Over the last 150 days we have learned much about the power of the habitual in post-millennial, post-apartheid South Africa. We have heard it in the grumbling, cavilling, quarrelling and grousing about the logic (or lack of) of government decrees. We have also seen it in the defiance of logic among the many bourgeois folks who mistook their entitlement for rights, whether to go running, do yoga on the beach, surf, get takeaway coffees, or to purchase items subjected to restricted trade… We saw it in the contradictory messages relayed by official government channels, in the conflict between some experts advising government, between government officials and such experts, and in the ways in which opposition parties contradicted themselves as they opposed government proclamations.
The premise of this satirical piece from Jon Stewart’s Daily Show is of course not entirely correct – as anyone who reads the letters pages of South African newspapers (or the comments section of this Blog!) would attest, but the way in which it mocks that arch-racist Dan Roodt is brilliant. By mocking Roodt (seemingly without him realizing), the interviewer is not giving him the power to make his racist views potent and hurtful. Roodt merely becomes a buffoon and a laughing stock – and hence powerless.
A lesson for South Africans, perhaps?
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Oliver – World Cup 2010: Into Africa – The Amazing Racists|