At first glance, Stella Orakwue seems like any educated young author who is eager to share her views with the world. Her piece "Love or hate, which?" was the first of the NewAfrican articles to capture my interest. The message was nothing like what I expected. Here are a few quotes:
As African people, the ability to maintain hatred for a long time is an ability that we have lacked.I have never read anything so sad in a long time. Few things leave me speechless but this most certainly did. Love and hate, equal emotions? Hatred a virtue? No wonder the world is such a confused place.
But when it comes to hating, really hating, people from other races who are at the root causes of our problems, then it appears that we have no capacity, […]
We seem to be alone among racial groups in not being able to hate other races like this.
I believe that not hating the right people enough has done us as Africans, irreparable harm and now puts us in tremendous constant danger.
Why is one emotion – love – supposedly “better” for you than another – hate? Why are we told that hate will only make us bitter? It does not.
An eye for an eye and the whole world would be blind.If only you could take all that energy Stella and steer it towards something positive and constructive! And if only the NewAfrican magazine would go on an African treasure hunt and pick out the things that are really genuine and strong; instead of comparing themselves to the western world and leaving the readers with a taste of bitterness and resentment.
I know the Western world had done Africa great harm. I know that there are many "white wolves" today portraying to be gentle sheep. I know the dirty politics behind the anti-slavery movement (which lead to the era of colonization instead, which didn't offer any more individual freedom now did it?) and I know the politics that flourish behind the aid movement.
I am not saying that Africa should be gullible - but what happens when we all lose our hearts? What happens when we fill ourselves with hatred and are more set on giving back than rebuilding what is in front of us? What good will it do anyone?
Stella, if you ever read this:
No one is forcing you to forgive. No one is forcing you to accept the past and play along silently when European governments refuse to take moral responsibility for what happened. But do not give way to hatred. There are so many things you can do with your talent! Hatred is not "just an emotion". It is a very heavy burden to bear, and comes at the price of your soul. If your goal is to play the game of the selfish people, then by all means, go ahead. I do not doubt your talent the slightest and am sure that you will be able to give them a good fight and aim lethal kicks. But becoming like them is not going to bless your country and your continent in any way. Do not answer evil with evil. It is a waste of your heart and talent, when there are so many constructive things you could do instead.