Last Week on This Page, Editor Ellis Mnyandu Wrote That New Words Should Be Found to Reinvigorate the Debates and Understanding of "Empowerment" and "Affirmative Action" in South Africa. Business Report Readers Agree and Have Some Suggestions of Their Own. There Are Three Nations within South Africa Several Misleading Terms Need Replacing
Thanks for the interesting article. In the US there has, for some time, been a movement to get away from not only the words but the practices of AA (affirmative action) and it's affiliates.
Interestingly, the leaders of these movements are mostly African-Americans. They have realised that self-made and successful African-Americans are tarred with the same (negative) brush as those who have not been successful, have a victim mentality, or can't get along without help, assistance or protection - not to mention financing.
Yes, let's get into a new positive-speak mode but, more importantly, positive action mode. Start with education, it's the key to everything. As long as our government and institutions are staffed by loyal cadres and political appointees, instead of competent people, regardless of colour - of both of skin and politics - we are knackered.
All humans originated in Africa (read Out of Africa's Eden by Stephen Oppenheimer), a group of people (Africans) who left evolved in various ways and are now all the different people in the world. Some came back, bringing with them their evolved and developed skills and talents, hard-earned by surviving the rigours of survival of the fittest. How can they be blamed for improving themselves? How can they be held responsible for those who stayed behind in the sun, living a life of consumption.
Life doesn't "owe" anyone anything. Life is what you make of it. I'm all for a new start.
Former president Thabo Mbeki was inclined to refer to two nations in South Africa, one white and rich, and one black and poor. I think there are three: the first is the white section, poor and rich, which aspires to a form of life which exists in Europe and America where the rule of law is accepted as the norm and governments change peacefully, frequently.
The second are the political elite who have enacted legislation and manipulated the tender processes to enrich themselves while decrying the benefits of colonialism to make their lives opulent and excessive. Members of this group are well known.
Third is the mass of the people who are duped, if not intimidated, by members of the second group to vote for a better life for all. This segment is given promises, regularly, of free education, electricity, water borne sanitation and jobs. Lacking the natural common sense and the education to discern the fallacy, they are stimulated to jealously regarding the position of the first group and aspire to their standard of life, without the concomitant work and rule of law. …