Racism embedded at the base

There is one race, the human race. That notwithstanding racism exists and has been practiced for centuries by people who call themselves white and believe that people of different skin pigmentation to theirs are sub-humans or simply part of the animal species, have no intelligence and therefore less deserving of humane treatment.
Negotiated settlement which ushered general elections in 1994 ensured that the gimmick of racism is not only entrenched but protected by the government of the so called new South Africa. The essence of the settlement was that a few Africans, under the pretext of representative democracy, can go and bask in the sun at the union buildings and in parliament while so called whites hold onto the means of production and critical levers of state power such as the judiciary at the expense of the poor African working class masses. It is on the back of this political fraud that Nelson Mandela became an ‘international’ celebrity.
The evil of racism was used to engineer and justify the greed and illegitimate opulence of so called white people on the one hand and the oppression, degradation, dispossession and exploitation of the African masses on the other. As such racism will not go away without at the same time dismantling the base structure of socio-economic imbalances created by apartheid settler colonialism. The objective of African national liberation movement is fundamentally to resolve this contradiction by restoring political and economic power to the disposed poor African working class masses.
This delusion of racial superiority amongst whites, including white children, is informed and perpetuated by opulence material position of white people as created by apartheid settler colonialism and now protected by neocolonialism. The fact of white opulence, al beit illegitimate, vis-à-vis African poverty and underdevelopment reinforces white supremacist racist ideology. The logic of this psychology is simple – if it is whites, a minority group from Europe, who send their children to best schools, stay in elegance and secure neighbourhood, provide job opportunities to Africans in their homes, factories, farms and companies in various industries, control the economy and own the wealth of Africa- therefore whites are ‘superior’ to Africans, otherwise how do you explain this anomaly?
The racist conspiracy stretches across all critical institutions of our society including the media and academia. In institutions of higher learning, for example, marks of African students are reduced to lower the success rate in the African communities while inflating success in the white communities by increasing marks of underperforming white students. Recently African workers at the state enterprise Telkom complained that they are paid less than their white colleagues and it is appalling that to date government has done nothing, let alone say something.
It is a disgrace that 15 years down the line, streets in our towns still bears the names of what is supposed to be our erstwhile oppressors. The land and the economy, as a whole, remain in the hands of a tiny white dispossessor class. The poor African working class masses remain victims of poverty and cheap labour.
It is unrealistic to think that racism will go away while the indigenous masses of our people remain in the same indigent social and economic class brought by apartheid settler colonialism. The bitter truth is that there is no way there will be economic Justice for Africans and eradication of racism without, at the same time, breaking the clover of illegitimate white opulence resulting in the most equitable distribution of wealth. On the other hand preserving white settler colonial class greed, interests and privileges will perpetuate African poverty, suffering and underdevelopment.

Hulisani Mmbara

Chief Editor