Preventative Maintenance or Damage Control … what will White South Africa choose?

equity
noun

the quality of being fair and impartial.
“equity of treatment”

synonyms: fairness, fair-mindedness, justness, justice, equitableness, fair play; impartiality, even-handedness, lack of discrimination/bias/prejudice/bigotry, egalitarianism; honesty, integrity, rightness, rightfulness, rectitude, uprightness, righteousness, properness, decency, goodness, honourableness, scrupulousness, conscientiousness; reasonableness, sensibleness; disinterest, disinterestedness, neutrality, objectivity, balance, open-mindedness

Fast forward 23 years into South Africa’s freedom after the 1994 elections and have a look around the country.

The Freedom to vote and to be associated with whom you want and to have your say is enjoyed by all, nobody knows this better than the now President of South Africa, Jacob Zuma.

The freedom the People are enjoying now also ensures them that they openly express their frustration, not only towards him as a party leader, but also towards political parties, unions and civil movement groups in general, as there is equity among South Africans in this regard.

Sadly however this new found freedom didn’t buy equity in all things, only in some things.

There is still no equity when it comes to the millions of poor, or as Marx would have called them, the Have Not’s who are predominantly black South Africans.

As the roaring young lion of South African politics eloquently stated
There can be no Freedom without Economic Freedom” – Julius Malema

For they are left to rot in the ever increasing lokasies without real hope to escape the generational poverty which was introduced with the formation of the Union and it’s need for and ever increasing cheap labor force which was then represented by the black populace of South Africa.

Very little has changed since the early 1900’s until now and this fact, is most arguably, the most important but also overlooked fact by millions in South Africa.

Many people, including a minority of white South Africans lately,  are falling around trying to remedy the symptoms which the Rainbow Nation are experiencing today but failing to identify the true cause.

The lack of equity experienced by our fellow black South Africans which in turn creates breeding grounds for desensitized beings, hardly human anymore,  who feel nothing for others because their value is estimated at very little or none by a system of control which values them as the cheap labor.

Because of this it is time that White South Africa must decided what their role will be in South Africa as a collective.

White South Africa has an obligation to their fellow black countrymen to hold Government accountable for the wastage of the tax money which was supposed to bring about equity in all things, not just in free speech and being able to vote.

Equity which was robbed of them when they encountered the colonialist capitalist which took South Africa by force.

White South Africa has an obligation to make sure that townships develop into safe neighborhoods with lively commerce which in turn would create sustainable income.

Some would argue otherwise, saying that they did what was expected of them, they gave up a percentage of their earnings to Government for this goal, they also paid VAT on items.

Others would say that they brought civilization to Africa with technological advancement and that bygones should be bygones and that we must just move forward, but how is that possible with such a massive weight which is embodied in the inequity of our fellow black South Africans holding us back?

Does white South Africa have enough common sense to take heed of the example Bouwer Bosch exhibited and get directly involved and acknowledging their contribution and gain and recognizing their privilege without trying to protect it, but to rather make sure that their privilege is not a privilege, but a norm for all?

Because now is the time that White South Africa must move in a consolidated effort to support their fellow black countrymen in achieving equity … or they must consider themselves casualties of war and try and do damage control.

I hope for the sake of our collective future as a Nation, that White South Africa wakes up and see that their part is not yet done.

The Pitchforks are Coming …

2014, Nick Hanauer, a filthy rich plutocrat was invited for a talk on TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) and he delivered a warning message for all the Have’s of the World.

The message was simple and in a nutshell boiled down to ‘Repent or pay the ultimate price’

A scary thought that one of the richest men in the World has come to that conclusion and has warned the World in general about their ways, yet to be ignored by the general populace.

All over the World the signs are there, the system as it is is failing. Since the collapse of the US Banking System and knock on effect it caused in World which could be seen in the rise of resistance to the system of control which is called Capitalism in the form of protests such as the #OccupyWallStreet movement to name but one of many such movement which arose after the crash.

You may wonder why I said that the capitalist system is a system of control?  Is it not just an economic and political system?

Yes, it is both those things, but it is something more, for you see, through capitalism, the Government can keep a tight grip on the populace and swing votes in their favor as long as the stay ahead of the wave.

The reason I am saying this is because there is no real freedom for any man, woman or child born into the system, unless you are part of the political and corporate elite, or if you by some good fortune, were at the right time, at the right place with the right materials to start up your own little enterprise.

Without money, things like taking your kids to a place like the National Kruger Park is out of the question, firstly, you need time off from work (if your Master allows it) then, you need money to finance your trip to the park, after this you need money to pay entrance to the park, and then accommodation etc.

