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This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.
If I were as strong as deji, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as matured and Good- looking as Caleb, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as strong- built as Neto, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were into girls like Isaiah, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as funny as Dan- obu, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as authorative as Eyo, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as smart as Ibrahim, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as social as Glen, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I could run like Noble, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as God- fearing and persistent as Tonye, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
If I were as intelligent as Gods- Favour, I told myself; I will surely be a man.
But I’m a man already. That can never change. Why do I have to try to be a man, when am one already??
Tags: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Anti-Gay Law: Chimamanda Adichie Writes, ‘Why can’t he just be like everyone else?’
By Chimamanda Ngozi adichie
I will call him Sochukwuma. A thin, smiling boy who liked to play with us girls at the university primary school in Nsukka. We were young. We knew he was different, we said, ‘he’s not like the other boys.’ But his was a benign and unquestioned difference; it was simply what it was. We did not have a name for him. We did not know the word ‘gay.’ He was Sochukwuma and he was friendly and he played oga so well that his side always won.
In secondary school, some boys in his class tried to throw Sochukwuma off a second floor balcony. They were strapping teenagers who had learned to notice, and fear, difference. They had a name for him. Homo. They mocked him because his hips swayed when he walked and his hands fluttered when he spoke. He brushed away their taunts, silently, sometimes grinning an uncomfortable grin. He must have wished that he could be what they wanted him to be. I imagine now how helplessly lonely he must have felt. The boys often asked, “Why can’t he just be like everyone else?”
Possible answers to that question include ‘because he is abnormal,’ ‘because he is a sinner, ‘because he chose the lifestyle.’ But the truest answer is ‘We don’t know.’ There is humility and humanity in accepting that there are things we simply don’t know. At the age of 8, Sochukwuma was obviously different. It was not about sex, because it could not possibly have been – his hormones were of course not yet fully formed – but it was an awareness of himself, and other children’s awareness of him, as different. He could not have ‘chosen the lifestyle’ because he was too young to do so. And why would he – or anybody – choose to be homosexual in a world that makes life so difficult for homosexuals?
The new law that criminalizes homosexuality is popular among Nigerians. But it shows a failure of our democracy, because the mark of a true democracy is not in the rule of its majority but in the protection of its minority – otherwise mob justice would be considered democratic. The law is also unconstitutional, ambiguous, and a strange priority in a country with so many real problems. Above all else, however, it is unjust. Even if this was not a country of abysmal electricity supply where university graduates are barely literate and people die of easily-treatable causes and Boko Haram commits casual mass murders, this law would still be unjust. We cannot be a just society unless we are able to accommodate benign difference, accept benign difference, live and let live. We may not understand homosexuality, we may find it personally abhorrent but our response cannot be to criminalize it.
A crime is a crime for a reason. A crime has victims. A crime harms society. On what basis is homosexuality a crime? Adults do no harm to society in how they love and whom they love. This is a law that will not prevent crime, but will, instead, lead to crimes of violence: there are already, in different parts of Nigeria, attacks on people ‘suspected’ of being gay. Ours is a society where men are openly affectionate with one another. Men hold hands. Men hug each other. Shall we now arrest friends who share a hotel room, or who walk side by side? How do we determine the clunky expressions in the law – ‘mutually beneficial,’ ‘directly or indirectly?’
Many Nigerians support the law because they believe the Bible condemns homosexuality. The Bible can be a basis for how we choose to live our personal lives, but it cannot be a basis for the laws we pass, not only because the holy books of different religions do not have equal significance for all Nigerians but also because the holy books are read differently by different people. The Bible, for example, also condemns fornication and adultery and divorce, but they are not crimes.
For supporters of the law, there seems to be something about homosexuality that sets it apart. A sense that it is not ‘normal.’ If we are part of a majority group, we tend to think others in minority groups are abnormal, not because they have done anything wrong, but because we have defined normal to be what we are and since they are not like us, then they are abnormal. Supporters of the law want a certain semblance of human homogeneity. But we cannot legislate into existence a world that does not exist: the truth of our human condition is that we are a diverse, multi-faceted species. The measure of our humanity lies, in part, in how we think of those different from us. We cannot – should not – have empathy only for people who are like us.
