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Opinions of Monday, 31 January 2011

Columnist: Adade, David

The Impending Truth about the Ghanaian Adolescence within Society

By David Adade, Brampton, Canada

The Ghanaian community has been praised within its own interlocked system of people for providing and maintaining a stable domain over their own children, while also being able to adapt into the western views of society in a positive manner. For the many years that Ghanaians have been within Canada, there had been no recollection of disobedience or conflicts of revolting with their children (prior to the modern scenarios they face now) however according to recent media and through word of mouth, the Ghanaian adolescence that were once acclaimed for their polite and self-respecting appeal began to decline in the eyes of the Ghanaian community. There had been an outbreak of gang violence and drop outs; it was like a parasite had latched onto the Ghanaian teenagers and young adults and was spreading like a virus. How is it that the children that were supposedly stimulated and nurtured with a positive environment surrounding them, with an embodiment of good prospects and morals to keep them motivated had diverged from their natural course and fallen into chaos? The Toronto Star stated that the experts on children dynamics know the cause of this abnormal change in behaviour; “it was a result of mix personality, circumstances, family situations and the influence of peers”. The youth want to feel as if they are a part of a greater purpose; they don’t want to feel alienated or absent, to remain individual and yet isolated; they wanted to be part of a bigger group. The Ghanaian community tries to restrict their children from these natural associations and interactions, detaining any form of expression towards the real world because they believe it will cause them to fall out of place; this inspires rebellion. Kofi Annan, the former U.N Secretary-General Leader and fellow Ghanaian said “we have seen that we cannot succeed without the leadership of the strong and the engagement of all”. He reinforces the significance of an inclusive environment, which a child should not be void of value or be detached from society and what it has to hold but be allowed to engage in it. The Ghanaian community is failing to see that by their attempts to protect the youth from the influence of society, they are actually feeding their impulse to join it. If Ghanaian families become more open-minded and understanding they can prevent the growing ratio of violence amongst the Ghanaian community. Before the reform of the youth justice system, approximately 125,000 youth where being charged of criminal conduct almost every year; Canada had incarceration rates that surpassed that of any country in the western hemisphere and there was a high possibility that some Ghanaian teens were incorporated within those statistics. The disciplinary acts that were traditional, in the way the children were raised in the Ghanaian community had its good moments but it also ushered in bad ones as well. By acknowledging the possibility of growth, through the everyday experiences that the youth generally go through, the Ghanaian community can begin to revive the dying stature the adolescence within the community once had; becoming respectful and obedient. It will reduce the disharmony that has stricken our youth and bring what was once appealing before this community.

Source: David Adade, Brampton, Canada