Unexpressed opinions won't change the world

in #uganda4 years ago

There are two categories of social media users:

(a) The kind that is always online but never posts anything, never says anything. Most times when this category chooses to talk - to comment, it is to generally express disapproval of what someone else has said. Or to comment "nice booty" on some random person's picture; and

(b) The kind that is always/usually/sometimes online and endeavours to post something. To say something, anything. To express what's on their mind. Some kind of opinion. To paint for the world 🗺 a picture of the kind of society they want to live in. To get their voices heard. And in effect, to contribute to and perharps shape national opinion and character. This category is very loud, atimes annoyingly loud. image


Category A

Obviously, because it never says anything, category A never makes mistakes. Never offends anyone. Makes no misogynistic, racist, insensitive, comments. Always plays it safe.

This category is usually skilled at passing silent judgment over category B, and in most cases would rather category B learnt to exercise more restraint in their "rather offensive" posts.

The downside for category A is that while its members have many ideals painted in their mind regarding the kind of society they want to live in, this category never uses the opportunity social media presents to influence something, anything, through their opinion.

While the members in this category may want a good road here and perfect medical services there, they really never express these desires/alternatives/opinions, and so while they want so many things to change or be done better, their cynical apathy and loud silence conspire to ensure that ultimately nothing ever changes.

As a result, the powers that be can comfortably ignore this lot and whatever change it silently craves. After all, it poses and expresses no threat. It is always going to be, apparently, contented with the status quo.

If you take into consideration the over 6 million registered and eligible Ugandan voters who abstained from the 2016 general election because "my vote can't change anything", and think about the possible political changes we could have experienced, but for their apathy and cynicism, you'll understand the consequences of that decision to withhold political opinion.

Category B

Meanwhile, because they are always saying "something", members of category B end up making so many mistakes. They say so much that they later realise should perhaps never have been said in the first place. When this happens, category A is almost always there to roast them.

But one thing for sure is that category B is always out there occupying every social media space available, forcefully pushing and promoting its "change" agenda. Whether good or bad. Painting its ideal community for everyone who cares to know. Influencing the day-to-day decisions taken by technocrats, the people responsible for implementing the change this category so much clamours for.

Bluntly put, this category never "settles" for bullshit. Refuses to be cynical or apathetic. Refuses to take a blow lying down. It believes in change. And will, loudly and defiantly, push that change agenda until it is achieved. While it may have no proof of or be able to cause that change in the short term, the goal will ultimately be achieved, whether 10 years away from now, or a millenium. Because that noise can't be ignored forever. That's for certain. Bur nevertheless, I'll interest you with a few illustrations:

It is not the silence of that first-time traveller who painfully coughed $100 before being allowed to board the plane at Entebbe International Airport, but the noise of that Category B social media user [e.g.Muhammad Ssegirinya] who loudly called bullshit to this practise, that jolted the Civil Aviation Authority out of its slumber into saying "this won't happen again!".

It is not the silence of the person who learnt - with muted offense - of the UGX 6Bn handshake, but the noise of that category B social media user [e.g. Giles Achebe Muhame] who loudly called bullshit on the payments, that got our national Parliament saying "Return the money!".

It is not the silence of that category A social media user who learnt - with muted revulsion - of the proposed social media tax, but the noise of that category B social media user [e.g. Nyanjura Doreen] who loudly called bullshit on the ridiculous proposal, that got the State to promise, at least, that "no such tax will be imposed".

It is not the silence of that category A social media user who learnt - with muted shock - of the massive corruption scandal surrounding Makerere University's 83rd Students Guild, but the noise of that category B social media user [e.g. Godwin Toko] who loudly called bullshit to the 83rd Guild's shenanigans, that gives a ray of hope that, perharps, something will finally be done about it.

Choose your category carefully, but remember that unexpressed. opinions will never change the world.

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