A role model is a person whose behavior, example, or success is or can be emulated by others, especially by younger people. In Philippians 4:9, Paul says “Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” As Paul was writing this letter to the Philippians, he was very comfortable that his life was worth emulating. In other words, he was a perfect example of a role model. In our current society, very few leaders would be willing to tell the young generation to emulate whatever they (young generation) see in them.
Last Sunday, I was comfortably seated in my living room watching Churchill show. Churchill was interviewing a young boy by the name Juma. He asked Juma who his role model was. The boy innocently replied that he doesn’t have one, since it’s hard to get one in our society. This left the entire audience in stitches. His answer didn’t come to me as a surprise since my proclivity towards a perfect society had already given me an indication that there was no role model in our society. The boy was simply affirming the non formal hypothesis I had.
Looking for a role model in our society is like searching for a needle in a desert. This is because the people who are supposed to be in the forefront to give directions to our young generation, are the ones who are plagued with scandals left, right and centre. Taking a peek in the media industry, the so called celebrity journalists have got nothing to show in their social fabric. Today, we’ll hear Lilian Muli being seen with the Shabana chairman romancing at a secluded rendezvous, tomorrow, we’ll hear Swalleh Mdoe and Tom Mboya being sued for child neglect and as if that’s not enough, we’ll hear Esther Arunga and the “Finger of God” church the following day.
In our religious institutions which are supposed to hold a monopoly of morality, things are not any better. If we are not treated to an endless soap opera where a pastor is found pants down with a member of his congregation, then we’ll be treated to a comedy of planting a “seed” for a fake miracle. On the other side, fake sheikhs will be busy indoctrinating young desperate men in the name of jihad.
Our families are not spared either. Nowadays, the news in the media is awash with scenes of fathers or mothers hacking or strangling to death close members of their families. Since the family is the basic unit of the society, we expect role models to originate from this institution, but the contrary is validated. Nowadays it’s not weird to see a parent encouraging his/her daughter to post nude photos in the internet for her to be regarded as a socialite.
Our learning institutions are also malnourished from role models. We always hear of teachers impregnating young girls in primary and secondary schools. In institutions of higher learning, we have Sexually Transmitted Degrees where the professors pry on young ladies before dishing out marks on the basis of who accepted their sexual advances. Instead of using most of their time to do researches and write journals, they instead use it to advocate for higher pay in the streets. Mark you; these are the people whom we expect to transform our corruption ridden government where people like Mike Sonko and Rachel Shebesh are entrusted with legislation of the laws governing our country.
Now you can understand why Juma said that he hasn’t seen any role model worth emulating and why I wasn’t shocked. With the current state of our society, no leader can bravely stand up and categorically echo Apostle Paul’s words to the Philippians.