is the last time we are talking. We are moving into the phase of action,’ concluded the TGGC officer.
IN ANOTHER DEVELOPMENT:
‘See change’ and ‘Change shared’ leaders of slider-diva humanness Organisations have called on their members to be cautious and adopt a security conscientiousness of the highest level. They have encouraged members to avoid isolated places, if possible keep in groups, have proper identification; continue with their studies for those in schools and for those at various job placements to continue working diligently.
‘See change’ and ‘Change shared’ are two foremost slider civil rights Organisations working tirelessly to bring to the forefront issues of sliders. The leaders need to be supported in this kind of work. Society is a large country with many sliders and it has come to our notice both groups, although supported differently, have helped address the immediate needs of sliders which include: rapid provision of shelter, establishing food banks for those in transit, calling on police in case of arrests, providing medical care for those wounded and ‘change shared’ is even running a transitory home giving shelter to 4-6 sliders for a few weeks until a permanent home is available. Unlike ‘Change shared,’ ‘See change’ is supported, however, with lots of funds by well-wishers and from Oversee. It is hoped ‘change shared’ will be a recipient too if fairness and representation is to be seen across the board.
‘Change shared’ Organisation, Society
At the Oversee offices, ‘change shared’ Organisation had presented its proposal for funding and was waiting feedback. In the proposal five areas pertaining to slider welfare were targeted: Promotion of team building skills; establishing desks with identified slider-straight spaces; sponsor health work camps; map out skills levels and; establish offices with telephone hotlines. The leaders were encouraged and prompted by the big numbers who were calling on them and asking them to seek support like ‘See change’ Organisation was always doing. For some it was a protest and to other it was the desire to see replication. They sighted so much was concentrated in the urban and yet in the outer fringes of the urban center many sliders were not getting their fair share of benefits. They claimed to hear some of their leaders talking about issues very different from what they felt on a day to day basis. The leader felt so confident this was the time ‘change shared’ would be supported. While in the lobby of Oversee, the leader went through various multi-coloured magazines, social justice newsletters from around the world and bulletins spread on the low lying coffee-table. The leader was a graduate from Society University in Journalism with a diploma in law, as well. The leader had almost failed to graduate when students at The University threw beddings of suspected sliders including this leader’s out. The intervention of the University Dean enabled this leader to complete studies. The leader decided to enrol for a diploma in law later. ‘Change shared’ was begun with 5 others who felt many issues of sliders were not addressed by existing slider groups and for reasons of diversity. They pooled together money and registered ‘change shared.’ After 3 years of working in an atmosphere of hostility they managed to have impact and had results to show: they had long range plans to address health care; they had counselling services in form of facebook pages; interactive websites and; run regular reach out services for sliders. They joined hands with various well-wishers to start income generating short business education courses. They had the only literacy and numeracy classes targeting sliders who had dropped out of school. They provided life planning skills’ seminars and planned to conduct boot camps. The leader was invited in:
“You say your Organisation is ‘change shared,’ and this, here, is your proposal?” asked a Community services’ liaison of Oversee.
“Yes, it is our Organisation and that is our proposal titled: empowering sliders to take effective responsibility of their lives,” the leader said confidently.
“Well, I see you have very good points indeed and the numbers you intend to reach out, as well as the value for money is impressive, but you have used the Libra style in writing your proposal yet we prefer the book style or atleast Biblio style. We made sure this is understood. Otherwise, that point alone has disqualified your group. Secondly, we know ‘See change’ Organisation as the only group in Society. We have never heard of ‘change shared’ Organisation try next time. Next please,” called the liaison.
“Wait a minute please. You say we used the ‘Libra style’ and you prefer ‘Book style’. But both are books. It is just that Libra is Latin for book! Secondly, if you read the attendance lists of the past three meetings your Oversee has held you will find many names of members from ‘Change shared’ Organisation. This is exactly what we are bringing to your notice. There has been a biasing tendency when it came to who was to attend meetings that Oversee convenes. In the end everyone invites a friend they know. The sample no doubt no doubt benefits insiders. On all three occasions we were invited by someone who works with ‘See change’ Organisation and being pleased with our organisation, tipped us about these meetings. This person has helped us at great peril. I am disappointed that it has come to this.” The leader’s next step was to seek the head of Oversee. In the next few days of persistence and fighting, the able leader secured funds for the group and the Oversee Executive promised to help the organisation access trainings like they were providing ‘See change’ Organisation.
