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No one will whip anyone's behind

by Bishop L
09 May 2021 at 08:02hrs | Views
AS a matter of principle and decency, the Bishop, as a man of the cloth, usually doesn't obsess about individuals as much as he fetishes discussing issues of substance affecting our community and civilisation.

He finds insults, especially outside the electioneering period, as a fatal failure to intellectually engage with topical issues.

Often-times, brawn starts where the brain fails.

This is a well-established pattern, particularly with social media trolls, who usually resort to coarse, abrasive and vulgar language as a nuclear option each time their bigoted and inferior intellect is put against the wall.

This is why social media is nauseatingly toxic, because it is full of supposedly all-knowing folks that masquerade as experts on anything and everything, including on issues they least understand; and when they are put to the test, they inevitably fail spectacularly, which leaves them to use abusive language to obfuscate issues that would be up for discussion.

You see, the pre-requisite of possessing even the most basic of academic qualifications is normally waived when it comes to the employment of nightclub bouncers, because all they need is to be sufficiently muscular and brawny enough to literally throw out troublesome patrons.

Professor Jonathan Moyo was quite accomplished when it came to using invectives to put down his opponents in cases he felt challenged.

But in June 2013, he was put in his proper place by Advocate Chris Mhike, who wrote an article in The Herald responding to one of Moyo's diatribes.

Mhike observed: "While well-educated and less-educated Asians, Americans and Europeans make breakthrough inventions in the mobile phone and computer, aviation and motor car, rocket science, educational science and medical fields, and many other developmental sectors, some of our professors and high-ranking politicians here spend considerable time concocting noxious slurs.

"This trait has resulted in a situation where the decency and politesse that should characterise debate in a democratic and civilised society, is fast vanishing from ours."


The tongue has the power to build or destroy.

James 3: 5-8 warns us: "Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one's life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison."

But one wouldn't expect brainiacs to have untamed tongues.

In February, Bishop Lazi told you about Africa's curse of deadbeat intellectuals who have unbelievably lofty academic credentials but cannot even do anything to materially improve the livelihoods and circumstances of their own people.

By any measure, Professor Arthur Mutambara is a fabulously educated chap.

At one time he was a research scientist at the famed NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which has the honourable distinction of landing the first human being on the moon.

This is serious stuff.

He also became a visiting professor at the reputed Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), among his many extraordinary accomplishments.

He has lived a life that can only be a wet dream for geeks and nerds around the world.

These are the people who should ordinarily be intellectual vanguards leading African on a new trajectory.

But in February, when most parts of Africa were being roiled by the coronavirus pandemic, Professor Mutambara made the most dispiriting and jarring comment imaginable, especially for people who look up to intellectuals to provide hope in troubled times.

"The African is an observer, a subject and not a participant in vaccine development.

"This is a terrible indictment of all us people of African descent. Shame on us! . . . That there is a black doctor working on the vaccine at Pfizer is irrelevant and inconsequential.

"An African country or black-owned company producing a vaccine — that is what we need . . . It will also give us agency and control as Africans," he said.

It would have been understandable had this been coming from a condescending white man, but this was a highly educated black man with the material and intellectual heft to do something about the situation, but the irony was obviously lost on him.

Blissful ignorance

Last week, he also thought it wise to share his views on the Constitutional Amendment Bill Number 2, which was since been signed into law.

"Zanu-PF is begging for more economic sanctions," he said.

"Amend(ment) No.2 gives its detractors reasons to maintain sanctions: Const(itutional) violations, illegal judges, compromised judiciary, corrupt imperial presidency. Zanu-PF (is) giving its detractors a big stick to whip its behind.

"Its pure idiocy."

And this was supposed to pass off as a reasoned opinion from an intellectual?

From someone supposedly sophisticated, one would have expected a robust intellectual deconstruction of the amendments to help ordinary wananchi appreciate what it is he finds repugnant — if at all there is any.

But the question is: Is he even capable of doing so?

Gracious Lord, help us!

You would be surprised to learn that many who are opposing these constitutional amendments are blissfully ignorant of what they actually entail, which makes it highly unlikely that they even know what is at stake.

Why would one oppose the scrapping of an alien concept of a Presidential running mate, which has abjectly failed and proven to be highly divisive in other jurisdictions on the continent, where the peculiar complexities of local politics are often poisoned by meddlesome, hostile foreign governments?

As the Bishop writes this, there is a country in East Africa where the President has not spoken to his deputy — who was a running mate in the last elections — in the past two months.

This is a real-world example of the pitfalls of two centres of power.

And why would one oppose giving the President the wiggle room to appoint two additional ministers from outside Parliament, unlike the current provisions that limit such appointments to five?

Is it also not prudent to trust a competent body such as the Judicial Services Commission (JSC) and the President to appoint our judges rather than put them through the ignominy of the pointless drama of public interviews that serve to lower their professional estimation?

In the US, which is considered the paragon of democracy, judicial officers — supreme court justices, appeals judges and district court judges — are appointed by the President for a life term.

In the UK, judges are appointed by the Queen on advice from the Prime Minister, who would have received recommendations from a select committee.

In addition, is extending reserved seats for women and introducing a quota for youths in Parliament objectionable?

Also, could introducing a law that adds impetus to devolution, which is supposed to empower communities, be a bad thing?

So what exactly are those who are opposed to these indubitably progressive changes objecting to?

But we have been down this road before.

We all know how sponsored interest groups mobilised against the proposed Constitution in 2000 to scupper provisions that would have allowed Government to compulsorily acquire land without compensation to aid the land reform exercise.

This naturally prompted the Constitutional Amendment (Number 16) in April 2000 to achieve precisely the same goal.

It is well known that the rejection of the 2000 Constitution had nothing to do with the document itself, but with mere ill-advised politicking, which later had far-reaching consequences.

Try America

Maybe Professor Mutambara needs to appreciate what is happening in America, a country which he seems to be intimately attached to the most.

Is he aware of the laws that have been passed in Georgia, Florida and Iowa, including proposed bills in Texas and Ohio that are designed to make it difficult for people to vote in these Republican-controlled states?

Is it not weird that this is happening in the so-called heartland of democracy?

He should try to read the HB 1 law (better known as the anti-riot bill) recently introduced in Florida, which some Americans are describing as an affront to the First Amendment rights that guarantee freedom of expression, assembly, etcetera.

Clearly, sovereign nations inherently have the prerogative to chart their own path in the national interest.

Zimbabwe has not and will never accept supervision and adulting from anyone.

If our intellectuals become so pedestrian, what will become of the pedestrians themselves?

Rest assured, no one will whip anyone's behind.

We, as a people, will shape our own destiny.

Bishop out!

Source - sundymail