Don’t look the other way whenever you see a youth taking the wrong route. Our strengths and our weaknesses dwell with these ones.
You may have given up on #MyCountry (deservedly so) but please don’t give up, on their behalf.
Don’t give up on their future.
Let them dream like we were allowed to. Help them have good dreams if you can. Inspire where you can, for you never know in whom God deposited the fire to change the situation you have given up on.
Lie if you have to but please don’t paint a quaint picture of the future for them, like pessimists like me do these days. Let them get and enjoy the high of a possible great Nigeria like we were allowed to. Teach them the meanings impregnated in every word of our beautiful Anthem and Pledge. Teach them the old Anthem if you have the time (as it is still ours. It just got old).
Instill in them the sense of responsibility that comes with a baton change. Let them know we are reluctantly handing over the baton of ‘saviours-of-the-nation’ to them. And let them know why we are reluctant.
Let them know we don’t have much confidence in young ones who sag everything they wear,including under wears, to take us to the next level. Tell them we never had BlackBerries and smart phones but we passed our JAMB and WAEC on one sitting. Tell them we never had cable TVs and internet but we had information we needed from sheer hard work and determination.
Tell them we would have a heart attack the day tattooed faces, legs and arms appear in our NASS or in the arms,faces and legs of our ministers or God forbid, our President.
But assure them of our love. Of our unflinching support in this great quest. A quest that we admittedly have failed in, just like our fathers and their fathers and the fathers before their fathers.
Assure them we will serve as their references (for free), if only they would swallow their pride and ask us for help.
Remind them that history is kept for a reason. And studied for a greater reason too. That we are their history and they thus should study us and not fall into the same stride, pit and squabbles we fell into.
Above all, remember to remind them to have fun because they will only live once. But to have fun responsibly. And that there is no better time to have fun more responsibly than their time – with the advent of AIDS/STDs (convey our heart felt sympathy).
Instill in them the importance of the greatest finding of our century and our time : “that the world or a life can be transformed by mere changing the way we think”.
Let them realize the power that lies in thinking/meditation. Let them know that it is ok to think abnormally or “outside-the-box”.
And that they can and should expand the boundaries of their given school curriculum by themselves and on their own.