We were all witness to the social media storm – for and against – that cop who shot some ‘young thug’ in cold blood on the bad streets the other week, saying the young man was a well-known robber.
You know how divisive things have gotten when the Inspector-General of Polisi Joseph Boinnet is saying ‘we will not entertain extra judicial killings’ but a Nairobi police boss – Japeth Koome? – is defending the bloody execution.
But what is this ‘wannabeism’ that is turning even teenagers in our streets and estates into hard-core gangsters so young? Let us begin with the basic need of a young wannabe after food, air and water. It is the need to dress to the nines, to be in cool gear, to impress their age mates. January to March in Nairobi were wonderful for the wannabe Nairobi girls who love short stuff when it comes to dressing.
But April is here, with rain and its many chills – and yet we are now seeing the ‘freeze and shine’ wannabes with their boots, thin material dresses and goose bumps, running through the rain!
Anyway, we are getting young gangsters because they want to ‘dress well.’
Then you get the ‘youthful’ politicians who want to dress like these lost wannabe youth – a whole would be county leader with fingers covered in gold rings like a classless pimp or drug lord in Miami, Florida.
Others are labour leaders who wear chokers and chains like dogs that have run away with their nyororos! If this goes on, I’ll not be surprised to see a Senator with big gold grills in the mouth in the next election.
But fashion is in as far as it goes with the youth taking the lead, and wannabe ‘with it’ politicos following.
Nothing says ‘cool’ among the youth than someone with a flashy moti (motor vehicle). So the next time you are carjacked by a gang of youth who look like they are on April holidays (they probably are!) just know their wannabe dreams revolve around earning enough money from such robberies to buy a speedy Subaru too – not thinking of going to Campus so they can someday buy a car in the 2030s.
Because, in Kenya, wannabeism has now taken to the air – as you will see especially in this election period. It used to be that politicians would transverse their constituencies seeking re-election in dust raising convoys that left villagers literally chewing dust.
Now the Wannabes descend on the peasants and paupers in dust SWIRLING choppers that leave them covered in dust.
Is it any wonder that urban youth now want the ‘high flying’ life when barely out of diapers?
Then you have seen those stupid boy thugs ‘flashing’ cash (wads of stolen money) on social media – no surer way of bringing some trigger happy cop to your door. Sometimes when you think Opportunity is knocking at your window, it is really the Grim Reaper – as everyone who read ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ knows.
The wannabes do this because they want people, especially the ‘baes’ (young women) to imagine that they are loaded and flock over and unleash ‘goodies’ for them.
And where do these morals of the alley cat emanate? Again, from the very top.
These days we have pastors sharing pornographic videos with married members of their congregation. We have loudly Christian leaders saying ‘wajana nayo’ to their marriage vows to mess around with other leaders on the tax payers’ tab.
We have tenderpreneurs supplying air (and metal) to the State for millions. Forget ‘Uwezo’ and all that jazz. The fact is that if youth musician Timmy T-Dat was singing ‘inawesa, haiwess?’ about accessing government tenders (reserved for youth) to an un-connected, under-capitalised youth, then the answer would definitely be ‘haiwess!’
So misguided wannabe youth resort to crime to get the ‘good things of life. On the femme side, the ladies also want to experience ‘Dubai’ and ‘Australia’. That is how you find ‘socialites’ with fake bums becoming drug mules and ‘living the life’ – until the day they are busted in Indonesia and start serving the life sentence in Jakarta. It’s all takataka.