At the news of the death of a 95 year-old man, an event which we shall all, eventually meet; I am happy to acknowledge that he was man enough to encourage reconciliation within South Africa. I do not rejoice at his death, but neither do I mourn him. I tend to look at a man’s achievements; at what he has done; at what he failed to do. In the balance, and we should always; at least those of us who actually think, instead of operating on knee-jerk reflexes only, judge fairly: accept that he was, as others have said before me, a flawed man. No saint, a man who could plot a murder because it was a means to an end, a future; only to see the promise of that same future discarded and vandalized by a bunch of chancers, thieves, charlatans and crooks masquerading under the banner of the political party of which he was the great figurehead.
My worry, my premonition, is based on the realities of life as it is now, in the shacks, the tin-roofed huts, on the dirt roads of the townships, with the untreated sewage running down the ditches, where the vast majority of South Africans live, in approximately the same way as they did when I was living there! My worry is that the resentment, the anger over the broken promises of the ANC Government will, instead of being directed at the thieves and criminals who have systematically stolen the birthright of a nation; will be instead directed at the people who once ruled, but are now forgotten. My worry is that the clubs, the guns and the bombs will be made ready, and the White minority, along with the Indians and the Cape coloureds, will be the focus for the violence which might have been stalled by Mandela. Stalled, but just delayed, not forgotten.
I remember that there lives, in a small, peaceful, coastal South African town, a 93 year-old Lady who devoted, since arriving in South Africa in 1940, every day of her life to teach all who came to her schools. I worry about my aunt, who lives now in retirement. A comment upon another post was that they had heard the South African anthem sung. I worry that there will be other chants, other songs and war-cries; and the loudest amongst them will be ‘Kill the Boer’ and ‘Kill the White Man’; because they are both easy chants to remember!