In spite of her premier position on the global map, America is suffering and smiling. Goke Omisore writes
History reveals, lessons learnt on the token aggregates of the combined- offer you envied in Western world. You will most likely in your youthful years enjoy, celebrate, and treasure. But it subtly, often reaches vanishing points sooner than later, though in a host of unlimited choices veneered in freedom, liberty and happiness to bait; packaged in Green Cards; they are packed full of dreams.
Knowing full well that which held you in warm embrace in your youth; that which you will swear by and prepare to die for or live to enjoy, sooner your preferred choice often vapourises into thin air of despair; it may soon wither and pale significantly into delusion. Always remember, the world has gone republican; it is a very lonely world out there, where each one is for himself but God for us all.
Often times, it will dawn on you like the pain of a wound received in an excitement which eclipses it. Your interest, hope and dreams of your chosen life, very often turns into certified regrets in a too late situation of bail-out system, on the real value of tokens earned. When Uncle Sam grants you education on loan and a 25-30 years Mortgage, who is fooling who?
Remember always, whoever issues a token reserves all the right of its worth at all times like a paper currency interest, doctored as often by federal reserves’ helmsman or woman. People often end up a Ward-of-state in old age, herein, is the secret of the system water tight in Taxation and SS – social security.
Pal, you ain’t nothing much, more worth than a SS number – America Gos’s own country – Fools’ paradise? Be wise: Caveat emptor, the end of dreams doesn’t often justify the creamy greener pastures as dreamt; it often turns into ashes in one’s mouth, says legions. The hidden beauty in poverty on African continent are in the offer of dignity and respect in your fatherland. Western system hardly rarely ever notices you; the exemptions are truly negligible few living the dream!
Boy, America, you have come a very, very, long way. The truth is, today, almost the whole world stands colonised by American culture in every nook and cranny of the planet earth and a niche on the moon. Coke is it! Jeans are fashionable in board-rooms and almost at any “A list” affair worthy of its platinum invitations! They pioneered the internet revolution in digital space racing and inventions!
The emphasis has since shifted to achievers, game changer, risk takers, while brawns are relegated to the lower rungs of success ladder. On all occasions, guests’ worth in intellect and mega-bucks in billions USD preferred; profound achievement is now the yard stick, not necessarily pedigrees or degrees – no longer tuxedo, Italian cut or French suits – from Tokyo to Shanghai, London to New Dehli, Jo-burg to Hamburg.
From Kenya to Malaysia, American literature, films and music set the pace worldwide. It betrays the jealousy in the Africa in me as our continent is still writhing in self-imposed darkness, wallowing in corruption in the 21st century! Quite a shame! America’s kind of globalisation generates healthy competitions worldwide.
But, are we Africans aliens in diaspora stranded in foreign lands, in lost hope and mentally enslaved or our souls conquered? That is, your physical presence is in America and Europe but your soul is longing to be on the African soil. Pathetic! East or West, home is preferred. This adage stands questioned in the realities of today’s world. A global village re-orientation is in the air of freedom – give it up or embrace your domicile.Welcome to the era of slavery by self-submission because we have failed ourselves and we are our own worst enemies in Africa. Period!
Yet, today, most of these dream merchants are somewhat stranded in what are at best, disillusionment that can best be deciphered between the lines. With no puns intended, the streets of the developed world are not paved with gold and diamonds – far from it. But in blood, sweat and tears veiled in subtle, milder modern day or dignified slavery with a human face. We are like human robots, plugged into the growth of host nations’ economy in their millions, sweating it out on bills.
There could be nothing worse than the reluctance and painful choice but helpless submission in the propagation and growth of capitalism in someone else’s backyard. When you claim to love your jobs, where lies your future in it? Even in the democratic trappings of the west, damned-up behind these host nations’ finest of their selfish-intentions, our people are serving mostly the interest of the masters.
Emigrants, be numbed in conglomerates of huge corporations – the wealth lords of modern day slavery. Subtly, with capitalism and all its treasures, values and hidden vices in concealed human exploitation. In the glittering cities of the West and the East’s growing points of attractions these days, growing faster – dazzling at dizzy pace. Beware of delusional glittering and blinding attractions; welcome to the global village.
Traditionally, African dream merchants, emigrants and migrants from various ethnic groups and tribes in their desire to earn their dreams and hope of a better life and quality education started migrating in droves as they trickled down onwards their various colonies homestead. They started trickling out into Europe to be educated and of course, indoctrinated, a la conflicting and competing masters’ superiority influences and gospel according to their hosts’ civilisations.
As defined by each nation’s culture and economic interests, our colonisers deliberately planted and left two powerful mind-benders on our continent since the years of colonialism: The Bible and Their Own Languages, that which, till today keeps us subservient, under lock and lost keys – English, French and Portuguese languages gloating with superiority complex, suppressing native tongues – even the Middle Eastern added Koran and Arabic language to Islamise and conquer mind of believers, who still recite in Arabic. Our fate appears sealed in bondage. Cry, thy beloved Africa.
Since the colonial days, groping on the dark continent of Africa in search of knowledge, communities, towns and cities – enlightened or brain-washed – by missionaries of all shades and hues started the sponsorship of natives to acquire education beyond their shores. Negligible but wealthy individuals joined in partaking in such promising ventures in the hope of positioning their wards for training into leadership positions in a greater tomorrow Africa.
