Differences wherever you go

2016-01-20 06:00

THE racial conflict that has blown up on social media is the last thing needed in this country. I believe it is a handful of people who make irresponsible comments and the reaction is then blown out of all proportion.

I believe the government encourages dramatic reactions because they divert attention away from its own inadequacies.

In South Africa, probably because of the past, differences are put in the black-white racial box, generally with whites taking all the blame. I live in the country and seldom go to town. When I do and return home, I generally have to ask where all this racial tension is, having experienced friendliness and help from people of all races­.

When I grew up in the fifties, there was a lot of tension, often violent, between Afrikaans­ and English-speaking white South Africans.

I know of friends who, on a visit to France, having asked in English, were told there was no seating in a restaurant. When they started speaking among themselves in Afrikaans, suddenly there was seating. The French hate the English.

There will be differences and conflict everywhere in the world where there are different languages and cultures. The genocide­ in central Africa, the xenophobia here - one could go on, but it is only when it is white on black that it is called racism.

N.L. BAXTER

Via email

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