In 1985, the USA for Africa group, a group of 44 renowned artist, under the leadership of Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson released the single titled, “We are the World”. In it they voiced, “We are the world. We are the children. We are the ones to make a brighter change so let’s start giving.”
Jordin Sparks a popular American R&B artist in 2013 released “This Is My Wish”. She sang “This is my wish. My wish for the world. That peace would find its way to every boy and girl. This is the time. The time of harmony. Let love be the song that everybody sings. … Let there be peace on earth.”
In the same album she sang HUMAN with words like “We got to do better than this because we only got one world to save for the children. A little love, a little kindness in this time of darkness. It would be what makes us human… Did you just walk on by and close your eyes whiles they cry? Maybe now we should listen to the screaming child. –we got to do better than this because we’ve got only one chance to make a difference.
We always hear the old say “the children are the future”. This has been continuously voiced into the belief of many children. But then what type of future should these children inherit? Is it one of hope? Is there a foundation? Is the foundation that strong? Are these children going to enjoy from the labour of the old? Are they being left a well deserving legacy to follow in that future? Are they going to build upon a foundation? Are they going to turn into corrective engineers to wipe away the wrongs of the old with all of their lives? Do these children have a hope of a better future to inherit?
We look around us. See all sorts of wrongs. Our conscience tells us they are wrong and in every vein of the word they are too. But we continue in our selfish ways. Seeking our own well-being. Whiles that poor child wastes away. Whiles the only light those poor village people see is the Sun of the day. And by our acts of comfort, we continuously take away their happiness. We quench away that glimmer of hope that is so dear to them. We steal away that hope they so much cling on to.
Is life all about us alone? Is our pilgrimage through this world just to waste away people’s happiness in order to build mansions of inequity for ourselves? Day in and day out, people somewhere scream, they wail and cry. They hate to see another day. They live a life so inhuman. All because of the self-seeking actions of the few.
Why can’t we live in a world of honesty? Is selfishness the only way to a better life? Can’t we sacrifice a bit for others to get the chance to quality life? Every evening, the African child sleeps with a hope of a better tomorrow. That someday things would be well. Always flanged on the belief that “it shall be well”. Can’t he for once sleep in the comfort of the reality that at least for once it is well? There is indeed a gap we need to bridge. The gap between a better quality life and honesty.
It’s so sad that the older generation learns so much during their passage. Yet the young ones would have to go through the same mistakes all over again. Precious time in life that could have been used to build better ideas are always wasted creating and correcting mistakes that have already been addressed. Prof. Francis Agyemang Yeboah, a Legal practitioner, Medical Doctor and Lecturer, at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology stated in one of his discourse with his students that “I feel we have learnt a lot and acquired so much experience that, it would be disastrous if we do not transfer it to our younger generation.”
Why should parents see themselves as bosses and treat children as not deserving? Why would a parent go through so much in life but hide it from his wards knowledge? It’s time to listen to that screaming child. It’s time to extend that helping hand. It is time for all of us to stand and fight for a better future for the children we say we love. It’s time for us to live by honesty and equity. We can make it. Selfishness isn’t what we need. No matter our walk. Irrespective of our race, the right thing must be done. Let’s not make our lives mountains for others to climb but rather bridges for them to cross that river, that fire, that valley. Let’s BRIDGE the gap.
Obed Mensah-Benyin (O.M.B)