The more things change……….

Whilst surfing the net for more photos I could jack for my blog’s header I came across the one on the left. I laughed when I saw what the sign says and felt guilty afterwards ’cause the guy using the computer next to mine gave me a weird look; as if I was laughing at the two black guys in photo, But I digress. I found the message portrayed in the photo interesting, back then the regime used fear as one of the tools to keep races apart, hence the ridiculous sign to warn white folks to beware the “savage natives” but now that shit like this hasn’t existed in a while why are we still afraid to go into certain areas? A while ago Laura made a post about her superpower basically she spoke about her instincts that seem to kick in whenever they were lost in the townships and a comment was made about how white folks are still scared of visiting the black townships, which is somewhat true and I also happen to know a few black people who aer still scared of going to Hillbrow because of a false notion that Hillbrow has been “taken over by Nigerian drug lords”pfft. I attributed the that to the fear of the unknown, that most white people don’t know much about the townships and hence would be reluctant to visit the townships but I’m starting to not buy that excuse.

Unlike the past, there is no propaganda machine that tells the people to beware the natives. There is so much information out there about the townships that I don’t see why people would be scared to visit there. A few months ago it was proven that Soweto is the safest place to shop, and I generally believe that a person is more likely to experience crime outside the townships (there’s just more to steal in the suburbs). Fear of the unknown is a weak excuse when you have all the tools to find out about stuff at your disposal, South-Africa is such a diverse place we shouldn’t be afraid to visit certain areas, a sign that says beware the natives shouldn’t pop out in our minds whenever we drive too close to certain “dangerous neighbourhoods”. Lets enjoy our land.

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6 thoughts on “The more things change……….

  1. Totally coincidentally, I was dropping a kid off at his house in the far reaches of the township this evening. And somehow (ARG!!) managed to lock my keys in my car!!! So I was totally stuck! So I phoned a friend to pick me up so I could go get my spare keys. And while I was waiting I sat with the kids family in their house. And I was slightly worried about my car. Not epically worried, but I was a bit worried. Because the keys were jut there dangling in the ignition – all you would need to do to steal my car would be break the window! So I said to the kids uncle that I was a bit nervous about my car. And he pretty much laughed at me (he didn’t actually laugh, but he had that smile that said he was laughing at me for being paranoid!)So I explained to him that pretty most people in my family in East London have had their cars stolen *at least* once. Anyway, I thought the whole conversation was pretty funny. Me being paranoid about my car being stolen in the township (where it was probably pretty safe actually!) because so many cars have been stolen outside my house in the suburbs in EL!

  2. I will raise my hand up and be guilty as charged on this one. The last time I was flying home to Zambia we stopped over in SA. In the airport i held on to my luggage tighter than an old white woman in an elevator with 2 black business men. The irrationality of my fear stemmed from all the news reports, docu’s and personal stories i had heard or watched. I as black woman was terrified my stuff was going to get jacked or i was going to be stabbed. basically i think media advertisement of the country as high in crime and associating it with black people not only scares people internationally but domestically.

  3. @Laura: I saw that on twitter the other day, sorry about that. But the friend did manage to pick you up, right?@K: basically i think media advertisement of the country as high in crime and associating it with black people not only scares people internationally but domestically^^^^Couldn’t agree with you more…

  4. so true.I want to come to SA for Uni but my family and friends are always discouraging me, about the high crime rates and xenophobia…is it really as bad as they make it out 2 be? why do they keep portraying it as dangerous if it isnt really?? who’s gaining?Same goes for ghettos around the world, people fear the ghettos, but it really depends on how u approach it. If your looking lost, afraid, out of place in ridiculously lavish gold chains and an over sized gucci bag, you might get mugged…Plus it helps if you know the language, as a non-South African, I would feel uncomfortable in Soweto and might likely get taken advantage of…but I totally agree with exploring and enjoying “our land”…I would like to experience Soweto someday…

  5. ^^The crime levels are unacceptably(sic?) high but the media does overexxagerate things at times, it’s really not as bad as they would like you to believe. I don’t really have a satisfying answer about who’s really gaining by painting the country of their birth in a negative light.as a non-South African, I would feel uncomfortable in Soweto and might likely get taken advantage of^^Honestly speaking, Sowetans are very hospitable people. They would make sure that you visit to their place is as memorable as it can be.I would like to experience Soweto someday…^^^Hit me up when you come this side, i’ll be your tour guide 😉

  6. hmmm cool, i will one of these days…well, i dont really know any sowetans so, i was just saying. good 2 know they aint mad-ghetto-crazy….lol

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