The average Joe on street does not have the finances to take himself or his family anywhere.  So ask yourself, is this average Joe free to move where he wants, when he wants as enshrined in the Constitution of South Africa in Chapter 2, the Bill of Rights?

Money buys “Freedom” , or so people think … but even those who are, like Scrooge McDuck, filthy rich and swimming in the cash, have to build massive walls around themselves to protect them and their cash from the “evil” Have Not’s of society who wants to plunder and loot that which was acquired in their lifetime.

In effect, building their own prisons with 12 foot walls and state of the art security systems to protect them and their loot.

How narrow minded …

Here in South Africa, we are suffering the ills of our former Liberation Movement, which has turned self serving scavenging hyenas, the ANC Government.

They have, through their constant looting of the Nation’s Tax coffers leeched the life out of South Africa, and now they are standing back when the question regarding “Free Quality Education” as promised in Freedom Charter and in Chapter 2, the Bill of Rights are being asked and shunting the “problem” off to the Universities to figure out while the students are on a rampage.

It is time for the middle “class” to wake up and smell the manure … they have more in common with the Have Not’s and those who are still suffering under Economic Apartheid in South Africa, and they should stand up and fight the Government, and the system of control in order to buy some more time through initiatives such as raising the minimum wage to a fair living wage of R10 000 so that we can implement the changes which needs to happen to keep the country from falling into civil war.

Aluta Continua, amandla awethu …

Communities, Us vs Them … where do you draw the line?

We have all been part of this “phenomena”, and we continue to do so on a daily basis without realizing what our position is within the bigger organisim; and picture.

South Africa is a very diverse country, different folks and they all have their different strokes, and we can all recognise this regardless of our own position in life which forms part of a bigger picture.

I call it a phenomena because it just happens, with or without your concent when you as an individual or you as part of a family unit decide to take up habitation with other people in an established group or community.

This is also true for Valhalla

No, not the Nordic dwelling of the gods, but the Valhalla much closer to the heart of “Die Republiek van Suid Afrika”

The issue at hand is regarding the construction of a mosque in a very Afrikaans-Christian orientated neighborhood.

On the one side, you have 3000 residents of Valhalla saying that a mosque should not be errected because of various issues.  Some of the issues one might descibe as issues with a racist undertone.

Other issues are issues which clearly show the ignorance of people when it comes to other people, their culture and their believes.

On the other side you have 250 Muslim families who make up part of the Valhalla community as they are staying there who want a place for worship.

Clearly, if one works on the motto of Commander Spock which some of you might know is truly a logical approach, then one should accept the fact that “The needs of the many outweight the needs of the few, or the one

As much as I cherish the logic of Spock one has to make exceptions, and this has been true in many of the Star Trek episodes and movies where the Prime Directive was overlooked to ensure the well being of all, and for me, this is where we should meet each other as a group inside of a bigger group.

So, the question needs to be asked, when does it become an “Us vs Them” issue when both parties are staying within the same community?

As for me person opinion on the matter.

For me there is only an “us”, smaller communities which make up little bigger communities, which eventually falls under the community of mankind.

Injustice put into perspective

There is nothing which grates my nerves more than seeing the injustice of the World around me, and not yet being in the position to actively do something about it, for example, being able to strip someone of his human rights when he performs an act of barbarism like violently assaulting, raping or murdering someone.

Earlier this week was one of those days which really tested my faith in humanity.

This is South Africa, and being a “First World Country” on a Third World continent has it’s challenges.  Especially when the minority subjugated the the majority and treated the majority as second class citizens in their own country.

The relevance of this statement comes into play in modern South Africa where most days, you won’t have to search through a paper to find an article about some sort of violent crime which has taken place.  Most of these cases involve the majority of South Africans, yes, the black South Africans, and it is not because they are sub-standard people, but because of the failure which was Apartheid, which only got amplified by the failure of our current ANC led Government to address these issues for various reasons.

The majority of the South African prison populace are black, and as I stated before, not because they are bad people by default, but because the system created an environment for them to fail.  The system has successfully created people who don’t value human life. The so called Justice System and our very own progressive Constitution has failed us!

The reason I say this is because a human life in South Africa is worth less than R10, and our so called progressive Constitution hampers our Justice System from actually being effective and deterring such negative and inefficient criminal social behavior.

These broken people of our society are shoved into our already crumbling correctional services facilities which are overpopulated, under staffed and rife with corruption, just to be victims themselves again of another sub-section of the system which put them there in the first place.

