By Jimi Bickersteth
This piece is echoing the Father Matthew Kukah’s treatise on “Mending a broken nation: the Easter metaphor.” The emphasis on Nigeria’s metaphors in the zango-kataf born bishop treatise were so diversely prototypical and probably has been so painted since the advent of the Buhari/Osinbajo ticket in the fall of 2014. Laughable without missing the point.
Today, the world is one with an outlook that was seemingly incorporeal with its many inclinations to the tip of the precipice of despair and inconsolable grief for its future, and exposés all in a slapstick comedy of silent films.
It’s been rather inclement this week, and a muted presidency and a vice that was only interested in sticking out his neck for the highest seat of power, in a world that begins to look incorporeal, without a body or material form. Everything looks so surreal and empty. Around the world, disturbing trends are causing fear of the future.
In a growing number of nations and cities, surveillance cameras are been mounted to monitor citizens and criminal elements alike. Because of the fear of terrorists, many busy airports have almost become military camps, not precluding the Kabul airport bombings, the deployment of drones, and the consequential, causal high casualties figure.
In other lands, those that are poor enough to take advantage takes the bashing and records a high number of casualties in premeditated attacks. There are murders in the ‘cathedral’, gang rapes and killings everywhere, and millions of children not lucky enough to be raised by a father or mother. Prowling the internet in growing numbers are Yahoo ‘robbers,’ thieves, and pedophiles who prey on unsuspecting victims.
Gradual spread of new and strange ailments, the covid19 and its variants occasioned deaths compounding and pose great challenge to global health issues. On the environmental front, pollution, natural and pysical science devastation, deforestation, extinction, and global warming threaten future life on the only planet that is habitable unaided.
Hurricane IDA’s (predicted to be the worst since 1850) 210km/h terrible wind wrecking havoc, slams Louisiana, America with rain, wind and storm surge and with such devastating force that was able to reverse the flow of the Mississippi River. All of which were intimidating, such that plans for a global revolution has began to incubate in the poor man’s mind. It is becoming imminent that the world really need to change its perspective about life, another way to see life, and generally, the meaning of life.
Unthinkable two or three generations ago, these concerns have today became stellar with the world power and governments attitudes, their indefinable air of mystery to the happenings around the world, and indefinite answers to its myriads of problems, ranging from economy, terrorism, arms proliferation and loose control. Morally indefensible!
For good reason many people wonder what is happening to the world, and what kind of life awaits them and their children. Is the time coming when people will be too afraid to board a bus, a train, or a plane? With prices of everything rising and earth’s resources being taxed more and more, will future generations be able to afford good medical care, quality food, quality education, and sufficient fuel?. One couldn’t appreciate the comedy of the situation.
To be honest, the future looks bleak and very scary in regard to rising health costs, food, fuel, and the generally escalating rise in global standard of living. Why? In order to reduce their dependency on fossil fuel, some countries are investing heavily in biofuel, such as ethanol, which is derived from vegetation. Hence for probably the first time in its history, the human stomach is competing with the automotive gas tank for the produce of available land. The resulting inflation in food prices is already being felt.
Meanwhile, the disparity between the rich and the poor is growing, adding to social tensions. In this second decade of the 21st century, immense advances in human well-being comes with extreme privation and deprivation that cuts across borders and global geographic divide. A World Health Organization report, “life expectancies have collapsed in some of the poorest countries to half the level of the richest.” The causes are primarily disease and social and economic chaos in politically failed states. Which is not a failed state today.
Concern has become all too real, for the growing moral vacuum in many parts of the world has forced governments to pass some laws that appeared ineffectual in an effort to curb crime, and there is a growing deep concern about the future. Here, I have in mind, not politics or poverty, but a much deeper problem –the general erosion of core values within the family, at work, in the community and nationally and globally. The traditional family unit is in meltdown due to plunging moral values and the rise of single parents.
Morality is taking a nosedive, as people are having sex earlier in life and with more partners than ever. Moral erosion has also affected those in positions of authority. People no longer look up to their leaders as strong moral exemplars. Politicians, heads of corporations, and even religious leaders “appear to lack the proper moral fibre.” A number of forces are driving this downward trend. One is a general spirit of rebellion against traditional values, and a curious belief that right and wrong is a matter of personal opinion. Whereas right is right and wrong is what it is, wrong. A rose remain one no matter what name you gave it.
Today’s society thrive and focuses on a second factor, moral autonomy, greed, the immediate satisfaction of individual desires, in a setting in which individual and collective hedonism becomes the dominant motive for behaviour, but are this vice conducive to genuine happiness, contentment and better relationships with others?. The anti graft and corruption agencies effect more arrests of suspects in hotels, bars and recreation spots than anywhere else.
Throw into this mix the specter of global warming and or the new coinage, climate change, which may cause increased desertification and more extreme weather, even as scientists continue to observe cascading effects of global warming on Earth’s complex ecosystems, and it comes as no surprise that many informed people are jittery about the world’s tomorrow.
The world began the [20th] century, the new millennium, enthusiastically believing that the scientists would save us and by 2019-2021, the world end it not believing a single word they say. The world is still politically manipulating the reports on the report of the origin of the covid pandemic.
Are the global prospects as bleak as they appear to be? Does the world’s only hope for a decent future depend on the leaders of business, politics, religion, and science? What other choice does the world have. Some say the world got itself into this terrible mess and quagmire; it must get itself out. Others feel that it is simply beyond the ability of humans to find the way out and that its only hope for a safe and secure future lies with the supreme being, maker of heaven and earth. That he’s the only one that could save the world from itself.
For me as a writer and blogger, my take is that the beautiful world we call home has over the time developed serious structural defects due to leadership absence and their flawed character. The world is in big trouble. Despite countless social and political tinkering experiments and almost miraculous advances in science and technology, the very fabric of society seems to be coming apart.
In a number of countries, lawlessness and anarchy are already the order of the day. Will desperation drive humans to resolve their problems, to create a new level of assimilation and understanding of the nature of the problems on the ground.
In an effort to make the world a better living space conducive for human habitation and their peace and happiness, thinkers from Greek philosopher Plato to German political philosopher and socialist Karl Marx have proposed numerous political ideologies. The results however, have not abolished poverty or constructed world peace. On the contrary, the world seem to have achieved exactly the opposite.
Jimi Bickersteth is a blogger and writer and could be reached at [email protected]