Friday, June 11, 2010

does it matter?

On a radio discussion, someone mentioned that the World Cup in South Africa was really not that important compared to the end of Apartheid. Absolutely.

They then argued that not much really has changed, or perhaps that the racial discrimination wasn't going away fast enough. Based upon our experiences here, it won't go away any time soon. Of course, we don't have a truth and reconciliation commission and are generally trying to pretend that everything is all better. If you doubt that anything has changed enough, look at the photo of the South African national team this year. Compare to 1962, when they were banned from playing. A greater indicator is to look at the stadium seating this morning for the South Africa fans. A veritable sea of yellow shirts. Is there a separate section for whites? No. Do you seriously think it even vaguely feasible to have seen this in 1960? 1980? 1990?

It's not as though racism disappears with the election of a black president - no more than it has here. I'm not delusional about the misery of poverty and racial discrimination (in which ever direction you want). Poverty is drawn on highly racial lines - as it is here. But it is unjust to say nothing much has changed.

Although, you can also find whites complaining about the loss of power & getting the dirty end of the stick themselves.

Does it matter who's in charge? No. Because you'll never make everyone happy. This is why we have an oligarchical political system here. No one wants to lose the power and money that they have - one of those facts which transcends race or nationality.

No comments: