“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete”. – Buckminster Fuller.
It is no semantics to say RevolutionNow, any revolution for that matter, is about progress. Indeed in more reliable fields than politics including science, revolution means the movement of earth in space, around the Sun and in relation to other revolving planets. From this revolving reality of earth derives seasonal variations, consequently influencing human dynamics as a result of the chemical perturbations, or spiritual fluidity if you mind, affecting divergent humanity’s physical realities. In other words, these physical realities, ultimately influenced by earth’s revolution, may be as commonplace as the threshold for surrender and allegiance, despair or resignation of Nigerians in the face of non-existent leadership.
The path taken by the earth when orbiting around the Sun is elliptical and so, sometimes some parts of earth come closer to the Sun than at other times, with its attendant influences on reactions, behaviors and temperaments. Revolution is about change, human dynamics that birth changes or variations from a reference. Such was the case of the quest for a Nigeria that is independent of the colonial master. It was a re-evolution from a reference, a variation from what was hitherto known as the norm, which was led by a team of nationalist Nigerians, including our pride, Pa Obafemi Awolowo.
When the reference is a nation that pretends to be holding out for the sovereign integrity of a nation whose leaders plunder her nutrients much more than any other external piggy, whose political elites encase themselves unabashedly with political contradictions and impropriety especially at election eras, whose elected leaders in attempting to escape the consequences of their indiscretions amass as much wealth as to cause a laugh in place of a cry, it is only commonsensical that a re-evolution, a movement away from the status quo to a better system that provides the much-needed human dignity and justice can no longer be put at bay. By those who are ignorant that a revolution, a change for something more humane, is as good for their gooses as it is for the ganders. The consolation for me is usually that, in the end, the reality will be laid bare that except to confuse, there is really no difference between the goose and the gander.
We are all in this mess together. When a serving senator, father, son, relative, political godfather and son, husband, uncle to some persons, and interestingly the deputy senate president of a nation’s assembly that was rigged as is business as usual, visits Germany to be roundly disciplined and disgraced, it dawns on all that there is no difference between he who has shoes today and he who doesn’t. We are joined at the umbilical by the multi-continental shame brought by the uproar caused by the crashes and mishaps of a polity and economy that is perpetually on auto-cruise, behind whose detached wheels are unscrupulous elements singing a different tune from their hearts’ conceptions. When prophecies become realities, like the prophecy of Ben Bruce while speaking to his colleagues on the dangers posed by exhausted Nigerians turning around to confront them, by throwing stones at their convoys on semi-auto cruise on potholed shaggy roads, then you know the served leaders and the underserved Nigerians equally use the road without immunity.
The assumption that any revolution is a natural progression to improvement, irrespective of approaches to the end, neither loses sight of the reality of history nor discountenances banal travesties of revolution, which conspiratorially earned true revolution its notorious reputation for which its actors must be punished by those who perceive themselves as victims rather than as gooses and ganders in the journey of redemption, of re-evolution.
A personal perception is that aloof of the spectrum of modern revolutions, including the early 20th-century constitutional revolutions, 1905 Russian revolution, and the Persian Constitutional Revolution, the 1908 Young Turk Revolution in the Ottoman Empire and the 1911 Chinese revolution and the palace revolt in Thailand, stands RevolutionNow in Nigeria, seeking justice, equality and nationhood as it should be. Only the enemies of progress will have lesser expectations than a better state of the nation.
Permit me a lengthy quote from the article of Fedorova 2017, “The concept of revolution is such a concept—it arises in the modern era as a theoretical tool for understanding the radical otherness of the present in relation to the past. Also, this concept is a crucial element of political practice itself, prefiguring the political strategies of an entire era. It is a conceptual tool, which with the help of the subject of Modernity—not the metaphysical subject, but, rather, the subject of action, of practice—is inscribed simultaneously into history and into practical action. The concept of revolution can be approached in different ways. There is a chain of events in revolution that stirs the imagination, written into history in passionate and violent letters of blood; events that are turned into myths and national symbols, firmly rooted in the collective unconscious. Its ethical or intellectual dimension can be emphasized—this is the world of concepts and values brought to life by the books and pamphlets, speeches, and heated discussions of the revolutionary period. At seventy-four years, Kant, unsatisfied with the mere chronological reconstruction of the facts, saw in revolution “the fact of reason.”
Where are we? Why are we where we are? And where are we willing to be wafted? How do we get there? It should be admitted that wielding unbridled power for decades can be soporific as to lure to complacency leaders who hold power and use same to suppress millions of Nigerians. But a reminder is due that nothing is constant forever, an implication of practical action for change, human dynamics for variation from what is considered a reference, bad reference, even if just a revolution of the earth in space. Change is change and it is very constantly changing. It is not easy, maybe sleepily convenient to amass as much wealth as it is unnecessary, to steal government money black and blue and rape an entire citizenry without a thought, but when the cats come calling, the mice must scamper. Change!
A change in political trajectory and consciousness is second-to-none at a time like this when an average Nigerian is tagged with epithets that are represented by the inglorious bastardliness of uncouth persons decked in stolen attires waiting to be soiled by the reconstructed anger of a people in progressive accord. The people are not entirely helpless in turning around the fortunes of their country, more importantly in peaceful ways. Indeed, history says otherwise.
During the unveiling ceremony of the revised national broadcasting code in Lagos, Nigeria on the 4th day of August, 2020, the increase of the fine for hate speech from five hundred thousand to five million naira was announced by the minister for information and culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed. What is however not certain is that the announcement is based on the honest realities of what hate speech constitutes and who are the actual purveyors of hate speech. Criticism? Expression of dissatisfaction? The recent shambolic show of ideological inconsistencies wantonly displayed by leaders and other political jobbers have been a circus of jesters inserting into our lexicon interesting dimensions of hate speech. A box of contradictions.
Democracy is not a joke. It is a serious matter. And it is meant to take care of the interest of the people in a collegial way. Not an opportunity for a few to enrich themselves or to usurp power and display ego.
The harrowing experience surrounding efforts to occupy elected positions should be dissuading enough for everyone, the gooses and the ganders, to come together and make their lives the better, together.
The people, therefore, have a right to ask questions; to demand continued progression and better welfare for every citizen and well-wishers of Nigeria, a nation that supports the realization of the personal and collective dreams of her people. And then leaders, who are supposed to be the sources of growth and life and love, the most important commandment given to mankind, turn around to harass and arrest their subjects on the counts that they are in love with a better nation.
Nigeria, like any sensible nation, ready to match gallantly into a future of hope and assured dignity, at this point in an evolving history requires clear-headed leaders, with a vision and mission to make Nigeria or her constituent parts proud.
An instructive model for RevolutionNow, or any re-evolution intent on transforming Nigeria into a nation of our dreams, is the meiji era which afforded tremendous transformation in Japanese society, radically remodeling the realities of life in Japan. The change that we seek for Nigeria, the re-evolution is going to be a process embedded in our national consciousness, and institutionalized to an extent that it becomes the reference for our national identity.
Once again, permit me to indulge you with the words of David Icke, “The only revolution that will change anything is a revolution of perception”
Fedorova, M.M., 2017. Revolution: The Transformations of the Semantic Field in Contemporary Political Philosophy. Russian Studies in Philosophy, 55(3-4), pp.280-292