As we watch 2013 draw its curtain, we see it close the chapter of not just another year to add to the timeline, but also separate us from loved ones, be it family or friends, through sudden tragedy and sickness leaving behind just one less light to brighten an ever darkening earth for us to admire.
Nothing can be truer than the most recent media news outcry of Madiba’s apparent passing at his home in Houghton on Thursday, 5 December 2013. It was an ending the country could not have ignored any longer after Madiba’s long struggles in and out of hospital, until the warrior finally decided it was time to go home and leave the rest to us.
Nelson Mandela was and is the very example of what a fighter is built of, and not just because he lived to see the age that he did. He was a man who not only fought for himself and HIS freedom, but the freedom of those around him and those that would come after him.
I have never had the privilege of meeting the man, but I have met others with his calibre, that fire of will that allows them to fight against all odds for what is right and equal, for what is not ‘beneficial’ or ‘advantageous’ but instead just and humane.
I have no delusions that he was a man without fault, but he became the man who changed the world by not only embracing those faults and facing them, but showing us that we are not just animals defined by singular actions that define our race, our culture and that by taking responsibility for our actions and accepting not only our own culture, but that of the people around us, we would be both better people and a better nation, a UNITED nation.
In an early article I wrote, I emphasised strongly that apartheid was not our [The youth’s] war to fight or rehash or complain about. I stand by that statement; HOWEVER, I do not mean we must not learn from it. Because that is OUR history and Madiba made it a part of our history we must not only learn from, but embrace and carry within us for as long as we exist as a species.
As young people we may not have anything to do with that struggle, aside from being the descendants of those torn by it, but we have more than we will ever know to be grateful for because of the sacrifices made by those lost in that struggle and Madiba’s imprisonment in his fight to end it.
The youth must never forget that it is because of them that we walk freely, not just on the streets, but besides the vast diversity of friends we stand next to. Friends whom we might never have been allowed the same breathing area back in the day, let alone hold hands and flirt with.
The youth must be thankful to our lost titan for his sacrifice and to those whom we will never know and how they fought for the right for you and I to marry someone not from our own race or culture, giving us a nation where most of us and to our future offspring are no longer born a crime.
The youth knows nothing of the true meaning of apartheid and they hopefully never will. It is not our struggle to fight and we have Madiba and long lost faceless soldiers to thank for that. They deserve our utmost respect and gratitude and I salute them for giving me the freedom I have today.
My heart goes out to the Mandela family and I hope they take time to appreciate the treasure they had and then lost, something too few families do in this day and age. I truly hope they don’t allow what is now the ‘ANC’ to take the legacy of this great man and drag it into the mud.
The reason for my harsh words are quite simple, we still aren’t stupid ANC.
Call me a conspiracy theorist or whatever you want, but this world doesn’t function on coincidence – or at least not like this. That the ANC have gone so low as to shift focus from the snowballing problem of Nkandla and all the other tumbling cards that are making their little charade look bad, isn’t even something I want to call disappointing, it’s flat-out sickening.
But the skies don’t cry for you today.
Rest in Peace god souls lost on roads and all those in homes may the angels ensure you are not alone.
My Ode to a Great Leader,
A Titan to the Ages
Now scripted for History’s pages
Rest well dear leader from troubled cages
- Tracy-Lee van der Haar
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