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Violent children are easy to come by these days, if they not are insulting an adult for not letting them have their way; they are throwing objects at them, or throwing themselves on the floor in the name of throwing tantrums.

So I have this story of a three-old boy, Musa, who would throw himself on the floor if he asked for snacks and he was told no.

“Mum,” he would start, “I want Gala.”

Once he was told there was no Gala, or he was ignored for some time, he would throw himself on the floor in protest and stay at it until the mother or father intervened and gave him what he wanted or at least sent someone to get it for him.

“Musa could give himself a serious injury one day. You should beat him when he does this thing. There are other ways he can protest,” his uncle, Ahmed warned Musa’s mother, Simbi.

“He is a child, he will outgrow it,” Simbi replied.

“But this is how violent children are raised, Simbi. A child can understandably cry or pout when denied a request, but to throw themselves on the floor violently, or throw objects at the person who rejected their request is a terrible thing which must be checked.”

“You worry too much, Ahmed,” Simbi smiled. “Food is ready, let me dish some tuwo for you.”

One Sunday, Simbi and her husband, Yemi, were expecting a guest from the community bank. Yemi had met the man, Ibrahim, when he went to the bank to seek a loan for his farm. The man was Yemi’s secondary school classmate, so he invited him home.

Ibrahim wasn’t the food type of person, so he had informed Yemi early enough that all he wanted to eat were fruits.

Yemi and his family weren’t the fruit eating type, but since it was what the guest wanted; Yemi bought different varieties of fruits.

As Ibrahim arrived in the house, Simbi served him the fruits in a large tray. Ibrahim ate and chatted with the couple.

Musa observed the guest. He hadn’t seen so many fruits being eaten by one person. In fact, he wasn’t used to eating fruits, so he wanted some. But as he approached the table to take some fruits from the tray, Yemi shouted at him, much to the amusement of the guest who shook his head at the delinquency of children.

Next thing, Musa threw himself to the floor as usual, but unfortunately there was a little water on the tiles after the visitor had washed his hands to eat the fruits. The water made Musa to slip as he was falling and he lost control of his fall. He landed with the back of his head squarely on the hard tiles.

A scream. Then blood. Musa was dead.

****

Most violent children are either first or only child/son, so the parents pamper them too much and let them get away with stupid things usually. But you can see, in the case of Musa, that stupidity doesn’t pay.

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