Circles of hate

People have been blaming other people for their own misgivings since the beginning of time. In Germany the Jews where blamed for the financial situation of the country, in biblical times the Roman's where blamed for the death of Jesus, the Christians blamed for the corruption of nations, and most recently, also the most applicable to me as I live here, the whites have been blamed for the plight of the poor state of South Africa.

Firstly, I am not one of those hypocritical white people who claim that apartheid is over and people have had enough time to stop blaming apartheid for the poverty of this country, then goes home and spews forth negative racist jargon all over the place.

I believe that apartheid is to blame for the current financial state of my country. People seem to think that a whole country, with a history as sad and divisive as ours, can rebuild and be equal and rich in 20 years, this is most certainly short-sighted and erroneous. It is going to take a lot of time for this country to get back on track.

''It is the fault of corruption and crime that we are not moving forward,'' is a type of thing one hears a lot. I whole heartily agree, but why is there so much crime and corruption? Most privileged people would dismiss my answer as liberal bullshit before even wanting to think about it for five minutes, but it is certainly the fault of apartheid. People were poor for generations.

If your grandfather was poor, father was poor and marginalized, you were raised in a poor desperate environment, a whole different way of life and mindset is bred. A mindset where you have to do what you can to take care of yourself and your family. You might say that everyone wants to take care of their families, but the desperation of poor people is not easily understood, also not the effect thereof.

Now from the perspective of the poor, they might claim that then they must be empowered, even if it is at the cost of the rich. This is an understandable feeling, but blame is easily cast. Blame only fuels hatred, which in turn causes a chain reaction of hate throughout society.

Blame can be cast on the settlers who came and took the land of the blacks, and this blame might be justified, but where do you stop? Did the Xhosa's take the Zulu's land? Do the Khoisan deserve all the land? Is this argument in any way a road to go down? I do not believe so.

Blame only succeeds to hold us back. Its whole definition links it to the past, when we should be looking at the future. A lot of people in this country is negative, racist, backward, and mostly scared, but there a large amount of people like myself that wants to move forward. It might be easy for me to say, because of my privileged upbringing, but it does not change the fact that the only way forward is to stop the blame.

 The only thing we need from the past is to learn, to learn what not to do. Violence and hate as always been a circle that never stops, lets hope we can be the first.

Kiss123 2014-08-19 09:08:04 PM
You are wrong on many accounts. The country could have been turned around , however its an African thing, they dont want to work dont understand the value of education , dont know how to take ownership of their actions, blame others etc ...and you can blame apartheid etc , Africa will always be held back as they are not interested in learning from the past, hell they arent even interested in learn form the now ! Please go and read Time magazines article of sept 2013 , where they ponder the question as to why African Americans are showing very limited and slow growth, in spite of all the efforts put into helping them ...and then there is Africa, with millions of them running around creating poverty taking no ownership complaining they dont get even chance etc
Wehr Wulf 2014-08-19 09:30:11 PM
I disagree. Twenty years is enough time to be a lot further down the way. Instead we've retreated twenty years behind 1994. And deteriorating fast. Like it or not, the skills and experience was in the hands of the whites and had we used that resource and mentored blacks this would be a vastly different and successful country. What the ANC nationalists did instead was throw the baby out with the bathwater and so 1500000+ skilled people with much needed skills and enterprise is lost to other countries. Not to mention those still here blocked from participating in the economy fully. Now there's your real problem.
NoeNoe 2014-08-19 11:23:36 PM
I was born in 1950 when ALL people had to work hard for a living. We were not poor as in destitute but there was no money to throw around. I never really went hungry, my school fees were always paid, we lived in a rented house and I can remember helping my dad search for second hand tyres for a 1947 Dodge at the scrap yards. I earned money selling programmes for the 1960-1966 Grand Prix races in East London to buy a new bed for myself among other things over the years, I did hard physical labour during school holidays as a casual worker in a foundry and I got jacked regularly at school BUT I did not complain. I never expected anything for nothing, have worked hard all my life and I have survived. My parents battled to survive retirement and when my dad died there was less than R20 000 left over for my sister and I to inherit. I did not want or need that money but took it and thanked my parents for all the love and hard work. I vowed that I would uplift myself through hard work and today we have been retired for 4 years, own a fully paid up house worth almost R2M, drive a Mercedes-Benz also paid for, take at least 4 breaks/holidays per year, live off our investments and eat well. We have been married for almost 40 years, have known each other for 46 years, have 2 children, 2 grandchildren and none of this came from racism or apartheid. What I willingly admit though is a growing hatred of what is being done to this beautiful country of ours call the Republic of South Africa.
Gerrie Malan 2014-08-20 08:27:06 AM
I have noted before in a comment that some people are so caught up in the past, they are going to miss the future.
johan609 2014-08-20 08:58:56 AM
Thanks for all the comments, I like it that is is mostly positive, unlike many other news24 articles. I am glad there are still some positive commentators around this place.
Stephen Townshend 2014-08-20 09:03:06 AM
I disagree. Nothing excuses corruption. Not even the legacy of apartheid. Because dishonesty is a choice. Nothing more, nothing less.
ThinkingApe 2014-08-20 09:16:17 AM
The answer was explained long ago by Nietzsche. “Ressentiment is a reassignment of the pain that accompanies a sense of one’s own inferiority/failure onto an external scapegoat. The ego creates the illusion of an enemy, a cause that can be “blamed” for one’s own inferiority/failure. Thus, one was thwarted not by a failure in oneself, but rather by an external “evil”; one suddenly conceives oneself to be oppressed rather than merely weak.” A mass movement can survive without a god, but never without a devil. Hitler had the Jews; Stalin, capitalism.Mugabe has the "evil British". The government of SA of course has the whites and apartheid. And why should it not be this way, leaders know very well, that people will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions and help them throw rocks at their enemies.
Fritz Knauff 2014-08-20 09:44:49 AM
To add to ThinkingApe’s thinking I also suspect the main problem is that the resentment and hate of others is more effective to justify policies and movements than rational persuasion. Rousseau argued this as far back as the 18th century. However this mode of engagement is dangerous. Firstly those resented become marginalised. Furthermore the resentful become infected; resentment is not a pleasant experience. There are people who go through their entire lives feeling this while it eats deeper into their flesh every day. When resentment is continually re-experienced the infected individual actively seeks out an enemy to blame all their own troubles on, eventually absolving themselves from all responsibility. Nobody wants to “be the change they seek in the world” since they’re too busy looking for the enemy that will produce the best excuse. Day in and day out they impotently wait for someone else to change things for the better. When the powerful start utilising the public’s resentment for their own benefit, they are slowly spreading a contagion that eventually impoverishes the entire country. South-Africa has been infected with resentment since time-immemorial. We always seem to need an enemy to establish our own identity, whoever you think ‘us’ may be.
Siebert Mazus 2014-08-20 10:43:17 AM
The following quotes are apt: -Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.- Nobody knows exactly where that one came from originally, but according to some of the people who investigated, it is most likely due to George Santayana. The original quote was supposed to be: ‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ The other quote: -History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme.- This one from Mark Twain.