Freedom or free-doomed?

2018-04-26 06:00

It was on a Wednesday, exactly 24 years ago, when all people of Mzantsi could cast their first vote to unshackle the country from the brutal colonial rule of a minority.

The majority of our people had been denied this opportunity for over 300 years and were instead treated as second-class if not destitute citizens.

This day came at the price of many of our liberation fighters being tortured, banished, imprisoned, exiled and – worse – sent to the gallows (to be hanged).

In this month a young black Solomon Kalushi Mahlangu, at the tender age of 23, was hanged by the brutal apartheid government – on 6 April 1979.

That is just one example of what the many thousands of South Africans had to endure for this day to be a reality.

However, the unwavering fighting spirit of African people, the international community, those exiled, imprisoned, and inside the country ensured that the country sees on 27 April what is today known as Freedom Day.

The day is commemorated and celebrated in most corners of our country.

This above line brings us to the gist of why I write this piece in the first place.

In its simplistic description, according to a quick Google search, “freedom” means “the power or right to act, speak or think as one wants”.

But my question is whether that is enough – can we do as we wish under the guise that it is our “freedom” to do so?

Is it still this “freedom” to have places such as Orania exist (which exclude the majority of people), including right-wing groups such as Afriforum, who have yet to prove that they do not mainly focus on selective “prosecution” of black leaders of our society?

Is this not perpetuating the exact reasons that our liberation fighters took a stand to say enough is enough?

I even wonder if places such as the one mentioned above and groupings such as Afriforum celebrate such important days.

How do we as a society draw the line when we commemorate such important days in our calendar? I will leave it to you as ,the reader, to ponder.

To this day one wonders if it is indeed “freedom”.

Is it enough for one to be able to think and associate with whomever he or she wants ?

The black majority are still living in appalling, squalid conditions, with no hope whatsoever that their conditions will ever change or not.

I, for one, believe if that can be addressed, Freedom Day will be well worth celebrating, far than its just being a one-day commemoration, and then the majority of our people can go back to their dire situations.

To me freedom means a meaningful participation of the majority of our people in the economy, a fair share in the wealth of this country and to be in an environment no less conducive than the ones our well-heeled counterparts have enjoyed for centuries and centuries!

Aluta continua!

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