The place of Honour…for the rest of us at least

Over the past week or the Republic of Kenya has been swept away by an intense wave of national mourning. Last Sunday 2 cabinet ministers and 4 others passed away in a helicopter crash. What followed is an outpouring of grief that (this blogger at least) has not witnessed ever. Parliament postponed the grand opening of its new chambers out of respect. They not only took over the funeral arrangements for all involved but dedicated the entire sitting on Tuesday. The Requirerem masses and funerals of the two politicians were telecast live by all Kenyan televisions bar one, and I suppose majority of the radio stations as well. Print media of all manner of inclination suddenly found common cause in celebrating the lives of these fallen giants. Public figures of all shapes and sizes were tripping over each other to eulogize the two. Even a certain ‘retired’ politician, famous for humiliating one of the deceased revealed that he’d been planning to endorse the deceased now ended presidential bid. In an attempt to be the gad fly, rather than the fly in the ointment I want to ask, had these two not been in active politics, would their deaths have garnered even a quarter of the attention they have now? Consider how we take it for granted that being made a cabinet minister automaticaly gets you the title Elder of the Golden Heart. Consider that in contrast breaking world records on the track, will most likely get you a Head of State’s commendation. Consider that none of Kenya’s 2003 world cup semifinalist cricket players has been remembered for their efforts. Consider the long line of Olympics medalists that simply get forgotten after the event. This is not to say that Kenyans working hard and breaking new grounds outside politics aren’t being recognized, just that it seems to this blogger we are not giving the non politians a fair look. Is it because the political class holds such sway over our lives that when they decide this thing (or person) is important we simply agree? Is it because tug rest of us aren’t so image conscious that whether or not people go nuts over our achievements or not isn’t so big a deal, therefore we don’t go out of our way to impose ourselves on others? Over to you.

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Author: kimemiamaina

blogger, writer, dreamer...

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