Broadway's butterflies

A boy wearing a butterfly wings and holding a gun. A picture taken from the movie Johnny Mad Dog

Amadi was sitting on the floor with his classmates, it was an English class. Their teacher was a volunteer from UNHCR, she was perfectly nice and helpful. Amadi was reading his homework when she stopped him and asked: "When you grow up what do you want to be Amadi?"

He stood up on his feet and simply answered: "Before thinking of the future we have to first figure out how to deal with our present, and for the moment I want to be a butterfly; to wear my wings, to stand on the Broadway stage and to be a butterfly.

She smiled "And why a butterfly?" she asked.

"Butterflies are beautiful and they have wings; I mean the butterfly is a strong creature, she comes out of her cocoon after a great struggle and in order for her to metamorphosis she has to go through pain, butterflies struggle to be free. No matter how much painful the pupa was, at the end of the day the butterflies will be free and that is why I want to be a butterfly. "


Amadi's dream is simple, to have a normal life and to be free. He wants to wake up in the morning, to have a healthy breakfast, to see his mother smiling and to go to school peacefully. Amadi wants to have books, plenty of them, he wants a nice house with a big garden and a dozen of friends that won't disappear by any time. He wants a hospital to go to when he is sick and not a health care tent, Amadi dreams to have a bright future and a successful career. But Amadi's reality is much different then that, he actually has no house, he lost it to another armed gang. Amadi's mother doesn't smile, she is always worried about her children safety and crying her late husband. Healthy breakfast is a delusion, for example this morning Amadi had no breakfast, they have a rice shortfall, which is all they have. His friends left the place so long ago, exactly after a bench of an armed men took over his small village and now he is all alone, even his English class teacher left. Amadi's school is closed and the armed men are surrounding the village, the UN peacekeepers announced that his village is a closed area. Amadi now has two choices; to join the armed group or to die with his family. Amadi wants to be a butterfly, he knows well that the pupa is a painful stage but he has to bear with, to be strong and to survive this hardship, that is why he chose to carry the gun and to wear the butterfly's wing in a hope of a salvation. Amadi's choice may seem wrong to some of you and some to others, maybe you won't care at all. This little kid had to do what seemed right for him. I, myself, I don't know what is the right thing to do in such situations but I am sure that we have to help him have a normal life and to prevent such situations from happening.

There are millions of Amadis out there and all they need is peace. As one global nation we have to put an end to these wars, and as a global citizens we have to act firmly to raise the awareness of world peace. Governments won't do anything to stop wars, they are busy manufacturing weapons and locating new natural resources. This is why we have to make the first step by ourselves and to speak loudly in order to save those little children.

Well, to be honest I trust Amadi. Today a cocoon, tomorrow a butterfly.