“Numbers of sliders engaged in activism and social-community services increased. We see a change in attitude to work by many sliders now as opposed to previous years. The image of sliders before the majority of people has changed drastically. We are seeing many more Civil Society organisations, companies and institutions embracing sliders and involving them in their programmes. We thank members of ‘Change shared’ Organisation whose approach has continuously changed the way slider-targeting activism works in Society.” This was part of the award testimonial for ‘Change shared’ Organisation.
‘See change’ Organisation, Society
This year, there was a political lull about slider issues by Society leaders and newspapers reported about other things. Most importantly they reported about the rainy seasons which with floods and landslides devastated most parts of Society. The leader of ‘See change’ had 12 travel invitations from different organisations. Some trips were spread over two weeks. The leader had just got two awards for doing ‘tremendous work in providing visibility, most times at the risk of life, in the middle of night, braving the pitch black nights to provide immediate support to sliders in need’ read part of the accolade from an internationally respected organisation. The leader’s desk had a small bronze plaque which read: ‘the first step in solving a problem is to identify it.’
The first quarter of the year had four trips: One trip was a three-day follow up on a radio talk show organised to give a picture of Society’s situation towards sliders. This was followed up by a trip to another country to meet with the department of foreign affairs and discuss how more sliders in Society can be involved in liberation and self-development. The third involved meeting with 6 University heads on issues of scholarships which could be arranged for Sliders from Society. The fourth was about health, diseases and care among sliders. The leader had an opportunity to choose six other people in all instances for all the trips. The leader shared this piece of news.
‘No, do not involve other people! Make sure you only talk about our organisation wherever you go. Show the whole world and impress it upon them this is the only organisation providing services for sliders,” said the one of the assistants who knew was to be chosen, had to be chosen.
“Sure ours is an insider management team. These trips are the benefit from our sweat,” said the leader self assuredly.
“Okay, you, you and you. You will come with me for the first trip,” he pointed at three obsequious assistants.
“I am rewarding you for coming to keep us company at our offices and our homes when we seemed so bored and had nothing to do,” he continued with the airs.
“You, you and you,” the leader pointed at the next three people.
“You will escort me for the two week long trip. I am rewarding you for having cleaned around the offices and always picked trash thrown around here at the offices and our apartments. I do thank you also for cleaning my cars,” the leader assured the next group.
“We can adjourn the meeting and go out for lunch. There is that diner at the corner between the water fountain and the City garden parks. I am inviting all of you for lunch,” said the leader.
“Oh, by the way I need to give the six of you these digital gadgets I no longer use. You can have them,” said the leader as a drawer was pulled open. “They are state-of-the-art-gadgets: this is an iproxynal digitizer phone, this is the latest aXyssus universal webrillator, this is the about-to-get-to-the market i-phone, that there is the KSTGKL i-pod and this is the futuristic STGLM video-phone ,” The leader shut the drawer of the mahogany brown executive desk, after clearing out the used gadgets which the assistants took, happily.
There were excited hoots and thank yous passed around. Indeed the leader was very considerate. What with all the bending while cleaning! One of the assistants had also seen the latest entertainment system at the leader’s home. It was worth the entire budgets of three of the slider grass-root based groups!
Other side of the hill, Society
“I only wish we could get support in form of funds and logistics for all this work we are doing. 200 sliders need immediate medication. According to our needs mapping list for sliders who access our services: 12 have expressed need for training in small scale business enterprises; 13 need cash boost in form of credit to improve on their businesses in used products; 35 are at different stages of study and 7 need support to complete University; 18 were evicted due to non-payment of rent; 03 were outed and evicted from houses; we have run out of preventive products and literature on various health issues; the utility bills need paying and; my car needs repair,” a volunteer who had worked quietly with sliders for the last 5 years was heard telling another about the current situation at this Samaritan center.
This center was unique in that it opened doors to mothers with children living with HIV, elderly people looking after HIV orphans and disabled persons. The community around knew it as a clinic and training center in skills development. They had sent proposals using the Livre, the biblio, the book and the Libra to Oversee. In all situations they got regrets. One of the reasons for not awarding these volunteers money: their proposals spelled out activities in list form yet they required tabular format presentations. For that, they were disqualified. Secondly, the only organisation eligible for support in Society was ‘see change.’ Try next time the letters ended with that endnote.
“I have prepared all the reports on mapped issues faced by sliders; I did upload them on the internet for anyone to access. I got requests from 3 countries to use our work. We need to raise money to support our work. I need to pay the volunteers, the utility bills and buy another car, this one is a broken down jalopy. It has served for over 3 years. The medication we have will run out by March 000002 if we do not get any funding support to purchase more. The gender neutral bathroom supplies are about to run out as well. If only funders knew that needs among sliders are vast and comprehensive, it would help a lot in providing cash grants to many more organisations,” the volunteer was sharing challenges with a colleague.
