New York Letter With Alagi Yorro Jallow: We Need To End The Culture Of Silence

A story was once told of a mouse who looked through the crack in the wall to see a farmer and his wife open a package. What food might this contain?”

Picture: Alagi Yorro Jallow
Photo credit: Author

The mouse wondered, but was soon devastated to discover it was a mousetrap. Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed a warning: There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!”

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, “Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it.”

The goat sympathized, but said, “I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers.”

The cow said, “Wow, Mr. Mouse. I’m sorry for you, but it’s no skin off my nose.” So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer’s mousetrap alone.

That very night a sound was heard throughout the house – like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer’s wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it, was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught.

The snake bit the farmer’s wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital, and she returned home with a fever.
Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his knife and offered the chicken for soup. But his wife’s sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock.

To feed them, the farmer butchered the goat. The farmer’s wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.

The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.

Hmmm! The story calls us all to stand for/with one another, so that the next time we hear someone is facing a problem we should not think it doesn’t concern us, because when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk.

Your silence at this moment when your voices need to be heard, standing, and condemning every act of bigotry and tribalism anywhere and everywhere, of all Gambians, speak volume to those who may not belong to your divide now.

Your silence, though golden now, will no longer be golden when the world is finally turned into a theatre of hatred and war and friends are made enemies devouring one another.

Your silence will no longer be golden when cries of pain, sorrow and death rents the air all around you and foul smell of injustice fills you breathe, with bells of guilt hanging over your consciences.

Your silence will no longer be golden, when in your freedom you realize you are now living in chains and shackles of those who have now taken over your life without your consent and all because you refused to talk when it was most necessary and needful.

Speak, also now, before your voices become irrelevant by todays silence.

If you refuse to speak you will soon realize that you share common enemies with those you now label fanatics and are still advancing a course in your name.

If you do not still speak, you may only wake up one day to realize that the fanatics own you already and when there are no more enemies to target, you will yourselves become slaves and victims of the blood thirsty political vampires


Leave a comment.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.