by Albert Brenner
December 11, 2006 01:00 PM EST
Tailored guilt comes in varying shades; most of it is black on white. Penance being paid can be worn as many garments, be it a Mandela pin, a Bono/Geldoff Save-Africa rock concert, affirmative action, South African black economic empowerment or a Brangelina Black-baby adoption shopping-spree. Uniform in complexion, all are interwoven with a single strand displaying the conscious intention of its Western wearer to placate a troublesome conscience.
On the catwalk of guilt those who strut their stuff in white are invariably assured of popular acclaim in a moral universe subsisting on blame. To clothe a multi-colored world in the most preciously-held Western ideals demands absolute dedication to perceived universal designs (e.g. freedom, democracy, human rights, and scientific/universal truths). Wearing the most ill-fitting clothes of Western design, Africa continuous to steal the limelight by virtue of parading its moral nudity as enlightened purity. And no amount of African horror can stain the liberal perception that all is to be gained by allowing Rousseau's Noble Savage to dictate the high ground of 21-century morality.
Mandela has, in a recent poll, been voted as the most admired leader in the world. Admired for what? Well, basically for being the best dressed African in Western clothing. Having adorned himself with all that we in the West deem as virtuous, Mandela (as a symbol of African moral purity), has been elevated to the position of judge and jury of all that is good and evil in this complex world we live in.
Credit should be given where it is due; Mandela certainly struts his borrowed clothes like a model of the highest repute (e.g. Naomi Campell), but does the Emperor have any real (home-spun) clothes? People tend to forget that Mandela is of 'noble' birth. I.e. his forefathers (and peers) were/are the dictatorial leaders of the Africa we have become so accustomed to ever since the West ventured to the shores of the Dark Continent. It suffices to say that he was born to lead, come hell (his ex-anti-capitalism) or high water (Apartheid). It also goes without saying that all leaders want freedom...to rule! But does the quest for freedom automatically translate into adherence to human rights& dignities and true democracy? Even a cursory glance at modern-day Iraq tells us that certain Western assumptions can be used as weapons of mass distraction.
Getting back to Mandelatopia; there were no human rights in pre-colonial Africa, nor were there any freedoms for the individual, scientific progress (a written language, the wheel, etc); nothing we can now, given our own civilization's journey through history, recognize as remotely progressive. In short; there was no Afro-Atlantis, something recalcitrant liberals conveniently forget in their suicidal quest to clothe the Other in their ideals in the hope of straightening the crooked timber of humanity....for all eternity.
Be that as it may, how well does/did Mandela's Western clothes fit him? The most prudent way to judge a leader is to look at his/her legacy. Hitler was a brilliant leader, but what were the consequences (legacy) of his actions? One only has to look at the legacy of the American Founding Fathers to realize what a magnificent contribution they made to humanity as a whole. Their efforts may not be appreciated in modern-day Iraq and Afghanistan, but they surely cannot be blamed for trying to enlighten the unenlightened. Mandela's legacy on the other hand is definitely not as commendable as lauded ad nauseum in Oprahverse.
When it comes to acknowledging universal scientific facts, he failed abysmally. For example, he blatantly ignored dire warnings by the Apartheid government that AIDS will have a devastating effect on the black population. With 800 blacks dying of AIDS per day in South Africa - and having buried his own son because of AIDS, the Emperor must surely take a long hard look at himself in the mirror every morning. Hell, even his chosen successor, Mbeki, still does not belief that AIDS is caused by a virus! It is therefore also no wonder that America asked the Apartheid government to dismantle its nuclear weapons, lest Mandela's old cronies (Arafat, Ghadaffi, Castro, etc) get hold of technology that would have emboldened them to live out their own dictatorial instincts...power at all cost!
When it concerns Western-induced moral imperatives, Mandela also fails to make the grade. He has never, not once, criticized Mugabe's horror regime in Zimbabwe, even though Mugabe exemplifies everything that he (Mandela) is praised (and given a Nobel Peace Prize) for opposing. Moral schizophrenia is nothing new on a continent whose fate is determined by Golem-like* leaders who will not hesitate, for one moment, to use the end to justify the means.
These are but a few examples of how ill-fitting the Emperor's clothes really are, if he has any! What is good enough to wear for the Western goose is obviously not good enough to adorn the African gander. And yet we still 'feel good' when heaping accolades on those who defile the very fabric of all that we hold dear. Africans are above reproach! The race-card is the Joker that always wins the hand for those who excel in the politically-correct game of populist power-poker.
In short; we keep on washing Africa's blood-stained garments with a Macbethian vigor (White Guilt) hell-bent on tearing asunder all that our hard-earned conscience (e.g. the Reformation, the French Revolution, and the American Constitution) shed a million tears for. Who abolished slavery? Who ended slavery and Apartheid? It definitely wasn't Africa. Slavery is alive and well on the Dark Continent; child soldiers, black-owned white sex-slaves and ethnic Apartheid still soil the very ground intended to bear the fruit of our US$ half-trillion investment in Africa's upliftment, not to mention the millions of Westerners who have died to make the world a better place for all humanity.
We surely have taken on a tremendous task in endeavoring to tailor the world according to our designs. Whether our garments will be fashionable in times to come, is obviously best left to the modeling of human history. But, lest we deny ourselves, let us not further the agendas of the naked who have managed to slip into (and under) our moral skin in order to make the Emperor appear clothed.
Here is a link to a video-clip where Mandela sings about killing whites;
(The white man to his left is the old Communist stalwart, Ronnie Kastrils - current Minister of Intelligence in South Africa)
More than 2000 white farmers have been killed in the past 12 years. Here is a link to one of the websites where these atrocities are chronicled (CAUTION: extremely horrific images!)
Source: The conservative voice