Everything was subordinated to the security of the state as determined by those in power. It made white South Africans feel that there was a bad world out there, eager to get them, to destroy their "South African way of life." This hostile world wanted to overthrow a Christian government and replace it with an ungodly, atheistic, undemocratic, Communist dictatorship. The apartheid government as propaganda machine was adept at pointing out the disasters that had befallen countries to the north of us in Africa that had adopted socialism - basically they had come to a sticky end because these unreliable, feckless blacks had taken over.Desmond goes on to say, though, that there is hope. South Africa managed to take that path. I hope that America takes a good, honest look at the values that the founder of its main religion actually stood for, and not the hate, discrimination, and dehumanization that some of its members seem to want to use to rule this country. I hope that Americans choose to take the path of hope and true change (even though it is more difficult) that their fellow South Africans have chosen.
None but the most obtuse can doubt that we are experiencing a radical brokenness in all of existence. Times are out of joint. Alienation and disharmony, conflict and turmoil, enmity and hatred characterize so much of life.
Now and again we catch a glimpse of the better thing for which we are meant - when for a little while we are bound together by bonds of a caring humanity, a universal sense of ubuntu. Then we experience fleetingly that we are made for togetherness, for friendship, for community, for family, that we are created to live in a delicate network of interdependence. There is a movement, not easily discernible, at the heart of things to reverse the awful centrifugal force of alienation, brokenness, division, hostility, and disharmony. God has set in motion a centripetal process, a moving towards the center, toward unity, harmony, goodness, peace, and justice, a process that removes barriers. Jesus says "And when I am lifted up from the earth, I shall draw everyone to myself" as he hangs from His cross with outflung arms, thrown out to clasp all, everyone and everything, in a cosmic embrace, so that all, everyone, everything, belongs. No one is an outsider, all are insiders, all belong. There are no aliens, all belong in the one family, God's family, the human family. There is no longer Jew, Greek, male or female, slave or free - instead of separation and division, all distinctions make for a rich diversity to be celebrated for the sake of the unity that underlies them. We are different so that we can know our need of one another, for no one is ultimately self-sufficient. The completely self-sufficient person would be subhuman.*Excerpts taken from No Future Without Forgiveness by Desmond Tutu.