I hope I have not forgotten much of what I read this morning on the so-called Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) curricular package that was recently scuttled by the Akufo-Addo cabinet, following widespread and vehement protests against the same, in an article titled “CSE in Ghana: The Truths Beyond the Misconceptions” authored by Dr. Richmond S. Ngula, a linguistics specialist (Ghanaweb.com 10/13/19). On the whole, this opinion piece is easily one of the most eloquent and instructive disquisitions produced on this very controversial subject to date. Unfortunately, even as the author himself quite pointedly notes, the problem with implementing this otherwise progressive curricular package has to do with the relatively static or regressive cultures of many a Third-World polity in Asia, Africa and the Americas, especially in the Caribbean and Latin America.
Dr. Ngula also puts his finger on the right button, when the author pointedly observes that it would take a considerable amount of time and sensitization of the general Ghanaian public, in particular our traditional rulers and the various religious communities to reach a level of optimal acceptability and acceptance of the Comprehensive Sexuality Education curricular package. As well, I unreservedly agree with the writer that the “Comprehensive” or LGBTQI – that is, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Queer and Intersexual – aspect of this curricular package would be better off concentrated or focused on at the Senior High School Level. The reason being that students at this academic level would be more emotionally mature and intellectually and psychologically better prepared for a comprehensive appreciation of this pedagogical package on human sexuality. The author also perspicuously underscores the fact that the overriding problem with the wholesale acceptance of this historic and factual reality of the byzantine complexity of human sexuality primarily has to do with the tangled mess of mythology that tends to becloud the ethical and cognitive terrain of many a Third-World denizen.
Where I have grave doubts about the gradualist and temporally prohibitive tack taken by Dr. Ngula is the stark fact that such deliberative approach could take several costly generations to achieve. Meanwhile, in this particular instance, the dictum that “What you don’t know would not hurt you” would definitely be inapplicable. Rather, I would very much prefer the “Einsteinian” maxim: “If you think the cost of a Comprehensive Sexuality Education is prohibitive, you just try illiteracy.” Dr. Ngula clearly recognizes this signal fact as well, except that where this writer would recommend a seismic and revolutionary paradigm-shift, as already noted, Dr. Ngula seems to prefer the more cost-ineffective gradualist approach. Well, by “Seismic Revolutionary Paradigm-Shift,” I simply mean what could aptly be described as “The Rawlings Factor.” And I mean the latter not in the more ideological and abstract sense of the term. Rather, I mean something more radical and personal, which is the prompt and immediate cooptation of Chairman Jerry John Rawlings, Ghana’s longest-reigning military strongman and the country’s most sanguinary and swashbuckling throat-cutter, as part of the implementation process.
On the latter count, it absolutely goes without saying that had a hard put Akufo-Addo Presidency shed just a couple of hundred-thousand cedis painstakingly explaining to the metaphorical Grim Reaper, precisely why a Comprehensive Sexuality Education cannot be put on hold any longer, Chairman Rawlings could almost definitely have been counted upon to immediately whip up the entire global Ghanaian community into line. And who knows, the Third-Coming of the Generalissimo of the Trokosi Nationalist Congress could very well have detonated just about the right amount of the doctor-ordered Nuclear Apocalypse. Is my uncle and his sterling team of crackerjack and visionary nation-building statesmen and stateswomen listening?
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
October 13, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]
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