“It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”
On December 5, 2013, Nelson Mandela passed away.
It’s a little awkward to try and synthesize what he meant to black South Africans, South Africa, Africa as a continent, and the world.
And it almost seems disrespectful to talk about how he impacted me, because I’m just a white bitch living in the United States. When I was finally old enough to pay attention to and understand current world history, Mandela was already larger than life, having succeeded in staring down the tyrants and getting the world to accept him and his country. I wasn’t there to worry that he would end up another Steve Biko. I wasn’t there when it looked like Apartheid would never end nor was I there when it looked like no one would care. And I definitely wasn’t there on the ground, suffering that oppression, wondering if I would live another day, much less those I respected as activists and leaders.
And on top of that, I only had access to his story in barest fragments. Despite the name, my “world” history classes’ coverage of Africa began and ended with Ancient Egypt. So I had to go outside to hear his story and to respect him. How he survived a brutal prison environment that had claimed so many of his compatriots. How he fought for what was right even when it cost him and even when all the Western world was happy to treat South African blacks as an unruly bits of property that needed to learn their place. And afterward, how he made those same fuckers actually respect him and South Africa as a nation to be treated as an equal and how he has been instrumental as a spokesperson for his entire continent, slowly helping to move it into its own away from its colonialist shadow.
It’s small and it’s narcissistic, but yeah, I respect the shit out of him. Every time I find my courage fail in activism, I remember his courage to stay true. And even when he compromised, he knew what was right and spoke in favor of it. A strong ally on feminism, LGBT issues, class consciousness, and anti-xenophobia, he fought hard to get protections for other marginalized groups enshrined in law even when it was already a struggle to get rights and protections for himself and those like him. He may have been inspired by Gandhi, but I don’t think I’m the only one who has been inspired to always try and do what is right by him.
And my most poignant memory of his isn’t even an iconic one for most and isn’t even all that remembered, but is the passionate way he supported Caster Semanya, the South African sprinter who was harassed by Olympic officials for being intersex, and spoke clearly about the exact forms of bigotry and bullshit that were going on.
Even when it wasn’t his fight. Even when his hardest battles were complete. Even when it was just a person in his nation when he was already old and frail and could have easily ignored it. He took the time to stand up for them. That is my memory of the man.
He was, simply, in many ways, better than we’ll ever be and the world is much poorer for his leaving.
Hamba Kahle Madiba!
So yeah, on that note, let’s talk about the right wing’s reaction to the death of this great man.
Really, None of You Fuckers Wanted to Put Your Name to This One?, Wing Nut Daily:
Nelson Mandela Was a Radical Marxist
Oh, hi there whiplash, fancy seeing you here!
What? Mandela was known as a revolutionary who fought an entrenched and very importantly white power structure on behalf of marginalized voices and the powerless. Of course the right-wing hated him.
And not just the right-wing as if the entrenchment of Apartheid was due to a handful of douchey white guys (who are all dead now, because racism is over, totes for real) and a small smattering of shut-ins still decrying that a Catholic could be elected President.
Pretty much all the current “saints” of modern conservatism were 100% behind the brutal oppression of Apartheid when they were still on top. Both Reagan and Thatcher were strong supporters of the Apartheid regime, even as international outrage built against the numerous human rights violations they were perpetrating. Reagan, especially, kept supporting it past the point where public opinion was so universally on the side of the black South Africans that his Congress felt safe overturning his veto against their disinvestment from the country. Which for context, it’s worth noting that this was the same congress that had no compunction about rubber-stamping his “trickle-down” economic bullshit and seriously debated his nutso “Star Wars” Defense Initiative.
And it wasn’t just them. Like with every other fight for human rights and dignity in the sum history of time, conservatives of the time were proudly on the right side (in a way that they’ll often be extremely quick to deny now), fully supporting Apartheid rule against the “uppity” terrorists and their evil commie-feminist caring about the health and safety of non-white people ways. And when Nelson Mandela was just a guy in prison to them, they were happy to shout the Apartheid party line about him being a dangerous maniac who needed to be killed for the good of the nation.
