I’ve had many conversations with white folk over the recent past.
(in the interest of full disclosure, I am also one)
I have expressed a growing frustration I am experiencing in and with many of these conversations. I am becoming increasingly frustrated at my “kind”.
We just don’t get it.
My “kind” is what I would collectively class as white South Africans, but in truth is much wider than that. How much wider I don’t know, but it certainly includes just about all of Europe.
Our “kind” emerged from the middle and dark ages which was a terrible time of dispossession and slavery and subjection beginning with Roman conquests, and the subsequent emergence of national identities and peoplehoods that were distinct from the culture and burdensome demands of the conquerors of the time.
From one false start to another our kind went bumbling along from one social experiment to the next, in each imposing the costs for it, on poor people’s backs that were stripped bare and then worked to death to support the lifestyles and power and travel aspirations of a growing, connected narcissistic elite.
There was a great deal of resentment amongst the masses who were forced to fund this all, by the time new lands were discovered that had never been explored by “civilized” souls.
And so it was that large numbers of angry folks left the “comfort” and “leisure” of life under their European oppressors (many of whom claimed to form part of family lines themselves descended from and divinely given to man by God) and escaped to the wild places of the new world, like Cape Town in 1652, from whence they moved inland, and carried on about their business of doing to the first folk of these new lands, precisely what had previously been done to them.
These “free burghers” and englishmen, escaping oppression, dispossession, subjugation and slavery on the European mainland, came and found others in the gentle African souls they encountered, who they could themselves oppress, dispossess, subjugate and enslave. Armed with superior firepower and themselves claiming divinely appointed species distinction over the “natives” and “barbarians”, the first settlers kicked off a 300 year process of brutal dispossession, and imposed inferior education to keep a whole populace dumb and able only to carry out menial work all the way into 1994 when finally common-sense prevailed and “our kind” handed power over to the “savages”.
The problem is, our kind created a pandora of all sorts of problems for themselves. Common sense and logic dictates that when one people gains ascendancy over another, then obviously they will fill all the ranks and positions available with “their kind” to try and exact justice for the past oppressions, but also to guarantee advancement of their kind over the others.
HF Verwoerd was advised many years ago by none other than the founder of modern-day Orania, Dr Boshoff, in a formal report commissioned by Verwoerd, as to the long-term sustainability of separate development (known as apartheid), and read the conclusion that it could never be sustained. But then he went ahead with it anyway…
Our kind knew the writing was on the wall, so what kind of pressure from whom or which “other kind” made him continue?
Could it be the kind of off-shore, foreign-power, pressure, eager to maintain it’s gold-cheaply-mined-by-the-equivalent-of-slave-labour advantages and privilege as long as possible, no matter the human cost?
Of course it was this kind. Money always calls the shots.
If we don’t know this by now, then the Dark Ages have taught us nothing.
From escaping one dark age, our kind went and imposed another on an innocent people and a land we knew nothing about.
I live in a soup of nationalistic resentment and frustration left over by 300 years of the wilful actions of my forefathers, inflicted by my “kind”, and now today, all my kind can say is how they long for the “good old days” while they complain about the incompetence our kind wilfully created, in the inefficient monopolistic parastatals which our kind built.
My kind wouldn’t spout such ridiculous nonsense about longing for good old days if they read an actual history book now and then.
We really haven’t done frightfully well, have we…?