The Oromo doesn’t have to prove anything to anyone as they demand their rights

Dr Tsegaye Ararssa

https://i0.wp.com/addisstandard.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/oromo-students-fresh-protest.jpgIf you fear the Oromo for asserting their rights, then blame your Oromophobia passed on to you through centuries of discursive violence meted out via ideologically motivated, state-driven official ‘history’ (and contemporary cultural propaganda).

If Oromo defense of their land and natural resources strikes terror in you, then blame it on your complicity in the unjust extraction and exploitation of both at the expense of the Oromo people.

If the Oromo quest for justice wreaks havoc among those of you who fetishized the pseudo unity in the Ethiopianist fantasy, then find the reason in your relentless expulsion of the Oromo from the polity while insisting on their presence in the territory.

If our call for freedom from oppression disturbs you, perhaps only because you have been the oppressor until the temporary placeholders took over from you, then don’t blame us. Go face your past, deal with your guilt, and come to terms with the future.

There’s nothing we can do to placate you. For we will continue to irritate, disturb, disrupt, and dismantle the logic of oppression anywhere–to the very end. And we refuse to apologize for doing so.

If you hesitate to support the Oromo demand for justice because it has no respect for your (prospective) power in the supposed kingdom to come, then suit yourself. We wish you luck, but don’t blame us for not giving you a guarantee that your insatiable appetite for power remains in tact. Too bad, we don’t have power now, and we can’t offer or guarantee one. After all, one can’t give, or guarantee, what one doesn’t have.

If Oromo lives are less important than others’ interest in political power, or your freedom of trade or property, or civil liberties such as press; or if Oromo sacrifice is valued as nothing in the light of your interest; if Oromo resistance is nothing and if, in your calendar, the date of saying NO to oppression starts only on the date you started pursuing political power, i.e 2005; if Oromo demand for justice is not worth standing with; then you know where you have drawn the line that determines who is Ethiopian and who is not. And you have nothing to blame the Oromo for.

And so, …, please, please, please,… stop asking me to pamper you. The quest for justice is not for political babies. In fact, it’s not for politicians at all. It is for those in the thick of the fog–of political exclusion, economic expolitation, and cultural dehumanization. And for those who know it all. For those who have risked all. For those who have lost all, and have nothing more left, nothing more to lose.

The resistance continues. Toughen up and go do your own bit of resistance, or make way.