So it should be no surprise that among the same modern conservatives who somehow thought that “anti-colonialist” was a)bad and b)was something that made black voices inherently untrustworthy there are some who seem to have lost the memo that everyone is supposed to pretend to have been physically present for his release like they were during MLK’s marches.
Which leads us to Wing Nut Daily, our first port of call. And we don’t even need to get out of the tagline to start harvesting plump juicy maggot-filled mangoes.
Renowned Christian minister: ‘He tried to destroy us, set his dogs on us’
What? I couldn’t possibly hear that dog whistle… or anything else after that trumpeting bellow made me deaf.
I mean, we talk about dog whistles a lot over here, but I think this might be the most blatant attempt at a “blacks are the real racists” and “our crimes are actually your crimes” dodge. I mean, fuck, at least the racism-deniers usually had the decency to at least stick to one culture’s crimes for their attempted judo shit instead of going “er, uh, I don’t want to even admit by analogy that the White South Africans did anything bad so let’s import some horrendous treatment of darkies from the States to pretend to suffer through.
Now if you managed to retain some manor of consciousness after having your inner ear completely annihilated, you might be wondering “so exactly what dead-ender Apartheid Denier did they drag out to be their ‘renowned Christian minister’?”
Rev. Peter Hammond, founder of Frontline Fellowship and Africa Christian Nation, has worked for nearly 30 years helping persecuted Christians in Africa.
Peter Hammond and his “Frontline Fellowship” are a well known South African mercenary squad which is (surprise, surprise) under fire by human rights organizations for their role in smuggling guns for the SPLA, which is a notorious gang of murderers and rapists in Sudan who are purporting to be a “Christian” resistance to… well, essentially the existence of Muslim officials in power. Peter Hammond is also connected to illegal gun running to Mozambique and considering he is part of a white “Christian” private army, no prizes as to what he was doing during the era of Apartheid rule (remember that “private” mercenary forces were often contracted to “take care” of certain political prisoners).
He’s also closely aligned to several other Christian “ministries” that are actually mercenary companies, including ones who reported the impending release of Nelson Mandela like it was the countdown to rapeapalooza and surprise of surprises he’s a fervent Apartheid Denier (not at all because of personal involvement in the crimes, of course, and you can trust his word and nothing but his word claiming to have never supported Apartheid on his blog… well, not so much denying it as demanding to know where the email writer lives, which might as well be the same thing).
In short, if WND got any more primary source for their Apartheid Denialism, they’d be digging up the corpse of PW Botha.
So what are this totally objective nutcase’s examples of Mandela perfidy?
As a result of Hammond’s visit with Mandela – in which the missionary laid hands on the president and prayed for him to see abortion for what it really is, the merciless slaughter of innocent human life – Hammond was subjected to a 13-year audit of his organization.
See, just because he was the leader of a white nationalist identified merecnary company that may or may not be staffed with ex-Apartheid governmental and military officials, Mandela had to get up all in his grill.
And sure, it turned out his company was in fact engaged in illegal gun running and other illegal activity, but that doesn’t mean that the police should be investigating.
I mean, what ever happened to the South African rule of law that said a white man could do whatever he wanted to up to and including killing darkies without a single policeman saying boo about it?
What? That was called Apartheid and it ended? Why the fuck would they do that? That shit was awesome! Goddamn commie darkies ruining all our fun!
Oh, and might I just chime in here to note how much I am fucking loving the right wing imploding their “get out of jail” “abortion” dodge by basically using it as the anthropomorphization fallacy exploiting “what about teh babiez” dodge it always was.
Because every time they barely hide that what they really hate is the notion of women having sex or in this example, the existence of a black leader in their previously whites only palace, it reduces that bullshit exploitation of people’s natural desire to put human motivations and existences onto inanimate and still growing objects and helps us get closer to a point where we no longer need to pretend that babies are just chilling out with a newspaper for 9 months because we want to pretend that all the important stuff is done the moment a cisman’s involvement is complete.
Anyways, what else is black… I mean, evil about Mandela?
Ha! Spoiler warning, it’s nothing. I mean, there’s a smattering here and there about him being a communist (which, shock of shocks, his oppressors were aligned with every capitalist shitbag country on the planet, what else was he going to be?), which just serves as a giant reminder that conservatives are wholly incapable of dealing with the new world order where the Soviets aren’t the big bad anymore. I look forward to the day that the people who don’t remember the Cold War outnumber those who do and just seeing the utter terror on their faces as they try and rant about how evil someone is for being an out socialist.
