The quote in my heading comes from a comment by DA Leader Mmusi Miamane in the Daily Maverik . This column is his response to racism which reared it’s ugly head over the festive season in a way we hadn’t seen for a long time. A spark had taken flame and a lot of people said things they shouldn’t have and either regret because their has been a backlash or regret because they probably said something they shouldn’t have in a way they didn’t exactly mean. But once you say racist things in South Africa it’s very difficult to wash yourself clean again.
Unfortunately, instances like these make all my efforts to highlight how great South Africans are, and how well things are going from a race perspective seem like twaddle. To quote Onkgepotse JJ Tabane in his recent Daily Maverick piece “how could [they]” these people who decided to spew hateful and derogatory things over social media have made South Africans take several steps back and look at each other as “us” and “them” again. The debate carries on and it seems like our legal system has to step in to try and make people behave. I really thought most of us were past this. I know there are still racists but I really hoped they would keep quietly to themselves so that us normal South Africans could carry on without influence.
I suppose the one bitter sweet thing that comes from this is that we clearly have to realise that there are still a lot of conversations which have to happen around this. We may have to re-have some conversations.
As Mmusi alludes to we have to also recognise that the inequality is still rife and that stems from historic racial divides. We have to try and help. So, I will do what I always do. I hereby ask people to please help each other, expect more from your government and frankly, just find your humanity.
Good luck to all true South African citizens