Some supporters of the law have asked – what is next, a marriage between a man and a dog?’ Or ‘have you seen animals being gay?’ (Actually, studies show that there is homosexual behavior in many species of animals.) But, quite simply, people are not dogs, and to accept the premise – that a homosexual is comparable to an animal – is inhumane. We cannot reduce the humanity of our fellow men and women because of how and who they love. Some animals eat their own kind, others desert their young. Shall we follow those examples, too?
Other supporters suggest that gay men sexually abuse little boys. But pedophilia and homosexuality are two very different things. There are men who abuse little girls, and women who abuse little boys, and we do not presume that they do it because they are heterosexuals. Child molestation is an ugly crime that is committed by both straight and gay adults (this is why it is a crime: children, by virtue of being non-adults, require protection and are unable to give sexual consent).
There has also been some nationalist posturing among supporters of the law. Homosexuality is ‘unafrican,’ they say, and we will not become like the west. The west is not exactly a homosexual haven; acts of discrimination against homosexuals are not uncommon in the US and Europe. But it is the idea of ‘unafricanness’ that is truly insidious. Sochukwuma was born of Igbo parents and had Igbo grandparents and Igbo great-grandparents. He was born a person who would romantically love other men. Many Nigerians know somebody like him. The boy who behaved like a girl. The girl who behaved like a boy. The effeminate man. The unusual woman. These were people we knew, people like us, born and raised on African soil. How then are they ‘unafrican?’
If anything, it is the passage of the law itself that is ‘unafrican.’ It goes against the values of tolerance and ‘live and let live’ that are part of many African cultures. (In 1970s Igboland, Area Scatter was a popular musician, a man who dressed like a woman, wore makeup, plaited his hair. We don’t know if he was gay – I think he was – but if he performed today, he could conceivably be sentenced to fourteen years in prison. For being who he is.) And it is informed not by a home-grown debate but by a cynically borrowed one: we turned on CNN and heard western countries debating ‘same sex marriage’ and we decided that we, too, would pass a law banning same sex marriage. Where, in Nigeria, whose constitution defines marriage as being between a man and a woman, has any homosexual asked for same-sex marriage?
This is an unjust law. It should be repealed. Throughout history, many inhumane laws have been passed, and have subsequently been repealed. Barack Obama, for example, would not be here today had his parents obeyed American laws that criminalized marriage between blacks and whites.
An acquaintance recently asked me, ‘if you support gays, how would you have been born?’ Of course, there were gay Nigerians when I was conceived. Gay people have existed as long as humans have existed. They have always been a small percentage of the human population. We don’t know why. What matters is this: Sochukwuma is a Nigerian and his existence is not a crime.
Good girl gone bad
Share with me,
My name is Mrs Rachael, I got a kid, her name is choima. We live in Port-Harcourt. It was in Lagos that we got married. It was also in Lagos that we had choima, that’s when my husband left me and went to marry a white chick as he calls them. I have didn’t know this lady at first. Till today, I don’t still believe that he’s with another lady, because there was no sign of him doing so. I always checked his messages on his phone, even his alerts from the Bank. Nothing proved so. Any time I remember how we broke up, I feel so stupid, I don’t know why but I do. Am happy that my daughter was still a baby , 3 months , when he left. My brother was teased me of knowing what is not so important. I can still remember how my father died, I was only 10 when he died, am 46 now, but I still remember everything vividly. I remember how my mother screamed from the room, she was hugging herself when I met her. Mr 2 older brothers were all married by then. It took forever for her to tell me that my father died. As I checked the wall clock, it was 5pm.