Cliff Kincaid, Apartheid America:
Comrade Mandela’s secret life
So let’s jump to the next crazy old person yelling at clouds about how they learned to hate that damn commie darkie that was gunna kill all the white people if he ever got free and dog nabbit nobody is gonna change their mind about that, nosiree.
Shorter (or the last port before Jungle):
- Bu-bu-but he was a dirty communist. He even admitted to being a socialist and supporting socialist ideas like the notion that people aren’t inferior because of their gender, sexuality, race, gender identity, religion, or social or economic class. So why doesn’t that instantly discredit him like all the other brave revolutionaries we were able to completely justify ignoring because of real or implied connections to that big scary word?
Oh, you can just see the indignation on their little faces as they write these.
They really can’t cope with the fact that just yelling “commie” doesn’t make the people scream with Red Terror like it used to and instead people are even feeling safe critiquing vulture capitalism, showing solidarity to marginalized groups, and even speaking out against oppression without dreading the life-ending accusation of being associated with “you know who”.
Also, somebody needs to sit them down and help them cope with their addiction to conspiracy theories.
My friend Victor Lasky used to write books about liberal or left-wing figures that carried the name of the person and the subtitle, “The Man and the Myth.” He would compare the coverage of a political figure with the truth. The coverage of the death of Nelson Mandela has focused mostly on the myth. Key facts are being omitted, including Mandela’s secret membership in the South African Communist Party (SACP), which may shed light on the future of South Africa.
Secret connections to shadowy forces, ooohh. It’s all a secret and only you are smart enough to know this support and alliance that just existed because of course it existed with Apartheid oppression using their “Capitalism” to gain support from Western powers who wanted an excuse to punish uppity colonies who thought they could shrug off white domination.
I know that pretending to be part of a tiny force of super smart savvy operators against a vast unstoppable conspiracy helps you deal with the guilt and shame of fighting on behalf of the powerful against the powerless, but Bob damnitt man, you don’t need to translate everything into shadow conspiracies just to get your hit.
Also, speaking as someone weak and small against a vast, disconnected array of antagonistic forces, never feeling there is one centralized authority you can just “defeat” and make everything better by conquering. I know you’re just essentially “playing the video game” version of this shit, but in reality, that life really fucking sucks. It completely does a number on your sanity, your perception of safety, and your ability to even focus on the raw essentials of survival when you’re constantly getting hit from all sides at once and you don’t feel you can ever fight back.
You don’t actually want that life, so stop fucking pretending, you goddamn posers.
Oh, and shock of shocks, the post ends with some Birther conspiracy nonsense because apparently thinking about South Africa’s first black president after Apartheid for more than five seconds just reminds them of how much they hate our first black leader after years of “proper white rule”.
Interestingly, President Obama used the foreword to describe Mandela as “a liberation figure” who worked for “equality, opportunity and human dignity.” But he said Mandela had acknowledged “that he has not been a perfect man” and had “his flaws.” Obama says the lesson is that we have to be “honest with ourselves” in the personal and political realms.
Clearly, Mandela was not honest with the public about his deep involvement with communism, including membership in the South African Communist Party. Then again, Obama was never honest with the American people about his mentor, Communist Party operative Frank Marshall Davis, a member of the Soviet espionage apparatus in Hawaii.
Do we see a pattern developing here?
Why aren’t you scared yet, AIEEEEE?!?
Now, hey, you might be going, hey at least these fuckers are being open and honest about their involvement and support for oppression instead of pretending they were always Team Underdog because it no longer is socially acceptable to be the monsters they are.
To which I say… yeah, let’s just pop over to the National Review shall we?
Travis Kavulla, National Bandwagon:
Cause, see, while there are still a few holdouts who are holding on to the halcyon days when saying you were proud to support Apartheid against those uppity commie africans and their marauding hordes of black people hellbent on slaughtering all white people everywhere and banning Christianity in “real” countries, the vast majority of former proud Apartheid supporters have long since seen the writing on the wall and have been trying to pull the standard MLK whitewash and co-opt stunt for years now.
