By Mike Smith
21st of June 2011
I had to chuckle when I saw this vitriolic attack on the Cape Party by the editor of the Mail & Guardian (online).
Chris Roper seems to hate this insignificant and small party so much that he spent a good few hours writing and editing his petulant tirade against it and Capetonians in general.
He basically insults them as dumb blondes, racists, trash, wine quaffers and if that is not enough, and when he started to run out of insults he launched into absurdities such as “Vespa-riding and Sushi-eating” people and then jumping on the illegal bandwagon claiming that it is constitutionally illegal for the Western Cape to secede as the Cape Party suggests. Article 235 in the constitution actually makes provision for self determination.
Why does this little party, who has done nothing to him personally and who simply practice their democratic right under the South African constitution, get him so hot under the collar? Why is he so intolerant towards them?
If it really is such a “constitutional illegality”, then why not just ignore the little Cape Party? Why get so upset? It is because Mr. Roper and some other ANC people know that it is in fact possible to secede and are shitting themselves, that they get so worked up.
Now if the Cape is as Racist as Mr. Roper suggests, “…about how racist Cape Town is. Of course it's racist, people, it's in South Africa!“…then why the hell does he make it his home? Why do “Plenty of Black people” also make it their home if it is so utterly racist?
I would like to remind Mr. Roper of the freedom he has under the current SA constitution. He and the “Plenty of Black people” are welcome to move out of “Racist” Cape Town any time they want to. There is nothing holding them in the Cape. Nobody forces them to stay. They should rather go and live in the Eastern Cape where the ANC has an 80% majority.
Please free us from the Cape Party
CHRIS ROPER: LOOKING-GLASS WARS - Jun 17 2011 00:00
There are many unofficial mantras by which South Africans live. "It's only a crime if someone else is doing it" is the most important one to remember. I've got used to people driving while holding their cellphones to their ears.
But I'll never get used to them breaking off their conversations to flash a finger out the window and shout, indignantly: "Look at that stupid bitch driving while talking on her cellphone!"
So the Cape Party, with its quixotic attempt to have the Western Cape secede from South Africa, operates in a fine tradition of civic blindness -- because it's constitutionally illegal, of course. Snide Jo'burgers will point out that the Cape has already seceded from the rest of the country, what with its "one blonde, one vote" policy and its insistence that Eurotrash be added as a 12th official language. So why not make it official?
In fact, why not go even further and actually separate the Western Cape from the African landmass and sail it away to anchor just off France, where the climate is good for growing wine and sneering at customers in restaurants? Well, because only a small part of the Cape fits the stereotype of so-called white, so-called coloured, racist, wine-quaffing Democratic Alliance voters.
There are plenty of black people there too, although the myth being put about is that they are bused in by the DA because you need black people for racism to thrive.
Hout Bay (a small, damp suburb outside Cape Town, also home to horses) famously formed a republic and did a brisk trade in official fake passports. But that was the cutely deranged action of a ¬lunatic fringe, many of whom had buckskin jackets with actual fringes. The Cape Party is something else.
As a fourth-generation or so Capetonian I'm pissed off at the provision of yet more ammunition to the bleating, self-righteous Jo'burgers in the city I now call home, people whose moral high ground appears to be that they'll ¬condescend to take money from any race on earth, whereas in the Cape we only fleece Europeans and white folk. Alas, the Cape Party is the embarrassment that proves their rule.
Its party slogan actually seems to be "Free the Cape" -- from the yoke of constitutional democracy, one assumes. It's tough enough being forced to field accusations from Jo'burgers (no other city seems to care) about how racist Cape Town is. Of course it's racist, people, it's in South Africa! But now I look at the Cape Party and I despair.
I'm not suggesting that it is necessarily racist. I'm sure the new "Cape nation" will allow people from any race in, provided they pass a citizenship test that includes eating sushi while riding a Vespa in the wind. But it is blindingly pretentious and makes it easy to accuse certain types of Capetonians of not thinking of themselves as South African, and certainly not as African.
Chris Roper is the editor of M&G Online. Follow him on Twitter @chrisroperza