There and then, the learned returnees armed with the presumed finest of education from across the Atlantic started exhibiting superiority traits – superiority complex in wholesale education and indoctrination acquired, yet hardly discounting imported cultures and values that were branded on it, feeling haughty and reeking-off arrogance.
Significantly worthy of note, when the Japanese or Chinese or Asians in general are in the West to acquire the preferred education, they dutifully filter out the excesses of the West without any apology. Guess what? The West respects them for that, a deserving patriotism to their nations and their culture. Whereas, Africans hardly disguise or discount their preferences of their colonial masters’ cultures and civilisations hence the stigma and preferences of preferred education from the West was born.
As developments crawl in pitiable progressions in Africa, those lettered and cultured men and women became symbolic mark of success, gloating and floating like redeemers from other planets. The culture was sold – London trained, American scholars, Best of Europe! The race in Africa’s preferences in almost all things from overseas – rightly or wrongly – was ignited, worsened and climaxed in the brain-drain.
The alarming reality confronting Africans in foreign lands today is in the growing exploitation into a tribe of economic refugees, living especially in the West, veiled in Residences and Citizenship’s rights. This is the crux of this article. The millions, who are stranded between the devil and the deep blue sea; the necessity to be in proximity to a greener pasture and the soulless pre-occupation of longing for returning home to Africa is the dilemma. Welcome to the global village in a digital world.
The pertinent question is: who stands to benefit most – the millions of economic refugees, now prowling and investing their youthful ages in the economy labour of the Western or Eastern countries? Besides, what’s in it for Africans if tomorrow comes? Would we be back on bended-kneels again, begging for aids, reparations or what? Let them pay us what is long overdue to us now – a declaration of a marshal plan on financing and building African infrastructure may serve as reparations due us Africans.
Then trades and other relationships will be better reasoned into on plain logical sequences and factors, even though things may never be hardly on equal grounds again. We have been wasted and held back for too long. Capitalism exploits you at youth, usually to be dumped as social security wards of states at old age; vegetating in old peoples’ homes – a culture most alien to Africans. The system incapacitates your ability to exit at sun-rise subtly under a well choreographed, scientifically aided taxation system that has been honed for centuries. At old age, realities creep in like the pain of a wound received in an excitement which eclipses it!
The worst affected in these saga are migrants with ill-defined missions, blind prospecting economic gains, brain-drain, poverty of governing and delinquent mismanagement of our resources on the continent of Africa are the culprits. Above all, corruption in our land, the bane of African growth! The fact is, judging by all hues of varying statistics and records, the longer years you stayed overseas for any reasons at all, the less you benefit and the more you unwittingly, willingly surrender to your host nation’s well-oiled system of exploitation.
You will hardly ever break through! If you are lucky, hardworking and resilient, you at best will break even. Worst yet, you have little time to enjoy the fruits of your own hard earned sweat on labour. It’s like the more you dig, the deeper you are sucked in. The marked difference in Western economies and cultures are the variable of unspoken facts, the hidden and whispering signals ignored.
The western world only offers tokenism and usually reserves all the right of its value in muted voices to be decoded and read between the lines at all times. So, wake up from your slumbering wishes and delusions of amassing wealth and untold monetary savings before relocation back home. If you choose to come back much too late, realities will sooner or later dawn on you in your old age, at your own regrets; it usually just doesn’t add up.
In America and Europe, east or west, everyone labours to develop: The larger society in the collective but varying contributions, in all human endeavours, for the benefit of all and sundry. I have no qualms with that. The system is air-tight, only yielding occasionally to inventors and stars of all hues, who are heavily taxed. These systems owes you nothing, but often offers less than you put in, other than that which you must have acquired in your brain: that is all yours!
I assure you, chances are that is all you will part with. So, stop the wishful thinking and day-dreaming about almighty USD. The harder you work, the less you earn. Definition of success in the culture and value of the West is not often a confined or money wise thing; it treasures the legacy of inventions, honour and fame above others. Hardly, money is not the source of wealth in western culture, but rather a reservoir and repository wells-spring of knowledge – that of being the creative source, resources and inventions that could stand the test of times will earn you greatly and grateful nations usually show appreciation.
Fellow Africans, in the above scenarios, whose league are disturbingly many and hopeless, Africans caught in the worldwide web of economic recessions and dreams of making it big, a growing army of frustrated, depressed economic refugees, whose plight are daily compounded as they are stranded and undecided about their own futures and fortune, wallowing in Denials on the prospects of wealth in old ages.
The exemptions are few rather than the prevailing variables you are confronted within such conflicts of culture are laden with broken families, failed dreams, torn marriages, wrecked homes, marked separation of families, living back to back in individuals self-discovery and assertion. My suspicions, you were brought into America to be raised in your offspring – finer and most profoundly, patriotic Americans and you are sooner discarded.
Alienation and hopelessness is in the air of freedom, from New York City, Hamburg to London; from prowling the nook and cranny of Chicago or Hollywood in search of dream and fame, to roaming in Rome for the elusive golden fleece – take heart in today’s realities. Home is where you find peace, happiness and love. The truism of the adage – home is the best – stands diminished! Dawn of a new global village! Welcome to a new world order, America, you have won.
-Omisore wrote from Lagos