Choima lived with me. She was a very shy girl, always keeping to herself. My friends whenever they visited, they would always ask if she was okay because she never greeted them, always starring at them. I know she had a lot on her mind. The thing I loved about her was that growing up, she didn’t disturb me about her Dad. She did talk to him on phone, and at times, my husband would come to take her out. He did come with his new wife whenever he came to the house.
I didn’t know that he never respected me; I mean who does that,
Bringing your new wife to pick up your child at your former house while your ex- wife is still there.
I did see the bitch. My husband sometimes would come with her when my friends visited.
Of course you know how we girls are
I hated her. She was beautiful though I never saw the radiant beauty like my friend chidima described it. They would gossip them as they leave. None of them ever mentioned my husband in the topic. They were scared that I would do something stupid.
My daughter , choima turned 18 on March. I did forget her birthday because I was thinking of how much I hated that lady that took my husband from me, how much sweat and blood I did put into the marriage. How I lived in fear since I got married of my husband leaving me, I was very inquisitive, checking his e-mail, Facebook, Account details, paying people to spy on him and all I did proved nothing. We were married for 15 years, and all seemed happy, then that bitch comes in.
Choima did forgive me for not remembering her birthday. She just gave me a warm hug, a hug I had always longed for. Choima seemed to drop her shy nature. She now made friends, people were visiting her always , mostly girls. Few guys visited, but I didn’t mind, I was so happy that she wasn’t shy and keeping to herself any longer.
She began visiting her father. At first it seemed rare, but it became more often. She hardly stays in the house. She most times stays for 2 days before coming back. I wanted to go to my husband house to get her, but I made a vow to myself that I would commit suicide the day I enter that house. So I called my husband. It was that bitch that picked. I insulted her full time, calling her all the bad names I could remember. I called her a smelling Dog mash before ending the call.
My husband did call back. I was expecting him to shout at me, but he didn’t. When I asked him of choima, he told me in a mocking tune that he didn’t see her, then and there I insulted him so badly.
Choima came back few hours after I shouted at my husband. She looked tired. I wanted to skin her alive, but seeing her, all my anger turned to pity. I did take her into her room.
Ever since that day, my daughter had been weak, always complaining she was tired, vomiting frequently, screaming about her Tommy. Whenever I told her about going to the hospital, she did decline. She would at times run into her room and lock the door. I would stand outside threatening her.
My husband came frequently to visit choima. He did tell me in one of our brief talks that his new wife did break up with me. Hearing that made me happy , but I put on the
I don’t care face .
I was happy. For me it mean’t that we would be back together. As much as I claim to hate him, I still want us back together. My friend Sophia always told me that it was one of my biggest problem. That I never did want to move on.
Choima didn’t get better. My husband was scared to death. He did sleep over in the house. He did sleep with me on the same bed. I did touch his back, forgetting how warm it felt. I longed to kiss him, but I felt restrained. He too was holding back.
Choima did sneak out of the house one night. I and my husband were sleeping. Nobody knew where she went to. It wasn’t till morning that we found out that she was gone. My husband found out first, before I did. He looked scared to death. We called police. My husband and I didn’t let them do all the searching. We looked for her for days, but we didn’t find her.
My husband became nice to me. We would kiss each other sometimes. He’d stop going to work. We never talked, but we would hold each other arms, starring into nothingness. My husband would always say out loud, ” I can’t loose my daughter “. There was no report about choima for weeks.
One sunny afternoon, my husband was in the living room starring at the ceiling. I was in my room when my phone rang 3 times. I didn’t pick it. When it rang again, I picked it. It was the police. I ran into the living room and altered my husband and he came over to the door where I was standing. The police officer told us to come to their police station. We both did hurriedly.
When we got there, we saw a woman, not too old, like in her late fiftieth, handcuffed and so also was a doctor. A boy in his twenties was sitting on a chair, afraid to look at us.
