The problem with this perspective is cancel culture isn’t real, at least not in the way people believe it is. Instead, it’s turned into a catch-all for when people in power face consequences for their actions or receive any type of criticism, something that they’re not used to. I’m a black, Muslim woman, and because of social media, marginalized people like myself can express ourselves in a way that was not possible before. That means racist, sexist, and bigoted behavior or remarks don’t fly like they used to. This applies to not only wealthy people or industry leaders but anyone whose privilege has historically shielded them from public scrutiny. Because they can’t handle this cultural shift, they rely on phrases like “cancel culture” to delegitimize the criticism.
This Business Day cartoon sums up the election rather well. Maybe local government officials and politicians of both the DA and the ANC will now begin to treat people with dignity and respect. Maybe they have learnt from the toilet scandals that one cannot only tell people what they want and what is best for them, but that one must also listen to what they say and take their needs seriously. One lives in hope – despite evidence to the contrary.
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