Kubatana.net ~ an online community of Zimbabwean activists

If you could change one thing, what would it be?

TOP del.icio.us

Our little chalk board outside the office door has a message scribbled on it that says; if you could change one thing, what would it be? We often receive many visitors, some of whom simply want to engage our humble but free services to ask for all kinds of information ranging from where they can find such and such an organization, to how far with the talks? Fortunately our front-desk man always somehow manages to stifle the temptation to say: this ain’t the effing Salvation Army!

Today this pleasant gentleman waltzed in and the first thing he asked me was what I would change if I could. I said well, that question is for anyone who walks in here, including himself. When I threw back the question to him he said simply, Mugabe. That one change, he explained, would result in an unimaginable ripple effect that will see a stream of other important changes take place to make this country a better place.

Frankly, I hadn’t thought of it that way. I mean, I had sort of perceived that question to somehow elicit a response that is more personal, like what one would change about oneself in terms of say, physical appearance or character. But now that I think of it, he has a point.

On my way to work yesterday I had to maneuver and take the longest route round because I had overlooked the fact that Parliament was being reconvened and a lot of the city’s roads would be cordoned off. I couldn’t help feeling that sense of dread that creeps up on me whenever I encounter the self-important goons in the security service with their polished shoes, neat uniforms and empty stomachs. They just cease to think properly whenever Uncle Bob is playing in the area. I mean, what’s the logic behind sealing off all the backstreets behind Parliament building even to pedestrians, and dictating that they may not walk across here but can do so there? What the hell do they honestly think we can possibly do to that old man (if at all you can see him)? There is no history of suicide bombings here and lets face it, some people just aren’t worth dying for.

If I could change these guys, I’d make them a little more sensible and less condescending. It would be nice to wipe those complacent, smug expressions off their faces.

And what about those clowns masquerading as political leaders with our best interests at heart? Apparently that’s why they spent three weeks at the circus in Pretoria, carefully deliberating our future. Yesterday they are at it again in a less elaborate venue called Parliament. Radio VOP has just reported that there was drama as women’s leagues from the main parties clashed outside Parliament. Apparently they engaged in a battle of the vocal chords whereby the MDC women prevailed by chanting “chinja” (change) and “you are now the opposition” at the top of their voices allegedly shocking their contenders into silence.   When will they realize that they shouldn’t fight each other but rather direct their attention to that one man? If I could wave a magic wand, would I not change their thought processes or better yet, make them all disappear and save us all from their nauseating shenanigans?

And how about hypocrites and opportunity-snatchers that shy away from the fields they are experts in, like rocket science, and choose rather to enlighten us all to the hidden schemes and neo-colonial tendencies of the West. Like rapists, I despise hypocrites. They are anything between a cockroach and that stuff that accumulates at the corner of your mouth when you are extremely thirsty.

I’d probably change them too, if I could.

As a matter of fact, I’d like to change a lot of things, wouldn’t you?  But as our friendly visitor suggested, let’s start with that one stubborn man. Change him, and you’ve changed everyone and everything else in Zimbabwe.

One comment to “If you could change one thing, what would it be?”

  1. Comment by Tawanda Maguze:

    You raise very interesting points Natasha, ofcourse as usual with a tad overdose of emotion, over realism. I am not quite sure which era you grew up in, but I am almost certain if you had been there in the early to mid eighties you would have awed at the splendour, glamour and pomp of those polished shoes and neat uniforms. Such set-ups Natasha are not like clothes that you alter to fit when you gain or lose weight. There is nowhere in the world where you will go and find the opening of such gatherings any less ceremonius. Moreover the opening of this year’s parly was really nothing out of the ordinary ( my guess is you are you are young, possibly naive. I do agree ofcourse that with our present situation, some behaviour tends to aggravate our feelings and we really can’t avoid such a reflex as yours. However though lest you forget, the rocket scientist didn’t use Jet A1 fuel to propel himself to where he is, people put him there, (and that simple fact isn’t rocket science).