Well, these are the normal people of South Africa I am talking about.  The “have not’s”, because if you are part of the few in South Africa who are financially well endowed, politically connected or some sort of a celebrity it seems that the normal Status Quo spares your from these horrors.

In 2009 South Africa ranked ninth in the World in terms of prison population with an astounding 160 000 inmates in 237 active correctional centres which was build to only facilitate 114 822 people.

While we struggle with overcrowding like this for the “normal” man on street, it seems, that when you are Oscar Pistorius or Radovan Krejcir that life on the inside is all but cramped and boring.

Today an article was release along with a video of the odd jailbird couple playing soccer and having enough space on their own.  It seems, that young Oscar has special needs because of his condition and that he can’t really walk around on his prosthetic legs and needs a wheelchair, hence he was moved into a section of the prison where only he and Radovan are kept, or should I maybe rather say entertained.

Once again, the “Have’s” has given the middle finger salute to the “have not’s” by clearly making a distinction between the way they get punished, and the way the “have not’s” get punished in jail.

The fact of the matter remains that both these men are killers in their own right, and they are enjoying a “day a the spa” compared to those other killers who didn’t have the luxury of fancy high paying lawyers to fight their cases on their behalves.

Where is the justice in something like this?  How much does “justice” cost, and is the only requirement to “find” justice a big fat cheque book?

I really feel pity for the people of our country suffering under this injustice, because it creates the perception that if you are wealthy and powerful that you can literally get away with murder, like for example, the “water tight case” against Shrien Dewani which in the end saw South Africans end up in this overcrowded broken system and Shrien walking away a free man.

This also creates the perception by the political elite who are financially well set that they are immune to criminal prosecution, well, if you have enough money and power of course, just ask our President Zuma and his ex-financial advisory, the terminally ill  Shabir Sheik who is most likely enjoyed a round of golf today.

It really gutted me, seeing Oscar and Radovan so casually enjoying their game of soccer while there are so many other men stuck in over crowded community cells where there is no privacy and where rape and violent assault is common.

For me personally, there is no justice in such a system, and I hope that my fellow South Africans will come to see this, and how deeply something like this impacts the mindset of an already broken people.

Fight against injustice where ever you see it, never stay quiet

Harsh Times, not only in South Africa, but the World

Things have been rough in the geopolitical sphere for a while now, but this most people have noticed to a degree I think since one can often hear them speaking about it in little groups, but as individual cases not linked together, and I am guessing, not totally grasping the influence in how it will define us as human beings in a time to come in the not so distant future I believe.

The gap between the “Have’s” and the “have not’s” are growing wider every single moment, never mind day.  

Oxfam has released a report stating that in 2016 the richest 1% of the population will own more than half of the World’s wealth. A staggering wake up call if one realizes that this means 80 of the richest billionaires will own the same amount as that of the bottom 50% of the Earth’s population!

How on Earth did we get to this point?  Where the gap is so gigantic and so unevenly spread?

Well, we forgot who we are, where we came from, and what our actual goal must be, and somewhere, along the journey we started out as wandering nomads, we forgot, or maybe just neglected the fact that we are all “stuck” on this little blue Goldilocks planet, and that we must evolve to explore beyond our current limitations.  Simply put, we stopped evolving and started devolving.

The dissident and the uproar of voices from the “have not’s” has been slowly, but steadily been climbing because of the steady flow of information in this digital age, the easy accessibly to this information, and also very often, misinformation.

Regardless of the misinformation, the tolerance for corrupt leaders who “lead” from a position of opulence is dwindling as more and more suffer the instabilities and unjust standards of living, or maybe I should say existence to which the majority of the Earth’s populace are subjected.

An example of this would be the grown disparity between the “have not’s” in South Africa, most of them from the “previously disadvantaged” who gained freedom through the efforts of liberators such and knowledgeable men like Mandela, Biko, De Klerk to name a few.  These “have not’s” as a majority group of the black populace of South Africa are mostly still disadvantaged, and little to nothing has changed for them since the end of Apartheid South Africa.

I want to stop a moment here to sketch you a picture of why these “have not’s”  will soon come into revolt against a system which is not working for them.

The Steyn City’s of South Africa is a glaring example of how the capitalistic way of life accompanied by globalization.  Of course these are not the only factor which brought to life the abomination of the Have’sand the “have not’s”  that is today the “Class Divide”, but this does not matter to the “have not”, because he does not care how it came to be, he just knows that it is unjust for him to live either in squalor, or to slave away at an average job, living an average life in order to maintain the opulent lifestyle of the “Have’s”.

