In a time where more and more people are running to their tribal corners and standing up for justice through the narrow prism of intolerance, it is refreshing to hear a voice who speaks of unity and inclusion. Sure there are others who have slicker productions and expensive studios, but one who speaks with love is infinitely greater than a thousand who preach from the pulpit of antipathy.
It is easy to bemoan the state of Ethiopia and be saddened by the disposition of too many among us who have hitched their wagons to zeregnenet (tribalism). However, focusing on the few zealots who are intent on dividing Ethiopia only gives them power. Instead of shaking our heads in displeasure at the tribal ministers who are infecting our birth land, let us embrace people who speak of andinet (unity) beyond slogans and believe in the redemptive powers of love with their actions instead of using fiker as a logo.
Rahwity Haile is one such Ethiopian, a young lady with an sunny disposition and a hopeful message to match, she utilizes social media to highlight the values of reconciliation, collaboration and seeking solutions through consensus. What Rahwity realizes, something many firebrands who invoke separatism don’t understand, is that more can be done by working together instead of working against one another.
On her YouTube channel, Rahwity interviews positive and enterprising Ethiopians who are intent on making a difference for their community and leaving a legacy of shared prosperity to future generations. The path that Rahwity is taking does not draw the eyeballs and attention the way that firebrands who incite emotions are able to accomplish, but it is better to reach one with love than it is to reach a million through anger and antagonism.
Watching Rahwity’s videos on her YouTube channel and Instagram is an exercise in optimism; instead of walking away with rage, one is able to draw inspiration and gain an understanding of our true power as Ethiopians. She is out to prove that a thousand spiders can indeed tie up a lion; by working with anyone who shares her positive outlook for Ethiopia, Rahwity is showing that partnership is better than rivalries.
We have strayed far from our communal nature, too many of us are chasing individuality at the cost of the collective whole. The divisiveness and the ethnic strife that is gashing our nation is a byproduct of pride and ego that places value on self and diminishes our national identity. Rahwity is a breath of fresh air in this way, she is a throwback to our forefathers who were able to defeat colonial powers because they were united beyond their differences.
There is no doubt that every one of us, whether at home or living abroad, loves Ethiopia. But when we give our hands to indignation and seek vengeance as a consequence, the light in our hearts morphs into darkness. That is why during moments of distress, it is of vital importance to seek voices who speak of hope and a faith for a better tomorrow. The challenge is that the agents of antagonism proliferate and shroud the beacons of light who could guide us out of the wilderness.The key is to connect one light like @rahwity to the next and in time their tiny ripples of hope can wash away the walls of malice that imprisons society. #Ethiopia Click To Tweet
There is another facet to consider and why Rahwity was chosen for this week’s “Spotlighting Excellence” segment. Too often, when we see someone with talent and the determination to make a difference, we wait on the sidelines as a community only to embrace them once they become famous. It’s almost as if we need validation from the world before we acknowledge ourselves. If we work among ourselves and collaborate as a people, we can empower a new generation of leaders and all of us will benefit in the process. This is a vision that Rahwity Haile understands and this is the reason we are highlighting her this week in the hopes that others will follow in her footsteps.
Ethiopia will not mend through grievance and sectarianism, what we need are audacious thinkers like Rahwity who are brave enough to speak against the mob of ethnocentrism and indifference who are cracking the foundation of our nation. Instead of tuning in to the latest ethnic station and following tribal voices of resentment, let us listen to people like Rahwity who know that the road to healing is not through the lanes of bitterness but through the pathway of love and togetherness.
“Goodness is the only investment that never fails.” ~ Henry David Thoreau
If you want to nominate people within our community who you believe to be highlighted for their commitment and dedication to service and excellence, please nominate them by submitting their names, pictures and why you believe they should be highlighted to firstname.lastname@example.org. Enamesegenalen.