Cooking Toyi-Toyi

Posted: December 20, 2011 in Uncategorized

  On December 16th, South Africa will be celebrating ‘Reconciliation  Day’. This day should be about unity. I believe we  should commemorate such occasions by striving to unite our youth – both black and white – in politics and beyond. The question is  how do we commemorate Reconciliation Day without being united?

In the past few months, I have noticed all around the world what united and outraged people can do. For example, in Italy demonstrators were united in their criticism of their Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. They spoke with a single voice. In the US, thousands of people of different genders and colours united to form a leaderless resistance movement ‘Occupy Wall Street’.  Similar occurrences were seen in France, Egypt, Spain, Syria, and so forth. However, here at home the failure of ‘Occupying Cape Town Movement’ did not come as a surprise to me. It seems certain issues that hamper our unity overshadow our views.

Seemingly, in South Africa black and white people do not share the same struggle. We do not share the same voice. In this city and the country in general, the majority of white people enjoy the privilege of private education, private medical insurances, private transport, secure jobs, etc. In fact, Cape Town looks like an apartheid museum. This city still bears the obvious scars of apartheid – the rich white and the poor blacks. It wasn’t a shock to notice the Occupying Cape Town Movement only attracting less than 200 people dominated by so-called ‘liberal whites’. However, one is still searching what the protest in Cape Town would be about – who should protest and who should not. Would it be a sit-in protest for this visible poverty or lack of housing? Open toilets, lack of employment or unequal distribution of income and wealth? By looking at the demographics of those who gathered at the Company’s Gardens on that day, I was not convinced the protest would be mostly about these issues. Was I naive to believe that the rich and the poor can unite in a revolt against the rich?

I believe that more prominent people need to speak out against the tyrants in government, high unemployment rate, poverty, unequal education, lack of housing, poor health system, and many other issues. However, that can only happen if our youth begins to share a commonality in fighting for their future together. Unlike Occupy Wall Street, the old generation of black and white in this country does not seem to share a common struggle. Day of Reconciliation should help resolve these issues, but still we view this day in black and white. The fact is blacks cannot reconcile alone, and the same is true for whites. The poor also cannot reconcile alone, and so cannot the rich.

I salute those who took part in the ‘Occupying Cape Town Movement’. It is not every day that you see such a number of whites and blacks outside one of the city’s main landmarks protesting together in South Africa. Not since the Black Sash Movement of the 80s. We should all no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of those in power. We should unite to get rid of this ‘fat-cats’ super rich political and economic elites that are at the root of this cancerous destruction of the country’s class and racial inequality. At the moment while other countries believe their protests are a complete success with people all singing with the same voice, ours is the opposite. Those with homes, refuse to protest with the homeless. Those employed, refuse to protest with the jobless.

There is no country more worthy of an uprising against capitalism than South Africa. Then again I cannot imagine a social movement in South Africa replacing capitalism, especially with the western terms such as ‘occupying movements’ led by the rich. So far I’d rather stick to more annoying but reliable toyi-toyi.

  1. Sarah says:

    Wouldn’t it be great to see people toyi-toyi on Wall Street en mass!

  2. jody says:

    I think this will take time, I mean there will be some change ,generation by generation but only if the youth is united together! Otherwise……!!!!….!!!!???!!

  3. hideous1 says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if the toyi-toyi became the ‘gangnam style’ amongst the youth of the 99% and the 1%..In other words the 100%?

    • blueishmind says:

      yeah, I agre but only that the Gangnam district office had designated smoke-free zones within its district. Other that i care less about the current hip-hop or the district’s support for US millitary zones. Thank you for the contribution though…

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