Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Lesson for Religious Bigots

The roof top choir has once again begun its chorus of condemnation against a proposed draft constitution that would retain the existence of Kadhi’s Courts in Kenya. The hymn being sung is quite a tired tune and I'm afraid that while the pastors, bishops and priests are getting sore throats, the Christian fraternity may itself be snoring, oblivious of the clergy’s wolf cries.

Granted that not all Christian leaders are opposed to the inclusion of the Islamic courts in the constitution, those opposed to it present one of their strongest arguments: It will give preferential treatment to one religion. They hold that, such a move would be according Muslims special treatment forgetting the fact that the law will only apply to marriage, divorce and inheritance laws as preferred by our Muslim brothers and sisters.

The Tin Man is convinced that the Christian leaders are out of tune with this song and are only trying to hide a deep seated bigotry against the Muslims. It has become my strong suspicion that the leaders faking a foul are only struggling to receive the backing of law to keep their Sunday crowds from dwindling and hence their pockets from shrinking. Given the fact that the courts have existed in our constitution since independence and have been operated without the slightest conflict amongst the public, it is difficult to share the nightmare that the clergy seem to be having.

I am brought to remind these Christian leaders that before they incite the majority against a minority, they must remember the Rwanda Genocide. Without the role that religious superiority or such sectorial consciousness played, the Intarahamwe may never have succeeded in turning against their Hutu. Without religious hatred, Irish Protestants and Catholics would not burn each others churches and homes. Without this misplaced “Holier than thou” attitude, the Al Qaeda would have no foothold.

I feel it my duty to further put it to the Christians, that if at all the constitution has given any religious group special treatment, it is they who got the longer end of the stick. Christianity was a shadowy and little known religion of people considered fanatics until Constantine made it the religion of Italy scrapping its own polytheistic beliefs. It is through violent crusading and the scorching of heretics that the religion spread to the vast Roman empire. That is how Britain came to be Christian. Kenya became Christians because when we accepted the gun totting, Bible reading explorers we did not know that our hospitality was to them an invitation to enslave us. That is why your Christian names can be termed by some slave names.

The Kenya Constitution is based greatly on the Commonwealth customary law, garnished here and there with some African tradition customs. The Kenya Constitution is therefore Christian, adopted from our former colonial masters. This is the reason why with some wisdom we deemed it fit to include our minority brethren who through their faith choose not to believe in the same things as the majority. It is their right. Just like you would desire some rights to be granted to the minority Christians in South Korea and China.

Religion was made by man to create a moral reference point for the good of the society. It is embarrassing to see you turning it into fodder for hatred amongst our citizens. As leaders of the faith, allow the rest of us the freedom to create our own tunes and bob our heads in enjoyment. Stop the wailing in out ears to try and turn friends into foes. We have enough problems as it is and to be making war cries in anticipation of the leaf of Kadhi’s courts remaining uncut, that is the height of hypocrisy and bigotry. Jesus asked he who hath no sin, to cast the first stone. The woman from whom he cast many demons later became a close companion of His. Before you proceed your finger pointing and religious chauvinism, ask yourself, what would Jesus do?

The Tin Man

1 comment:

  1. And you call yourself a Christian????


Recent Comments