So, no end to articles like this trying to elevate shitstains like Dick Lugar to honorary ANC members in the hopes of stealing reflected glory and erasing less noble racist actions. And no end to people who were just as happy to rant about Mandela the commie trying belatedly to pretend that they were on the streets protesting this shit before it was cool as if they weren’t sneering at every hippie who tried to get Americans to care about what was happening to “those people”.
Shorter (or the last port before Jungle):
- Okay, fine, Mandela was great, but only because he wasn’t a white-murdering reverse racist like we tried to sell him as. But his successors will totally be that, so please support white rule now that that uppity negro is out of the way.
Well, they would be trying the whole “Actually instead of supporting his oppressors and calling him a commie pinko, I actually marched with him and he totally told me that he always supported infinite tax cuts for rich people because rich white guys are the most oppressed class” game, if it wasn’t really fresh for the old bigots.
I mean, we’re talking about people who have difficulty handling the notion that social attitudes can change from one century to another. The concept of radically rethinking one’s stance on a public figure in only about 20 years or so is really new to them and kinda scary.
As such, there’s still an awkward adjustment to the whole “pretending to be on his side” con and thus, they have a little bit of a hard time hiding the bitter resentment at having been thwarted by a “non-entity”.
Dignity, humility, and courage. Those are the words, predictable as they are proper, that are being used to describe Nelson Mandela after his death on Thursday.
Few other people in the annals of the 20th century suffered such great personal indignities and yet turned the other cheek. Few others, too, managed such an explosive political moment so deftly.
Yeah… on that note. I’ve seen no end of hagiographies of the man talking about how he “refrained from getting revenge on the whites” as if a) it was his only accomplishment or goal, b) it was the only goal that “real” people should care about, and c) it was necessary.
I mean, yeah, the passion of the moment, and the way white people have utterly shit their pants over Zimbabwe, and the real concessions to white power that Mandela had to make in order not to spook a hesitant white power dynamic that had a real hard time accepting a black South African leader and all that…
But here’s the thing.
A lack of revenge isn’t fucking novel. Most rights movements do not end in the recreation of bigoted power structures (but now with the former oppressor power in the “victim” spot). It’s just not really the “point” of the rights movement, even though brutal oppressions have been survived.
But every time in a group’s struggle to be free, we have to deal with the outpouring of fear from dominant group members about the specter of “revenge”.
Every fucking time, as it becomes more and more apparent to the world that an oppression exists and is wrong, we get the outpouring of bullshit from the oppressors claiming that while they understand that things can’t continue, they are just so scared that if they stop and treat the oppressed group with dignity then that broken and beaten oppressed group will “try and get revenge”. And before that, the most brutal forms of oppression are often done in the name of “preventing revenge”.
And when the oppressors are finally losing their undeserved place on the neck of the oppressed, they hijack the conversation once again, pretending that every gain of rights for their former victims is an “act of revenge” against them. And once they have fully lost and it’s time to talk about all the murders and beatings, it becomes all about them in the form of demanding that accounting the real human rights violations “not become about revenge”.
And after they have been relegated to the dustbin of history and after their victims have accepted the bare minimum of accountability for the depths of the crimes committed against them because everyone is tired of fighting, we then get this shit.
Where we are all asked to not focus on the crimes committed against the oppressed because “that sort of backward thinking is just revenge” and only herald those who suffered and bled to topple oppression on how they totally stopped all those infinite hordes of “bad oppressed members” who would totally have started stabbing oppressors if that great man hadn’t used their one and only act of heroism to protect them.
And it’s insulting because not only does it erase real crimes and real acts of heroism, but it also privileges this dangerous delusion and justifies its reuse in every fight against oppression.
Allowing this tactic to delay and truncate justice to thrive over and over again as everyone fawns over the poor oppressors and their ludicrously rare “fears” of their righteously angry victims doing a tiny fraction of what they did.
Certainly no African leader is more deserving of a cult of personality (on a continent where this practice is widespread). Yet Mandela was one of those Gandhi-like figures who, if occasionally vain and tempestuous, was no self-indulgent demagogue.
