Friday, January 18, 2013
Men and Women of Shame
By Bakampa Brian Baryaguma
[Dip. Law (First Class)–LDC; Cert. Oil & Gas–Mak; LLB (Hons)–Mak; Dip. LP Candidate–LDC]
In late December, last year, I had a chat with my cousin brother and our mutual friend, over wide ranging matters. In the course of discussion, one of our friend’s girlfriends repeatedly purported to ring him (it’s commonly called “beeping”). Finally, the girl seriously rung but the young man refused to pick up and later started terminating the calls. From the very first signal, the young man was furious and poured scorn and venom upon the girl in her absence, so much so that I was prompted to ask what the problem was between them. He said that his girlfriend is employed and earning a salary. That he had asked her to send him Ug Shs 100,000 but she had declined to do so, for which reason he was angry with her! He admitted that she had sent him money on several occasions before. I was shocked and worried by his behaviour. So, I asked him to explain why he was being mean and rude to his apparently loving and caring girlfriend. He then dropped a bombshell; briefly, according to him, statistics show that there are more women than men, such that it is necessary for women to “bribe” the few men available to love and possibly marry them subsequently. I noticed that all along, my cousin was supporting our friend’s attitude towards the girl and his views on the matter as a whole.
Further forward, on Monday, 7 January, 2013, I reported to LDC for resumption of my Bar Course studies. On that day, I interacted with a female colleague of mine and somehow, our rather brief and cordial conversation ended up in the arena of relationships. She said that she looks forward to marrying a rich man who will take good care of her by satisfying all her life’s needs. At this moment, I remembered the December discussion with my cousin and friend. Upon reflection, I now realize how deeply and regrettably messed up and distorted our society is today. Seriously, there is moral decay!
Whereas I am not against people setting their objectives and standards to be met by those they interact with including, prospective marital partners, one theme is clear from the above: a growing dislike and apathy for work. Nowadays people are very indifferent towards genuine acquisition of wealth. The growing trend favours shortcuts and suggests that one simply has to strategize to gain from the sweat of others, with impunity. Talk of reaping without sowing! This is moral corruption. It’s pathetic and undesirable for both personal and national development. By the way, it’s no surprise at all because we have, unfortunately, been brought up by and in a system that glorifies disguised theft, plunder and corruption; a system without any safety valves against moral depravity generally. The current social regime scorns upon uprightness and normalcy. This degeneration is bad and dangerous for social integration, cohesion and harmony. It’s an affront to desirable human virtue and serves to escalate the ills of the contemporary monetary-market system which considers success on the basis of the amount of money one has instead of his or her social contribution towards the betterment of society. This system disorder has reduced and stooped us so low as to begin offering, for sale in the marketplace, human virtues like love and affection. More than anything, it has bred men and women of shame.
The socio-economic status quo is highly lamentable but for want of space and time, let me reserve more of that for future discourses. I conclude this topic with a few words of advice and caution. Real men and women are looking for companions with whom to equally share life’s opportunities and challenges. Clearly, the young men and woman forming the subject of this article are living on the wrong side of life. Our world is changing very fast. Our duty is to make this change worthwhile.