Catherine Wahome, the wife of the late Nyeri Governor Wahome Gakuru, is a woman of substance, of unmatched clarity of mind and nimbleness of thought.
Her extra-ordinary courage, strength and wisdom during the State funeral of her husband is one to be remembered for days to come and will form the crux of my column today.
Delivering her tribute to a national audience in a live broadcast of her husband’s funeral, Catherine was astonishingly calm and composed and her speech, overflowing with words of wisdom, punctuated by poignant Bible verses to encourage the mourners.
I was particularly moved by some very interesting words she said; “Before you speak, before you write, do the filter test. Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? If it does not meet any of that criteria please do not speak it, do not voice it.”
My hunch was that Catherine was referring to a story published by a local tabloid detailing the personal life of her late husband. I will not dishonour this space by repeating the details of the story but I will say that there was not an embarrassing personal detail about the governor that was left out.
Isn’t it funny how low some people will sink — even as low as attacking the dead who cannot speak for themselves — just to gain traction?
Topping that were equally disturbing social media reports that were in bad taste, hurtful and with a hint of malice to tarnish a family in mourning.
But Catherine — God bless her — engineered an astute tackle and silenced the detractors. So let me take this opportunity to commend you ma’am, for that wise move.
Again, this week, people on social media began to spread some malicious rumours about the well-being of the ailing wife of one of the Nasa principals, suggesting that she had lost her battle to an ailment. What is wrong with people?
People have no souls out here.
And I say this with so much heaviness of heart because there are people among us who are hell-bent on character-assassination, slander and maligning other people that it is getting worrying.
There are people living and walking in our society who are on a mission to hurt people with words; rumours and embarrassing details (and lies) about the personal lives of others that are simply not necessary.
It is usually the failures that are the biggest gossipers and the loudest slanderers. Gossip is never a portion of the prosperous. It is often the habit of the losers and under-achievers among us to talk about and insult what they cannot achieve.
True, think about the most prolific malicious talker you know. Malice and malicious talk is usually a preoccupation of those who have failed in life, those who life has frustrated so much that they need an outlet to vent their exasperation with life.
Is it not the people who are not married or in any meaningful relationships that are always the first to talk about other people’s families? Isn’t it those whose careers are in the trenches often the loudest about other people’s jobs, businesses or careers?
Isn’t it true that the people whose lives are so broken, miserable and with nothing to show at their advanced age often the first to discuss other people’s lives?
Isn’t it the miserable, the rejected, the broke and broken people that are most concerned with the affairs of the others? Isn’t it those with unsuccessful, under-achieving children that are the first to gossip about other people’s children?
We are being honest here, aren’t we?
I am here to tell rumourmongers, character-assassinators and gossipers that you need to start minding your own business and start living your own lives, worrying about your own families, your own careers and your lives and leave people’s children and families alone.
And for you reading this, perhaps a victim of malicious rumours, I would like to give you advice from a sister whose been there. Hang in there. Keep doing your thing. Keep shining in life. The only way you can prove your detractors wrong is by doing even better. Nobody argues with success, they can only talk about it from far.
Busybodies, rumourmongers and character assassinators should know even God hates gossip. I would like to refer you to some very practical advice at such a time as this from my favourite book in First Thessalonians 4:11: “…and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you.”