15.6.06

Hector Pieterson

I was recently involved in a conversation in which one of the participants did not know who Hector Pieterson was. The others proceeded to scold the shit out of him for his ignorance. What an idiot. I wouldn’t usually be that critical on someone, but in this case I have no choice: that someone turns out to be me.

Hector Pieterson was killed alongside 565 other school children on June the 16th 1976, while they were protesting the compulsory teaching of Afrikaans in their schools. The only difference between him and the others is that there was a photographer nearby to immortalize the image of his death.

Of all events we commemorate on public holidays, this one is surely one of the most poignant, right up there with the birth and death of your personal choice of a pseudo-God. If you’re not affected by 565 children being shot to death, you’re probably dead yourself. I suppose it's doubly apt that Youth Day commemorates these children, since even though they would now have been in their forties were they alive, they will be children forever.

Hector Pieterson. For me this is going to be one of those names/words/concepts that you go for years never even knowing it existed and then suddenly, when you learn of it, you hear it all the time. And then, one day, it comes up in conversation and a friend doesn’t know anything about it, and you take great pleasure in scolding the shit out of him.

God, what an ignoramus.

7 comments:

Voica said...

a bare traumatic rendition

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

1. Wrong!, only 76 people were killed that day mate! and that was because they were pushed in front of the ANC & PAC Cadres that was instigating the upheavel.
2. The shooting started when the Police station were stormed by these people.
3.The young Policemen manning the station started to shoot in total panic!

WHAT WOULD YOU DO? I also suggest that you read up about Communist Doctrine - how the uneducated masses are used to reach your objective or aim..

b said...

dear anon

"1. Wrong!, only 76 people were killed "

I'll go with wikipedia on this one.

"2. The shooting started when the Police station were stormed by these people."

Rubber bullets were not yet invented i suppose. tear gas?

"3.The young Policemen manning the station started to shoot in total panic!"

you panic and shoot 566 (67 whatever) school children, not in the legs, straight in the head, it seems.


"I also suggest that you read up about Communist Doctrine - how the uneducated masses are used to reach your objective or aim."

what in the heck is my aim? the opposite of "SA is crap", i suppose. opposite of hate, helplessness and patheticness (to coin a word).

Anonymous said...

Dear "B"

1.Wikipedia is wrong, don't believe everything you read.
2.Our lives were in mortal danger, rubber bullets would not stop thousands of them.
3.Not all were headshots - if you under that tipe of pressure this type of shooting just don't happen.
4. Don't ever say SA is crap, I also fought for this country when I was young.

Check out the movie"Terms of Engagement" you will find out what I mean..

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Anon here again it's called "Rules of Engagement" then you will see how this tipe of operation play out - the good guys is always the bad guys - ole Commie trick.

b said...

anon

i have to choose between someone i've never met, and the consensus number reflected by wikipedia. perhaps if you directed me to some website or book that supports your number i can be persuaded.

I have seen “rules of engagement” and I understand your point. I wasn’t there, so it’s difficult to argue against it. However, it happened, and it was inevitable. The young soldiers were just pawns, the masterminds were sitting comfortably at home.

I don’t think SA is crap, and I’m glad you don’t agree. I assumed you followed my trail from the blog “South Africa is crap”, and that you are one of the blogmaster The Almighty Realist’s disciples. My apologies.

Thanks for your comments.

B

PS: When you say “our lives”, do you mean to say you were actually there!?