Evidence in this can be seen in uprisings all over South Africa.  Yes, uprisings, not protests, because there is a very clear difference between the two.

A Protest is defined as the following:
A statement or action expressing disapproval of or objection to something

Where as an Uprising can be defined as the following:
An act of resistance or rebellion; a revolt

A few examples of the unhappiness about the normal run of the day Modus Operandi of the South African Government can been seen in the often, and very often violent “service delivery protests” which is going on around South Africa today, for example Marikana, Randfontein, Alexandra and for me, which was one of the most important and significant uprisings, the Ficksburg uprising, where a man I believe to be a true patriot towards the cause of the “have not’s” gave his life, Andries Tatane.

This is a phenomenon that is sticking out it’s head all over the globe, and with increased frequency.  People who are sicked and tired of the normal Modus Operandi of their own Governments and big corporations, this, compounded by rising crime rates, the increase in violent criminal behavior, the apparent perception of social decay and the loss of moral and ethical behavior with a very real increase in the costs of survival is opening up the eyes of the people to a great extent, where I believe that full on revolutions, the likes of the French Revolution and the Russian October Revolution is in our collective near future if things don’t change drastically.

Political turmoil all over the globe has pushed up the instability that we as a species experience, and this turmoil is mostly caused by our very own greed factor, the need to have more than one can use.

To quote a great man who has made a profound impression on my life:

The miracle is this:  The more we share the more we have” – the late Leonard Nimoy

Leonard Nimoy

He also coined it in his role on board the Star-ship Enterprise in the movie Star Trek II : The Wrath of Khan when he said famously said ” Logic clearly dictates that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few

This my friends is just a peep into the crisis we as a collective human race face. Only together will we be able to survive the onslaught on our humanity which we are going to face in the not so distant future.

Namaste

Nigeria, black faces, black problems … who cares?

During the last week a lot of things has happened in the geopolitical sphere, and of these things the two which stood out prominently for me as a liberal South African which take great interest in the ongoing war between the West and radical Islam.

These two things were, as you might have guessed by now the attack on Charlie Hebdo which left 12 people dead along with the attack by Boko Haram on Baga which left between 150 and 2000 dead.

What puzzles my mind is the fact that the whole World (and Benjamin Netanyahu) came out in support of the 12 journalists killed by extremist Muslims in Europe, and even Goodluck Jonathan condemned the killings, but very few of them have come out and publicly denounced the massive terror attack in Nigeria.

Then it struck me like a stone between the eyes, and I remember Leanardo DiCaprio’s exclamation “TIA”

This is Africa yes, and sadly the World in general does not care for Africa.  It might sound as if I am painting the World’s population in one colour and with a huge brush by generalizing to this extent, but lets face it, Africa is like Las Vegas.

Generally the saying goes “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”, and this seem to be the attitude towards African issues too.

Last week something pretty nifty saw the day of light, the Janicki Omniprocessor.  A brilliant piece of machinery which takes human waste and converts this into water and electricity, and not only this, it powers itself!

After watching the video on YouTube I read some of the comments, and one of the comments read as follow from a user called Pavel:

“I think we should burn african children to create warmth necessary to survive during the cold african winters.”

Obviously, being an humanist firstly and an African secondly this irked my ire as to how someone could be so insensitive towards the plight of his fellow man.

Which brings me back to the Nigerian issue at hand, black faces, black problems, and the leaders of the World can’t care enough, nor can the general populace of Europe, Asia and the Americas actually really care for the sad state of affairs here in Africa.

People like Julius Malema, the leader of the upcoming EFF party in South Africa also fired a heavy worded barrage at Goodluck Jonathan about his silence on this matter considering the fact that this is happening under his “rule”.

Boko Haram is and will forever be a problem unless drastic measures are implemented to fight extremists like them.  The same with the extremists who were responsible for the massacre in France.

In Nigeria it is a bit different though, because things there are not as civilized as in Europe, and of course, there are black people over there, and this is a case where black radical Muslims kill fellow black Muslims, so why should the World care?

“Let the Africans sort out their own problems, let them sort out their own internal struggles in Nigeria and while they are at it, a few less Muslims won’t be a bad thing either right?”

So the problem with this outlook is, that hate only begets hate, and we as the rest of the World has a duty towards our fellow human being to make sure they also get to live a quality life devoid of terror, fear, famine and disease.  This is what makes us human and which sets us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom.  This is also the only way that we will evolve beyond our current limitations and venture forth and become a space faring species.

For if you take away our humanity, our sense of community, then you will be left with something barely “better” than the great Apes.

