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Category: Acumen News

#Racism, the #Pandemic

Date: 04.14.2024

Written By

Tonya Khoury

Let’s start with the biggest story in the world today, no not #CoVid19 – #GeorgeFloyd. Most of us watched this man die at the knee of the police brutality in America and let’s be honest, we also couldn’t breathe. My mind refused to comprehend what my eyes were telling it to make sense of.  There was no sense, of course there was no sense. And then the message came loud and clear, every country in the world knows and respects #GeorgeFloyd – if there was any sense, this was it.  The globe took to the streets in largely peaceful protest (outside of the US – will get there – hang on).  Images flooded media and timelines with international protests where thousands of people came out to speak out against racism.  There was no #Covid19 this week when these protests took place, the protestors lives didn’t matter.  Those that stood in solidarity risked their lives to stand up for what is right.  #BlackLivesMatter and the stats show that 31 Million articles in less than seven days about #GeorgeFloyd against 23 Million articles on #CoVid19 in the same period.

It’s not a new hashtag, it’s not a new conversation but why is it the every single (insert expletive) time it is followed with the #AllLivesMatter crew sitting in the peanut gallery throwing tweets?  I read somewhere a perfect analogy, it’s like your house is on fire and you shout on the street “help my house matters” only to get the response “all houses matter”.  I’m sick of explaining it.  Sick to death of seeing a barrage of race-based violence over the 25 years I’ve worked in media and today America is no better in its attitude than it was in the 1800s.  I don’t get it!  I don’t get it at all. The American nation goes into fury, confusion, anger, and grief and guess what their President did?  #Trump switched off the lights at the White House, blocked social media and hid in his bunker.  And that wasn’t all.  He tweeted when “the looting starts the shooting starts” and magically bricks appeared in major cities by the riot fairies.  It took an algorithm to point out that his narrative incited violence. #TrueStory, obviously #Zuckerberg said his machine made a mistake.

Then, and this was a gem, Trump thought, this is the time for a photo-op, is he on acid?  The curfew had passed  and still protestors kneeled on the streets in salute to the many deaths at the hands of the police.  The #PhotoOp delivered the gift of tear gas and rubber bullets so that Trump could walk out holding a Bible above his head.  This is not a #Weinstein movie people, this is the leader of the so-call “land of the free”, that’s a joke!   Many are shouting to remove Trump with the vote, which means America must send its vote to Sleepy and Creepy Joe. Will he stay awake?  All this has led me to one question – why do 70-year olds run the world? My Mom is 72 and although she has several health issues, she’s a capable 72-year-old but I can tell you for sure she couldn’t run an amateur dramatics class let alone America.  And another question how can the biggest democratic country in the world only have two options?  We had over 130 parties in our last election yet in America millions of people chucked into two boxes, pun intended!

Racism is not new in SA, and for the most part we seem to deal with it a great deal better than other S*hole countries.  We talk about our racial divide all the time, it never leaves our narrative, for the most part we try to do better and to be fair most times we fail but sometimes we win.  Outstanding organisations like the #AhmedKathradaFoundation have been fighting racism in all its forms for decades.  #UncleKathy dedicated his life to it and he made an impact.  We all do. It starts with each individual.  The #GeorgeFloyd conversation in South Africa was deeper than racism. #CollinsKhosa is our #GeorgeFloyd, killed by the SANDF in his own home and no justice to be seen.  South Africa is so far ahead in this racism discussion that the timelines turned black in seconds.  We have been here for a long time; we didn’t need an international story to awaken us we had #BellPottinger for that.  Dear America, if you need help, see what South Africa did to #BellPottinger, we were played as I am sure you are being played during your elections too, but we rose up and destroyed the #ThirdForce without a single shot fired.  We did it all on social media.  Here I am banging on about how we got this, but I lie of course, have you seen the #GeorgeFloydChallenge?  It is at that point that I lost all motivation for humans.  We are gross. #WhiteShame

Then I turned my TV to Al Jazeera and of course a #Palestinian was killed on his way to school, it made my mind wander… Where was our rage for the #LibyanSlaveTrade, for the #Rohingya, for #SyrianRefugees for #Yemen for starvation in Sudan, I have not run out of examples, I want to make a point #BrownLivesMatter and apart from an outrage protest here and there, what we are seeing in America is normal life.  Racism is endemic in fact it’s a #Pandemic.

I’ve written over 800 words about an international story so I suppose I have to face the SA media now, I’ve delayed because to be perfectly honest, I can’t work out what the hell is going on!