It was then that the boy told I and my husband the story. According to him, choima and he had been dating. He lived close to my husband’s new house, I knew so because of the way he’d described the place. My husband lived in Woji while I lived in Rumudara in port Harcourt. ( Woji too is in port Harcourt). So that’s why she always left, with the excuse of seeing her father. I didn’t look at my husband’s face.
The boy told us that he and choima had sex thrice. Only that after the third time, choima became pregnant. I didn’t believe him when he said that it was only thrice that they had sex..
The boy then said that his mother knew about their affair and had encouraged it by cooking something special whenever choima came by. I knew my daughter was easily influenced my food. She must have cooked spaghetti with greens and carrots. I was right because the boy mentioned the name of the food and it was what I thought.
“When choima got pregnant, my mother forced her to go through an abortion. My mum kept saying that she can’t have a bastard in her house” the boy said. I looked at his mother, who was handcuffed. I wondered why people could be wicked. She had encouraged it and now the pregnancy came, she forced my daughter who was turned eighteen a week ago to go into abortion.
The boy coughed as he began speaking tearfully “So we arranged the day for the abortion. She told me that it was perfect for her that all she needed was to tell her mum that she would visit her Dad”
“Unfortunately, she died” the police officer said cutting in.
I saw my husband leave the station upon hearing that. I wanted to run after him, but I didn’t. I stayed at the station crying bitterly
To make things worse, as I got home, my husband left the house with a note on the bed. He had made out with another lady. I couldn’t believe it. It looked like things would get better between the both of us. He did stay over at the house, we did look for choima together, crying, starring into nothingness, sharing similar fears together.
Maybe he did that only because of choima, but if he did love her, he wouldn’t have gone again. I didn’t want to think about choima yet, because I know I would.
It’s always been said that when one tells the truth, it frees him. When I consider the statement literally, I wonder what type of freedom is guaranteed here, is it freedom from being punished??,
Here are some of John’s experiences, where truth telling got him to.
Good kid at home
John was known for being a good kid at home. He was never good at lying, And he never wanted to be one.His brothers hated him because of this. Once his 2 brothers had got him involved in breaking into their mum’s jewelry box and had stolen her diamond ring, and her golden pearl. John watched them as they did this. In addition, they stole her N500,000 after they broke open her saving box. They broke the window, using a stone. They also scattered the house, so that it would really look like someone came to rob the house.
The eldest brother called their father who was with their mother at a restaurant. He used a panic voice, breathing hard on the phone to tell him about the robbery, adding that the robbers had nearly killed John. Immediately, his parents dashed home. John’s eldest brother, Victor could hear his mother panicking about her son.
John’s dad , called the police. He did look around the house like he was suspecting a foul play. John’s mother didn’t scream when her husband said loudly ” they stole your diamond ring and Pearl ”
Later, a police car arrived. Victor became tensed seeing him. “Dad what’s he doing here” ” he’s taking you people to his cell” “Dad so u think we stole mum’s jewelries” victor asked “No I don’t. Beside John wouldn’t have joined you guys in doing that, he is not like you guys; he’s not a criminal. This words caught John. He suddenly became tensed, sweating profusely.
” Are you okay?? ” his father asked. His mother who had gone inside to change, had came out, wearing a red purple gown. She stood beside her husband , starring into John’s eyes, those piercing eyes made him more tensed but he controlled himself. He began looking down, not wanting to look into his mother’s eye.
To be continued .
Today I went to a church ; don’t want to mention it. But it was a camp fellowship.The pastor was preaching about grace. He kept on saying that all you need to is to accept Jesus and all your sins, past present, and future will be forgiven. I was kind of distracted looking at the decorated altar , the altar was made in a cake form, it was glowing, like someone had polished it with a white substance. I loved the A.C., it gave me a thrilling effect as it kept releasing cool air.
As the pastor was preaching, a man stood up and said “sir I have a question”. The pastor who was angry at the way the man interrupted him and wanted to snap at him, having enough self control said ” what?? ” “I want to ask if a lady who was once a fornicator before, then accepts Christ, if she goes back to it and she dies, will she make heaven?” “Of course.” The pastor said loudly “don’t u get it if any man be in Christ, old things are passed away behold all things are made new”. The man sat down.
