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View Diary: Healing, truth and reconciliation in South Africa (163 comments)

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  •  Unfortunately, most of the gains from the (3+ / 0-)

    TJ&RC have been negated by the persistent structures of inequality and economic apartheid. Most black and colored South Africans are no doubt worse off materially now than under apartheid. White South Africans believe it or not are doing even better. There's a super-wealthy black elite and a slim black middle class but that's about it. True justice can only come about once we attack the economic systems that continue to dehumanize and impoverish the majority. Until then we'll continue to see rising tensions, a falling standard of living and continued racism.

    •  I disagree. (6+ / 0-)

      Living under the boot, the hell of apartheid cannot ever be diminished.  

      SA - as a new nation state without it, has only existed since the 1990's.

      Yes, of course there is still economic inequality.  Dismantling the structures of global capitalism - whether there, or elsewhere is an issue I'm unable to address in this diary.

      Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Apr 21, 2013 at 08:15:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Inequality has increased since the end (0+ / 0-)

        of apartheid. INCREASED. So a terrible situation is now actually worse. Meanwhile, the bottom half has seen real incomes drop. At the same time living costs have skyrocketed. Isn't there something wrong with this picture?

        And the fact that the new dispensation has only lasted since the 1990s is not an adequate reason. Life should be at least marginally better or at least constant for the majority.

        •  Hopelessly, utterly wrong (0+ / 0-)

          Income inequality is down somewhat according to the Gini coefficient, though still high by world standards.

          As recent data points out, one reason that inequality is high is that if black South Africa were measured as a separate country, it would be one of the most income unequal countries on earth. But that's a reflection of the fact that so many black South Africans have moved into the unionized working class and middle class leaving the rural poor behind.

          Please provide a link to data saying that "all gains" have been negated. Otherwise I have to conclude you are just spouting ignorant ill informed bullshit.

      •  I have written this elsewhere, (0+ / 0-)

        but I hope I am not leaving the impression that fighting to end apartheid was not a worthwhile struggle. It was and I hope I have not diminished that. But the struggle was fundamentally also a struggle for economic justice - The Freedom Charter - had lines upon lines on economic equality. Thus people are now speaking of an economic apartheid still in place.

    •  most of the gains not "negated" eom (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Yasuragi, Denise Oliver Velez
    •  Utterly wrong on a factual basis (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Yasuragi, Denise Oliver Velez

      The biggest gains made since the end of apartheid have been to the unionized working class, one of the main constituents of the ANC alliance. Even the killing of miners last year was a result of the conflict between the privileged unionized miners and the casual workers. The black middle class has grown dramatically.

      While there are still many poor people, to say that most of the gains have been negated is a statement based in pure ignorance of the data.

    •  I don't think so (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Yasuragi, Denise Oliver Velez

      After the Civil War, many Southern blacks lived in abject poverty. And yet several who were interviewed about it said they would still take that to going back to slavery, even though many of them had it better in slavery, economically speaking. Institutionalized discrimination and oppression of that nature, I think, is far worse. It dehumanizes people in a way traditional economic inequality does not. It also causes the people who are part of the oppressive class to treat you far differently than they do when it is not enshrined in law.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Sun Apr 21, 2013 at 12:44:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree of course that legalized slavery (0+ / 0-)

        and apartheid were dehumanizing and utterly evil institutions. I am not squabbling over whether it was worthwhile to fight to end these institutions and in the case of S.Africa, seek to heal and forgive. It was. My concern is that true revolution was not carried over to the economic realm and that is threatening to overshadow everything else.

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