David Lynch’s evil creations
David Lynch’s evil creations
Converse’s music Tumblr is here. Let’s rage.
I want these shoes.
Earlier this week, the BBC posted an article that outlined a supposedly bleak future for the minority white population living in post-Apartheid South Africa, in particular, “working-class white people, most of them Afrikaans-speakers”.
The post, written by BBC World Affairs editor John Simpson said that despite white people in South Africa having the best jobs, running the economy, and having a disproportionate amount of influence in politics and the media, not all was rosy for all white people in the country. Because of course, if all white people aren’t ‘riding high’, there is a problem - especially because Apartheid offered almost all white people in the country (Afrikaans-speaking white people specifically) a certain quality of life that may have been unparalleled elsewhere. All this whilst systematically restricting the rest of the non-white population of their most basic human rights.
Of this ‘past’, Simpson claims that both white and black people alike have chosen to indulge in historical amnesia as South Africans would ‘like to forget’ the ‘bad old past’.
But I beg to differ. South Africans don’t commemorate and celebrate holidays such as Youth Day (June 16th), Heritage Day (September 24th), Human Rights Day (March 21st), and Freedom Day (April 27th), because they’d like to ‘forget’ the past, quite the opposite, Mr. Simpson. And then again, whenever any of the ruling governments departments - whether it be the police, the ANCYL, or the Department of Home Affairs - gets caught up in a scandal of some sort, you can bet your last Rand that white people in the country somewhere will bring up, in some way, how disorganized, inefficient or corrupt this government is in comparison to those prior to 1994. I’ve even witnessed people at grocery stores rant on about how ‘black people got lazy after Apartheid was over’.
But I digress.
Simpson is part of a BBC investigative news team that features stories that ‘reveal deeper truths about their areas of expertise’, and although I’m no expert on poverty and race relations in South Africa, the perspective of the article didn’t sit well with me and after tumblr user mixopop posted this article (link above), I went on a little search of my own to see if Simpson’s claims had any weight to them.
Here are some excerpts from other articles:
The BBC article mainly featured poor white South Africans in a country with millions of poor black people. The article failed to mention that white unemployment in South Africa is only 7%, which is lower than the majority of European nations, while black unemployment is well above 30%. If Simpson wants to talk about who has no place in South Africa, and if the basis of his argument is an economic one, then it is the black person who has no place in South Africa.
Seeing a poor white person in South Africa is still a relatively new phenomenon. When most black people see a poor white person, they ask themselves: ”What were you doing during apartheid? What were your parents doing during apartheid?” You see, apartheid taught us that to be white meant you were well off, while being black meant you were poor.
Although poverty is no longer legislated, it is not true that South Africans now have an equal opportunity to achieve wealth – black South Africans are still at greater risk of falling into or remaining in poverty. One wonders if Simpson posed the question about poor whites because it was unfathomable for him to see whites living in poverty, that blacks can be poor but whites should not be. The premise of his argument, although left unsaid, implies that.
“South Africa has never been in a situation where whites have been singled out and persecuted,” said ANC spokesperson Keith Khoza.
“Instances of crime and poverty affect all South Africans regardless of the colour of their skin.”
Khoza also said the BBC was suffering from an “apartheid hangover”.
“The BBC is living in their own world with their racist tendencies where they wish to undermine the government of South Africa because it is largely a black government.”
“This isn’t just an attack on the government of South Africa and the ANC, it’s an attack on South Africa as a whole.”
The Democratic Alliance too were displeased with the article.
“This is a very pessimistic post-apartheid view of South Africa. Poverty is endemic in this country and we have poor people – not poor whites and poor blacks.
“The article and video create the impression that black people don’t suffer in the new South Africa, where they most certainly do.”
Evolutionary projection for man?
A British family of four planning a holiday to South Africa could be forced to pay an additional £320 thanks to proposals to introduce a visa requirement, which industry insiders fear could slash visitor numbers from its biggest overseas market.
The announcement comes weeks after a diplomatic row erupted when Britain announced it would cut its £19m annual development aid to South Africa and is seen as a “tit for tat” move as the two countries’ relationship continues to sour.
In 2009 Britain revoked South Africa’s visa-free status amid concerns about the ease with which foreigners could obtain South African passports and corrupt home affairs officials.
South Africans are now charged R1,180 (£80) for visas – something that has been blamed for an almost complete drying-up of the traditional flood of young professionals spending extended gap years in Britain.
It has also caused bureaucratic headaches for visiting South African businessmen along with officials and diplomats.
South Africa has spent billions upgrading its passport with new security features and introducing a more stringent issuing process but the British visa rules have remained.
Naledi Pandor, the home affairs minister, told MPs last week that there had been “no movement” after talks between the two nations.
“We had been given a promise that following the (London) Olympics, there would be a focus on whether this visa requirement can be lifted,” she said. “There hasn’t been any movement and I think the time has come for us to consider reciprocity.”
Tourism insiders said Miss Pandor’s plan to charge visiting Britons was “hugely concerning” and symptomatic of the “tetchy” relationship that has developed between the two countries.
Last month, Pravin Gordhan, the South African finance minister, accused the UK Government of announcing its aid cut without prior warning to boost its chances in local elections.
One South African tourism chief said concerns by the British about South Africa siding with Russia and China in international debates on Syria, Libya and Burma might also have prompted a revision of the “special relationship”.
“The relationship is tetchy right now and then there was the bilateral slanging match over the aid cut,” he said.
“The British visa decision caused quite a bit of collateral damage. Many prominent South Africans going to the UK for sabbaticals were saying ‘to hell with Britain if that’s how they feel about us’.”
But others raised concerns about South Africa shooting itself in the foot with a “tit for tat” move. Britain continues to be South Africa’s largest overseas tourism market, with 438,023 British visitors last year.
“It is hugely concerning,” said one Cape Town-based tourism source. “South African needs to streamline visa processes and access to the country, not create barriers of entry for our visitors.”
“It would definitely have a chilling effect,” a spokesman for South Africa’s Tourism Ministry agreed.
Ronnie Mamoepa, the Home Affairs spokesman, denied that the minister was acting out of “frustration” at Britain’s failure to review its visa rules. He said any firm decision had to be approved by Cabinet.
“The original rule from Britain was not a good idea but states cannot act on frustration, they must act on principles,” he said.
“There are ebbs and flows in any relationship – it doesn’t mean South Africa doesn’t view the UK as a strategic partner but that partnership must be based on equality.”
A British Home Office spokesman said it continues to “work closely with South Africa to address immigration issues on both sides, improve our visa service and maintain the security of our border”.I really, really, really, really hope this happens. Or that SA at least charges British visitors some amount of money for visa applications because what they demand SA passport holders pay is just ridiculous. Charging British passport holders a visa fee only seems fair. Plus, you could grant them a visa for a lengthy amount of time, such as a 10-year tourist visa, so the fee would eventually pay off and be worthwhile.
Fog, by bzwemmer.
time2stand: Reminds me of something out of a John Steinbeck novel.
Jason and Will holding hands while walking thru NY.
time2stand: Love these guys so much!