One of my white expatriate friends in the UK has a habit of sharing white supremacist bullshit on Facebook. He’s shared rubbish before about the murder of white people by black people in South Africa, and this time he shared this rubbish about white squatter camps in South Africa.
Is it really so difficult to think critically rather than credulously passing along whatever you read that suits your racist agenda? The article cites BEE (Black Economic Empowerment) as the reason for growing poverty among white South Africans. My first step before accepting a report on any site as factual (ignoring that the one in question provides no evidence of the alleged “camps”) is to peruse other content of the same website… Is there an agenda? Is this really a news site or do all its articles share a common theme?
The article shows photos of children in the alleged white squatter camps (shanty towns), and gives details of an organisation that’s helping those people. The address (and banking details!) of the organisation is given, but notably absent are the addresses of the white shanty towns themselves. In this day and age, where I can find the address of anything using Google Maps before driving there, where the GPS is my driving aid of choice, at the very least I would expect those photos to be accompanied by addresses and GPS coordinates. Or how about some statistics about the increase in white poverty and the population growth, along with the locations, of the alleged camps? A legitimate article about such a subject should contain a few graphs to help us visualize the plight of the poor and the rise in white poverty.
Note that the organisation helping those people is “Boere Gemeenskap Transvaal”. That name alone should tell you all you need to know. It’s an Akrikaans name that translates as “Farmer Community Gauteng”. “Boer” is Afrikaans for farmer, but is also slang used by white Afrikaans people to describe themselves. “Transvaal” is the old name for Gauteng – old as in apartheid-era name. So this community is a community of white people who look out for other white people.
Where are the adults in the photos? I’m not saying that we should simply be sceptical of such photos. I’m saying that we should immediately disregard them as fake, or not what they appear to be.
There are plenty of poor communities in South Africa. Even if we are to accept that there are some poor “white” communities, we should ask ourselves why those communities are only white… An area that is predominantly white or even all-white doesn’t necessarily mean that white poverty is on the increase. It could simply mean that those communities are made up of white trash who are intolerant of other people. There are plenty of areas here that are saturated by drug addiction, which leads to destitute children. (Again, where are the adults in the photos? I can identify drug addicts from their photos alone. Too bad they are missing.) Growing poverty is an issue here, but why care specifically about white poverty? I smell a rat, and that rat’s name is Racism. Sprinkled with white supremacy.
It would be valid to criticize our venerable wannabe dictator, Jacob Zuma (SA’s president). It would be valid to point out that he is a self-enriching crook who has protected himself with cronies, and turned the ANC into a laughing stock and his personal cleanup squad. But let’s not make this about race. The problems in this country are due to some corrupt people with power. The colour of their skin is irrelevant.
To conclude, the article is from a website with a clear agenda, one where white supremacists would like to present a view of white people being persecuted, by black people. Maybe they genuinely believe it? That was what white racists always feared about the abolition of apartheid – that black people, who they regard as inferior, would not be able to govern, and that the racist system of apartheid would reverse such that white people would be oppressed by black people. Articles like those on the site in question present a narrative that this is what happened (even though it has not), which is convenient for the confirmation bias of people like my expatriate friend who ran away. It confirms that his worst fears have come to pass, and that his choice to run away was the right one.
The name of the organization mentioned treats apartheid with nostalgia, by not recognizing the new province name of the former “Transvaal”. That is, the source is white racist propaganda. While some articles on their site might contain a grain of truth, all propaganda, and in fact all well-crafted lies contain some truth. One should disregard everything on such a website as outrageous lies, and should not pass it along. Think before you share, for goodness sake…