“Sure, we may be forced to close this place. We have exhausted everything we put in. We thought by now there would be funding but nothing is trickling in yet. No, we may end up closing as soon as March 000002 and instead concentrate on internet based counselling which has also picked up,” continued the volunteer.
“You too! Oh! That will be wonderful! It will take us through June 000002. Perhaps by then funders at Oversee will finally support us too. It is amazing why they keep on telling us they know ‘See change’ as the only organisation. We helped train many of the groups in health and HIV planning. Hopefully these leaders are mentioning this fact wherever they talk about experiences about sliders whether internationally or nationally,” observed the volunteer rather late.
“You know it costs the same amount of money used to buy one fancy state-of-the-art cell phone to provide medical care to 12 people for 2 months. I only wish someone, anyone slider leader could spare some of the money they use to buy very expensive accessories and invest in improving the life of other sliders,” he told the doctor on the other side of the phone.
“What? Sure, I understand. Some people gain leadership positions to selfishly horde and hedge all the trappings of their positions, they in the process are blinded about the needs of the people they are to serve and how they are to be cared for. It only remains for those who can talk about it to straighten things,” concluded the volunteer.
My father, my mother, my teacher, my village friend, community hall manager and the Straight Code evaluator kicked me out of the community hall. I am no longer a representation of decency and all that is dignified. The community hall has a very big notice: management reserves admission.
As people passed me, I would hear sneers, taunting comments and direct verbal abuse. Slap! That was from a man we call the village drunk. I see him through tear-filled eyes. He walks with a zigzag gait, walks three steps ahead then walks five steps back with the back stooped and arms hanging like tails of cows. I know he is not drunk; he slapped me after he was promised the bottle of ‘battle-drink’ or two. He is the self appointed village-crier specialising in gossipy titbits. In a drunken stupor he shouts aloud slurred gossip. He is the community outlet. Now, this situation has caught up with me.
My father, my mother, my teacher, my village friend, my community hall manager and the Straight Code evaluator do forget; I am a member of this community and I remember helping in building this community hall. I know am the Straight Code evaluator’s cousin who is a slider; I know am the community hall manager’s nephew who is a slider; I know am my village friend’s friend who is a slider; I know am my mother’s child who is a slider and; I know am my father’s child who is a slider. I am their kin and kith!
My energetic age is wasted by watching my back for the next expulsion or eviction or beating. The 3-D squads are everywhere conducting all sorts of heinous abuses. Yesterday a Society hall leader was charged with housing a slider. The big home in which he had raised his family for so many years; the two cars and everything were looted. What couldn’t be taken was burnt. The leader was cast out! I have been running all my life. I need to grow, love, live and be focused. Otherwise am to spend so much of my youth hiding, fearing, annoyed and non-productive. When it comes to 50 years what shall we all show for life? I talked to our slider leaders and all they were saying was to wait, wait, wait and wait. Meanwhile they can afford to have two or more vehicles, live in fancy apartments the other side of the city, a couple of fancy state-of-the-art cell-phones, gold and bling-bling chains. They give out gifts to those who please them. All I need is a credit opportunity to complete my studies at University. I wrote a personal appeal to Deus’s assistant and I was told by the leaders that it was they who were supposed to represent me. They even blamed me for taking the initiative to talk about my problems. Then I told them that instead am sending my appeal to the Oversee Organisation. Even there, I was told it is they, the leaders, who are the ones to talk on my behalf about my problems. I waited for any feedback and none has come yet! Meanwhile the leaders continue fuelling their fancy cars, paying annual rent fees, changing into the best attire and matching cell-phone colour. The streets, to them, are the ever beckoning cat-walk. The worries of individual sliders will, well, sort themselves automatically.
My last resort is to send this appeal letter to Deus’s assistant:
“Dear Deus’s assistant,
In the name of Deus, I appeal to you for consideration. Am a ‘sometimes man sometimes woman’ I was evicted from our Community Hall and now can no longer access a home, education and food. I am forced to scavenge around. I met a child with whom I made friends. The child brings me food. I appeal to your office to provide me with needs. I am the beggar you see on the main street corner in the brown ragged clothes. Thank you.”
Opulent Club: No admittance for disabled, elderly and sliders
“In the name of ‘battle-drink’ I say I shall finish this ‘3 inches’ of a drink in a gulp. Watch me,” the ‘firmly man always masculine’ raised the small glass, brought it to his mouth, tipped his head and in one gulp the fiery drink was gone.
