To whom it may concern
When the #RhodesMustFall movement came along, I truly believed in you. As a young man living in South Africa, it takes a lot to ignore the injustices that many of us have to live with as part of our identity. Injustices that are so “normal” to us that we simply can’t imagine life without them. There are certain life experiences that some of us will never have, restaurants we will never go to and university lectures we will never be able to attend. Personally, I have made peace with some of these things but when your movement came along, I thought that some of these things might change. Hope sprang…
I use the past tense because, increasingly, I see that the coordinators of this movement are just angrily demonstrating your new found freedom to demand/destroy and somehow, don’t really care what happens to the rest of South Africa. You’ve demonstrated a complete willingness to watch this country burn and justify your actions using big words that barely scratch the surface of the Pandora like box that is the crux of this dilemma in South Africa. #RhodesMustFall is, more or less, trying to open a can of worms, without tools, after slathering your hands in Vaseline.
Promoting destruction and violence in a country that is recovering from just that, is the epitome of backward thinking. Pieces of art that could have been used to educate the children of this nation, vehicles that are DESPERATLEY needed to transport people with disabilities and wasted seats in lecture rooms which have become plotting spaces for privileged black boys and girls who just want to rebel against their privileged BEE parents.
Why isn’t #RhodesMustFall taking the knowledge that they’re gaining while at the universities, going into disadvantaged communities and disseminating valuable information about what it means to be oppressed and what those oppressed individuals can do about it? Why aren’t you taking on REAL issues like the destruction of the environment and the constantly growing homeless population? Probably because it’s easier to point fingers and play the pathetic, “helpless” victim. Am I right?
Well, maybe it’s time to face reality and #TakeResponsibility for the development (not destruction) of South Africa. Stop burning paintings that some of us actually wanted to see and study. Who are you to decide what stays and what goes? We don’t want people like you in any kind of power and you need to take a seat when it comes to decisions like that.
I began this letter with “dear” but I think it’s more appropriate to use “deer”, seeing as your convulsive actions bring to mind a deer caught in the headlights of a large vehicle that it can’t comprehend. Your actions have disgraced the message of peace that South Africa needs to share and you need to fix your mess.