There are campaigns after campaigns exhorting
the people to "Say No !"
The populace have been persuaded, coerced, bribed,
threatened, punished and even loved to "Say No !" to many social ills but there
are still fans of these wayward lifestyle.
There is the campaign to "Say No !" to cigarettes. Huge billboards are put up
at strategic places. Even the media (television, radio, newspapers) have been
used but there is still smoke billowing in the air.
Previous to saying no to cigarettes, it was to drugs and bad traffic manners,
road bullies. You name it, we had these campaigns.
It could be that when asked to "Say No !", the curious wonder why and they
are tempted to try. Once in, it si sure difficult to come out of the jungle.
Even jungle guides and trackers have been known to lose their way in hills and
the forests, what more a greenhorn ?
Moreover, it could be that be emphasizing "Say No !", the message that gets
across is not "No" but the product that is banned.
A case n point could be the continued presence of "Mat Rempits" on our
highways. Come the weekend, the whole future racers are on their machines,
waiting for just the right opportunity to test their skills against the forces
of luck and chance. Despite being maimed and despite lives being lost, these
adrenaline-seeking youths have to qualms about competing with one another. What
are a few bruises and cuts compared to the thrills and spills ?
Would it not be better to conduct campaigns where the message is to "Say Yes
!" Wouldn't it be better to encourage safe driving, legal races, good nutrition
and healthy living ? Wouldn't it be more rewarding to say yes to continued
education, good moral values, obedience to parents an caring for one's life.
The fact that we are emphasizing the negative by the motto: "Say No !" is
tantamount to adults and authorities telling youths to indulge in that we said
to say no to ? It has been proven by psychiatrists that the more you say no to,
the more rebellious they become and the more eager they are to break rules.
I believe it would be far more effective to use the positive approach to curb
social ills. A positive attitude assists in brining out the
innate goodness in youths. Before teenagers
mature into mature adolescents, their raging hormones need an outlet. There must
be avenues for them to release this burning desire to prove themselves.
Given the opportunity to expand their energies and live life to the fullest,
let us change the way we exhort youths to mend their ways. "Say Yes !" to all
the positive values that ensure a happy life.