Not for granted...

2016-02-29 20:29

South Africans are up in arms. The past few months have been characterized by chaos across South Africa’s university campuses. We’ve all witnessed the mess. We are all worried... What does the future hold? Is there still hope? Can we still expect to have universities in this country that function optimally amidst the mess that we are currently in?

I believe that as South Africans we have been very privileged up to now. We have had access to a relatively good quality of education. We have a lot to be thankful for.

This brings me to the next point. Education must never be taken for granted. Yes it is a necessity. Yes it opens up opportunities to a better life. However we need to realize that we can’t get everything handed to us on a silver platter.

South Africa is a country ridden by poverty. We are still in the process of uplifting people and it takes money. Lots and lots of money… Therefore we need to accept that there are a lot of needs that have to be met.

If we want this democracy to succeed we need to grow up and take stock of our responsibilities. We all need to pitch in and do our part. There are no simple solutions. It’s going to take hard work and a lot of effort. Also it means that at times we will need to accept that all our needs and demands can’t be met immediately. We will need to make peace with the fact that our country is still in the process of addressing the needs of the poor. Furthermore a very small percentage of the population pays tax. That makes it even harder for the government to make everything a top priority. Some things like basic housing, water and electricity are a greater necessity than getting a prestigious degree.

Yes I acknowledge that due to corruption a lot of money do not go to where it should. Of course that is a huge problem!

However I do feel that we need to stop shifting the blame. We need to look inside ourselves and ask ourselves what we can do to contribute.

When it comes to education, I believe that we need to accept that it is not a right, but a privilege. Basic schooling is a privilege, but university is a whole different ball game. It can never be taken for granted. What’s more is that burning buildings and creating an atmosphere of strife on campus, is not a way to contribute towards building a democracy. In fact that is breaking down the little that we have.

South Africans have yet to realize that if we want a better future, we need to work for it. That means if you can’t go to varsity right away, get a job and study part time.

I agree that education is the means towards a better life. However there are no instant solutions to the problems that we face in this country! We need to accept that we are on a journey and the road ahead is long and hard. Nothing in this country can be taken for granted. We all need to make sacrifices and we need to know that it’s going to take time. We do have a future, but Rome wasn’t built in one day…


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