KENYA HISTORY PROJECT, OPINION

Each Human Life is Equally Important

“The ultimate end of all revolutionary social change is to establish the sanctity of human life, the dignity of man, the right of every human being to liberty and well-being.” Emma Goldman

Our articles here at INFO254 are written with an emphasis on taking pride in our history and the heroes who sacrificed themselves for Kenya’s self-determination.

One overarching theme for the struggle for independence was this idea that we wanted to be treated equally in the eyes of the world and not be judged through the prism of our colonial masters.

It is therefore sad to see that we ourselves sometime perpetuate this idea that there are more important lives than others in our country. In light to the recent bus accident that killed 55 people and spate of murders that has taken the lives of young Kenyans, one has to ask; why do we place such a low value on life in Kenya?

As a society, we get so much joy in the birth of a child and are left despondent and inconsolable with the death of loved ones. But somehow in-between we tend to not feel the need to emphasize the importance of each and every life despite someone’s station in life.

But most certainly, one of the major reasons why human life seems to continue to lose its value in our society is because we have made money to be the ultimate bottom-line and marker of who is important and not important in our midst.

Inevitably, when we place such a high premium on money, everything in our society becomes transactional and in many instances our human side ends up being subdued or altogether eliminated.

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Furthermore, by placing money on such a lofty pedestal we diminish the important role of otherwise important members of society such as artists, thespians, teachers, nurses and many more. These people are considered the pillar and in most cases the conscience of any thriving society despite the lack of large monetary benefits derived from such occupations.

But in today’s Kenya, the influence these people once wielded on the moral direction of our society continues to reduce by the day. You wonder why pastors are stealing left and right from their congregants, teachers are leaking exams for money, hospitals can watch people die at their doors without flinching just because these people can’t afford care or even a bus driver can drive with such total disregard for human life.

In many cases it has to do with the fact that many people providing essential community services no longer feel valued by society. For them making money to achieve a perceived economic status and “earn respect” of the society becomes more important. This need to earn respect justifies their lack of sensitivity towards people who they feel that are not important in the eyes of society.

Do you ever wonder why many practitioners for change from the past eras grew so quiet?

It is because all of a sudden, there is a certain realization and accompanying sense of futility that nearly every person in Kenya has a price tag and can be bought.

But it is not all doom and gloom.

Social media has become such a potent platform for promoting the value of all human life and equality in our country and throughout the world.

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Kenyans are gaining their footing on social media and asking the right questions and insisting that their lives be valued by their government and fellow citizens.

It is only when we value each other’s lives equally irrespective of our station in life that we will be able to make great strides in improving the quality of life of each and every person in our country.

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