Heh, I guess Mandela is not the only world-renowned figure who makes these Colonialism Cheerleaders wet their pants in hatred and fear.
In the 1980s and ’90s, as the chorus to end apartheid reached its high notes, a guerilla campaign was waged on all sides in South Africa — white segregationists versus blacks, a Zulu nationalist faction versus Mandela’s African National Congress, “coloreds” (a South African term for the Afrikaans-speaking, darker-skinned, but not black, population) on both sides. There was a very real chance that South Africa would become another Zimbabwe. The forecast was for civil war, followed by an inevitable victory by black nationalists, and then decades of score-settling through expropriation and clannish misrule.
We were so too justified in fearing that this campaign for justice would end in the culling of all whites unlike every other racial struggle for equality! WAAAH! Why did you deny us, you bastard, and instead make us have to pretend to take African nations seriously even if they don’t have a proper white spokesperson?
That South Africa has avoided this outcome thus far is remarkable.
And it could still come true for us, you’ll see! Fucking cockblocking commie.
The country’s internal social and economic inequality makes the United States look like a nation of levelers. (South Africa’s distribution of income is the most unequal of any country for which the World Bank compiles statistics.) Even today, it is not clear what fruits the end of apartheid has delivered to most black South Africans — except the basic dignities of the freedom of movement and the freedom of the ballot, which are not to be mocked, but which at the same time don’t fill empty bellies.
I mean, after all, the white power structure is still using economic means to perpetuate the effects of Apartheid in much the same way that capitalism is used against black empowerment hear in the Sta…
On second thought, please pay no attention to this semi-closeted attempt to smear the target of our rage for our own crimes.
Mandela was the one who counseled patience. Justice needed to be realized, but realism demanded a slower departure from the status quo ante. Coming to power, he retained virtually all the apartheid-era bureaucracy. The Mandela government sought justice through its famous Truth and Reconciliation Commission — which offered those two things, but not the material proceeds of a reckoning.
Mandela is today revered as a saint. But it was his cautiousness and realism — his recognition that South Africa could and would become a basket case if popular passions were unloosed all at once — that were his best virtues in government.
He was one of the few who could have accomplished what he did, because everyone knew that he was a man with the most to be furious about. He had been a prisoner for almost three decades. He did not even know his family.
Revolution is the easy part. Washington knew he needed a Hamilton, Jefferson a Gallatin. Mandela’s government included both revolutionaries and technocrats. Terms like “capital attraction,” lost on most revolutionary governments, were in vogue.
This is probably the main reason that Obama gets criticized right here. It’s that Obama recognizes he is in a historic role and wants to live up to the moderate and forgiving name those past historical roles have made for themselves…
Seemingly unaware that not a one of them was actually “moderate”, merely labeled that way to make their shocking transformations to the system seem more mundane and thus forgettable and less dangerous to the oppressive system as a whole.
MLK Jr, Gandhi, Mandela. None of these figures were actually the milquetoast “oh my poor oppressors, let’s not hurt them too bad” figures they are painted as. Sure, many of them shared principles of non-violence that frankly most social justice movements share, but all of them also spoke out frankly about abuses of power and were willing to stand up for unpopular groups and shared human rights and accept no compromise and quarter.
It’s why they must be reduced to a caricature, some smiling face whose message can just be some fucking 70s soft rock song about how we should all try and be friends instead of rare moments when consistent effort finally punched through the brick walls of oppression and forced a social change.
And it’s also why these movements are always reduced to one man, no matter how great, supposedly surrounded by an infinite horde of mean-spirited grudge-holders who want blood spilled in the streets.
Because that makes them easier to discount.
This is Mandela’s saddest legacy. Like so many ruling parties in Africa, the ANC has become a byword for a self-dealing, one-party rule. Its ranks are filled with senescent, go-along-to-get-along cronies. There are some good, thoughtful people in South Africa’s government, but its top leadership barely has a sense of where to guide the country, and certainly little idea of how to get there.
Stay classy, you fuckers.
But wait, there’s more!
