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The Effect of AIDS in South Africa, Graphically

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Declining life expectancies in South Africa are attributed to the rise and rise of HIV/AIDS infections. It follows, therefore, that an increasing life expectancy may mean that the scourge is under control, or at least that it is being contained and the ill are receiving better medical care and therefore living longer. This in turn […]

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The Tragedies of the Eugene Terre’Blanche Murder

The first

As with nearly all murders, the cold facts reported in newspapers and on websites, and the clever comments deliberated on in opinion pieces and blogs, do not reveal the gut-wrenching pain of loss, especially when it is a violent and unexpected loss.

And, while most of us vehemently disagree with his opinions and lifestyle, before all else, Eugene Terre’Blanche was a man, a human being, with family and friends. And it is their loss that is the tragedy.

The second

So far most observers have ignored is another tragedy. A fifteen year old boy was part of the attack, and according to his mother responsible for some of the injuries that lead to Eugene Terre’Blanche’s death. Fifteen years old!

What is it about our society that allows, enables, leads to, a fifteen year old boy getting himself into a position where he is part of a murder? And, more telling, what does it say about our society that commentators and media are so preoccupied with the race issue that the idea of a fifteen year old committing murder barely raises an eyebrow? Barely a sentence written about it anywhere. Fifteen years old!

The third

And therein lies the third tragedy. We allow race and race relations to over-shadow all other issues (a strange concept since race cannot have a relationship; people have relationships).

We have allowed ourselves, and our media, to temper all our thoughts and actions with the colour of our skin. And although the colour of our skins, to a large extent, defined our history, it is absurd that we continue to define our future in the same terms. There has to come a time and place when we look at people and see them for their humanity before we see them being black, white, straight, gay, Zulu, Croatian, Christian, Muslim, left, right, or whatever other tribe we care to define.

Because if we don’t, we slip very easily into Eugene Terre’Blanche mode: there is only black and white; there are no people, only black people and white people; there are no good ideas, only my ideas which are superior to your ideas; there is no common good, only my good at the expense of yours.

And we don’t want that, do we?

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#SpeakZA : Youngsters Speak Out

Julius Malema and his ANCYL comrades have been making waves in the press world again. This time it was a series of attacks on the press and journalists. But, instead of the usual sniggers and/or anger, they provoked a thoughtful response from internet savvy young adults. Sipho Hlongwane, a young law student initiated a campaign […]

March 24, 2010 0
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Catholic Confession For Sale?

For years and years the Roman Catholics have been doing the confession thing right way. To feel better about ourselves we need to unburden our souls. We need to tell someone else about our sins, problems and foibles. Then, through the magic of asking for, and receiving, forgiveness we soothe our souls and know that […]

June 3, 2009 0
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Old SA Flag at Loftus

So the old South African flag gets itself more headlines. Our Deputy Minister of Sport, Gert Oosthuizen: … it is absolutely tragic that there are still people who would do such a thing. It’s absolutely unacceptable, and something which the government wants to get rid of once and for all. It is such a pity […]

June 2, 2009 10
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The Effect of AIDS in South Africa, Graphically

Declining life expectancies in South Africa are attributed to the rise and rise of HIV/AIDS infections. It follows, therefore, that an increasing life expectancy may mean that the scourge is under control, or at least that it is being contained and the ill are receiving better medical care and therefore living longer. This in turn […]

May 25, 2009 8
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World No Tobacco Day

World No Tobacco Day is on Sunday 31 May 2009. It is a World Health Organisation project that is part of the much larger Tobacco Free Initiative. “The Tobacco Free Initiative (TFI) was established in July 1998 to focus international attention, resources and action on the global tobacco epidemic.” Each year World No Tobacco Day […]

May 23, 2009 4
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Jacob Zuma’s Ndebele Headache

And no, it’s not a Zimbabwean1 headache. Although Jacob Zuma is sure to be getting a few of those over the next five years. It is much closer to home. Sb’u Ndebele, the new Minister of Transport, and his brand new Mercedes Benz (and a couple of other things like a plasma television and two […]

May 19, 2009 2
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Manchester United won the League. So What?

Manchester United won the English Premier League. So what? It was not as though it was not going to be one of the big four clubs (Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea FC and Arsenal) that was destined to win the league. It was not as though the procession of the big four clubs winning the league […]

May 18, 2009 4
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The Vodacom Listing Saga

After a court ruling went against it, COSATU (Congress of South African Trade Unions) has not been successful in stopping the listing of telecommunications company Vodacom on the JSE (Johannesburg Securities Exchange) tomorrow. Consequently they are now threatening action that is a little more militant than court cases and urgent interdicts. This time it is […]

May 18, 2009 4
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Zille angers ANC and Partners

Helen Zille locks horns with the ANC, SA Communist Party, COSATU, ANC Youth League and, judging by comments on internet forums, even some of her own supporters. Her letter to the Cape Argus as published by the Sowetan has raised a furore that won’t be dying down for a while. It has even been picked […]

May 13, 2009 3
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