Who Stole Reality?

Let me tell you what I think happens when those voices are ignored. First you get frustrated that nobody is listening to your real problems. Then someone sees an opportunity to get some power by playing with your frustrations. They offer you a way of getting your voice heard.

Sometimes, if you are lucky, a politician emerges and is clever enough to get his or her peoples’ views understood in a democratic process, but the poorer people are, the less educated they are, the more unlikely such a leader will emerge.

Even when a leader does arrive, how many of them take the power for their own good when they get the influence and the political positions? Too often that is what ‘real’ democracy means in the developing world.

So in my country, and maybe in a few others like Afghanistan and Iraq, many young vulnerable people ended up picking up a gun and playing the ‘big man’ soldier – and all because they felt nobody in power was listening to their real problems.

Why is it surprising that when you make someone feel irrelevant then part of them is going to want to change your mind? You can call them rebels if you want, but I think we should at least make the effort to understand what it is they are rebelling against.

I suppose it has always been a difficult one for the western media to listen to the voices of the weak, but I think that now, more than any time before, it is time we started to do some serious listening. So that is what is so strange to me, that when the world needs real ‘reality’ it gets ‘Reality Television’.

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