Tone of letter not justified

2016-07-07 06:00

IN his letter titled “Response lacks neither­ surprise nor credibility” (23 June), ANC Councillor Ronnie Nair refers to a letter by another of your correspondents, thus: “Dr Peltz’s reactions to my previous response … lacks neither surprise nor credibility. With her outpourings of confusing statistics, statements and vitriol, she continues in the same refrain of absurd utterances and insults. Her blinded fixation and her eagerness to attack the ANC and the government causes her to miss the point of the argument by a mile.”

Mr Nair, in your attempts to defend the indefensible, being the failings of the ANC and the government, which are one and the same, you are indulging in vitriolic bombast, nit-picking and typecasting. You admit that our education system is suffering from some “major challenges”, which “must be rectified as a matter of urgency”, but you describe your protagonist’s fair criticism of the system’s rampant failings as “crudity and insults.”

I missed Dr Peltz’s original letter, but can find no statements about the education system in her second letter that could possibly justify your vitriolic response.

No matter your tainted view of Dr Peltz, she is clearly sincere in her wish to see improvements implemented for the good of all, and she does have a record of help the underprivileged. By avoiding these points and labouring negatives you say a lot about your standpoint.

You admit that the education system requires major attention “as a matter of urgency”, but the point you gloss over is that this urgency was due 20 years ago. The ANC government has failed dismally to redress it’s appalling shortcomings, as a consequence of which generations of children desperately in need of decent education have missed out on an opportunity to make better lives for themselves.

Instead of improving the means of education, the government has lowered the standard. Dr Peltz refers to cheating being organised by corrupt teachers, of incompetent, unqualified teachers buying their positions, of people being promoted as a matter of course regardless of their failures, of pass marks being lowered to ridiculous levels, and more which is all a matter of public record. This is part of the legacy of the ANC, which clearly has no notion of “urgency” in righting the wrongs that have led us to be seen as yet another failed African state. Of course this applies not only in the field of education, though that is the failed foundation preventing progress and exacerbating the interminable degeneration we have been seeing in all government departments for more than twenty years and, at this rate, will be seeing for the rest of our lives. No nation can survive such a sustained onslaught.

If people’s criticisms of the ANC are severe, they are justifiably so. The tone of your letter to which I have referred was not justified.

Steven van Staden

If people’s criticisms of the ANC are
severe, they are justifiably so. The tone of your letter to which I have referred was not justified


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