The art of using letters to scare

Talk about words, ha! You’ll need words to talk about words. Cool. Words? Words are huge, words are lovely, words are consoling, words are deadly! Words are scary, words can be sweet. Words can be scarce. but no! This is not the business of any authority-to scarcely console nor sweet talk subjects? To be sweet, to be nice, to be friendly-not in the 21st century, sweet and console is the business of family and close friends, Scare in handy is a role authorities world over have perfected, and so is the art we have all come to fear privately in our lonely moments-each one of us has a day just like the proverbial dog. Words, what better way to drive a psychological war home-Letters, official letters is the subject!

Governments, whether by the people or dictatorial, have this need to showcase the meaning of power, just how outreaching it is, just how bad-ass it is, especially if you are unlucky enough to be on the receiving end, the other side of the table where your tax and that of your community combined rains down on you, crushing all the thoughts you had of defiance-defiance in this case can mean so many things, not necessarily negative, could also be your thoughts about a better chance, that magical ideal that you feel you want to seek, or you feel strongly that you should have, and so when the letter hummer crushes you, its a warning shot in the air for those who would in future dream of such a dream like you have, and so words, especially from an official letter-to scare!

In Nairobi, my cradle city, i would learn, through personal and other people’s experiences, that action speaks louder than words, even a guaranteed right in law could be  annulled by action, illegal action like what rogue cops do to citizens standing up for their rights. They have this Kofi la bila sababu ( a slap with no reason) as they crave to stamp certain authority to scare out legitimacy of a known right. This slap is normally served amid harsh toned words and the poor fellow must comply or live to fight another day, call that stamping of authority by inhumane beings, but what is being human? humanity is a word lost in to the interpretation of the victor just like history, and that’s where we are,isn’t it? A slap with no reason but purpose, and yes! It serves the purpose of the beholder, where the recipient must dig deep in their half empty pockets to buy their way out-to bribe if you like it, for the fear of escalation on the already crappy position they find themselves in.  So better words than slaps, huh?? To scare, the new game by the powerful to the weak! The weak being the ordinary, and by the way, you don’t have to have done something wrong to appear on that side of the table, its merely by coincidence that you find yourself there and the predator must invoke his authority which needs to be respected by all means.

However, In the first world, a place where such rogue offenses are a rare, the hunger to stamp authority is still live, live as human beings still exists. Faced with strong laws against physical violence, and a very socially emancipated society,  the German authorities have in time adopted to this psychological art of letter writing to scare and dish out threats. You get a letter if you are born, telling you we know you and welcome to future tax payments when you grow old or maybe to remind your parents that they have a child in case they forgot, you get a letter to join Kita and later one for Schule-note that you can’t read at this level but you still get one( this is no joke by the way, you can ask Jöpke my buddy to elaborate)In case you are wondering why all these letters, well, because they have the means and they will fund you should your parents be unable to, you get letters all through your life, in fact the only one exception is when you die, and i am betting they would send you one to the after life if they had the means or if it was proved scientifically that there is such an address. Comparing this to elsewhere, where you are born, the government doesn’t give a hoot, brought up whichever way, no communication, you might even die, still no letters the only one time you receive such letters is if you are in trouble against the law, and even this is delivered in person by the arresting authorities, letters can be stressing and scary, especially in a mix of such cultures that you were lucky enough to experience in one life time.

For this reason, stress, some crooks have taken to letter writing to extort, they will accuse you of cyber crimes like sharing of music files, you never heard of or watching movies on their domain without permission or using their platform to entertain other people. This gets sick when at the end of the long letter you find the bill you need to pay to get off the hook, and if you do it you will still get other bills attached with threats in future, if you don’t you will still need a lawyer to draft them a letter explaining why-the legal fees for services are compulsory because that’s his profession, shit! This once upon a time art that was used to express love, gratitude and all the good things has been taken up by the commercial world that we have made to communicate all the shitty things in our time,. I wonder whether giving other people sleepless nights by the barrel of your pen has become the order of the day, wait a second, or was it always so and humans never changed?




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