POSTED RESPONSE TO AN EDITORIAL IN TORONTO'S GLOBE AND MAIL
The century is being invented before our eyes?
Who writes this stuff?
How do you invent a century?
And surely there are few options to something’s happening than “before our eyes,” a very tired cliché.
Well, I guess it’s the same person who writes the other nonsense in this editorial, such as, Africa being the site of the greatest transformation. You want transformation, you look to China and India, not Africa.
Africa is a disaster, pretty much from top to bottom.
Authoritarian governments. Corruption. Instability. Coups. Civil wars. Crime on a frightening scale.
Superstition with some of the most deadly beliefs on the planet, including the efficacy of albino body parts for health cures or the rights of male adults to rape village girls freely or the regular practice of about 3 million female genital mutilations each year.
The unending violence of Africa undoubtedly is owing in part to its high rate of natural increase in relation to its poor economies and often poor resources. Unfavorable population/resource ratios are associated with crime and violence generally, as for example in Haiti.
African women frequently have babies at an age we regard as part of childhood.
The babies frequently get no attention or support from their fathers, who as often as not have no income in an often subsistence economy.
And that same economy has no capacity to absorb additional mouths.
The girls having the children get no education themselves.
Violent crime is found at rates exceeding any place else on earth. The rates of murder and rape are appalling and likely well understated owing to the lack of modern police and bureaucracy.
How does one set about changing that complex set of behaviors for hundreds of millions of people?
I don’t see how anyone who is not slightly delusional can write or speak of “now is Africa’s moment.”
Tens and tens of billions in aide have been poured into Africa over recent decades, and the results are what we observe today.
I suspect Africa will just grind on the way it is and has been a very long time.