A group of UK-based pop singers and researchers are raising funds for an expedition to Africa to finally answer the question “Do they know it’s Christmas” that, for decades, has been haunting the conscious of the West, usually around the festive season of Christmas.
According to the researchers, the much-needed funds will be used to facilitate the acquisition of entry visas for the group, vital supplies such as food, water and toiletries, ebola-protection suits; and communication hardware such as satellite phones and backup power supply and generators for the duration of the expedition.
Funds have started to flow in, but the group is already reporting difficulties in finding the embassy of Africa in the UK. They have asked their online community and those who visited Africa recently to advise them on how and where to apply for an entry visa for Africa.
According to the group, “after we land in Africa and communicate our coordinates back to our Mission Control Centre in London, we shall seek to make contact with the locals. We shall then carry out of exploratory expedition under the burning sun to determine if anything really grows there..”
Using the lyrics of Band Aid serial best-selling hit song ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’, the pop singers and researchers will seek to address some of the facts documented in it.
[part of the lyrics]
It’s hard, but when you’re having fun
There’s a world outside your window
And it’s a world of dread and fear
Where the only water flowing is the bitter sting of tears
And the Christmas bells that ring there
Are the clanging chimes of doom
Well tonight thank God it’s them instead of you
And there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmastime
The greatest gift they’ll get this year is life
Oh, where nothing ever grows, no rain or rivers flow
Do they know it’s Christmastime at all?
The researchers have also prepared a questionnaire with pictures of a Christmas tree, snow, wrapped presents under a Christmas tree, a chimney, and Santa Claus. According to them, how Africans answer those questions will determine for a part whether they know of have experienced the feeling of Christmas before.
However, not everyone is pleased with what the researchers will find.
A representative from Band Aid, a charitable trust comprised mostly of British and Irish musicians and recording artists who have used the question to sell millions of records every year for the last 30 years, said the question is too big and broad for a group of self-funding researchers using unconventional ways to answer.
But others believe Band Aid’s reaction to distance itself from these pop singers is purely out of fear that an affirmative answer to the question may ruin their chances of ever selling and making millions out of an old and insulting stereotype of Africa.
The group plans to arrive Africa before Christmas – that is if they find address of the embassy of Africa to issue the visas.
Here are some links you may find interesting
– Ebola survivor Will Pooley calls Band Aid ‘cringeworthy cultural ignorance’