Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Another Black Moderate Speaks Out Against ANC Racism

We know that Zille was against racism and against apartheid long before 1994 and she was not quiet. But I agree with Mike Mathabela, she can speak out more. I know she has recently condemned the ANC for their racist campaign and she has called for a democracy based on values rather than division. I'm glad that there are more and more moderate blacks speaking out too.

Zille owes us a courageous speech on race
Mike Mathabela

07 June 2011 Article rating:-->
Mike Mathabela says the DA leader needs to chide white racists to mend their wicked ways
Zille Owes Nation Race Speech
A day before the recent Local Government Elections, a racial incident occurred which almost derailed my resolve to, for the first time, vote for the DA. I was almost run down by a burly White male who proceeded to hurl demeaning expletives including the K-word at me after I had run to safety.
I was crossing the road at a marked pedestrian crossing in Sasolburg when he charged down at me in his Land Rover vehicle.
During that emotional moment, I resolved to resort to my old ways of voting for the ANC the next day. How could I, a middle-aged Black man, betray my conscience and painful experience to vote for a party like the DA as embodied by this reprehensible low life who almost ran me over?
Later I sobered up and reasoned that I must be sufficiently matured to still vote for the DA. My objective to help dislodge the ANC's firm grip and monopoly of the South African political space was far more overwhelming than the racist attitude of this burly low life.
The ANC's corruption streak as well as its stifling of the democratic space had to be weakened through empowering the Opposition politics; whether one was persuaded by its logic or not. The ANC's stranglehold had to be slackened. We need change!
That said and done, Helen Zille owes this country a courageous speech on race. She must atone for the painful, continuing racist attitudes of a significant number of Whites towards their fellow Black citizens.
If she must be taken seriously by the Black voters, she has to chide these racists to mend their crooked ways else they have no room in the DA, indeed in the New South Africa. She must tell the farmer to stop underpaying and ill-treating his farm workers, as if they were sub-human. She must tell the Madams to treat their helpers with respect and dignity. She must tell her White supporters to fully embrace a South African identity.
She must ask them to come out in droves to attend National events and celebrations. She must tell them to come out to her township rallies, to sing, to toyi-toyi together with their Black counterparts.
She has to cajole the business community to open up the economic space to Blacks and vigorously advance employment equity, BEE, etc. Helen Zille must lead the effort to align the national confidence levels: down scale the unrealistically high, arrogant confidence levels of many Whites riding the wave of economic success and upscale the low confidence levels of the many Blacks disadvantaged in the economic space.
The superiority complex and hoarding of resources by many Whites, must give way to a new order of mutual respect, treating others with dignity and a shared South African nationhood.
Barack Obama mustered this courage to deliver a speech on race during his previous campaign. Does Helen Zille have the courage to do the same? That will define her greatness or otherwise as a leader.
Mike Mathabela is the Chairperson of the Sasolburg Black Professionals Advancement Forum (SBPAF). He writes in his personal capacity.

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