I hear you too have taken to the streets
draped in flags of solidarity hoping to hide your ills.
I see you holding placards pretending to speak truth to
The same power you misuse against your own kith?!
Yes, you who are:
the corrupters of your cultures
the defilers of your traditions
the stealers of your people’s patrimony
the traducers of your kind
the unpunished killers of your brothers,
the unjailed rapists of your sisters
the jailer who is also the accuser and the judge!
It is to you I speak.
You think your ills will be washed away by pointing the finger
at the white man?
Who was it that sold your kin as spoils of war for mere mirrors and gun powder?
The same mirror in which, when you dare to look, you see only your enemies’ reflection.
Your pretend government of the people, by the people and for the people is only a ruse for a government of your friends, the indolent and the incompetent!
You rail against the white man’s government, but you give yours no grief, failing to hold it accountable for its flaws.
Do not pretend to fight this battle
for there wouldn’t have been one were it not for your self-centredness.
There wouldn’t have been a need contending with the white man if you hadn’t frittered away the beauty and blessings of a land we all own: a land which used to flow with milk and honey!
What is the basis of your solidarity marches?
‘White on black’ is racism but what do you call ‘black on black’?
See: he isn’t black who is one only in colour.
Don’t humour me by taking a knee for you do not understand its essence.
Bending the knee represents the fight against racism and police brutality in America.
You whitewash your remembrance of things past forgetting how often your police lock up the innocent for walking the streets, or for owning a type of phone, and for refusing to give a bribe.
In America, some for whom you hold solidarity protests consider your kin beneath them.
They say: “No, you aren’t black. You are from Africa. You have an accent. Go back from where you came!”
Complicated, isn’t it? That’s another talk for another day.
For now, you may take a knee for whatever reason you choose for as long as you want, but don’t make it a fad.
You cannot feel a pain that really isn’t yours
so don’t try to cry more than the bereaved.
Idowu Ohioze is principal lawyer at Andrew Law, Edmonton Canada. He is a graduate of the University of Benin (LLB), the Nigerian Law School and the University of Alberta, Canada (LLM). www.andrewlaw.ca