Joel Pollak, Wearing a Dead Man’s Blog:
Communism Was Worse than Apartheid
Cause while we’ve gone into the various wingnuts who want to drunkenly piss on Mandela’s grave like they always fantasized about and those who want to pretend to be people to be taken seriously by trying to fake the genuine regard the vast majority had for a glorious man, what about those who want both?
Who want to pretend that they are super serious people who should be listened to because they aren’t super crazy racists who would still support Apartheid in the modern era, but also want all the Klan rejects they’ve been courting for the last 8 years to know that they are still on their side and aren’t about to start speaking well of a commie darkie fag-lover?
Well, don’t you worry, over at Not Compensating for Anything Journalism, we’ve got this complete mess of a post.
Shorter (or the last port before Jungle):
- Um… er… uh… well… (freak out) OOH, no wait, I’ve got something. The way that people are acknowledging the actual things conservatives did to support apartheid and smear Nelson Mandela is the perfect example of why American white conservatives are the most oppressed people in the world. I mean, how dare they suggest that conservatives would ever dare smear such a great man as Nelson Mandela. Though, now that you mention it he was a commie scumbag and Apartheid isn’t as bad as having a bunch of darkies running around letting themselves vote.
And still some of us liberals accuse them of being racist. It’s just not fair.
We begin our final port of call, like every Not Compensating for Anything Journalism post ever written, whining about the mean Jewish… i mean liberal media.
The left media has continued exploiting the death of Nelson Mandela to attack conservatives. The latest version is Sam Kleiner’s attack at Foreign Policy and the Huffington Post, “Apartheid Amnesia: How the GOP conveniently forgot about its role in propping up a white supremacist regime.”
WAAAH! People having memories of our actions is EVIL! And OPPRESSION! AND I DON’T HAVE TO TAKE IT! WAAAHHH!
But seriously, it’s amazing to see just how unwilling conservatives are to accept the consequences of their actions. It honestly galls them and incenses them that people are allowed to remember and think poorly of their past actions in modern circumstances.
And it infuriates them that they could even be critiqued in a modern context not just for the horrible things they said then, but the horrible things they are still saying now or that those horrible actions in the past might mean that they have to put extra effort into their modern scams.
It’s like they are the world’s laziest conmen and just expect the whole world to carefully create a permanent culture of amnesiac marks so they don’t have to go through all the trouble of changing the name on the side of the cart when they want to sell another batch of snake oil.
Which… no. History happened. You supported what you supported.
If you can’t deal with that being permanently recorded on teh interwebs, may I suggest you stop supporting terrible things.
Cause see, 50 years later, I doubt I’m going to be nervously trying to hide my support for trans* rights the way that these fucks do their still current support for Apartheid and Segregation.
Kleiner acknowledges that President Ronald Reagan officially opposed apartheid,
Only because he was literally forced to by Congress. I mean, the fucker tried to veto nearly every attempt by the American people to oppose Apartheid rule and even when his hands were tied he still sent unofficial support and strongly encouraged private business to step in where his government could not.
I mean, if that’s “opposing” Apartheid, then Mussolini “opposed” fascism.
and that some GOP leaders voted to impose sanctions.
Yes, some GOP members belatedly broke ranks with their Apartheid supporting majority in order to do the right thing once it was already a world-wide condemned human rights abuse (it’s worth noting that America was one of the last nations on Earth to finally stop supporting Apartheid in an official or unofficial capacity).
I mean, that’s like saying there’s one or two Republicans who are willing to criticize the Iraq War in 2013 and it certainly doesn’t change where the majority of politicians were aligned at the time.
But he tries to claim that Democrats owned the anti-apartheid struggle, while conservatives backed the regime.
Isn’t it just the worst when left-leaning blogs and indie papers aren’t willing to lie for you? Even when you scream about how they are filthy liberal commies?
It’s just not fucking fair.
As in all such attacks, Kleiner plays down the association of Mandela’s organization, the African National Congress, with global communism.
HE’S A DIRTY FILTHY COMMIE! WHY HASN’T THIS DISCREDITED HIM YET?
Again, I’m just giggling my ass off to think of the day that fucking Pavlov trick dies its ignoble death as the collective American youth go “huh? You mean, like Sweden? Yeah, that place is cool.”