The pastor began speaking in tongue. My friend calls it cabashing in tongues. I felt like a sinner there, not being captivated as the crowd were, not jumping up and shouting Glory like the pastor and the crowd were doing. As if the pastor knew I was there said ” some people are not screaming, they don’t understand the things of the spirit. They see us as weird people wondering if we are okay. They forget that Jesus said we are not of this world ” I watched the pastor remove his jacket and another person bending as he came to the altar to collect it. I watched people going to the altar to drop money.
Soon the shouting ended, I thought I was the one not captivated , till a lady who was sitting beside me, stood up. She tied her hair in a very weird manner. Her shirt was fad
ed and rumbled, she wore no make up ,making her face look pale. She took the microphone when a man gave her. She wasted no time as she spoke, ” I’ve heard the rubbish you have been teaching.The Bible spoke rightly about you people who mix the truth of God’s word with a bit of deception and call it good news. No wonder it warns us that we should not listen to teachers with itching ears. This Grace message that is supposed to take people to heaven will take people to hell. You people will accept one part of the Bible that you feel is good and the ones you dislike, you disbelief it. Was God confused when he told us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling?? If u don’t know what you are doing, may God have mercy on you, but if you are purposely taking people to hell and you think you will make heaven, may God punish you both now and in hell fire”. She said as she took her things and left the church.
A man in the front of my seat had been laughing loudly as the lady spoke. The pastor who had kept calm as the lady spoke, soon began cursing the man, attacking him for no reason. The man kept calm at first saying nothing. The pastor who felt like a fool, called the man, “u son of a bitch”. The man got so angry and called the pastor an unfortunate bastard. Suddenly I watched the pastor keep quiet ,looking at the man who was leaving the church. I watched the congregation looking at the man with disapproval. He didn’t mind, he just walked away. I wondered why the pastor looked horrified after the man called him an unfortunate bastard. I then heard a lady at my back telling another guy that the pastor who was graduating next year had just lost his parents in a motor accident. The pastor didn’t preach again, he just left the church. Nkechi who was sitting beside me was saying ” That man wey curse this pastor go enter street. ” A woman “Amen” resounded loudly. Everyone at my role was critical about the man who insulted the pastor. I didn’t say anything but kept focusing at the altar as people began leaving.
So people ,who do you think was wrong among the lady, the man and the pastor?? I Hope to get your comments
Happy bleated Sunday
Chidi watched everyone eat at the restaurant. From his parents to his cousin, sharon who came all the way from New York in America to see them. She were living in a hotel with her mother, Mrs Eno . Chidi knew that she was still in secondary school
Chidi could remember when his auntie relocated to America as they were living with chidi’s parents. He was still in jss2 as at then. He did help them pack their things for them. He didn’t like his auntie because of the way she behaved. Auntie Eno was always dancing and shaking her behind, muttering blessings to chidi’s mother whenever she gave her clothes and wrappers no matter how tattered and torn they looked and Mrs Eno would wear them to parties and church, elegantly showing off the dress. When one of chidi’s mother friend will complain about how Mrs Eno was looking , chidi’s mother would tell the person that she was her house maid,saying that she wore leaves when she first picked her up. So it was surprising when a guy proposed to her. She didn’t know his name, never met the guy and showed interest in seeing him. She knew they were planning to marry but believed that he would dump her at last. Auntie Eno spent another I week at chidi’s parents house. She didn’t tell chidi or his mother about her relocation to America.
One Sunday morning, she just began parking her things. Chidi helped her looking at her with for the first time with scorn. He then remembered his dad who was in england. He did come home every october.She talked with his mother for a little while before she left. Chidi couldn’t see affection in the discussion. It was like a boss talking to his employees. That was only a year ago.
