I want your opinion on this

David Bullard was fired for publishing this colum in the sunday times last week.

they say the remarks are racist and while I should say that I dont agree with his closing comment, he raises a good point.

What would AFRICA be like if the brits and their kin had not colonised the place.

I especially would like my ethnik readres (what is the politically correct term here?) to comment as I am aware that I am seeing this from a white persons perspective.

Imagine for a moment what life would be like in South Africa if the evil white man hadn’t come to disturb the rustic idyll of the early black settlers.

Ignored by the Portuguese and Dutch, except as a convenient resting point en route to India. Shunned by the British, who had decided that their empire was already large enough and didn’t need to include bits of Africa.

The vast mineral wealth lying undisturbed below the Highveld soil as simple tribesmen graze their cattle blissfully unaware that beneath them lies one of the richest gold seams in the world. But what would they want with gold?

There are no roads because no roads are needed because there are no cars. It’s 2008 and no one has taken the slightest interest in South Africa, apart from a handful of botanists and zoologists who reckon that the country’s flora and fauna rank as one of the largest unspoilt areas in a polluted world.

Because they have never been exposed to the sinful ways of the West, the various tribes of South Africa live healthy and peaceful lives, only occasionally indulging in a bit of ethnic cleansing.

Their children don’t watch television because there is no television to watch. Instead they listen to their grandparents telling stories around a fire. They live in single-storey huts arranged to catch most of the day’s sunshine and their animals are kept nearby.

Nobody has any more animals than his family needs and nobody grows more crops than he requires to feed his family and swap for other crops. Ostentation is unknown because what is the point of trying to impress your fellow citizens when they are not impressible?

The dreaded Internet doesn’t exist in South Africa and cellphone companies have laughed off any hope of interesting the inhabitants in talking expensively into a piece of black plastic. There are no unsightly shopping malls selling expensive goods made by Asian slave workers and consequently there are no newspapers or magazines carrying articles comparing the relative merits of ladies’ handbags.

Whisky, the curse of the white man, isn’t known in this undeveloped land and neither are cigars. The locals brew a sort of beer out of vegetables and drink it out of shallow wooden bowls. Five-litre paint cans have yet to arrive in South Africa.

Every so often a child goes missing from the village, eaten either by a hungry lion or a crocodile. The family mourn for a week or so and then have another child. Life is, on the whole, pretty good but there is something vital missing. Being unaware of the temptations of the outside world, nobody knows what it is. Fire has been discovered and the development of the wheel is coming on nicely but the tribal elders are still aware of some essential happiness ingredient they still need to discover. Praying to the ancestors is no help because they are just as clueless.

Then something happens that will change this undisturbed South Africa forever. Huge metal ships land on the coast and big metal flying birds are sent to explore the sparsely populated hinterland. They are full of men from a place called China and they are looking for coal, metal, oil, platinum, farmland, fresh water and cheap labour and lots of it. Suddenly the indigenous population realize what they have been missing all along: someone to blame. At last their prayers have been answered.



~ by nosjunkie on April 11, 2008.

13 Responses to “I want your opinion on this”

  1. Since we are being politically correct today, I would like to publically state that I am not FAT. I’m gravitationally challenged.

    With regards to David Bullard. He was employed by Sunday Times and mandated by them to write a controversial column. This was so because it helped them sell papers. The editors, sub-editors and staff of the Sunday Times also had access to the column 3 days before it was to be published. If they had a problem with it, they should have made an issue then, not afterwards. The column that you highlight here will be offensive to a lot of South Africansa and can be seen as racist and generalisation.

    David Bullard does not work for the Sunday Times, he only contributes to a column. He actually rents a desk at the Sunday Times. They have thus not fired him, but rather decided to stop making use of his writing contributions. He also writes in a lot of other publications. He has been writing this column for the Sunday Times for 14 years.

    In my mind, it’s the Sunday Times that will suffer from this, not him, as they may well lose a lot of readers through this move.

