Opinions are personal. Nobody instructs an opinion writer to write opinions unless that opinion writer is a stranger in Jerusalem. Many, if not all, opinion writers are independent in their writings.
This is simply because they would be biased in their opinion-writing if they listened to instructions somewhere. But the major reason is that their passion would be manipulated and, if manipulated, would die if they were not left to decide what to write on their own.
This is the reason why some opinion writers disappear the same way they emerge. Opinion writers who are sent to write emerge very exponentially, and when spotted and advised to follow ethics, they disappear very fast like clouds.
But those who write opinions with an independent mind are genuine, ethical, unbiased, truthful, and emerge slowly but satisfactorily. It is very difficult for an independent-minded opinion writer to assassinate the character of someone, including someone with whom he or she has a disagreement.
This brings me to the point of why I chose the title of this opinion like that. I swear that I have never been used by someone else to write on his or her behalf. This is attested to by my non-sycophantic writings and a love for writing on issues facing citizens. If the “public” were a person, then he or she would be that person who uses me to write on his or her behalf. Writing is all about what is good and bad, but mostly what is bad so that it can be corrected.
When the civil servants spend three months without salary and I pick up my pen and paper to write about it, who do you think among the civil servants has sent me to write about it? It is a public concern, and because it is so, someone capable of writing about it can write about it.
If the army goes unpaid for as many months as four or sometimes five, forcing the soldiers to pick their axes, go to the forest, and cut down trees for charcoal for survival, and someone picks up a pen and paper to write about that, who do you think among the soldiers has sent him or her?
If the prices of commodities shoot up and the economy-boosting cluster goes quiet about it like it is happening now, and someone picks up a pen and paper to write about it, who do you think has sent that person? In general, if an opinion writer writes an opinion on a public issue, how wrong is that?
Last week, I wrote an article about hunger caused by this unending economic crisis, and I went as far as blaming the government for not providing the bread so that the citizens would go and look for sauce. Someone called “government” took it personal, called me on the phone, and investigated me as if he was the chief police investigator in charge of my case.
When I tried explaining myself, it was as if I were pouring fuel into a settling fire. So, I gave Mr. Government time to flatten the plateau of his anger, but his anger seemed to be growing. One thing I did not reveal to him was that I’m called “government” myself.
It was a phone attack between the government and the opposition. Who is the government? It’s me and him. Lastly, he falsely accused me of threatening the government to provide food or else the citizens would go on a demonstration. I told him I’m a goat, and there is nowhere a goat can threaten the leopard.
The author is a medical student, University of Juba.