Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Am I Proudly South African?

.............. I don't know! Am I? What does being proudly South African really mean? Everyone is always pushing the whole proudly South African thing, but when it boils down to the very nitty gritty, are we truly proudly South African.

Don't get me wrong, I love my country and other than wanting to get out of the rat race and move to the serene far South Coast, I do not have the urge to leave here, nor the desire. However, saying that, there is a lot that I am not proud of as a South African.



I desperately wanted to leave the country after my son was killed. I hated this country, the justice system and everything else that you could think of. There is just no justice in this country and road fatalities are not taken seriously. Our road fatalities are one of the highest in the world and the carnage on the roads everyday is unbelievable. You have more chance of being killed on the roads than you do because of Aids and crime, yet people see road deaths as "accidents" yet very few are the result of an accident. Accident means something unintentional and unavoidable. Strangers from other countries contacted me after reading my son’s story to pay their condolences and to share their stories with me and it was the same, where they expected justice to prevail when their loved ones were killed due to a blatant road transgression, they never got it, due to some or other technicality the accused got away with murder, just like the accused in my son’s case and in all the others in South Africa.











How ironic, sad and unfortunate is it that we can all do something to stop the road carnage, yet all the nay-Sayers, the anti- government, the ones who blame the government for the high crime rate, the ones that complain about the crime rate, the corruption and everything else are actually the ones that can do something about all the deaths and trauma caused by the carnage on our roads, but carry on driving like the criminals that they actually are. They blame the Metro Police; the roads; the mini-bus taxis, but then break every rule of the road. Oh yes the mini-bus taxis are bad, but if you drive with an open mind, you will notice that there are far more non taxis that speed, jump traffic lights and stop streets; drive in the emergency lane, drive on the wrong side of the road, because why should we wait in the traffic when we can just drive on the opposite of the road and expect oncoming cars to stop and get out of our way, just because we can. The best excuse is if the taxis can do it so can we. What kind of mentality is that? The kind that is lower than a mini-bus taxi drivers’ every will be. Sometimes I feel sorry for these drivers in their mini-bus taxis. People refuse to let them in, they get sworn at by every second motorist, they have to get a load of passengers to their destination on time, yet no one will give them a gap in the traffic, but moms and dads and grannies and grandpas and sons and daughters and brothers and sisters can all jump the traffic lights, push and shove their way through the traffic cut people off and just do as the please, because they believe they are above the law and are selective about what a crime is and what is not. Perhaps we should all just go around shop lifting, after all the crime rate is so high and hardened criminals get away with murder and robbery, so let’s us all join them. Yep, that is the mentality of our road users.



Perhaps I love my country, but not the people in it. I buy South African products not because I refuse to buy non South African products, but because imported goods are so expensive. So maybe I am not proudly South African at all, but I love my country and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. We have so much to be proud of in our country, but we all seem to forget it. Especially in times like now, when the media sensationalise the news and most of the troubles are all hyped up. As we all know sensationalism sells, so everyone gets into a panic, because of what is reported on the news.



Yes, we have to be extra security conscious and double and triple lock our doors and live behind electric fences and high walls and security bars, but we do not stay locked up like prisoners like most people think. We have the greatest weather, comfortable summers and mild winters. We sit outside at night and enjoy the warm evenings and admire the clear starlit skies. Winter days are not that cold and can be spent outside in the warmth of the sun. The nights and early mornings are cold, but Johannesburg winters are not dark and drab. Maybe icy cold in the morning, but with bright blue skies. Dull and grey skies are the exception and not the rule. Not forgetting the awesome sunsets.



We have such beautiful landscapes and places of interest. I love Cape Town; it is definitely the tourist destination of South Africa. I would not like to live there, because of the weather. Winters are dark and drab in the mornings and the sun comes up too late for my liking. They have four seasons in one day, although I must say Johannesburg is becoming like that too – climate change is definitely happening. For a holiday, Cape Town is the best, the whole tourist atmosphere, the sites and places to see, Table Mountain, the beaches, the winding roads and I always say why would anyone want to go anywhere else in the world when we have Cape Town, our own piece of heaven and paradise. The sea is freezing cold, but much calmer than the KZN Sea. Just so tranquil and calm and awesome sitting on the beach looking out at the horizon across the ocean and admiring the beauty of our land and oceans, with table mountain behind you with the mist hanging over the edge, just like a snow white table cloth over it, such a perfect description they give Table Mountain when the mists are thick and heavy.


So I might not be proudly South African, but am proud to say that I am South African and proud to live in such an awesome country with such beauty likes the Eastern Transvaal’s (Mpumalanga) landscapes, the Hibiscus coast and Cape Town’s majestic Table Mountain.



I am adding pictures of Cape Town to my post to take a damper off the beginning of my post, which started out in a rather negative tone.



Till Next Time

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