Never stop the discussions

2012-03-17 09:29

South Africa, like all other leading democracies, reflects the grand compromises that make societies work.

The bargain between black South Africans and white South Africans.

The government’s role has always been to guard against passion of the moment.

However, responsibilities on both sides have always required us to cycle back to the start every so often.

White South Africans, irrespective of what they would like to tell themselves, can attribute their past errors, no doubt correctly, to the time and place they were raised.

Most of them may have been more vocal and institutionalised in resisting black freedom than they may come to admit today.

It is, however, when that peculiar mentality of living in grand comfort in the midst of grinding poverty, unmoved and resistant to the efforts of the government to redistribute the resources that the spirit of the compromise is lost.

After almost two decades of trying to close the gap between promise and practice, South Africans are at a crossroads of a contest between power and principle; where does the power lie, and where do principles stand?

To understand why South Africa must always improve the Constitution we must always revisit past promises and make judgments in subsequent events.

Again, taking a cue from the most advanced democracies, enough time has to be spent not only discussing sunset clauses but just what those clauses should be and whether they continue to be a reflection of where society is.

No law is ever truly final, there is always the opportunity to strengthen what appears done.

Most of the times the law is settled and plain as is the case with most of the constitution, but life turns up new problems or the desired results by a particular law are not realised.

What we must agree on is that what constitutes a near-perfect Constitution for the kind of society we are is no easy matter and deserves a serious debate.

We should never stop the discussions.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.