OpEd, Politics

Pulled in front by humanity and pushed behind by revolution

If people who live a stressful life are counted, then I am one of them. I never sleep a wink when I think of how I should handle the two. The thinking never comes alone, but it often comes when I take a walk around my residential area to find poor, unfenced houses occupied by families who cannot even afford half a meal or half a tablet of paracetamol.

I almost cry whenever I see them, but I keep my cool by deceiving myself that one day I will bring them change. What change shall I then bring to them? This is where my stress comes from. Yes, I am a medical student, and when I excel in medicine, I shall bring them change by enhancing their health, but the question remains: how many years do I need to fully excel in medicine so that my services to them may not contribute further to their suffering but to their well-being instead?

If I choose that path as the only possible way to help them, then how many people will I rescue at the end of the day? Diseases do not segregate between the elderly and the young, so I promise myself to continue and come back to save the young who are spared by diseases. When I toss these questions aside and try to answer some of them, I end up not sleeping. With the little knowledge I have in medicine, I can help them, but where is the manpower?

When I think too much and I see that I am becoming mad over this, I dismiss the issue, telling myself that it will be done by other people, but who are those people? I am one of them. I also think of abandoning medicine like H.E. Late Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia and liberating the vulnerable community, but I later realized that times are different; the time of Meles Zenawi was favorable for revolution, but now, even those that you want to liberate feel shy and almost reject you.

Revolution never parts with fighting, and if it happens that their area becomes a war zone and many of those I want to revolutionize get killed by cross-fired bullets, how shall I explain it after revolution? If it happens that I am killed far away from the destination I want these people to go to, then I shall have done nothing to rescue them at the end of the day. In case I succeed in fighting for their rights, shall I be on good terms with those who are satisfied now and will miss this satisfaction later during my tenure?

A lot of questions come to mind. I unknowingly talk while walking alone, shaking my confused head and pointing at moving air in search of the solution, but it is too early for me to do that. This is done by old people whose memories are diminishing. I am sure if I continue like this and die at the age of 95, as it is a common age at which most revolutionaries die, my brain will be found like the brain of a 195-year-old man.

Coming to the core reason why I chose the title of the article like that, I am deeply trained to love humanity and to struggle harder to minimize, if not stop, what destroys humans, making me choose medicine as a field where humanity is most respected. I have grown to love it, swearing to myself not to do anything to harm humans.

But when I resort to revolution as a rapid means of bringing change, then I have contradicted myself. I know there are people outside who will call me a coward, but why don’t they begin it themselves? If revolution needs human sacrifices and humanity goes against it, this is what will make my brain grow older than my body.

The author is a medical student, University of Juba.


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