During the period June 2006 to June
2019, the traditional initiation procedure for African males has resulted in a
veritable genocide in South Africa. Yet year after year all that government provides
as a solution and solace for grieving parents are platitudes and promises.
What is the extent of this travesty?
Main picture: Xhosa initiates
The extent of this disaster is obvious
from the cumulative statistics for this period. These statistics relate only to
the Eastern Cape.
What has been the response from the
government? Apart from some platitudes and proposals, no concrete action has
been taken. Has any person been charged for culpable homicide? Has anybody been
incarcerated or even fined? A deafening silence will be heard. Instead somebody
is fined R200,000 for uttering the word Kaffir. The use of such a pejorative
and demeaning term cannot be justified but none of the perpetrators of death
was even fined by a derisory R1. Where is the justice?
On the other hand what has been the
response when one black scholar was drowned while on school-organised adventure
in the North West? Immediately the Education MEC for Gauteng, Pansy Lesufi, was
baying for blood. The principal of the school was suspended, the South African
Human Rights Commission became involved and vitriol was heaped upon all and sundry.
Yet 794 black youths can callously die without nary a raised voice. The school
officials deserve to have opprobrium heaped
upon them as all the basic control procedures such as the issue of life jackets
seemed to have been ignored but what about the rights of 794 youths on the cusp
of attaining adulthood. Does tradition trump life itself? Any government truly
concerned about the rights of all its citizens would have put in place the relevant
controls and punishments to prevent this senseless slaughter.
Why the asymmetrical treatment? Surely one irregular death is the same as another. This demands equivalence in the treatment not only between the various methods of death but also the severity of crimes such as crimen inuria versus death.
At this rate, South African doctors
will become the most experienced in the world in performing penis transplants.
In fact we will be in the invidious position of inviting foreign doctors to
hone their skills in this little-practiced area in medical treatment.
I think we’re f%$@ed no matter
what we do. Perhaps that’s an
exaggeration, but I believe that unless we make radical interventions soon, it
will be too late no matter what we do then.
I’m not referring to the tearing of the social fabric of society due to
social media or violent pc games, or the destruction of rain forests, or the
bleaching of coral reefs – I am only concerned here with climate change.
Imagine that one has a net income of R10,000 per month but owes the bank interest of R15,000 per month on loans of R.5m. Despite this disastrous financial position one nevertheless decides to increase the children’s pocket money by 20% whilst simultaneously taking unpaid leave amounting to 20 days. To prevent one’s family from starving, one then approaches one’s retired parents for a stipend of R5,000 per month. This will keep the wolf from the door but unless drastic cuts are made to the expenses, reductions made in the number of free-loading married children, and boosting one’s income, one will have to approach one’s aging parents on a biannual, if not annual, basis for increases in one’s allowance.
Numerous reasons have been trotted out over the years by the powers-that-be as to the exact cause of load shedding. Amongst them were the unbelievable such as the coal being wet to the non-sensible excuse in which Apartheid was blamed. In the latter case, the logic was that Blacks were now permitted to use electricity, thus creating additional demand. Finally, last week, the real underlying cause of the shortage of electricity was eventually revealed. Why have these reasons been hidden from the public’s purview for so long?
Main picture: Cartoon encapsulating two of South Africa’s ogres – corruption and load-shedding
Even according to the most favourable estimates, the Estina Dairy Farm was at best, a marginal enterprise. Even giving the proposers the benefit of the doubt regarding its viability, surely the accountants who perused the proposal would have poked numerous holes in the financial logic.
On checking the current status of this project, the Sunday Times has uncovered an even deeper hole.
The phenomenon of recycling is a First World concept yet the whole world needs to embrace it. If recycling is to be adopted by Third World countries as well, solutions will have to be found to overcome its two most contentious issues: cost and work opportunities.
In line with best practice, the Joburg Metro has announced its intention to role out recycling in the Metro as from 1st July 2018. As might have been predicted, like all change, there are protagonists and naysayers. In any environment of costs constraints conflated with the urgent requirement to create jobs, how can a third world city meet both requirements simultaneously.
I believe that they can and will illustrate how it is possible.
Main picture: Is this what will happen? Separate bins per category of recyclable?
In today’s edition of the American Journal, The Atlantic,James Fallows’ article “It’s Been an Open Secret All Along” raises the preternatural possibility that Trump was voted in as President in spite of it being an open secret that Trump was not only unqualified to perform the job but also rank incompetent.
What warning indicators were blinking ominously and why do intelligent commentators ignore those signals?
Main picture: Donald Trump with former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon in more amicable times
In many ways, Donald Trump has the dubious distinction of being the alter ego of Il Duce, Benito Mussolini. Typifying his approach is to declare that he is the greatest, the smartest and the best at everything. Such as bombastic, narcissistic, bragging and bullying demeanour is a divisive technique for a leader. At best he was suppress dissent but will never win an argument through cogent reasoning.
Much more troubling is what his speech indicates about his neurological condition with its emotional equivalent of a five-year-old.
Initially it was Trump’s bombastic, egotistical style which appalled me and raised my hackles. Later it was Trump’s inability to distinguish fact from fiction which sealed his fate in my eyes. Finally Trump will justifiably be crucified by later generations as his style of leadership has irredeemably cheapened that nation’s political discourse.
Has the cumulative effect of Trump’s blundering finally cast his Presidency as doomed? Signs of a backlash abound but will this Teflon coated man survive through sheer bloody mindedness?
Helen’s accomplishments are legendary from exposing the lies regarding the death of Steve Biko, to opposing Apartheid during her days as a member of the Black Sash to her growing the DA from an inconsequential political party into one of substantial heft.
But now Zille is a liability to the Democratic Alliance.
Why? She is damaging not only herself but also the DA and ultimately South Africa.