In case you have not yet looked it up, Wikipedia says useful idiot is a derogatory term for a person perceived as propagandising for a cause without fully comprehending the cause’s goals, and who is cynically used by the cause’s leaders. Or in Cambridge English, a person who is easy to persuade to do, say, or believe things that help a particular group or another person politically: Also, in case you haven’t yet heard, Betty Nambooze, the loud MP for Mukono Municipality called Balaam Barugahare, the guy with the orange stripped T-shirt, a useful idiot during some TV show sometime this week.
To Balaam, I say, take heart. After all, a number of important people have been called useful idiots before so relax bruh, you is not alone. In fact you will be pleased to know that in the useful idiots hall of fame is US president Donald Trump, who was once called Vladmir Putin’s useful idiot by a retired Ukrainian army colonel.
There’s also an endless list of impressionable bootlickers from all kinds of camps so yeah, you are in good company. Please note that the term is not exclusive to the NRM camp. All these other self-righteous politicians who pretend to be more patriotic than Nelson Mandela also have their lists of carefully selected idiots. The only difference is that the ones in the yellow party have some shillings attached to their idiocy, while the rest are fed on speeches of change, promises of revolution and feelings.
But then again, what Nambooze said holds some ka water, so let’s not all act shocked at what she said and instead take this moment to think of all the other useful idiots who never even get a chance to make it to a TV show, be called out in front of many people and even trend on social media. It is much like someone stating your name and then everyone being shocked that someone dared to call you by your real name.
Politics aside, most of us are also useful idiots at our workplaces, in our relationships, name it. Your boss has somehow managed to convince you that you are the company and the company is you and so you go out preaching its objectives and goals and selling its goods and services like your life depends on it, until someone more motivated shows up and you are unceremoniously replaced with nothing but company T-shirts and a mug to show for all your hard work and dedication. So yes, we are all useful idiots. We just haven’t yet been lucky enough to have a blunt Nambooze point it out for us. Oh Balaam, you lucky idiot!