And it’ll be great to finally be able to acknowledge all these great people’s works supporting economic justice without a bunch of old fucks jumping at ghosts screaming commie every five seconds as if that was a goddamn argument against their moral characters.
That revisionist step is necessary to make the slander stick,
Uhhhhhh… did you mean to reveal your game plan or was that just an IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION accident?
as it obscures the context within which conservatives were reacting.
See, when we supported the outright murder of civil rights activists and a brutal oppressive regime enforcing the will of white colonialism over native interests, we were just speaking out about communism.
Yeah, that’s the ticket. We were just so worried that if South Africa fell to the dirty rotten commies and their magic hammer and sickle dance, then um… they’d be able to launch nukes into Kansas? I dunno, we’re making up shit on the fly at this point and hoping that “oh that’s right, the ruskies” will serve as much as a blanket forgiveness of sins as “but think of the children”.
Kleiner has a loose grip on the facts anyway: he writes that “Nelson Mandela was freed from jail in 1988,” when in fact he was freed in 1990. Those two years are crucial: in 1989, the Berlin Wall fell, ending communism as a threat and opening the door to Mandela’s release.
Yes, you fucking Apartheid Denialist, I’m sure that connection was firmly in the mind of Apartheid leaders when they were resisting international pressure to free their prisoners. They were totally thinking, gosh, we’d so love to release the guy we’ve been torturing for decades this year, but gosh darn it, the Soviet Union just hasn’t quite fell yet and if we let him out too soon, he’ll use his evil commie brainwashing powers to make us all like Borscht, so guess we’ll just have to be evil human rights violating scumbags for another two years.
Are there any other bullshit after the fact justifications you want to pull out of your ass?
Hmm, maybe they had to delay two more years so that Bush the First Evil could promise no new taxes because tax cut promises solve all ills.
Or maybe they needed to wait until a World Cup year because all the good spaces for the “Welcome to not being imprisoned by us” parties were being used up by “We’re so sad our oppressive segregation in all things has gotten us banned from international competition” parties.
Ooh, maybe they just thought the 80s as a decade sucked too bad to have something that awesome happen in them.
I mean, if we’re just making up shit anyways…
But let us accept, just for argument’s sake
That this “supposed” Apartheid took place. And further let us “suppose” for argument’s sake only that it was “bad”. And in an act of reckless charity we even “suppose” that the denial of its “crimes” is an act on par with denying acts of genocide, then…
Huh, I guess even with all that bullshit it still makes us look like the complete wankers we are. Fuck. More obfuscation!
Kleiner’s misleading claim that conservatives supported apartheid.
Just because it’s “true” and we haven’t even stopped supporting it long enough to mourn his death properly instead of trying to piss in his face. I mean, fuck, are we going to start being held to heel for every shitty thing we’ve done now, because that’s going to take a while and…
Suddenly I understand why liberals hate us so much.
An honest comparison of apartheid and communism would have to conclude that communism is, by far, the worse evil.
(gently wipe spilled water off shirt)
Communism killed millions of people worldwide, in addition to condemning millions to poverty. Apartheid subjected millions of black people to terrible oppression, but killed few
You know, if it turns out, contrary to your history on these matters, that you are right and there is a Hell, I would ask you to please not feign surprise when you wake up there after your death choking on a pound of uncut heroin.
–and the black population of South Africa grew during that time. (Notably, life expectancy in the post-apartheid era has fallen dramatically.)
Cool story, Klansbro! #blamingyoureconomicvictimsforcapitalismscrimes
The ANC’s choice to align with the Soviet Union was understandable, given that non-violent resistance to apartheid had largely failed by 1960, and the communists were the only source of arms.
Well, that and the fact that nobody but communists gave a fuck about African self-independence and self-rule. Fuck, that’s still pretty fucking true today seeing as how it seems to only ever be filthy liberal hippies in the West who note how things like the World Bank, IMF, or Western private companies treat Africa like an unruly child who just needs a few more beatings to “learn its place”.
But sure, why not pretend that good ol’ America was waiting with bated breath to help those poor oppressed souls but was just too darn wary of letting the mean darkies play with guns.
Yet on balance, that alliance, in addition to being morally problematic, likely set back the anti-apartheid struggle by a decade or more by alienating allies in the free world.
