we know the truth cos we live it

Today I made my first ever ‘complaint’ against someone. I feel uneasy now at the thought of what the consequences for that person might be, so I’m writing this post to work out if I did the right thing. Here’s what happened:

A South African friend on Facebook shared an article about white people being murdered by blacks. I commented. There was some back-and-forth with others chipping in. One man’s contribution to the discussion was as follows:

“No use arguing with an opinionated libtard. No cure for that. We know the truth cos we live it.”

In case it’s not obvious, the libtard is me. I didn’t reply. The man had made it clear that nothing I say interests him. I felt sad. Who is this guy? I looked at his Facebook page. He is a middle aged Afrikaans man. He recently celebrated his wife’s birthday. He is proud that his son was chosen to play in the under 16s Bokkie Week. He rides a big motorcycle. He listens to Karen Zoid. Even without the endorsement of our friend in common, this man seems like someone I could appreciate. If we met at a braai, I might chirp that he was quite hip for an old ballie, and he might call me a libtard. I was really warming to the man and thinking maybe I’d reply in a nice way when I noticed his job title: he is the deputy headmaster of a Christian prep school. Suddenly his comment took on new meaning. This man who calls himself a teacher considers thinking an incurable malady. His contempt for argument is an insult to the whole education project. I looked up his school’s website. It seems like a wonderful place. I like what they stand for there, so I wrote to the headmaster.

Everyone has one Facebook event that really got under their skin. This is mine. It’s taken writing this post to work out why. I think it’s wrong to sort people into good and bad. We’d all end up in the bad pile. But there are certain professions, considered callings, in which people aspire to be noble. One of these professions is teaching. The man’s comment offended me when I realised that he was a teacher because he is supposed to care about truth. He is supposed to welcome questions. His contempt for me and my attempts to understand a complex situation should not be acceptable in his profession. That’s basically what I said to the headmaster. He replied immediately, sad and cross. I felt relieved.

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2 thoughts on “we know the truth cos we live it”

  1. It is a strange but true thing to say,and it is particularly noticeable on facebook, that people living in South Africa, will not accept any comments about the situation in this country coming from anyone who has left the country. They seem to think that if you no longer live here you have forfeited the right to comment on the situation here. I have seen derogatory comments made again and again by South Africans against those who they feel might in some way be criticizing South Africans, particularly white people. I think this is because so many people are disillusioned by what has happened in our beloved country and we are made to feel constantly guilty for the mess we find ourselves in. We often do not feel welcome or needed in our own country, despite the fact that most people who have remained here really want things to work and make sacrifices on a daily basis in order to improve matters.It is very difficult to watch our country fall apart and then be criticized by those who are not experiencing what we are. So don’t take the remark personally. I am sure that your comment was not meant to be critical but the response was probably a knee jerk reaction from someone very frustrated by what is happening here. They are probably of the same ilk as those who voted for brexit and Tump! Just very frustrated!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Sarah, thanks for your response, so appreciated. Rory and I have been heading in the same direction in our thinking, re: Brexit & Trump. I love your idea about people feeling edged out, and not knowing what they have to offer. Thanks again xx

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