20/12/2016 18:28 SAST | Updated 20/12/2016 19:48 SAST

ANCYL: There Is Racial Hatred In Our Society

These racist incidences are not isolated but show a "deeper underlying racial hatred that continues to exist".

Rogan Ward / Reuters
Life's not a beach when it comes to cleaning up inherent racism in South Africa.

The African National Congress Youth League has described the recent racist outbursts on social media as indications of a deep-lying hatred in society.

Spokesperson Mlondi Mkhize said racial profiling in public spaces, restaurants, schools and beaches signals a resurgence of racial arrogance that proclaims white supremacy with bravery.

He said such racist incidences "can no longer be classified as 'pockets of incidents' but show a deeper, underlying racial hatred that continues to exist in our society.

The ANC Youth League holds a view that racist arrogance is a result of exercising power that is backed by historically accumulated privilege. "This platform exists only for white people and against black people in the context of the centuries of material and social dispossession," he said.

Mkhize said the current setup of the South African economy breeds racism, with black people lacking material power while the majority of white racists believe their economic standing in society continues to make them a superior race.

The year 2016 has been characterised by racist remarks made on social media, followed by weak apologies. It started early in the year, with real estate agent Penny Sparrow calling black beachgoers in Durban monkeys. And just days ago a Sandton man, Ben Sasonof, found himself on the wrong side of the law when he posted a racist remark on social media, also criticising black people at the beach.

Mkhize said the ongoing white domination of the ownership of capital and the economy feeds the arrogance shown by racists. The ANCYL would put pressure on the mother body to move swiftly to expropriate land and to take away the power white people seemed to believe they have, due to control of the land, he added.

"The arrogance of racists is fed by the belief that their wealth, coupled with white privilege they continue to receive makes them a superior race. The ANC Youth League holds a firm view that if we do not temper (tamper) with the current ownership structure of our economy we will not undermine white supremacy."

The ANCYL would "relentlessly" lobby the government to pass laws that will "pull the plug on the main sources of white privilege, white power, and white arrogance. We must move faster with land expropriation and economic transformation because this is what sustains white supremacy. We must put sustained pressure on the ANC government to create a regulatory framework to do this," he said.

The organisation will also lobbying for laws making racism a crime punishable by imprisonment.

"We can no longer file for charges that only result in fines. We should criminalise racism with a minimum jail sentence of 10 years," said Mkhize,adding that the time for pickets and marches against racism was over.