Monday, May 25, 2009

"The Flip Side Of The Race Card"

by Eusebius McKaiser
Mail & Guardian
May 25 2009

"Thabo Mbeki lived in something of a racial hell, his skin constantly rubbed raw by the devils of colonialism and apartheid. It was evident in so much that he wrote and said -- perhaps most devastatingly in his approach to HIV/Aids, where his belief that the western discourse on the disease was fundamentally racist led directly to a policy that cost hundreds of thousands of lives.

He tried to keep us all there with him, but our failure to find a way out is our own. We could have rejected his paranoia by finding other ways to engage with the race theme, but instead we escaped to the dishonest safety of multiracial coffee shops, bookstores, conference circuits, liberal media and restaurant tables filled with patrons of all skin colours talking about everything but the race question.

If nothing else, the Jacob Zuma presidency gives us the space to have the national conversation we never had. We can now lay the foundation for this overdue, but still very much needed, national debate."
Read the rest of the article here.

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