I am absolutely exhausted by the argument that says we cannot complain about inefficient and corrupt African leaders because, “even Western leaders do it.” The follow-up to this point is usually the indignant “How come when white people do it, its OK?”
And by ‘it’ here the speaker is referring to plunging a population into a well of suffering simply because one can.
A few days ago I happened upon an article on The Root in which the gripes social media users have with the royal family were brought to light. The article was short and simple: a report on a report really.
In fact, ‘Swaziland’s royal family has found itself ensnared in the firm grip of social media users who are determined to expose the lavish lifestyle of “Africa’s last absolute monarch,” while most of the country’s people barely subsist on $1 a day per person, Agence France-Presse reports.’
Was basically the gist of it.
But the responses to it are what angered me. Of the hundreds of comments that this post attracted, many of them repeated the same idea: if the [insert white royal family] can do it, why can’t we?
I was so overcome with rage, I found myself doing the one thing I promised myself I never would: I left an angry Facebook comment. But that was not the end of it. The rage at the commenters, many of them African American echoing a sentiment often uttered by Africans too when our own leaders are to be held accountable for one act or another, did not go away.