The other day I received an email informing me I had a new follower on Twitter.
Now this is an extremely rare event so naturally I had to investigate.
The first thing I noticed was that their avatar showed a map of Africa. Was the entire continent following me? Now this was a flattering thought but I am a realist and a modest one at that so I discounted the thought and decided to investigate. I followed their link.
WELCOME TO AFRICA TOBACCO-FREE INITIATIVE [with a suspicious address at “africatobaccofreeinitiative dot org” which is apparently considered by the Interwebs to be “suspicious”! I’ll say!!]
Now what the fuck are they following me for? Are they looking for enlightenment? Or am I now classed as “the enemy” who must be spied upon? Could I be so lucky? I had a look at their “Who we are” page.
Avoiding conflict of interest: We believe that there is a fundamental and irreconcilable conflict between the tobacco industry’s interests and public health policy interests in Africa.
Integrity: We act consistently with our mission, being honest and transparent in what we do and say, and accept responsibility for our collective and individual actions.
Collective approach: We value unity, cooperation, and collaboration based on collective trust
Excellence: We constantly challenge ourselves to the highest levels of performance to achieve greater impact.
Effectiveness: We believe in being results oriented, responsive, innovative, and creative in achieving our mission.
Diversity: We strive to be inclusive, diverse, representative and gender sensitive.
Consensus building and democratic: We strive for consensus in decision making, valuing a participatory and inclusive approach.
Accountability: We believe in transparency and accountability.
Ho kay so. They don’t believe in a conflict of interest. That’s fair enough, but I would like to know where they get their funding from and whether there is a conflict of interest there?
So let’s look at integrity. They may be honest [?] but I have a problem with transparency. Where do they get their funding from? They miraculously fail to mention that.
They believe in unity, cooperation, and collaboration based on collective trust. I haven’t a fucking clue what that means. I don’t trust them so they have failed on that one.
They strive to be inclusive, diverse, representative and gender sensitive? What? The? FUCK?? Gender sensitive? Boy but we have a right bunch of little snowflakes here?
We strive for consensus in decision making. Does that mean consensus amongst the entire population or just within the anti-smoker conclave?
We believe in transparency and accountability. Well then they should live up to their own standards and tell us how they are funded.
There is one question though that I would really like to ask them –
What fucking right have you got to impose your beliefs on others and decide what is best for an entire continent of individuals?
It’s the African Missions all over again.