#Lockdown #Level3 and #Level4 was declared #unconstitutional (we have already moved from #Level4 but I digress).  The High Court issued judgement and gave government fourteen days to appeal. #JacksonMthembu had the unenviable job yesterday of telling SA that the Presidency and COGTA will be appealing the judgement. The analysts are saying that the appeal will win, and I assume then it was just a waste of time and money? Look don’t get me wrong; I am in awe of the Davids who stood up against the Goliaths but I’m tired, we are on day 71! SEVENTY-ONE of Lockdown.  As I was grappling to understand what all this meant #MinMthembu came right out and said that the #StateofDisaster has been extended to July 15th.  Can someone explain that to me, does it mean we have more access to disaster funding (I’m down for that) or does it mean that we have at least another six weeks of this vortex of utter confusion?

The President signed three new laws into #Parly yesterday, this has something to do with #IPID and #PoliticalFunding.  I couldn’t keep up, forgive me.

Alcohol was on the shelves this week, not for very long as it turns out we are a nation of #Boozers, queues and stock-piling on the first Monday at work made me wonder where was the cash coming from and with that kind of cash surely you have a job so why aren’t you working?  #BhekiCele in true #CeleStyle gave us a serious telling off and basically said we were irresponsible children that resulted in massive spike in crime and alcohol related assaults and fatalities.  I lament, a great deal, but I’m also a realist.  Minister Cele, there was crime before #Lockdown sir. You’re looking at the same stats just after a relief from them.  I get this feeling that we thought this was a different South Africa now, it’s not, it’s a ticking timebomb as it was pre-Covid but now without food and employment.  As a layman statistician I’m going to bet your crime numbers are going to blow up if people are hungry.  To be fair no statistician needed for that comment.  We now are masked as a rule – we are even stealing the PPE to rob pensioners.  It’s the same SA #Cele, your job just got harder. NgiXolisa

Oh #Angie, Angie Angie Angie, so we get to school at 8am, for #Motshekga to tell us at 11am that school wasn’t meant to be open and then she doesn’t address the problem. That was earlier this week, turns out those school without water Pre-CoVid, ya they’re still a problem, that looting and vandalization of 1500 schools during lockdown, that’s still a problem too. One step forward, 42 steps back.  Despite this constant narrative that kids have a better immunity, the numbers have risen in infection rates for our children.

And then there’s the Western Cape what kind of crazy numbers are these?  Apparently, CT is about to run out of ICU beds, so they’re reducing testing, yes you read right, apparently there is no need to test 55-yrs old, they don’t count see?  Why?  Have no idea, can someone phone a friend?

No really there is no need for this next dialogue, SAA? Why am I analysing SAA? So, we’re back to bailout this time at R2bn, #WhoWantsToBeABillionaire #Dudu

What on earth happened with the ciggies guys? I’m going to have to #AskTheAudience, I think that #NDZ had to file an affidavit which she did, late and not of great content, and then did she miss the memo to respond to court? What kind of arrogance is that?   In the meantime, Mazzotti came out and told us he’s a good oke, and of course we didn’t believe him, but can we have a pack of 20 please at R15796?  Oh wait, I can’t leave this bit, there was a #TobaccoBanProtest three people turned up, the rest stayed at home and smoked. I read that to date (at shelf price cause that’s how we measure these stats not at street value like drugs #justsaying) SARS has lost out on R2.4bn, wonder how many ICU beds and SAA’s that is.  I’m going to take a 50/50 on that one please.

The lights might go off on set for this show, #Eskom puts in a request for 50% increase in prepaid and a once off levy of R200 – you got to be in it to win it in this #GameShow

And just as you thought the game show was over it rained money in Krugersdorp as a #CashInTransit heist went wrong and people clambered on tarmac for “free money”.  As if in stark contrast #EkhuruleniMayor called for an end to the #WhiteEconomy by supporting an #EFF tweet.  (Yes you read right).  The ANC took that very seriously. Mind that heart button comrades

I can’t close without these two, #MaddyMcCann murdererer found the headlines read.  Does that confirm she is dead?  His name is Christian B and he has been in a prison in Germany for years, a known paedophile arrested on an “unrelated charge”.  I suppose we’ll have to wait for the next episode on this one, but one would have thought the biggest investigation into a missing child would have started with the cops going through existing paedophiles.

Oh and #CarolBaskin forged the will.  #JusticeforMrBaskin?  (Can’t remember his name)

I want to close with something positive but I’ll have to opt for motivational.  There is a narrative in SA for #CoVid19 that is #ChangeYourBehaviour, it extends to every aspect of the human race, not #ChangeEveryonesBehaviour #JustYours.


5th June 2020



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