Of COURSE there won’t be snow in Africa!

I just have to say something which has been on my mind for a while now. That song, Feed The World, which I thought was Free The World until really recently. It’s ridiculous.

“And there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmastime.”
Duuuuh! Of course there won’t. What that got to do with anything? Is that fact supposed to evoke pity in me?

O no, they won’t have snow, they must be soooo gutted. I bet all that sunshine and warm weather is really bugging them and that they wish, in their hardship, that they had snow. It’s so hard living in a sunny country.

It’s the worst thing ever. If, as we are led to believe by the song, everyone in Africa is sitting around starving and poverty-stricken, do you really think SNOW, of all things, is going to help the situation? Now they’re starving, poverty-stricken and dying of pneumonia.

As an aside, there also “won’t be snow” in Australia this Christmastime but they can think again if they’re expecting a load of food parcels because of it!

The next bit, “The greatest gift they’ll get this year is life.” Talk about talking down to people! Like we’re whispering with a doctor about a cancer ridden old lady. Africa isn’t one massive country unable to do anything for itself or work out how to get food. If you’d have told any of the people in the town in Namibia where I lived that the greatest gift they could expect was to not die, I’m pretty sure they would have found it hilarious. They were people like you or I and they were doing ok. Of course there are places of extreme poverty in many countries in Africa but as a whole, it’s just not possible to write one song, applicable to all, about how everyone is starving. It’s really offensive.

And lastly, “Do they know it’s Christmastime at all?” To be honest, I don’t think it’s very high on the priority list. A lot of African countries aren’t Christian. It makes absolutely no sense to say, ‘O, isn’t it awful? They don’t have any celebrations at Christmas.’ It’s like a Muslim country singing a song about how awful it is for us in Britain and “Do they know it’s Ramadan time at all?” Well, no, I don’t know when Ramadan is, not because I’m terribly unfortunate and you must raise money for me. Just because it’s not something I celebrate anyway. So to say about Africa, do they know it’s Christmas – probably some of them don’t. What on earth has that got to do with how poor they are or aren’t?

And that is my rant over and done with. I’ve been needing to let that out for years over this stupid stupid song.

Thank you.

PS I’ve just remembered that there was a town further inland from Luderitz, where I lived, which did get snow! Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Bob Geldof. Was it Bob Geldof?

10 responses to this post.

  1. So funny! 🙂


  2. I think in the mountainous regions of Africa it *is* cold enough to get snow…even at Christmas-time.
    And yes, I agree it is patronising to generalise Africa as a poverty-stricken place. The continent is several times larger than Europe with a diverse mixture of countries: some poor (but not necessarily starving), some wealthy, some with stable democracies, some very unstable.
    Glad to hear you’re getting into the Xmas spirit, though. 😉


    • I certainly am. So long as that silly song is not on the radio! I find any discussions about ‘Africa’ as a whole irritating for the exact reason you mentioned. It’s just not possible to talk about ‘Africa’s problems’ or about ‘how to solve’ the problems. It’s all so patronising.


  3. Love love your take on this. You know, I remember when the song came out and what a big hullaballoo it was (hullaballoo – now that is a word I hadn’t thought of in two decades) but I never gave much of a thought to the lyrics. Put like that – it is ridiculous and patronizing!


  4. You make me smile! There are many, many songs that say things that simply don’t make sense or hold up under scrutiny. Now, here, I am sure, the song was to evoke pity and so forth, but to do so with falsities is just not quite right, I agree.
    Your rant is verified and true. Be happy!


  5. It has made me insane for years. “Do they know it’s Christmastime at all” NO they don’t, they’re Muslim you idiots. That song was written for drought relief for Ethiopia, I believe. I remember when it first came out and everyone loved it. Then I grew up and realized it was self-indulgent tripe.


  6. Posted by Alex Jones on December 28, 2012 at 20:38

    In snows in South Africa now, as well of course in the mountains of Africa.


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