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South Africa's Racial Past Continues To Rob It Of Its Prosperous Future

Racism robbed SA of its economic potential and any form of racial perpetuation robs SA of its prosperous future.

19/10/2017 06:21 SAST | Updated 19/10/2017 06:21 SAST
iol.co.za
Xolani Loliwe allegedly denied entry to Gordon's Bay Spur.

Two weeks ago my nephew was abused by two white men in Strand, Cape Town over an altercation that started over a parking bay. As if that was not enough, upon alighting from his vehicle to enter the chain store restaurant, he was again abused by another white man, whom later was established to be the owner who took the racial stereotype abuse a notch higher by blocking his entry to Spur restaurant, reason, "because you are black, so f*ck off...".

The matter is now in front of the courts as we seek justice, the poor young man has since been hospitalised for post-traumatic stress disorder. The problem with racism in South Africa (SA), is that its central thesis is to deny economic participation and emancipation of blacks by whites. It's founding fathers introduced it as a mechanism to ameliorate whites while denying black people economic emancipation.

Outside of economic benefit, white people would have no qualms coexisting with black people in the same space. The unintended consequence of racial exclusion to economic participation of the majority in SA meant the reduced performance of the economy, both in terms of scale for consumer consumption, industrialization and entrepreneurial exuberance.

The resultant effect of racism in SA produced a smaller underdeveloped economy with enterprises generating smaller revenue with reduced fiscal revenue base. In true sense, racism robbed SA of its economic potential and any form of racial perpetuation robs SA of its prosperous future. Therefore, it's logical and fair to suggest that any racist is an enemy of the state who commits economic sabotage and human rights violation.

Thus, with the advent of democracy in SA, with laws against racism and oppression, it has become a responsibility of every individual to ensure they use the ambits of the law to enforce their civil liberties.

The temptation to unleash violence to whites that continue to perpetuate racism after its fall in SA is always an attractive solution to blacks, this due to the historical shape the apartheid resistance took, from being non-violent to violent.

Racism is a human rights violation which the law has redress mechanism for victims.

The difference between democracy and apartheid is that the constitution is an equaliser, racism is a human rights violation which the law has redress mechanism for victims. Meanwhile, during apartheid victims of racism, blacks, didn't recognise the laws nor the constitution that legalised their oppression.

Besides, the government of apartheid only responded to the black quest for justice by unleashing violence necessitating reciprocity from the victims.

This is no longer necessary in a democracy as the constitution ensures egalitarian dispersion of rights and opportunities.

Part of Black Wealth Foundation's (BWF) work, a foundation founded by black professionals to promote and protect economic fortunes and opportunities of black people, is to educate society of its right and obligation to use and protect its civil liberties as guaranteed in the constitution.

Part of nation-building project in SA should entail reeducating black people about the ethos of non-violence in addressing their grievances, while whites need to unlearn racial hatred and value of constitutionalism.