THE INNOCENCE OF CHILDHOOD.

“Childhood is the most beautiful of all life’s seasons.”

Has the world suddenly forgotten what innocence is? The grownups, do they not reminiscence about their childhood?  Have children become the enemies of the 21st century?

My childhood was beautiful because it was natural. Most of you can relate. How we cooked sand and leafs. With empty cans of tomato puree and fed our imaginary children. How we took care of our rubber dolls and lay them on our backs imitating our mothers hoping that one day we will be mothers.

You may forget your childhood, but your childhood never forgets you.”- Michael Dibdin

We knew nothing about death for at funerals we hopped and played with friends and relatives. The thought of sex was far away from us. We could play around naked and not care that the son of mama born-boy is of the opposite sex. Bright eyes! innocent milk teeth.  We loved birthday parties; some of us had sleep overs.

“Childhood memories are often the best memories.”

For the older generation, I have no idea what their childhood was like, but I know that childmarriage was not the deal, at least, not from age 11.

Why then has the world decided to rob these young ones of their innocence? Of what benefit is child marriage. And for you that is aware of how ugly it is, what have you done to prevent it?

“Children are like wet cement. Whatever falls on them makes an impression.”- Dr. Hiam Ginnot

It is one burden to be a girl, and a greater one being a child mother.

The baby knows nothing about herself. She has no idea what she is capable of. She has no idea what life is about, and what is happening.

“Imagine a world if we all looked at others and saw the innocent child in them that we all once were.”- Eric Handler

These are the words of an 11-year-old Yemeni girl Nada Al-Ahdal (spoken in Arabic but translated into English)

Salaam Alaikum

Allah’s mercy and blessings upon you! Hello to you all.

I’d like to thank Al-Sharafi and Amal

I’d like to thank all the journalists and you as well.

It is true I ran away from my family. I can’t live with them anymore. Enough, I want to go live with my uncle. What about the innocence of childhood? What have the children done wrong? Why do you marry them off like that? I managed to solve my problem, but some innocent children can’t solve theirs, and they might die, commit suicide, or do whatever comes to mind. They are just like kids. What do they know? They didn’t have time to study, or anything. It’s not our fault. I’m not the only one. It can happen to any child. There are many cases like that. Some children decided to throw themselves into the sea. They’re dead now. This is not normal for innocent children. It’s true I fled to my uncle, but he wasn’t home. So I called Abd Al-Jabbar to come and get me. [He] sent me a woman to travel with her to Al-hudaydah. When my uncle heard about it he came for me. I filed a complaint with the police against my mother. I told them that I am 11 years old and that she wants to marry me off.

I would have had no life, no education. Do they have any compassion? What kind of upbringing did they get? I’m better off dead. I’d rather die. I’d rather live with my uncle than with these people

They threatened to kill me if I went to my uncle. What kinds of people threaten their children like that?

Would it make you happy to marry me off like that? Go ahead and marry me off. I’ll kill myself, just like that. I won’t go back to live with them. I won’t

They have killed my dreams. They have killed everything inside us. There’s nothing left. This is no upbringing. This is criminal, simply criminal. My maternal aunt was 14 years old. She lasted one year with her husband, and then she poured gasoline over herself and set herself on fire. She died. He would beat her with metal (chains) he would get drunk.

Would it make you happy to marry me off?!

My mother; my family, believe me when I say: I’m done with you. You’ve ruined my dreams.

“At any given moment you have the power to say this is not how the story will end.”

This child is just 11. Do you see the way she repeats INNOCENCE?

“Innocence does not find near so much protection as guilt.”- Francois de la Rochefoucauld.

That is what children are innocent. To now imagine that some bunch of northern rulers want this to be passed into law. Backing this up with religion!

“Some of you say religion makes people happy. So does laughing gas. So does whisky.”- Clarence Darrow

“Any religion or philosophy that is not based on respect for life is not a true religion or philosophy.”- Albert Schweitzer

What religion? A religion that doesn’t protect its child! As if illiteracy in the north is not enough an epidemic for you! Oh hopeless northern leaders what then are you doing?

And most Nigerian youths are shamelessly silent saying that there is nothing to be done. Bunch of fools!

 

I was tweeting out links for my followers to petition and someone asked ‘is it you they are marrying?’ Imagine the idiot. What if it were your sister? It can be anybody.

Maturity is not when we start speaking big things; it is when we start understanding small things.”-

Let me type this here for anyone with a conscience and a sound mind

It is the youths that bring change to a dead country.

“If your government shut down the internet, shut down the government.”

Child NOT bride!

Although it’s another rage that I know people wouldn’t care to read, but I know it’s been recorded somewhere that I did my best to bring about change.

Say NO to child marriage. Protect the future!

“Every child is innocent save them from the fear. That is a responsibility of you too. Stop child abuse.”

 

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