Jilani's Blog

Story of my life

Know your rights

So I know I havent been here for a while. Last weekend; 9th to the 13th of December, I attended a human rights and social justice camp at the Lukenya getaway camp-absolute fun.

Camp2010 participants in Lukenya

Camp2010 participants in Lukenya

It was an experimental event for akibauhaki-the organising body since it was their first of its kind, they had never held one like this before, and never knew how it would turn out, since it was a call for participants from all over the country;people who had never met before, but as fate would have it, it was awesome. Peeps started mingling from the very start, even before we left Nairobi for the place.
So over the sessions I had a totally different view towards the matter at hand-human rights. I guess just like any other average human, the issue of human rights would only be relevant if some guy decided to grab land from my place back in the rural, or my employer delays my salo, or even when I bump into the cops late at night when heading home; key in all these examples is that the occurences happen to ME! I would only care about my human rights if these things happen to me…but what about the other people? Do they even know if whatever is being violated are rights pertaining to them. Consider the guy back at the slum being harassed by the cops, or the first year lady student at campus who’s lecturer is making advances at her, and she doesnt know what action to take…or even the heterosexuals, the gay community, the meterosexuals, the bisexuals, the list is endless-would you fight for their rights as well? I was reading this article on a friend’s blog, and she stirs up this argument of the gay community and how they should stop considering themselves to be a ‘special’ group of people that need special attention or ‘victims’ that have special needs, just because they are gay, and I totally agree with her…(Of course, that was not the whole point of that article; it’s just an argument i’ve handpicked from her main point of focus!) From my point of view, if your a normal mwanainchi, and you know how to use your rights in your defense, well and good. If your gay(also a normal mwanainchi for that matter), and you know how to use your rights in your defense as well, thats good. What im trying to preach is that personally, as a Kenyan, or any other citizen belonging to some other country, it’s a good thing that you know your rights and what’s in for you-you will be amazed at the number of things your entitled to. Dig down to your constitutional rights to know your ‘ability’ and ‘capability’ as a citizen, and in that same spirit, empower your friends. Educate them if need be. Share with them what you think you know and what they probably dont…carry the flag of being your brother’s keeper. That was an eye opener for me. Fight not for your rights only, but also for your brother’s.

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This entry was posted on December 14, 2010 by in Life's realities.

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