Khaya Dlanga

Crime has no colour

2010-12-08 07:54

Let’s face it; there is a deep and unspoken view when it comes to crime in South Africa it is black. Some will go on to quote prison stats. Of course, the stats will back them up.

Most of our prisoners are black. True. What often amuses me are those people who think that they are not being racist when they say that it is logical that most crime will be committed by black people because there are more black people in South Africa than other racial group.

That’s an understandable position to hold. However, the numbers may be racially neutral and factual. Unfortunately, people’s intentions with their stats aren’t always neutral.

According to translations of Steve Hofmeyr’s Facebook status update he said: “We must not generalise, most black people I know are not violent but they slurp up the propaganda of entitlement, which gives young killers what they need to justify their brutality.”

What is this propaganda he speaks? I am not aware of it? Hofmeyr hides his racism behind the veil of “we must not generalise”, but then immediately cancels that out by saying “they slurp up the propaganda of entitlement”.

Then Hofmeyr’s racial tirade continued, this time evoking Christianity by saying: “I don’t know how the world thinks we should transform, integrate and let go of our prejudices and stay nice, tolerant Christians when blacks can shoot a three-year-old child in the head. Sorry to emphasise the colour, but I’m struggling to spot the terrible whites who climb over blacks’ walls to do that to their children.”

As much as I could point out cases in which there was white on black murder, I refuse to go there because Hofmeyr’s intentions are not that of a South African that is trying to heal our wounded past. If anything, it appears he would rather see a racial intolerance of the past. This is not going to happen. South Africans across racial lines prefer this South Africa to the one Hofmeyr is reaching out for.

If Hofmeyr’s comments were racially neutral, he would have mentioned the fact that blacks are actually greater victims of crime than white people. According to futurist Guy Lundy, for every 33 black people who are victims of murder, only one is white.

Black people outnumber whites by a margin of seven to one. If you do the maths, you will realise that there is no targeting of white people. If white people were being targeted by black people, those numbers would be significantly higher. If anything, blacks are targeting themselves!

Steve Hofmeyr’s Facebook comments were made in response to an attack, which happened in the Free State. Six men were arrested for the murder of Attie Potgieter, his wife Wilna and their three-year-old daughter Willemien on their farm in the Free State last week.

His tirade didn’t end: “Blacks (God knows, probably not all of them, but most of those I observe) feel justified and ‘entitled’ in everything, from quotas/low matric marks to land rights/brutality.”

Hofmeyr’s statements suggest that the government is involved in systematic propaganda that somehow incites blacks to refuse to think for themselves and thus perpetrate crimes against whites because of this propaganda. If anyone is engaged in propaganda, it is Hofmeyr.

Crime is neither black nor white. Crime is crime. All our blood is red. It gets spilled, people die and people are buried because of crime. Regardless of skin colour.

The mistake that he made is that he thinks all South Africans share his tainted views. We are all angry when a crime is committed; we don’t rejoice because it affected one racial group and not another.

We will not be divided by an ageing musician trying to stay relevant. South Africa is far better than Steve Hofmeyr.

- Follow Khaya on Twitter.

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