Charisse Zeifert

Racism will consume us until we start tolerating one another


It began with a now notorious Facebook comment by Penny Sparrow likening black beach-goers to monkeys, and most recently surfaced in the form of "kill a Jew" graffiti at Wits University during the #FeesMustFall protest.

It would seem that for many, the best way to respond to any form of racism is by answering in kind.

Such tit-for-tat abuse has merely seen the anger in our country being fuelled further, with the South African Hate Crimes Commission cautioning us not to "fight racism with racism".

Have we, as a nation, become so desensitized and unconcerned about the hurt we cause each other, thinking that "anything goes"?

Following the Wits graffiti incident, the Vuvuzela, the Wits student newspaper, posted the story on its Facebook page.

In response, someone posted in the comments section, a negative caricature of Jews, a sinister image of scheming evil and corruption of the type used by the hateful regime of Nazi Germany to justify its genocide against the Jews in Europe.

Recent Articles

Successful Israeli Parliamentary Delegation reaffirms importance of dialogue

A delegation of Israeli Members of Parliament (Knesset) is currently on an official visit to South Africa. The delegation has met with leaders across the South African political spectrum, including with the ANC, DA, Cope, ACDP, IFP & FF+. The delegation also met with Jewish and Christian organisations, as well as the Business community.

Durban Jewish Exhibition

Since its initial conceptualisation in 1919, the historic Durban Jewish Club has been not only the centre of Jewish communal life in Durban, but a frequently used public space for the broader society. The building itself, "surrounded by bush, rippling dunes of corrugated white sand mingled with ochre earth", was officially opened on 4 May 1931. Since then, it has been host to generations of people, with a history that has witnessed wars and political unrest, conferences and public meetings and music and theatre performances. 

Sara Gon compares the experience of Penny Sparrow with that of Bongani Masuku

“COSATU has got members here even on this campus; we can make sure that for that side it will be hell”

“COSATU is with you, we will do everything to make sure that whether its at Wits University, whether its at Orange Grove, anyone who does not support equality and dignity, who does not support the rights of other people must face the consequences even if it means that we will do something that may necessarily cause what is regarded as harm…”