Sure it did.
You do realize that just because you use something as an excuse to do what you want to do that doesn’t actually make it your genuine reason, right?
Also, you do realize that we’re not as fucking stupid as you and thus aren’t willing to swallow your self-serving bullshit as if it was the chocolate cake you want to pretend it is?
Of course, few Americans who supported the anti-apartheid struggle supported communism.
And I totally bet money that when Apartheid was supported by a majority of Americans, you were equally committed to this “concession” and totally never yelled at anti-Apartheid activists as “being a pack of nasty hippie commies”. Cause that’s truth, yo.
Yet that alliance meant that building such support was more difficult.
Yeah, I’m betting that was totally the reason that bigoted white racists just couldn’t be down with doing the literal bare minimum to stop one of the worst human rights violations in the last 40 years. Mmmhmm.
There were always a few brave souls, in the U.S. and in South Africa itself, who fought apartheid while opposing communism.
Suuuuuure there were. You just keep telling yourself that. And then tell yourself that those same people were you and you get to be off the hook for pledging material and moral support to a bunch of murdering psychos who wanted segregation and colonial rule in Africa to extend into the 21st century and beyond.
One such was Helen Suzman, once the sole anti-apartheid member of the South African Parliament, whose liberal colleagues eventually helped shape South Africa’s constitution to resemble the U.S. Constitution in some respects.
Heh. I love this.
You should care about this lady. Okay, so she didn’t actually do anything to stop oppression, but people in the same governing body were eventually drafted to pledge a seal of white support to the darkie’s document which was stolen from the Freedom Loving USAians so it’s not like they were smart enough to make a real Constitution on their own and and WAAAAAAHHH! Why did he have to win?!?
Rather than trying to politicize Mandela’s death through historical revisionism, Americans should celebrate the fact that his legacy is a point of rare bipartisan consensus.
Why are we even caring about these uppity “fighting against oppression” little shits anyways? I mean, can’t we just exploit every brave person’s death to sell the same brand of “both sides do it, the truth is in the middle” horseshit that we’ve been exploiting for four decades?
Reducing their accomplishments into a tiny little marketable shell that can be safely forgotten and never inspire others to fight for their own freedom and human dignity?
Co opting their struggles into something that can prop up the status quo and enforce the same mythologies that are used to abuse and oppress, resisting the inevitable with violent force and bigoted deed?
Well, dickweasels. Let me answer that.
We stand up for the memories and the reality of their struggle because it did fucking matter. People like Madiba took genuine risks when it would have been safer to be bullied into a hole. Were brave when it would have been simplicity to cower. And by remaining true to themselves, helped slowly steer the world to what it needs to be.
His story needs to be told. To be heard. Right alongside the context of all those who would have been glad to see him hang, all those who now try and claw at his memory because his impact can’t be erased.
Because it’s a reminder of how those epic power structures crumble and fall.
How we can manage to topple the bigotry and hatred and all those who say things can never change.
Because he was and will forever be, just as much an inspiration to others as Gandhi was to him.
Hamba Kahle Madiba.
We stand and remember you.
‘Shorter’ concept created by Daniel Davies and perfected by Elton Beard. Thina, bantu baseNingizimu Afrika, Siyakukhumbula ukucekelwa phansi kwamalungelo okwenzeka eminyakeni eyadlula; Sibungaza labo abahluphekela ubulungiswa nenkululeko kulo mhlaba wethu; Sihlonipha labo abasebenzela ukwakha nokuthuthukisa izwe lethu; futhi Sikholelwa ekutheni iNingizimu Afrika ingeyabo bonke abahlala kuyo, sibumbene nakuba singafani. We are aware of all Internet traditions.™
*As of the writing of this post, the first comment on the Breitbart column is someone pointing out the giant pile of Denialist donkey shit followed by a bunch of inbred tigers trying to prove they are the dumbest fuck on Fuck Mountain by doing the best rendition of “black people iz communist iz Hitler” they can. It’s tragicomic how utterly irredeemable these shitstains are. But as Mandela taught us, we don’t need to convert the irredeemable, merely make them the irrelevant past-clinging turds they have always been.