Thoughts on South African and international politics and culture

Thursday, June 10, 2004

I take it as a real triumph for the our fledgling democracy, and a lucid indication of how far this country has come in the last decade, when the release of Eugene Terreblanche on Friday raises very little media coverage, and the majority of the offered column space is laced with a subtle derision. Feared this man no longer is, and the non-white population of Ventersdorp will be greeting him with interest and amusement, akin to some sort of washed-out 80's electronica celebrity.

The Mail & Guardian reports that he will be "welcomed by a brass band and flanked by two riders, he will mount a black horse and parade through town to a hotel, where he will give a press conference." Question 1: Will he fall off? Question 2. Will anyone care?

I did have to chuckle at this quote from Terreblanche's lawyer, Gerrie Basson. "His ideology hasn't changed but he has become more tolerant. He's not a racist, more a xenophobe who respects his own kind more." One of the best euphemisms I've ever heard! 'A xenophobe who respects his own kind more', I think that inherently implies denigration of others that are not his 'own kind', doesn't it?