My name is Bernhard Baatjies. You may know me from a feature film made by Anant Sign about my life story, called DOLLARS AND WHITE PIPES, or very recently I produced a show for SABC called COLOUR TV.
Firstly I have to commend Delroy on his comment about the marginalization of Coloured People in media.
This is a very real issue and I commend him for noting this, I hope that with this comment of mine I will shed some more light on this matter to all.
I have dedicated my life to pursue this very cause, as I am one of millions of Coloured South Africans who had voted out an apartheid government and voted in, and for a new democratic government with a constitution and bill of rights I expected would, for a change celebrate , nurture and at very least protect my heritage,culture and traditions I practice.
This expectation in its most basic appeal is nothing more than the very essence and cornerstone of ANY democracy worldwide.
With our votes as new free citizens , im sure we all expected every benefit that comes with living in a democratic society as apposed to a oppressive system like apartheid.
Glad to say that with great leaders, fighters and pioneers of the struggle we got exactly what we wanted, a country free to all with limitless benefits irrespective of colour or cultural difference.
Yet a sad and obvious truth is apparent, we seemingly are a country of only 2 races...Black and White.
Research of world population statistics documents MIXED RACE as a separate demographic.
In fact the MIXED RACE demographic is the fastest growing demographic (useless info-but just remember that)
Our votes not only said YES to the new system of democracy, but also a Bill Of Right attached to a solid constitution.
Therefore: in agreeing to vote for your new government we collectively agreed in principle to our new constitution in its totality.
In this said constitution the country gets sub-divided into 4 demographics- BLACK-WHITE-COLOURED and INDIAN/ASIAN, this is a common and correct procedure for ALL democracies worldwide as it recognizes all its citizens diversity and individual rights.
In SA the population split is as follows:79% Black 9.2% White 9% Coloured and 2.8% Indian/Asian.
If this is the case, is it not correct to say or assume that based on the above-mentioned percentages it would only be fair that every sub-culture should receive the relevant media exposure by its national broadcaster?
Are the traditions that my grandparent handed down to me from their grandparents not relevant enough in this new democracy, even though I am almost the second largest demographic?
Irrespective of the differences within our/my culture is it fair to disregard my demographic in its entirety?
Why has our national broadcaster (SABC) paid for and commissioned a show like EASTERN MOSAIC for the past 9yrs, thereby fulfilling their constitutional obligation to programming quotas for the smallest grouping, yet they frown and totally disregard any for Coloured people?
It makes no sense how a national broadcaster uses TV licence payments from ALL South Africans (not forgetting our tax-payers money, as they are a para-state institution) and spends Millions anually on 2.8% yet totally disregard the media rights of a far greater 9%.
Is it not our basic right to have programming as Coloureds on all our channels because MY and YOUR constitution recognizes us as a demographic. (and almost the second largest demographic to be totally honest)
It is entrenched in the constitution and accepted by the ENTIRE nation that we recognize these 4 separate demographics, and we as citizens abide by this to such an extent that on a census form we are obligated and/or obliged to note our culture/demographic diffence for record purposes.
Why then are we accepting so much less in our very basic right like media exposure?
The Coloured communities culture,heritage and traditions (no matter how diverse) is being bled out at such a fast and sickening rate, it borders on cultural genocide.
Why are we so blind to this? is it because we are starting to believe the propaganda- machine that we are a lessor and/or second rate society that is so diverse and separate that we dont matter as a culture?
We need to be very aware of the worlds oldest strategy at war...."Divide and concur"
Soon Coloured people will be so divided that we ourselves will submit and ask to be absorbed into one of the other 3 demographics.
In fact, this is already the sad truth I have discovered in my years of research.
Many Coloured people say they Black,some even claim to be White, and this is a sad sign of a culture that will soon be forgotten.
I implore you to STOP and start speaking to your grandparents and see the values and traditions they have carried with them and held dear to them which they only wish could be carried on to your children.
There are many traditions that are very specific to our culture , the 21st KEY , the koeksister with klapper, hair-treatments and yes even the 'passion gap'(to mention just a few), but we have be so programmed to see them all as bad that we starting to believe.
I have seen men with their bodies hurt and legs or arms amputated, but there is no sadder sight than the sight of a man with an amputated soul.
It is time to rise up up my fellow citizens and start demanding our rights as first class citizens, after all we where the loudest voice in the country when our fellow black brothers and sister freedom fighters where exiled and couldn't fight from inside.
We lost our lives mostly during the 76 riots , yes the UDF was the voice of the voiceless and yes we stood up for that 79% of our Black brothers and sisters way back then.
Its time to rise up now and not just accept crumbs from the cake that we have played equal part to bake.
The white Afrikaners (of the past) have even gone as far as stealing our language we started and claimed it their own.
Let me explain this:
There is no version that makes any sense or documented proof how the Dutch just suddenly started to water down their own language and 'invented' Afrikaans, it makes no sense to any person with any logical thinking how a proud Dutch nation could just start changing there own language.
Here is the only plausible definition and the one that I know makes total sense to me.
It is no secret that when JVR landed and claimed the Cape as theirs, they used the locals (Khoi) as slaves to work their farms and also in all their homes.
Over the years more and more Khoi started to work for the Dutch masters yet there was a huge communication barrier in homes and on the land.
This led to many beatings and even deaths.
The Khoi nation being the smart and advanced culture that they where at the time (only documented culture that used paintings and writing at that stage in Africa) slowly used there own version of the masters language to communicate better.
This as we came to know its was called Kombuis Afrikaans, as it was the language that the slaves used to speak to the masters in the kitchen where they worked.
This language was a breakthrough and a blessing to even the Dutch for productivity and after many years became so widely used that the Dutch themselves adapted it due to the fact that they now spent more time in SA than in Holland.
As kids grew up in these dutch homes they learnt not the dialect spoken in Holland but this new language now used as their everyday communication.
So back to now....
I am starting a movement that will hold the SA Government accountable for marginalizing us as a demographic and not living up to their constitutional obligations as stipulated in our Bill Of Rights.
Soon I will pitch a new TV series to SABC and I hope it will appeal to as many of you as possible.
Please feel free to send me your suggestions and comments, as I want to try incorporate as many opinions as possible in the new series.
I would also like to know your feelings on me pursuing a constitutional court application demanding the media rights we deserve based on our constitution.
Please mail me at email@example.com or go to the facebook page for Colour TV.
+27 82 5835995
Posted by: bernhard