In the traditional African cultural set-up, when a child was born, everyone celebrated and welcomed the new member into the society. In some communities, women ululated as they brought gifts to the baby, the mother and the father as well.
However, things seem to have changed. Births are not celebrated as before and people don’t respect social values anymore. No one worries about what society will say or do; all in the name of “rights”.
Procuring an abortion is now like a walk in the park. Some even procure multiple abortions. African values were strictly against such acts and one could even be cursed and excommunicated from the community.
Nowadays, people even poke fun at women who seek safe abortions, no matter the circumstances. Cases of abortion have become rampant, especially among teenage girls. Some have even died due to excessive bleeding during abortion.
Mercifully, technology has brought ease and comfort in procuring abortion in cases where the mother’s life is at risk.
That said, it is worrisome that the youth these days fear pregnancy more than sexually transmitted illnesses and other ills.
They fear becoming parents because they feel they are not ready, but the truth is that they are henceforth parents.
The only difference is that they don’t nurture their kids to maturity. Parents no longer guide their children or impart to them virtues that we traditionally embraced. They just let their children be under the consolation that “they are grownups”.
However, parents and guardians need to ask themselves where they would be if they had been allowed to be when they were at the age of their kids.
It’s all a matter of negligence. When one becomes successful, they get out of their parent's home and celebrate elsewhere.
People nowadays hardly give back to the society. Even where the effort that generates that success is individual, we still belong to the society.
We must positively impact the society we came from. We seem to have forgotten that by helping others, we help ourselves as well.
Deviant behaviour among the youth is a direct result of our disregard for societal values.
It is very easy to blame these bad behaviours on the influence of western culture, but why should we absorb more of the negative than positive foreign habits?
It is never too late to change for the better as long as we are still alive and kicking.
The society is all about goodwill, public benefit and public growth. Let’s save ourselves from unnecessary drama and embrace societal values. When we do good, the society thrives well and when we do bad the society gets distorted.
Besides, where would we be without the societies that brought us up? We should embrace African social values as they point us in the right direction. They help us achieve national goals and a sense of national direction.
Gerald Tomno, Baringo