Chidi kept watching his cousin and auntie and mother eat quietly. He never knew about his cousin. He watched as Mrs Eno eyed Sharon and Sharon who was about to put the spoonful of the rice into her mouth, suddenly dropped the spoon. She then said ‘ auntie, mum says that she would like you guys to spend next summer with us in America’. Chidi’s mother didn’t reply. ‘And auntie, my dad bought my mum a range rovers as a gift for their wedding anniversary.’ ‘ that’s good’ chidi’s mother replied indifferently. ‘He also bought me this diamond wedding ring’ Mrs Eno said showing her the diamond wedding ring. ‘ Me and him have been having sex that’s how we got Sharon even though we aren’t married yet’ . ‘and you think he will marry you??’.’Of course he would ‘ Mrs Eno said indifferently not minding that her sister said it spitefully. ‘ I love the lemo ride. He takes us to cinemas and he bought me an iPhone 7 for my birthday, and he has made huge savings for my daughter’s college. I didn’t tell you my daughter is going to Harvard next year’. ‘But mum am only in the 9th grade’. Sharon said , then she held her mouth. Chidi’s mother who’s heart was beating as Mrs Eno spoke then held a sigh of relief as she now knew that all she said was a lie. She had framed it all up.But the kin happiness lasted for a short while. Chidi’s mother , giving a spiteful look asked for the guy picture. Mrs Eno showed her the picture. She then screamed so loudly attracting great attention. She couldn’t believe it, it was her husband. Mrs Eno was sitting calmly while chidi’s mother began cursing Mrs Eno. Chidi didn’t understand why his mum as acting like that but he saw shouting till she began rolling on the floor.
Chidi looked at his mother in the car. She was no more angry, but laughing loudly to herself saying, ‘she thinks she has won, right?? , no wonder they say education is power, I can’t wait to see the look on her face when she finds out that marriage under affinity is invalid. I can’t wait to go to America’. She then checked her phone as it beeped. It was her husband it read thus.’honey I just made up a false marriage with a lady I know nothing of. She’s been all over me like a dog. I just proposed to her so that she would stop pestering me but after marriage I would like you to help me end the marriage and also I will soon divorce the lady am with now. I only used her as a rebound to make you jealous. I can’t wait for us to get back together.
Love you Kate my first love’
Chidi’s mother threw her phone from the window.
I must say this, ,,,(2008-2017) 8 years of solid achievements, dedication devotion, bravery, decision making, great display of democracy government. Bravo!
I mean how will America be?? Well I believe in the slogan of America ‘in God will trust ‘ . I would have loved you to stay another 4 years. I mean, if you did ever contest, I will always vote for you. I love what you did in our country, America. I mean the Great positive impact your administration brought, can’t be easily forgotten. My friend said during your first presidential campaign ‘how can a
monkey rule us? Some get a gun and shoot that guy’
Am sure he has swallowed his words. I became a stupid ass when I voted for you and not the other man who
was contesting for presidency.
Am always proud of myself for trusting my guts.
President Obama was the strongest bravest, wisest, most dedicated, and the never -say-die president .Your greatest achievement was the killing world renowned terrorist, Osama Bin Laden . No other president could get him, but you did. I can’t also forgot how human you are, after the killing of 20 children and 6 adults in 2013,i watched you break down when you were giving your speech concerning their deaths. As I watched you on my TV , I could see a loving caring father . You have been a great inspiration to me. Thanks for everything you did for Americans like me. For inspiring us, thanks, for your dedication thanks, for the good days and bad days we had under your administration, we say thanks.
We Americans will continue your legacy. You gave so much to be forgotten easily . You are a living icon.
Time will not permit me to talk about your legacy. You can’t be written in just a single paragraph. Even your haters knows that. You have given so much to humanity to be easily forgotten and like Myles murone always says ‘that’s the goal of life ‘ . So much hope and courage. America might say they will not forget you but I say I won’t forget you.
Shout out to Mr Obama , the greatest president of all times