I despise BEE for the same reasons i despised apartheid. Racism, of all sorts, is impractical to building a nation. Undoubtedly, there is great need to uplift poor people in South Africa but to raise one up by putting down another of a different colour isn’t balance, it’s impractical and just plain wrong.
Of the things i’m critical of the ANC, it’s second, in importance, only to corruption. Likewise, the same applies to the DA who’ve abandoned their liberal policies in pursuit of black power.
With South Africa’s heavyweight political parties supporting discrimination, they’ve assured that human rights is further displaced by the value of us being defined by the colours of our skin. Judging people in this way does not pursue that ever illusory concept of the “Rainbow Nation” nor does it build the nation that we’ve got. All it does is divide us into different kinds of intolerance and hate.
These thoughts crawl into mind with the recent SAPS vs Renate Barnard case in which Barnard, who is in service with the SAPS, was denied promotion for for being white. After she won in the Labour Court, the SAPS took it to the Constitutional Court where the decision was overruled on September 2 2014. This, essentially, means that it’s ok to be racist, that doing a good job isn’t encouraged (i.e. merit doesn’t count) and that white cops will continue to be pushed out of service. In my own town of Knysna, a Captain recently quit after failure to be promoted after 17 years.
The result is that people will be promoted into positions of authority not because they have proven to be leaders but because they were a ‘better’ colour.
I can’t help but wonder if these discriminatory practices played a part in the atrocity that was the case against Johann Burmeister. It is certain that those higher in rank than him, who perpetuated and supported the crime against him, weren’t leaders.
My anger at the DA is because they were, as they have been so many times regards race, silent. They only speak out against it when pushed by the media to do so. That is reaction not action.
RW Johnson emphasises this state of affairs far better than i with his article, ‘Silence of the Lambs’:
“The DA’s failure to stand up for the principles of fairness, merit, equality under the law and against racial discrimination show all too graphically how completely the party has lost its moorings. Moreover, in the past, one suspects, such events would have led to vigorous and open debate within the party, resolutions moved at provincial conferences and the like. The party did not use to be so sheep-like. This unhappy silence suggests that something has gone badly wrong within the party.” Read the full article here.
You can also read the press release and full judgement in ‘Racism is Officially Legal in the SAPS’ at Knysna Crime Watch.