When I was a young boy, probably around nine, the age at which one is presumed to be responsible and mature enough to understand the concept of having other people’s welfare in their hands, my mother, that sainted lady, sent me out on an errand.
Caveat: I should point out that this did not literally happen. Yes, I was a responsible kid and was sent on errands frequently, and my mother is a saint, but the events I am about to describe are actually more of a fable than a factual account of events. You will see the point if you endure with me to the end.
We Proceed: She said, “Lad, take this money and go to yonder shop.” (When I was a child people spoke differently.) “Hie thee unto yonder shop and buy some flour so that I can use it to make dinner for thee, thy siblings, myself, and whoever else I feel like feeding. Make haste for in these ancient days load shedding is even more fierce.”
Mishap: I accepted the responsibility with a smile and very nice clothing. I also accepted the money. I set off to carry out my appointed task of making sure the money was used to provide flour for the family’s dinner.
But Ugandans: I, however, failed. I lost the money. I cannot tell you how. Maybe it fell out of a hole in my pocket. Maybe termites invaded my trousers and ate the notes. There are those who suspect that I may have just bought beer and toffees but these people have no proof and I deny it. The point is that in the end there was no flour, there was no money, and all that remained was my family’s hunger and a huge mystery as to where the money went.
Saint Mummy: Oh, she was distraught. How was she going to feed the children? The sibs were furious, but they were hungry and did not have the energy to lynch me. As for me, I was mortified with shame. As I looked across the empty dining table at their stricken faces all I could think of was how I had failed my loved ones. It was my responsibility to bring food and I let them down. I could not bear to look them in the face, let alone say a word.
Moral of the story: It was unfortunate that I was not a Ugandan politician, because if I was, I would have just gone on to merrily chat away at the starving siblings about how we, the youth, are the key to development of the country.
And the point of the story?: Twitter. There are politicians on twitter who have been involved in scandal. The courts say they are not supposed to be in jail for theft, and I take the courts at their word because I am a patriot (seriously. No sarcasm. I belive in the rule of law) but seriously these guys.
You were given the job of making sure that this money went and bought medicine for poor people. The money did not buy the medicine. The poor people got sick. You should really be way too ashamed to show your head in public after that. Instead you are there gleefully tweeting about Obama and the keys to development of Africa. Really. The moral of the story is, as we say on twitter, STFU.
Translation: Shut The Something Up.