Disabuse yourself of the notion that a politician from your tribe can spew hate speech. Always defend his honour no matter what. Let everyone know that he is the greatest leader that ever walked the earth and that whatever he utters is infallible and even divine. Make sure to severely abuse anyone who badmouths him. Use threats to show you are serious. Even when he is charged with making inflammatory remarks, stand by him, defend him passionately because he is one of your own. Remember, there’s really no need to look at the evidence, you don’t really need to because you are know that’s just baseless allegations. When he is locked up, agitate for this release. Join a demo to this endeavour.
Pepper your vocabulary with words like “mass action” or “panga” or “fire” or “tires.” Never pass up an opportunity to use the word “ethnic cleansing.” While you are at this, make sure you take advantage of the pronouns “we” and “them.” These are powerful tools you can use to draw a very essential divide. Allude to how strong and united your tribesmen are. Mention that you come from a community that is destined for greater things than the rest. Wield this exceptionalism as your weapon of choice, along with the pangas and machetes. On the “we” side, talk about how your tribe is deservingly meant to rule all other tribes. Use God to support this position. Also, the indispensable contributions and selfless sacrifice of your forefathers for the country will be very helpful to drive this point home.
On the “them” side, don’t be shy to throw a lot of blame here. In fact, it is common knowledge that all the woes facing your community rightfully belong here. Stolen crops. Dead animals. Evil spirits. Thick headed offspring. Unemployment. Come up with as many as possible. Never ever pass up a chance to blame “them” for getting in the way of “your” community’s rightful claim to “your” throne. Preach that the problems facing your community will miraculously vanish when one of you manages to ascend to the House on the Hill.
Whenever there’s a new wave of political tension, make sure to contribute and share your expert opinion. Use the above mentioned pronouns sparsely. “We are ready for them.” “We will deal with them.” “They will see fire.” “War is coming for you.” Gather with your tribesmen to discuss these issues.
Use social media to your advantage. Regularly tweet or post status updates to vent your grievances or to simply rub it in, depending on which side of the divide you are. In your twitter bio, be particularly keen to point out your impeccable intellect and professionalism. Flaunt your qualifications and achievements. Of course do not forget to note that you are “allergic to bullshit.” Do not mention your political or tribal affiliations; take full advantage of this. Instead, make it clear that you are #TeamKenya. Talk about how Kenya means everything to you and how it is beautiful and how you love everything about it. Drive the point home that your love for this country is unmatched― because you are patriotic.
Ideally, your avatar should have a thoughtful, sophisticated, almost professorial look and you should have on designer spectacles and a tweed jacket. It should be befittingly taken sitting, legs crossed, having tea and pondering over The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal. Appear as learned as possible. Make sure your cover picture is a beautiful Kenyan landscape and culture with a breathtaking sunset in the background. This will reinforce your enviable love for your country.
Depending on which side of the political and tribal divide, passionately justify your position. If on the opposition, always remind everyone that “they” stole the election from your community several times, denying your community its divine right. Get very emotional and show signs of bitterness and disillusionment. Remember you are always the victim all the time, no matter what happens. Everybody is out to finish your tribe politically and is strategizing against you. Adopt a sad tone: why do bad things happen to good people? When will your people get their turn to eat and sit on the throne?
Long before the elections, like now, predict that your community will emerge the winner come D-day. Also make a prophecy that if this does not happen, then it is because “they” stole the elections. When your community loses, concoct a theory to justify why you lost. Do not entertain the silly notion that perhaps it could be due to a lack of a winning strategy. Claim that your community won without a pellet of a doubt. Elections cannot be stolen from you in every election year and if that happens, then you deserve it because you allow it to happen. It is all your fault. And you can’t allow this to happen. If you are the ruling party, complain immensely about the other camp’s laziness and incessant complains. State that “they” will never rule your people, come what may.
Move from the hashtags to the streets. Twitter wars are a child’s play for you, so you’d want to get out of your comfort zone. Go for rallies. Listen to your politician speak. Test your grit; hurl stones, loot businesses, clash with the police, get a good beating, may be even break a limb or two. Inhale teargas, cry (literally) for your tribesman or political party. Along with other faithful supporters, exercise your loyalty, and support him/her without fail. Use vernacular in these gatherings so that “the others” do not spy on “your” plans. In fact, use vernacular in every occasion especially when the “others” are around.
Never apologise for believing that politics is indeed personal. Remember that you are always right. The Constitution gives you the right to your own beliefs. Your tribal leader’s opponents are your community’s mortal enemy. It is therefore your responsibility to defend your people. So take politics personal and make it the most important thing in your life.
As you do all this, it is of utmost importance that you don’t reveal that your brother or sister or cousin is married into the other tribe. This is a taboo, so it is wise to keep mum about it. Preferably, sweep this under the carpet. Besides, keeping quiet is not the same as lying right?
Master the art of rumour mongering and the incredible potential that lies latent within you: the hyperbole. This will come in handy when you are justifying your political position, especially when you are aggrieved. Simply explode, get offended easily and be very generous with the allegations, even if they are unconfirmed. Because you care. The sad tone, use it. Ideally, exaggerate everything. If a woman, wail, for best results. If a man, preferably beat your chest and the ground and speak your vernacular menacingly. Along with your comrades, march to the streets and cause chaos. Block a road. Burn tires. Refer to your allegiance to your tribal leader. Be quick point fingers at the other camp even when it is impossible they had nothing to do with it. Trust your instinct. If you are ever in doubt or simply need inspiration, consult Donald Trump.
If you are the media, splash catchy, sensational headlines on the front page. Censoring your material is overrated anyway. Don’t think twice alleging plots by one camp to harm the other. Allude to highly reliable sources for the story but be sure to hide behind press freedom and the ever reliable confidentiality principle. Fan the flames of conflict. Take sides. Create tension.
If you are a politician, get all the fools on your side and you’ll be elected to anything. However, never mention to them that they are actually fools. Ignore the citizenry’s basic rights but always quote the Constitution because you respect the rule of law. Always be at hand to spew expletive-filled statements at rallies. Use the unwavering support of your tribe effectively.The tribal card is both a weapon and shield; use it well. Remember to reserve the most vitriolic statements for the rival camp. It is highly advisable that you always reiterate to the masses that there is “us” versus “them.” Create tension. Keep the masses alarmed, on the edge and clamorous to be led to safety. Whenever you speak to your constituents, leave the impression that without your help, they are doomed and they will be finished. Remind them that it is only you who can lead them to safety; because you care.
As a politician, it is imperative that you get involved in public hate campaigns. Preferably, go digital and use social networks as a platform to spread propaganda. Never feel ashamed or remorseful for using the ethnic conflict card to their own advantage. Never be subtle in these endeavours; openly call for a revolution and remind the other party that you people are prepared to use violence. Because the other communities will be put off if you don’t openly bay for their blood. If you must go out of your way to help an individual, only deal with the interests of members of your own ethnic group. Because charity begins at home.
When elections come, divert the attention of your constituents from dreary and mundane issues of manifestos and keep hooked on the issues of tribal conflict. To achieve this, prophesize election rigging. Have some youth armed and ready to fight in the event this happens. When you lose, never accept results because you are not one to lose anything and you are special. Also don’t make the rookie mistake of conceding defeat because that is weakness.
Image source: news.vice.com