Rev Jesse Jackson has run for president of the United States, twice but did not even manage to win the Democratic Party nomination that would have seen him go beyond the preliminaries. By Kenyan political standards the man "ameanguka mara mbili" (has failed twice) and is therefore a failure. However on closer examination this is very far from the truth.
In actual fact what has happened is the Rev Jackson has pushed many of his ideas forward through other candidates as a result of his two memorable campaigns. Most notably through former President Bill Clinton. Jackson has also managed to draw a lot of attention to civil right causes. The net result is that the quality of life for blacks in America has improved dramatically through initiatives that trace their origin directly to Jackson and his civil rights cause.
In Kenya, we have this big problem that if you stand for high office and you have no chance of winning, then you are just wasting time. This is one of the reasons why so many young people are frightened to run for any political seat and yet they will be the first to complain loudly about how bad our current leadership is.
Part of the problem of course is that election campaigns in Kenya have never been...
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