I had an interesting discussion with mate a very good mate of mine the other day. He, like most white people in SA I would imagine, was stumped as to, amongst other things, why black people keep voting ANC. The practice just seems illogical to him along with many traits black people exhibit in this country and Africa at large. What especially troubled him was some of the atrocities committed on the continent by its own people and the general disregard for sanctity of life displayed by criminals in SA. These were genuine concerns from a man I know to have more compassion for his fellow man than most.
What has become quite apparent to me, has eluded him for one very powerful reason... Indoctrination. I realised I would have to start chipping away it, if my dear mate was ever going begin to see what I meant to convey to him. I knew I wouldn’t be able to drive the message home in one chat, as the process of stepping outside of one’s indoctrination (especially the variety imposed during childhood) is an extremely difficult and painful one. A process easier avoided than confronted. I decided to get the ball rolling...
During footage of a video uploaded on youtube not long ago, Frans Jooste, an old apartheid figure, can be heard saying the following to young Afrikaner boys at his racist bootcamp:
“Let there be no doubt. Aside from the Aborigines in Australia, the African black is the most underdeveloped, barbaric species of the human race.”
“In South Africa, you can only be one of two things: either you are blind or you are a racist.”
You will also hear him share “scientific” facts that include black people having a 120 gram smaller brain than white people. This apparently prevents them from being able to think critically.
Granted, this is the extreme as far as South African racist indoctrination is concerned, but I’ve heard similar sentiments freely expressed both in my adulthood and, more importantly, during my childhood. I’m sure many of you have as well. This kind of drivel was accepted as fact during the apartheid years. Anything ideas to the contrary were banned or censored, leaving few opportunities for one to encounter them. People were separated and spoke different languages, so everyday interaction did little to dispel these notions. Black people have, at that stage, been disenfranchised for hundreds of years; making it easier to accept their inferiority as fact. Little, if any, information was available with regards to pre-colonial Africa.
It is the easiest thing in the world to point out the difference between the people of the world. What I wanted to do is illustrate the similarities to my mate, especially those displayed by our actions. He wanted to know why black people are so violent and vicious. Knowing the answer, I posed the same question to him, only, I wanted to know the same thing when it comes to Europeans. He asked for an example. I gave him one...
The following is a link an article posted on Columbus day in the states (please be warned that the content of the below link makes for a rather disturbing read):
I realise that most people don’t bother exploring links. For those, I will highlight a few extracts:
“Columbus wasn't a hero. When he set foot on that sandy beach in the Bahamas on October 12, 1492, Columbus discovered that the islands were inhabited by friendly, peaceful people called the Lucayans, Taínos and Arawaks. Writing in his diary, Columbus said they were a handsome, smart and kind people. He noted that the gentle Arawaks were remarkable for their hospitality.”
“Columbus was so impressed with the hard work of these gentle islanders, that he immediately seized their land for Spain and enslaved them to work in his brutal gold mines. Within only two years, 125,000 (half of the population) of the original natives on the island were dead.”
“Shockingly, Columbus supervised the selling of native girls into sexual slavery. Young girls of the ages 9 to 10 were the most desired by his men. In 1500, Columbus casually wrote about it in his log. He said: "A hundred castellanoes are as easily obtained for a woman as for a farm, and it is very general and there are plenty of dealers who go about looking for girls; those from nine to ten are now in demand.”
“One of Columbus' men, Bartolome De Las Casas, was so mortified by Columbus' brutal atrocities against the native peoples, that he quit working for Columbus and became a Catholic priest. He described how the Spaniards under Columbus' command cut off the legs of children who ran from them, to test the sharpness of their blades. According to De Las Casas, the men made bets as to who, with one sweep of his sword, could cut a person in half. He says that Columbus' men poured people full of boiling soap. In a single day, De Las Casas was an eye witness as the Spanish soldiers dismembered, beheaded, or raped 3000 native people. "Such inhumanities and barbarisms were committed in my sight as no age can parallel," De Las Casas wrote. "My eyes have seen these acts so foreign to human nature that now I tremble as I write."”
“De Las Casas spent the rest of his life trying to protect the helpless native people. But after a while, there were no more natives to protect. Experts generally agree that before 1492, the population on the island of Hispaniola probably numbered above 3 million. Within 20 years of Spanish arrival, it was reduced to only 60,000. Within 50 years, not a single original native inhabitant could be found.”
The atrocities committed by this man, celebrated as a hero the world over, are some of the most heinous examples of human behaviour that I have ever come across. Why this is not common knowledge is a perfect example of western indoctrination at work. I remind my mate at this stage to always remember that the victor not only writes the history, but also decided which parts of the his predecessor’s history will remain.
As it was for me, I realised this information would need time to be digested before I could continue. I therefore ended the first phase of my chipping away with a simple rhetorical question; one which I now pose to you:
If the Lucayans, Taínos and Arawaks (people described by Columbus himself as being “handsome, kind, honest, smart and hospitable”) were to have survived and liberated from Spanish rule, how many of those virtuous character traits would have survived with them?