Reflections on a tragic week…

At the end of this very busy week, I have been reflecting about the events I have encountered and that have been on the news recently. Leading this nationally, is of course the tragic Lonmin mining massacre. Locally, in Hillbrow this week I learned of 5 more deaths including two police officers, a man who was shot by people who wanted to occupy his bedroom and 2 more homeless people who died of the cold. I again heard several accounts of police brutality towards the poor and homeless. Blankets were also taken away from the homeless on the streets for the third time in two weeks.

Our very human response to all of this is to ask the question: “Who is to blame?” We want someone to take responsibility and be held accountable.

Could it be … that we are all to blame? We are all at fault because we have neglected our duty to create a society that places high value on all people. We have pursued personal gain at the expense of others’ human dignity. We have lost sight of the dream for national reconciliation and healing and of a non racial, democratic South Africa. We have allowed workers to be exploited, earning wages which are not enough to live on. We have allowed the police to develop a culture of violence through our inaction. We have not been active citizens in helping establish justice and peace in our land. If anyone is to blame, let it start with me. I am going to take responsibility for this mess. I want to be held accountable to stop the tide… Will you join me?

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