This article details choice(s) in our today's democracy. A local palm nut seller used the market approach to explain the power of choice and how it affects democracy and society in general.
In economics, we have ‘scale of preference’ which means, the ranking of priorities in order of importance. Then, comes choice(the possible best option you selected) and opportunity cost(the ones left after you have made your choice) but for me, I like to say, forgone choice. The importance of priorities vary with the elements involved especially the human person. What may seems good to Ma Kumba may just be bad to her own daughter (Kumba) she nourished for years.
Choice comes from the heart, the soul and with emotions and feelings. To win a choice, you must recognize and respect the choice of the other man noting the beginning of his rights must end at yours or vice versa. When choices are grossly disrespected or provoked, the responses become unspecified and uncertain in a manner beyond the provocation.
Ma Clara Nyumah, a no nonsense Kru woman married to a Kissi man from Lofa had this to say about democracy. For her, she sees democracy just like her everyday Rally Town market in Central Monrovia where she regularly sells sweet-country palm nuts among varieties of soups sellers of course, the western types too.
Democracy just like the market for goods and services, people compete to attract sales and maximize profits. Similar to Ma Clara, she views every consumers as rational being and wins them with skills and techniques challenging her peers in the market to get her palm sold fast with high returns. She goes the extra mile appealing and convincing the hearts of her dear customers that her palm is more preferable to the next as it serves dual purposes: food and savings on vegetable oil. She went further, that there's sweet nut within the palm for chewing and for oil production (creaming or eating). Without headache, insults and loud noise, she makes a perfect sales winning the minds of consumers to her product.
Interestingly, she highlighted two constraints faced by her daily in the Rally Town market: One is how to win the buying hearts of non customers who'd been enjoying close substitutes of her product? Another is how to regain the expenditure confidence of customers/non customers who traded her product but didn't enjoy the taste on that day? Cognizant of the facts that these two scenarios negatively affect her sales, she puts in her best noting that losing one customer is like losing 10 plus potential buyers in every hour because society easily reacts to bad news than good news.
Taking cue from this analogy, you'll realize that democracy works perfectly when people are free to make their choices while respecting individuals’ rights within the state. Like yours, let's respect the choice of the next man, he got right to his choice and associations because it comes from within and with proud and conviction. To beat him to your choice, you must not denigrate, insult nor negatively brand him to the less class but rather embrace him, recognize him, respect him as part of society, appeal to his inner man and then convince him to your choice by telling him the real why? Why mine not yours, comes with responsibility, sense of human and direction. This is a point when man meets man, brings out the bests and speaks in a tone that's appealing to minds.
In all that we do, the common goal is to win and trust we must win with Liberia. Let's keep the peace guys recognizing that the progress of this country is a credit to all and sundry including the shoe shine boys, the car loader, the water seller and the farmer in Degei, across the St. Paul River in Fuamah district, Bong County. Peace today, peace tomorrow and peace forever!