Encore: Cruelty is a form of kindness, is it not?

Encore: Cruelty is a form of kindness, is it not?

Some time ago (about two years ago, I think) I wrote about this topic: how human beings lost their humanness, or their humanity.
And, of course, silly me. I thought human beings would “progress” as they evolve into “better” beings. Like I said, silly me. These days one is constantly looking over one’s shoulders, like never before. Scamsters are just about everywhere – from hoax e-mails to Internet banking fraudsters, and from R200 fake notes and R5 fake coins to children being “rented out” or “sold” for purposes of begging on the streets. And of course who can forget about the strikes that set us back so cutely (or should that read acutely)? Just once I would like to see people toyi-toying in the streets because they earn too much money!

I am sorry folks – but where will this all end up? I imagine either a completely depleted society or an exceptionally paranoid one. Let’s not even go to the electricity debacle, and how I am being asked to watch my (very little) electricity usage from time to time on TV and to “switch off as many appliances as possible”. Winter’s coming up once again, so the requests are becoming more frequent. And I think to myself – why should I, who live alone in a small-ish apartment, switch off my few appliances because I want to “do the right thing” when someone, somewhere with a huge house (and the equivalent of 3 nuclear families playing PlayStations and X-Boxes for the holidays) probably doesn’t heed the call at all?

Then I thought of the beggars and the children (and blind people) being used to beg for money at the traffic lights. This one really irks me. There are just more and more of them.
Why are there so many children on the streets, and why are we being asked at every corner to assist with these children that are not ours?
We have to feed them and clothe them, and make sure they have school uniforms?

Don’t get me wrong, I do my bit for charity but, as snobbish and even naïve as I may come off (and probably have a few human rights activists on my case) does this not send out messages to the poorer people who surely can’t afford to have children that it is okay to have them? “Go ahead, have more children – we will pick up the tab.” But who will love them? Surely children need more than just a slice of bread and a pair of shoes to wear to school? Surely this is no life for any child – to be begging at a traffic light with an adult who has been told by society that it is okay to do so? By doing nothing about it we are saying it is okay, aren’t we?

Friends and I joke about putting a moratorium on having children. Stop making them for a while. Let’s first see to the ones that are already on the earth that need our love and our care. And while it is only said in jest, it has some merit. And I know it is everyone’s right to have a child, even if they can’t afford one.

That to me speaks far more to abuse of human rights than what my moratorium proposal jests. People who believe it is their right to make more children (when there are so many already in need of a loving home) must remember it is also my right to say I don’t want to pick up their tab, as I don’t ask them to pay for any of my comforts.

Ideal world – I reckon if each of us who can afford it took the children who are in need and we say don’t make anymore until an agreed upon time, we might be in a better position to care for all our people…silly, simplistic me!
We, the people who need to inhabit this earth, this continent, this country and this city should be able to say no more! It is exhausting us a species. And it will lead to our demise!
It is not enough to just talk about suffering. Something’s gotta be done. Since we didn’t prevent it, we need a serious, meaningful intervention. Perhaps kindness should be replaced by cruelty?

Email: rafiek@mweb.co.za