  2. Blah, Blah, Blah. Yes, I see I can write a lot of crap.

  3. Gluggs aparantly you and I both caught John Robbies show this morning on 702… I noticed you always know everything I know.
    But I am not interasted in the nitty gritties of the terms of him employment but rather what people think about it.

    It is a generalisation I agree but doubt that it was ment as racist.
    look the facts are the facts that if colonialism did not happen South-Africa would be very close to what Bullard discribes.
    I dont think it was racist and he could quite easily have commented on what the world would have looked like if the romans had succeeded in coquering the world or what our country (or Zim for that matter ) would have looked like if we hadnt gotten rid of the brits

  4. That article was offensive precisely b/c it’s true! Were the white man not there, some other evil man would be….

    What would AFRICA be like if the brits and their kin had not colonised the place.???

    1. Lower GDP
    2. No rugby

  5. I am for the Mondli Makhanya fan club on this.

    The Bulldog overstepped a mark.

    I could go on about how outrageous it is to assume that the progress of Africa is incumbent on the colonization by European countries, how absurd it is to suggest that progress was the trump card of the white people and the the African’s brains would not have matured beyond whittling and herding cattle.

    But I won’t as those arguments are for scholars and historians.

    I’m just glad he was fired.

  6. From the comments, I think…
    1. the paper is hypocritical to have him write something inflammatory and then fire him for it
    2. the article sounds like it was intended as satire much the same way Jonathan Swift wrote about the Irish-not to say it’s not insulting, but it’s meant as such-I’m sure there are a lot of people that probably think what he wrote
    3. the article is pure speculation because we really don’t know how things would have turned out.

  7. I don’t think the article should be construed as Satire, regardless of whether or not that’s the way it was intended, but perhaps a vocalization of the minority who has been overwhelmed with the sentiment that every imperial effort ever perpetrated by a white power was 100% wrong.

    Hardly touched on are the South-American conquest by the Spaniards and Portugese (at least in my experience).

    I’m not saying that South Africa, or South America or Australia would lack ‘civilization’ were it not for the imperial influence, but there would be a severe lack of technology.

    So, with the evil comes certain perks… including the ability to get out if you so desired – which before would only mean certain doom.

    Good article, shitty stance by the paper – isn’t it time that being Politically Correct be relatively confined to politicians? I’m not advocating hate-pamphlets, but intelligent discourse is definitely worthwhile.

  8. politically correct is sooooo 2001

  9. Oh, and I agree that some of the subjugation and oppression has been awful in South America as well, I was just trying to say that the perception and the amount of press these problems get in Africa and re: Africa are what really seem to be the problem.

  10. There are so many alternative possibilities for Africa developing that to pick one and then vilify it is bizarre. If the paper wanted an extreme position, then they should have the courage of their convictions, as opposed to wimping out and blaming the journalist they bought it from.

    I could build scenarios based on explorers, traders, pharmaceutical companys looking for plants to produce medical cures, etc. Depending on the scenario, almost any time frame. I could also piss off or mollify almost anyone. I find it easier to piss people off, actually.

  11. Interesting. Can’t say I agree. Like most people of Indian origin, I have a bias view of being conquered and ruled by someone else – not a fan. I see his point but don’t agree with it in principle, but then I’ve never been to South Africa so don’t really know what its actually like over there.

  12. and where are the lot of you?

  13. I must say I agree with the ending(suprisingly) Comming from the Netherlands Antilles I feel like people here use colonazation and occupation as anexcuse. Because it’s easier to blame the white men than to admit your own shortcommings. Wich is why there is no progress, because everyone dwells on the atrocities of the past.

    I don’t believe he should have been fire, everyone has a right to his own opinion.

    However I dont agree with the picture he painted. I really don’t think SA would have stayed that underdevelopped had the West not invaded it. Someone would have gone out, came by, people evolve out of a need to survive. The realization that they must invent better tools , better ways to make their life easier. It’s out of characther to imagine SA so remote ad unaffected by the rest of the world, or even by the rest of Africa

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