Once upon a time, America was a great nation. It was so great that every country trembled at the mere mention of its name.
I do not know what has happened to America.
Actually, I am worried at the terminal decline of American power. Unlike other romanticists out there, I don’t subscribe to the notion that the world should be everyone’s playground where anarchy and disorder reign.
Every playground needs a grown up.
In the school playground, a grownup has to be around to protect innocent children from harassment by the bullies. In any case, a grownup has to be around to ensure the kids don’t hurt themselves.
By the same token, the world needs a grown up to ensure that every country falls into line and irresponsible countries are saved from themselves.
In our sphere of things, that grown up has always been America.
For a grown up to earn respect, and hence authority, they have to lead by example and exhibit positive attributes.
There is no doubt that America has displayed such attributes. For instance, America is a free country where everyone can say what they like because they are protected by the law. It is because of freedom of expression that America has attained greatness.
Otherwise, how would all the wonderful innovations that originate from America been possible if the people were not allowed to think and speak outside the box?
America is also great because, unlike small countries, who cannot even tie their shoelaces, it is able to acknowledge its mistakes and rectify things.
Only a generation ago, black people suffered a lot of discrimination and were prohibited from doing certain things. Having realized the folly of its ways, America mended herself and today in the White House we have a man who is from a useless continent, whose relatives are allowed to visit. Not only are they allowed to visit, when they arrive and there is not enough room, they simply sleep in the kitchen or lounge and slaughter a goat on the manicured lawns.
That is America.
We live in countries where body fat is prized. The reason is because poverty has rendered many people malnourished.
On the contrary, the fattest people are found in America because there they can eat as much as they like and cheaply for that matter.
Again, in a show of greatness, America does not eat alone. It has made sure that malnourished people all over the world receive food aid in the form of gifts from the people of America. Many a life was saved because of this charitable gesture. Show me food hampers and cooking oil from all those countries that claim to be communist. There is none. None of them can match America.
Hey, some of the beneficiaries abuse and insult America at the drop of a hat and yet they cannot even feed their own people. However, America helps them because it understands they are bitter and jealous.
For some of us, such magnanimity is the reason why America is great. In America, rulers only stay for a limited period in office. They are not allowed to loot, or to raid the public purse. Should they be caught they are shown the door, and live the remainder of their days in disgrace. In other words America is not like Africa where high office means looting and abuse of power.
America is not only great because of its political values. It is also a groovy country. All the best forms of popular entertainment are produced in America. People the world over, even those who don’t understand the American language swear by American music and movies. In short no other nation has had such a massive impact on the world.
So why am I saying America is in decline? Well you see there was small incident this week that convinced me there is a problem.
We all know which countries are well behaved and are friends with America.
Citizens of such countries are very lucky because if they remain friends with America, some of her positive virtues will hopefully rub onto them. But we also know which countries are cheeky and even have the temerity to insult America.
In those countries, there is no freedom of expression. Hence there is no innovation. In those countries the people are bony and malnourished.
In those countries there is no democracy and the rulers steal public money and abuse office. In those countries there is no groove.
Some of us who are on the side of America feel sorry for those countries.
We feel America should use her great power to correct things, and ensure the citizens of those countries also enjoy what America and her friends enjoy. A glorious opportunity to do just that presented itself this week. And America missed out on the opportunity. This lost opportunity, to me, is a manifestation of loss of American power.
I saw the opportunity coming. I watched in dismay as the opportunity went, and America did nothing.
I am not an apologist for dictators and their ilk. Wherever they are, they must be smoked out, driven from office and put on trial. Only America is capable of that.
But like I say America has failed us.
I watched as that little tyrant from Iran arrived in Sims to visit his fellow dictator. There they were, enjoying all the pomp and ceremony of office and insulting America.
How dare they insult America?
Anyway they lounged, clinked champagne glasses and exchanged notes on the latest torture methods to use against their opponents whose only crime is to agree with America.
If America was still great, it would have pounced on those tyrants, arrested them and carted them to the International Criminal Court. America has let us down by not arresting those two dictators when they were in one place and when they could have been arrested without a single shot fired in anger.
Oh America, what have you done to us? Why did you let us down when Ahmadinajab and Old Man were comparing torture notes in Harare this week?
America is you still a great nation that takes care of t