I guess we, the Oromos, are upset because Menilik II was not a perfect, divine, and a leader or an Emperor without fault. My question is: weren’t the leaders, even limited to the U.S., like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, or James Madison great? Yet, Madison, the father of “the living U.S. Constitution, or the greatest document ever written”, owned slaves as George Washington and Thomas Jefferson did. Still, you don’t see African Americans today demanding no schools, roads, or hospitals named after them. African Americans and Native Americans do not glorify the founders shortcoming, but celebrate their great deeds-establishing a great nation.
Even Lincoln’s initial goal was to save the Great Union, not to free the slaves!! Consequently, Menelik may have made errors that can be explained or even justified given his time and circumstances. I am not apologizing for what he did to the Oromos or others as he was toiling to unify the country, but I want to see it from another wide and liberal angel. Not doing so would certainly attempts to unfairly exclude the great Oromos who fought and led the Adwa war, not doing so would deprive the credit earned and due to the tens if not hundredth thousands Oromos who died in the historic war an African, Black, Nation defeating European colonizer, and not doing so would be a tragedy that history and humanity would not forgive!!
I am certain if Justin Biber or Justin Timberlake were to say the “war against the Natives” or the ” Civil War” was a holy war to unify the Country not many would protesting, let alone boycott their sponsors. It certainly would be distasteful for any celebrity, note here a celebrity not historian or political leader, to make insensitive and one sided statement. Teddy Afro is just a singer who saw things from one angle and when he was told he made a grave error, he owned up to his mistake and apologized. Further, even the newspaper published and admitted misquoting Teddy. Then, why are we still persisted in destroying the good name of the young singer and hurt, hurt the poor Bedele Beer employees who are Ormoms who would be adversely affected?
The cancellation of the “Love Journey” is truly heart breaking and is a travesty. The promoters of the “boycott Bedele” beer campaign should be ashamed for preventing the Millions of Oromos from enjoying a show and a singer who has incorporated Oromigna and Oromo heroes in his songs. Boycotting “love journey” tantamount to advocating for hate and division. Truly a sad affair!!
As to Heinken and Teddy, I suspect they will survive financially or business wise after this debacle. It is the poor and innocent employees of Bedele beer, the Oromos, who would suffer the consequences and left holding the bag as a result of the reckless, thoughtless, and cruel actions of Jawar and Co.
The fact of the matter is Menilik II was human, not immortal without fault, however, his great deeds far outweighs his shortcomings as all the great leaders before our time. In sum, I believe the Oromos need to get out of silly fights against silly causes, when there are current, pressing, and needed issues to focus and concentrate on.
Now, Jawar and Co., let’s see you freeing the tens of thousands of Oromos in Ethiopian Jails all over the country, stop the giving away of the fertile Oromo lands to foreigners while displacing Oromos, show us that Oromos empowered and demand fair share of wealth and power when they are the majority, not subservient to a minority regime, and above all please boycott the true enemies of the Oromos: lack of love, unity, and vision!!