Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Passing of the Baton

During the last few years we have seen so many of the old guard moving out to pasture and/or dying. As we ponder the chances they took, the stands they made, and the courage required to stand up and say NO, we can only hope the younger generation will continue the courageous effort required to thumb their noses at evil and authoritarian menaces. As we admire the larger-than-life figures on the world stage(i.e. Mandela, Suzman, et al), we need to also thank and acknowledge all those others who were equally courageous and without whom the big fish could not swim. My mother, who died on 2 January, was a member of The Black Sash. In the 1950's and '60's, these women held silent, public vigils....true Ghandians and MLKs.....against the atrocities and inhumanities of the Apartheid regime. They endured rotten eggs and tomatoes thrown at them; curses cast upon them; the indignities of jeers and taunts. They believed that these were minor in comparison to Pass Laws, the Group Areas Act, the "pencil test", and other, more egregious acts of disgusting behaviour of one set of humans against another. Please take the time to read about the history of The Black Sash.

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