Killing with Kindness

I worry about Africa. I really do. They seem to be in a lot of trouble. There are a lot of horrible dictators there. There are a lot of famine and droughts, and people seem to be constantly starving.

Why are they contstantly starving in Africa? America doesn’t seem to have famine like that. I mean, has the United States ever had a famine?

When was the last time that Britain had famine? Or France? Or Germany?

Why should Africa be so full of famine? What’s the deal with that?

Here is one Kenyan economist’s explanation:
the Europeans’ devastating urge to do good can no longer be countered with reason…We can buy these donated clothes cheaply at our so-called Mitumba markets…Why do we get these mountains of clothes? No one is freezing here… Instead, our tailors lose their livlihoods. They’re in the same position as our farmers. No one in the low-wage world of Africa can be cost-efficient enough to keep pace with donated products. In 1997, 137,000 workers were employed in Nigeria’s textile industry. By 2003, the figure had dropped to 57,000. The results are the same in all other areas where overwhelming helpfulness and fragile African markets collide.”

I recommend reading the interview. He makes some incredibly valid points. We need to let the African countries take care of themselves. They are much stronger than we have let them be. They deserve the chance to be truly independent. We just have to get out of the way.

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