Sunday, September 22, 2013

Nairobi Westgate Mall Shooting and the Deaths of Innocent Civilians

Many people were cautious regarding the identity and nationalities of the shooters when the shooting happen. Kenyans officials refused to speculate as to the nationalities of the gunmen. However, we all knew who they could be. Given what happened in Kampala in July 2010, we all knew the fingers would point at the Somali Islamists, Al-Shabaab.

What one has to ask is why do such people become so wicked to that extent? What happens to their human hearts? These young people have siblings, parents and relatives however, they are willing to takes lives without compunction.

Only dehumanized hearts would do such a horrible act. No person in his/her right mind would work into a mall packed with shopping families and start shooting. The radicalization of young Muslim men in the west is something that has to be addressed properly. The mainstream western populations point fingers at the radical groups, however, we have to understand that these young men are handed to or forced to seek supposed 'purpose,' sense of self and human validation among the heartless radicals.

These young people live at the periphery of the society and that makes them easy targets of radical groups among whom they find a sense of belonging. The consequences of marginalization of these young people become the horror and a problem to the innocent civilians.



As someone who grew up in war conditions and lived as a refugee for a long time, I'm sometimes considered by many people in the 'west' to be prone to (or have) low self-esteem, be poor or illiterate. Living as refugees or displaced persons, who depended on the good will of others put people in a situation where they don't think much about themselves. But that's not everyone though.

As I stood by our front desk at my place work talking about Race and Identity in relation to my book, Is 'Black' Really Beautiful?, the issue of why many African peoples in North America become so over-sensitive when racial issues come up! For many rational people, this owes its origin to slavery and racial segregation.

But one of my coworkers, a person of European descent, was surprised to realize that her 'black' friend, a very intelligent woman, easily becomes irritated by simple things she [friend] considers racist. The friend considers any mention of a watermelon racist; and complains a lot about 'white privilege.' This means that discrimination is considered something 'whites' don't face because of 'white privilege.' In any discussion between 'blacks' and 'whites', 'white privilege' issue comes up!