With the circulating video footage of a Black Gauteng traffic officer who was allegedly aggressive towards a White motorist, and consequently suspended from duties pending an ongoing investigation on the issue, it is expedient that this article be written. You’ll get to see the video footage at the bottom of this article and make of it whatever you like. I’m essentially less willing to fault any of the party involved as we are all, in a way or another, guilty of making the nation conscious of how divers she is in a negative way. This write-up is about that.
Martin Luther King, Jr. the American Baptist minister, activist, humanitarian, and leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement wasn’t thinking about South Africa when he said “we must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” The statement however is very relevant to the nation which is bent on allowing its racial complexity emerge as its greatest undoing. The long walk to freedom is each day proving to be less sufficient to hall-mark the rainbow nation phase of South Africa. And as a citizen of the country, I’ve long realized to my unhappy relief that many South Africans are not sensible, thus the foolishness in perishing together as fools is blissfully alright with them.
To other South Africans, black, white or colored who still hopes to safe the country from the looming disaster, here’s how we can co-exist together as a nation; we just have to stop expecting certain things from each other. Yes it’s that simple. First, we have to stop:
1. Wanting Others To Agree With Us
We must recognize that we’re people from distinct history who history decided to prank on by bringing us together. We must acknowledge that we’re different from one another but always remember that we’re all humans. We must not agree with each other and must not expect others to agree with us. We mustn’t all agree that ANC is a cANCer eating up South Africa, we mustn’t all agree that the DA is a racist party or that the EFF are goons. We must accept that our opinions mustn’t agree, and henceforth consider wanting others to agree with us as an abomination. Let’s just allow each other the space to be stupid. There’s more hope in having a rainbow nation therein than trying to get every other “different person” to stand on same ground with us.
2. Quit Needing Others To Respect Us
Please do us all a favor and get your respect elsewhere. I’ve long concluded that rainbow nation is attainable when the blacks will stop needing the government to respect and treat them as “special citizens” – the true owners of South Africa. Whites should stop being needy of being respected by everyone who isn’t White because their ancestors were supposed to have rescued the Black ancestors from living in caves, giving them electricity, constructing roads and all that. And the colored South Africans should stop calling for respect by lamenting to every ear that everything about South Africa is always about the Blacks versus the Whites.
3. Stop Requiring Others To Like Us
We mustn’t like each other guys, and it is certainly outrageous to expect others to like us. Like isn’t necessary, survival is. So we might as well get over the whole fuse about Whites being treated as “unwanted” in the country, and blacks as “Unworthy” to be liked by whites. Let’s quit making big issues of interracial marriages or White benevolence to people with dark skin. Punch line; we’re all special and priceless in our own ways. We should be satisfied with that as requiring others to like us have delayed so long our rainbow nation from materializing.
4. Stop Wanting Others To Be Who We Expect Them To Be
The sub-title above is about having a conviction about other persons and expecting them to be who we have convinced ourselves to believe they are. Dear Whites, stop expecting every black guy walking the street to break into your apartment. And Blacks, stop thinking every White being you encounter is thinking they are superior to you. It is annoying to think that all this little, unfounded convictions about each other have impended on our unity as a country.
5. Quit Expecting Others To Change
It’s high time we stopped expecting others to change and be more like us. We must know that certain miracles are impossible. Blacks will always be black and Whites, white. We must accept each other for who we are, and allow the integration to flow naturally. Forcing it have been disastrous. South Africans must learn to live together as brothers. We can’t afford to perish together as fools.
Below is the incident that inspired this publication.