In this episode of African Perspectives, our host Lawrence Mlotshwa, and his panelists Sydwell Mashaba, Sami Modiba and Tebogo Sithathu look into the solutions to racism in Africa.
Racism in Africa did not start with the colonial period, nor did it end with that time’s passing. As terrible as European and American slavery was, it was rivaled beforehand by the routine enslavement of one African race by another. Given South Africa’s long and bitter history of racial oppression and its continued legacy, it is astonishing that the country is yet to have an open and transparent public discussion about race. In fact the only people who talk publicly about race are the extremists on both ends of the racial divide, which in the end does not make rational debate possible; without which, we cannot cobble together lasting solutions. Racism is only a symptom of a greater problem, not the disease itself. Behind this effect is a cause: human nature is selfish, and gravitates toward hatred. It prefers itself, and reflexively dislikes anything that is much different from it.
Watch this video to learn more:
COPE spokesperson, Dennis Bloem, speaking on the Penny Sparrow incident, said this had thrown up a challenge for Africa to do its utmost to defeat racism, not thrive from it. He also said that condemning racism is much less important than conquering racism through moral, informed and inspiring leadership. “Cure Racism South Africa” – a South African anti-discrimination drive – says that the solution to racism is to enable humanity to unlearn hatred, anger and prejudice, through a real change of heart. The same organization believes that a socio-economic generator that allows anti-discrimination work is sustainable in Africa. Many analysts argue that the solution to racism is two-pronged and involves de-segregation a process in which people live and learn closer together, melting away prejudices and breaking down barriers to economic parity. However, this seem not to be happening as fast as many would want and proving harder to achieve than expected, though considerable progress has been made.
Watch this video below as Lawrence and his panelists discuss the different solutions to racism: