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Lived in South Africa during Apartheid years. AMA

37 replies

iswhatisis · 15/07/2018 19:45


OP posts:
Mooey89 · 15/07/2018 20:49

Do you still have friends/family in sA? How old were you when you left?

Tortycat · 15/07/2018 20:55

Would you like to move back?
Do you think the older members of your family are still racist?
Do you feel guilty for being racist at the time and did you vote while living there?

iswhatisis · 15/07/2018 21:11

No I would not like to move back.
The older members of my family are not racist. Distance lends clarity.
Part of me feels guilty but another part thinks, well I had no choice.
I was moved to another country when I was very young. I had to adapt.
Sink or swim.

OP posts:
iswhatisis · 15/07/2018 21:15

I still have friends who live in SA.
Most of those who have stayed have their own businesses.
Under the new regime it's difficult for whites with ordinary skills to survive as there has been a lot of 'positive discrimination' ie. jobs going to black people, to try to redress the balance.

OP posts:
LunaTrap · 15/07/2018 21:22

Do you not think your parents were racist? You were a child so had no choice but they were adults and with full awareness of the situation yet chose to benefit from an oppressive regime. I couldn't imagine anybody choosing to go there given the international view and publicity of what was going on, unless they were racist.

iswhatisis · 15/07/2018 22:28

Hmmm. Tough one.
It was at a time when employment in UK was at a low.
Parents with mouths to feed are going to do what's best for their children.

OP posts:
missyB1 · 16/07/2018 07:39

It took a long time for the scales to fall from my DH’s eyes about his upbringing there. SA was a very censored society, media was controlled tightly by the government. DH was taught that the rest of the world had no right to judge apartheid, and there was a lot of anti British feeling. He wasn’t helped by his parents never discussing politics or encouraging him to think for himself.
Now he totally realises what a strange and privileged little bubble he grew up in, and he would never go back to live there. He’s very grateful that he was able to come to the UK to work for the NHS.

UrsulaPandress · 16/07/2018 07:44

Do you back to visit?

unadventuretime · 16/07/2018 15:16

When did you return to the UK?

Did you experience a big drop in your standard of living when you returned?

Do you feel safer here than there?

iswhatisis · 16/07/2018 16:19

Ursula, every other year to visit my sister , funds permitting.

unadventuretime I didn't notice a big drop. Yes the houses are smaller because of Britain being space poor but other than that I think the standard of living is good, but we do both have fairly good jobs which has made a difference.

I feel this is a safer place to raise my children.

OP posts:
Racecardriver · 16/07/2018 16:42

Do you ever wish that you parents had chosen Australia instead?

How has the whole experience made you feel about Britain? Do you consider it home or SA or both?

Would you move for your children the way your parents did or do you think it would be better to stay put and try to make things work?

Hefzi · 16/07/2018 16:55

Do you think that the farm murders are about race, as some campaigners argue, or are just "regular" crime?

What is your opinion of Malema?

Do you think it's ever possible that the ANC will be defeated in the general elections?

I like South Africa a lot (and speak Afrikaans and Xhosa) but wouldn't live somewhere that I had to live behind bars for my own safety. There's lots of places this is the case, of course, but it seems sad in such a large and bountiful country as South Africa. The first time I visited, my (female, Zulu) taxi driver was outraged at the level of illegal immigration to RSA: "for goodness sake, there's six million of us here - we're full already" Grin

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