Friday, March 25, 2011

Kunda and his bad language

Kunda and his bad language
By The Post
Fri 25 Mar. 2011, 04:00 CAT

“Let me now address you about the behaviour of Michael Chilufya Sata. Sata is mad, in fact HH has revealed that he walked out of the pact because Sata was using the pact to fundraise money for homosexual activities from foreign powers that allow the practice in their countries…Sata is surrounded by proven homosexuals.

All those that surround him have one thing in common, but my government will not tolerate them…”; “Lastly, let me talk about this man, Panji Kaunda. Panji has been advocating violence, bloodshed.

Panji is a colonel, very well trained, there they teach discipline.

How can he advocate bloodshed…we know he is broke, that is why he is attacking us, we are not responsible for his suffering, the economy is booming, let him just work hard…”

This is the language of George Kunda, the Vice-President of the Republic of Zambia and our country’s Minister of Justice, a man who is also aspiring to be the vice-president of the ruling MMD at the party’s forthcoming national convention.

It is said that a person’s talk shows his faults; it is like a sieve that separates out the rubbish.

The way you think shows your character just as surely as a kiln shows any flaws in the pottery being fired.

It is said that you can tell how well a tree has been cared for by the fruit it bears, and you can tell a person’s feelings by the way he expresses himself.

Never praise anyone before you hear them talk; that is the real test.

And the Bible states explicitly that what a fool lacks is knowledge while a stupid man lacks understanding.

By implication, therefore, what a man who speaks before he thinks suffers from is stupidity.

There is no reason anybody can offer to justify the use of foul language on another person.

This type of language that George is fond of using can degenerate into a conflict of monumental dimension, if not properly handled.

Wrong choice of words against others has resulted in many conflicts.

Intolerance seems to dominate our politics.

And this is due largely to greediness, hatefulness, self-centeredness and corruption on the part of our politicians, of politicians like George.

If a leader possesses sublime qualities of love, incorruptibility, peace and altruism, it will definitely reflect in what he says and does – he will not be brash, pushy and easily irritated. It takes a humble heart to show tolerance in the face of utter provocation.

This is why those who show restraint in their politicking endure in leadership.

One truth nobody can dispute is that to be a leader carries with it enormous responsibilities.

It is said that to be a leader requires one to see oneself beyond the microcosmic imperatives of one’s position and environment and look at the bigger picture confronting one in the task of offering selfless leadership to the electorate.

Again, it is also said that whoever wants to make a success of his leadership position must learn to be a father-figure.

This eliminates the temptation of parochialism, meanness, voluptuousness that characterises the lives of despots and tin-gods.

It is said that the essence of human communication, generally, is to interact with one another in a most refined, culturally-permissible manner for the advancement of the cause of society.

But it becomes perilous and destructive when such communication assumes a contemptuous, derogatory, defamatory and pejorative dimension.

George’s choice of language is, to say the least, immature, arrogant and self-effacing. All that matters to George when he speaks is his own interests.

It is said that an articulate, urbane and ingenious politician is one that thinks before he speaks.

Can George boast of this unique quality?

Or does he speak before he thinks?

We wish to state without any equanimity that George targets the character of his opponents in his speeches instead of concentrating on issues.

But we all know that when a politician mounts the soapbox , he is expected to exhibit the highest level of decorum and decency.

And George is Vice-President of the Republic of Zambia. And we also know that the stake becomes higher when the person involved is a higher political office holder like George.

There is something that has endeared Barrack Obama, the Afro American President of the United States, to both his friends and his foes: his altruistic and mature use of language.

This special attribute of Obama has been tested on several occasions. In fact, it was Obama’s masterly speeches and his comportment and coolness in the face of provocation that warmed him into the hearts of most Americans to vote for him, to emerge the first Afro American President of the most powerful country in the world.

And he has never disappointed in this respect.

And the Bible captures the havoc the careless tongue like that of George can cause when it describes it as a consuming furnace.

We are told that the tongue has the capacity to set a nation ablaze if wrongly applied.

When a politician uses foul language on another person, especially his opponent, it speaks volumes about that politician’s demeanour, his personality and pedigree.

George has been found to be culpable in this regard.

George and his friends in the ruling MMD use the state-owned media they control to impugn the character of their perceived enemies without recourse to integrity, rule of law and ethics.

They forget that when you point a finger at another person, the other four point at you.

And the whole essence of political contests is to promote social re-engineering and bring out the best in our politicians for the good of our country and our people.

Painfully, for petty-minded politicians like George, they see such contests as avenues for the character assassination, slander, humiliation and intimidation of their opponents and entrenchment of a regime of terror, fear and abuse.

Politics shouldn’t be like this.

Politics should be a means to an end not the end in itself; it shouldn’t be a do or die affair the way George and his friends dispose themselves to it.

Even where people disagree with each other, they should never allow emotions to rule their heads.

Even when provoked, they should show restraint and humanness.

George has jettisoned decency from our politics and in its place he has embraced brigandage and cantankerousness.

The most annoying aspect of George’s behaviour is his willingness to resort to gutter language and pettiness at the slightest chance.

He trivialises serious national issues in the name of politics and makes mockery of our collective sensibilities and lumps all of us as a bunch of idiots.

George seriously lacks love, godliness, integrity and discipline. It is laughable, therefore, when we expect too much from him. It is impossible to give what you don’t have – in Latin they say nemo quad non habet.

It is said that it is from the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks.

Our worry is that the way things are going, George and his friends may throw this nation into a serious crisis going by the way they behave and talk.

It is said that provocative utterances evoke provocative response.

This is natural.

It is also said that fumes and smoke appear before the flames do; insults come before violence.

This is not the kind of leaders we want.

We need leaders that will take us to paradise, not those who cause others discomfort and pain by their lies, malice, slander, calumny, deceit, falsehoods and unguarded utterances.

How long are we going to wait before our nation is given purposeful leadership?

We need sincerity and love to build a cohesive and dignified nation in which the dignity of all will be respected and protected. We need leaders who will lead by example, whether they intend it or not.

It is said that example is not the main thing in influencing others; it is the only thing and that ethics must begin at the top because it is a leadership issue and the leaders must set the example.

Liars and vulgar elements deserve to be cast.

There is no need to waste one’s time listening to the nonsense, lies, slander and malice coming from the mouths of characters like George.

It is said that “…anyone who pays attention to slander can never find peace of mind.

A whip can raise a welt, but a vicious tongue can break bones. More people have died as a result of loose talk than were ever killed by swords.

Count yourself lucky if you have been spared the experience of having irresponsible talk directed against you – if you have never had that iron yoke around your neck or those heavy chains on your legs.

Slander leads to a miserable death; but in fact, you would be better off dead.

Devout people, however, can never be overcome by slander; they can never be burned by its flames.

Its victims are those who have abandoned the lord; once the fire of slander has been lit among them, it cannot be put out.

Slander will pounce on them like a lion and tear them to pieces like a leopard.”

Clearly, the verbal violence that we are getting from George and his friends in the MMD during this pre-election campaign is an affront against the rights of this country’s voters and the rights of all other politicians who intend to be candidates in this year’s elections.

Campaigns must be carried out in a peaceful and honest way, devoid of any violence and slander of opponents.

The malice, character assassination, defamation of character, lies and deceit being propagated by George and his friends with the help of the state-owned media they control is starting to leave most of our people dismayed and disheartened.

This is not good for our politics and for our elections. It must be stopped.

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