Sunday, September 20, 2020

Let the Rastas go home (part 2)

Since time immemorial, man has had a yearning to migrate. We migrate for many reasons. Usually we migrate in search of a better life. That is why all those years ago Europeans put to sea. It was not as if they just felt bored and wanted to sail to strange parts of the world. No, they sailed because they thought they could discover new places where they could have a better life. And a better life they found. The history of colonialism is about exploitation of resources. Colonialists would not have established themselves were it not for the presence of resources of various kinds. With the exploitation of resources came a better life. A better life led to a superiority complex which in turn bred discrimination and racism. In the modern age, people still continue to migrate. Some do it legally but most, especially from poor countries, do it illegally.

Sometimes when things are tough I also think of joining the migration wave. If I were to migrate, it would be from the continent. I don?t see much sense in going to another country which has people as poor as I am. I will only migrate to a country where the vast majority of people have more than I have. But getting out is not easy. On this continent many illegal migrants just hoof it on foot. I mean when faced with starvation or walking to a country next door, you would rather walk there. I think it?s a reasonable way of doing things. Why sit and die from hunger instead of walking to a place where you can find something to eat? I mean, even if it doesn?t work out, you could die trying. More fortunate migrants get rides and pay exorbitant sums of money to leave their god forsaken countries. Recently, there has been a wave of boat people from the continent who end up being washed ashore in Europe. I think they are brave people. They are also smart. They realised that instead of migrating to another poor African country, they could as well try for Europe. Some Europeans seem to have a problem with it. They must be kidding. For hundreds of years they have been coming here uninvited. A lot of them stayed forever and clearly will never go back. Europeans, therefore, have no moral authority to deny a few hundred desperate Africans entry into their countries. Actually, if this country was not landlocked, I would also take to sea and sail to Europe. Life certainly looks good there. When the boat people are washed ashore they are greeted with warm food and draped in expensive looking duvets. They are even checked by a doctor. What more could a poor African want? The issue of illegal migration came to my mind when I heard about the three Ethiopian
Soccer players. Their team apparently came to play here. The players were put up in a swanky hotel where they could eat as much as they wanted. They also feasted their eyes on the local girls who, it must be said, are pretty hot. Having surveyed the scene the players decided they rather liked the look of this place and did a vanishing act. Their team mates and the police were frantically looking for them. But clearly they had planned well and no amount of searching could locate them in time for the flight back home two days later. I can only assume the return journey was a glum affair. But far from their team mates missing them, they were kicking themselves, wondering why they too had not disappeared. Latest reports indicate that the footballers have been found. And that brings us to my problem with their impending repatriation. Because the footballers are here illegally the knee jerk reaction of the authorities is to send them back to Ethiopia. That would be a bad move. Why send them back to the very problems they fled from? I am not acquainted with their problems back home but I am certain about one thing. They decided on their course of action because they want a better life here. In my view they shouldn?t be sent back.

The authorities should show a bit more imagination when it comes to these matters. I think I have just the right solution. In this country there is a cult called the Rastafarians. The Rastas I know seem to spend a lot of their time smoking an illegal substance, coyly known as weed. They also seem to have an aversion to regular work. If they are not chilling and smoking weed, they are selling wood carvings and other artifacts. They tend not to place too much of a premium on personal cleanliness. I don?t know, I could be mistaken. But with their long, thick dreadlocks, they certainly don?t cut a figure of good hygiene. The Rastas also tend to be very skinny. It would seem they have issues with the world and have decided not to eat meat and other normal food. They appear to have some beef with white people as well. But strangely I have seen one or two with white girls, looking quite pleased with themselves on their achievement. Rastas practise some religion that worships Haile Selassie, once Emperor of Ethiopia. Although some of us who live in the real world know that Selassie was a brutal dictator those who are always high on illegal substance regard him as some demi god. Such is their adoration for Selassie that the desire of many Rastas is to go to Ethiopia. They call Ethiopia home. Now the people of Ethiopia are not Rastas. They obviously have good reasons not to be. I, therefore, propose that instead of sending the footballers back, the authorities must simply invite all the Rastas who want to go to Ethiopia to come to the nearest immigration office. Every single Rasta who wants to go will then be given a one way ticket, allowed to carry his tom tom drums and as much weed as they wish. Considering that the flight is long, I am sure they will need lots of weed and drumming to liven up the trip. I think that is the way to go. When the Rastas are in Ethiopia they will finally realise why the three footballers decided to flee. It?s time for a reality check. Let the

Rastas go home!

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Sunday Standard September 20 – 26

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 20 - 26, 2020.