I was sitting on my verandah in what is, for me, the most beautiful country in the world, listening to the falsetto popcorn-popping symphony of the tiny frogs in the next-door garden and wondering what on earth to put on this blog.
Should I move away from the past fortnights’s hateful utterings of South African extremism and begin to look forward to what I believe will be the most beautiful celebration of our humanity at this year’s World Cup? This thought held great appeal.
I was trying to get my synapses crackling around this idea when a comment popped up in my Facebook stream. This led me to a group named “Vierkleur” which led me to a website called something like Boerevryheid2010 which displayed a video entitled “South Africa: The Final Battle”.
I feel it is my duty as a “SA-positive” South African to try to understand the thinking of those polarised on both extremes of domestic politics, the displaced and angry white Boer and the disgruntled and seemingly equally angry black South African.
So i watched this video… (please allow it to fully buffer so as to have uninterrupted viewing)…
This left me feeling deeply saddened. Then five words popped into my head. The title of one of my favourite songs of all time – “Why Can’t We Live Together?”, by Timmy Thomas. It’s a beautiful tune, one which I hadn’t heard in a while. I searched for it on YouTube. And listened. And got wondrous shivers up and down my spine. And then I cried. For those people who fear and hate so much that they can’t live together in South Africa. And I cried for our country. And then I sat, listening to those frogs singing their falsetto popcorn song and was immediately lifted into believing that we are going to be just fine.
Listen to Sade (I chose this version because of the added visuals) singing “Why Can’t We Live Together?”. I defy you not to feel moved…
OK. So why can’t we live together? I believe that we can. We may have cultural differences but, for crying out aloud, let us all just celebrate those differences and stop living in the past.
Let us all be South Africans first and foremost, be proud of how far we have come, be “SA-positive and walk forward into a brave and bright new future. We owe it to South Africa, we owe it to our children who are South Africa’s future and we owe it to ourselves.
Let’s learn to live together. Please.