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To Sunette Bridges and her racist fans

23 August 2012, 11:53

Dear Sunette and fans,

Since you are a public figure and have been in the news lately, I thought that this would be a good platform to start an open dialogue with yourself and your fans.

I bumped into you a few years ago on an Internet Platform, and I instantly adored you. You were tremendously witty and had a very moderate and balanced vision concerning the political and economic climate in South Africa. I recall you being very alarmed about the plight of all racial groups residing in this nation.

It was unknown to me at the time that you were slightly well-known due to the fact that your father had some success in the Afrikaans music industry. I just saw you as another individual, trying to spread reason and harmony, in a somewhat antagonistic online environment.

Gradually, I started to notice some risky ethnic statements and frantic right wing advertising from fans on your Facebook Profile. I recall how you attempted to calm people down, and gathered that you were a very soft and gentle being, who did not want to offend anyone or argue with their sentiments.

Unexpectedly you started to align yourself with the majority of the fans on your page’s extremist political views, and opposing, sensible opinions points were banned. You joined a campaign to boycott the World Cup 2010 and at that point I unfriended you and only observed you commenting on various News Sites from time to time.

Today a colleague made me aware of an atrocious Facebook group called “Afrikaners vir wie ons skaam Kry” . I was sickened by the content and the way in which contributors were shaming various Afrikaners on the page, including you.

I decided to investigate and discovered that you were not so innocent yourself:

-          You stated on Facebook that Nelson Mandela is a terrorist.

-          You entertain your fans’ racist remarks. One of your fans mentioned that “Black people are animals that will kill one another”. Instead of deleting the comment you actually responded in such a way that it seemed like you condoned the statement.

-           You showed no regard for any of the victims of the Lonmin tragedy. It seems like you were celebrating, rather than mourning this terrible occurrence.

-          You stated that you can’t wait for the day that the “Vierkleur” (Old Transvaal Flag), will be flying again at Church Square in Pretoria. This is probably the most dangerous statement that you as a public figure have ever made!

-          People have been complaining that you ban any person that does not share your political opinion on your website. You do not allow coloured, black or Indian people to take part in any discussion.

Having known the old Sunette, I am going to put it to you that you have sold out! You used to be moderate in your political views. You used to be open to debate, and you used to be funny, witty and positive about life in the New South Africa. I think you attracted a large following of very conservative and openly racist fans, which you did not know how to control. You had to go out of your way to try and fit in with them, because you were too indulgent to tell them that you do not agree with many of their sentimenets.  

Now you are stuck with these fans and you cannot be seen supporting a more moderate view. This is why you are avoiding debate and only allowing certain kinds on your Facebook page.

You are clearly upset about folks discussing your misconduct on various other social media. You call these individuals “sick”, “liberals” and “joiners”. Ever heard of the saying: “Misery loves company?”

You reap what you sow, my dearest Sunette.

I really hope you take some time to think about the online persona that you have created. I will never believe that this fundamentalist online monster is the real Sunette Bridges!  

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