“One step forward, one foot in front and another following, look straight ahead. Walk shtraight. One……… sheep ford, one fool…… in front and another……. following, look shit ahead! Walk sshtraight. Join me in thishhh walk. Remember do as I do and shhhhay!” commanded ‘firmly man always masculine’ who entertained all the 42 members in the Opulent Club. They all joined in the straight walk which ended up as a circle because of the size of the room. The commander was leading.
“One shhhtep fond, one fooool in front and another following, look shitraight ahead. Walk shhhhitraight. One……… sheep ford, one fool…… in front and another……. following, look shhhhhhit ahead! Walk sshitraight,” the leader commanded even louder and the 42 followers with arms around the waist of the person ahead, all in a circle, strived to keep in pace. Some were pulling back and others were bumping into each other. The leader reminded them that perhaps they needed to start the walk with the mandatory salutation.
“In the name of the ‘battle-drink’, one shitep ford, one foot in front and another following, look shitraight ahead. Walk shhhhtraight. One……… sheep ford, one fool…… in front and another……. following, look shit ahead. Walk sshhhitraight,” commanded the leader and this time there seemed to be some order in the club. This went on for quite a time. Some stripped. Others continued to intoxicate. The zigzag gait, the back and forth walk and the excuses to do better as they continued downing more glasses of the fiery ‘battle-drink’.
Deus’s assistant had spent days without seeing the Society leaders, many of whom were members of the Club. The assistant opened the door to the Club and what the eyes met was so shocking. The assistant was so furious. In the next minute a most potent of curses was what came out the mouth that had previously taken an oath not curse Society. Within a very short time all of Society, became a death spot. The curse killed everyone and the assistant’s Dog too!
Deus walked into the Club and looked in the assistant’s eyes. The assistant avoided the stare. The assistant pleaded to Deus to bring back all the people of Society and the Dog.
“I am giving you three choices which you must make carefully. The choice you make wrongly will destroy everything. The one you make rightly will recreate everything,” warned Deus.
“The first choice is to bring back life; the second is to bring contentment and; the third is to bring back the 7 forgiving spirits,” he said and asked the assistant to choose.
The assistant took a very long time deciding. The assistant’s mind went through all the experiences from the start of time. The assistant realised that all it required to live well in Society was: tolerance for each other; sacrifice; compassion; guidance; tenderness; due regard and; sympathy. The assistant had just realised the list of the seven spirits and without more hesitation picked the third choice. Society was restored!
“Whenever you talked to the people in Society you were talking to me. Whenever you met in all those clubs and halls, however private they were, I was there. Every part you see, even what you do not see, every single bit of nature belongs to me. I am in it and I made everything. I am the one who came to your grand house seeking for a place to stay. My people should know they were in need of the seven spirits of forgiveness some day in their lives. They have to give as much as they want to be given. They have to put in effort to act just. It takes effort. They should not judge others using scales they cannot apply to themselves. It is the essence of justice,” Deus said and disappeared again.
Benchmark: The Society Constitution
Section I: Life Concept
Article 1. All forms of life (organic and biological) and nature (inorganic, non-living and unseen) are derived from the Divine.
Article 2. Human life must be upheld with respect, dignity and care.
Article 3. Human life is enriched by nature.
Article 4. All persons are to be treated with Tender loving care in all conditions of life and given respect, even, in death.
Section II: Society and its components (communities)
Article 1. All communities are composed of persons, their belongings and resources.
Article 2. All communities are composed of people with aspirations, needs and means.
Article 3. All communities must not antagonize each other, internally or externally, in seeking to address, meet aspirations, needs and by any means.
Article 4. All communities elect leaders to represent them at Society leadership level.
Article 5. All persons have access to ‘open chubby’ 1 or 2.
Section III: Liberties and Freedoms
Article 1. Speech must be promoted in form of dialogue, dumb-expression, meetings, writing or in a form suitable to conditions of persons expressing themselves.
Article 2. Associations must be encouraged as a means of building more representation of people and representative management of Society affairs.
Article 3. Self-development of individuals and communities must be encouraged.
Section IV: Amendments
Article 1. Society is organic and because any unforeseen need or issue that may arise shall be presented to community leadership or open chubby mechanism to be debated upon and added as an amendment. This is in accordance with following the aspiration to govern fairly and expediently.
Section V: Leadership
Section 1. All tiers of leadership should represent the characteristic of communities.
Section 2. Eligibility age for different leadership tiers must be above 15 years and up to 79 years. No other qualification should be used to deny any person from vying for elections and leadership positions.
Section 3. All leaders serve two four (4 year) terms or a maximum of 8 years.
Section 4. In case of death or other un-foreseeable action that may cause vacancy of incumbent any person from the community can be nominated and elected to complete a term through by-elections.