Sadly, this is not only religious issue, but it is also a racial issue, because bigots still exist in our World to this day, and the only way to combat this type of bigotry and acts of terror at the same time is through providing quality education for people from all walks of life, all religious groups and all the different political parties.

Only  once we start thinking critically about ourselves and about our place in the World within the greater community of mankind and our relation to those around us will we be able to determine if our leaders are really leaders who are worth while following.

So, I implore you who have access to the Internet to learn.  Learn as much as possible.  Get the facts regarding the topics and form your own opinions.  Don’t just read one or two pages, read extensively and arm yourself with knowledge, because as the saying goes, “Knowledge is Power”

When the opportunity arise (and it does so almost on a daily basis for me as a South African) and you are faced with bigotry and hate preaching individuals challenge their ideas, do not keep quiet, but do so in a constructive way devoid of disrespectful commentary, because this will only harden their resolve to be bigots.

When someone says “Die fokken kaffirs fok alles op!” remind them, that these people are people, they are not just “kaffirs”, because this type of hate speech also leads to extremist acts of violence, like the terror acts by radicalized Muslims on the fringe of society who were pushed out into the fringes after being marginalized  and shunned for their belief and their customs which differ from most of the people in the West.

The same goes for when someone berates groups of people like adherents of the Islamic faith.  Don’t keep quiet, because if you keep quiet you are basically condoning this type of stereotyping and bigotry and the World will be poorer for it.

So, here is to the victims of Charlie Hebdo, the unsung victims of Baga, and all the other nameless victims of bigotry, racism and oppression! Do not let their deaths and suffering be in vein, because you, and only you can stop this as you make your way through life by educating others around you.

PS: What happend to #Bringbackourgirls … and do #blacklivesmatter ?

“ .. let us reminds ourselves that our work is far from complete .. “

On the 5th of December 2013 the World lost a good man and a great leader, someone who taught us that love can overcome all, someone who showed us his dream, someone who worked tirelessly to realise his dream of the Rainbow Nation.  Mandela … the former terrorist, the murder, the bomber.

Five days after that the World lost another good man, but someone closer to me, my Uncle who is his own right was the glue which kept our small family together after my Grandfather passed on.  Someone, like Mandela, who had a good side, but who also had a bad side.

That which makes them human, and ultimately heroes in my eyes.

The examples which they have set will always be with me until the day that I too finally lay down my head for the last time, and today I want to remind you of the truths which men like Mandela shared with us, to remind you that we should not give up, that we can’t just let things slide, because that would be like us spitting in the faces of these great men who came before us.

At the 46664 Hyde Park Concert in London in 2008 Mandela gave a speech which included the following, which I would like us all to remember going forward for the next year, and to see how much we can do so that the Old Man’s idea and his dream can come become a reality.

”As we celebrate, let us remind ourselves that our work is far from complete.  Where there is poverty and sickness, including AIDS, where human beings are being oppressed, there is more work to be done. Our work is freedom for all …

Our work as children of the soil of South Africa is far from over

We have allowed our Government to trample on the dreams of visionaries like Mandela.  We have stood idly by while they spat on his legacy of greatness with their pity squabbles to cling on to power and to enrich themselves at the cost of those that suffer the injustice of the past and the dehumanizing grip of poverty.

None of the political parties have our best interests at heart, and the sooner we accept this, the better of we will be and the sooner we can start mending all the wrongs.  The wrongs of the last 20 years and the wrongs of the years during Apartheid and Segregation.

The ANC desperately cling on to power while rejecting all criticism, even when it is positive criticism like that of the Public Protector.  The two major opposition parties won’t be able to exist had it not been for the ANC doing such a dismal job at governing the county and the public servants of our country, so it is up to us as the people of South Africa to FORCE the ANC on the right path, to get them off the path of self service and onto a path of serving the people of South Africa.

“Since mankind’s dawn, a handful of oppressors have accepted the responsibility over our lives that we should have accepted for ourselves. By doing so, they took our power. By doing nothing, we gave it away. We’ve seen where their way leads, through camps and wars, towards the slaughterhouse.” – V for Vendetta

The fact is that the Zuma’s ANC has failed us as the people, but the ANC of Mandela did a lot of good for the people of South Africa, and we must force them back onto the route of Mandela’s ANC, or, we should simply just replace them.

Be critical, be honest, and above all else, be hopeful, because there are many of us who won’t see the country burn, many of us who do believe that dreams can come true, and there are many of us with enough love and tolerance in our hearts to look past our differences and focus on that which we have in common.

Amandla People of South Africa!