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Friday, October 12, 2012

Weapon of mass distruction

 My CD player has not been working for a while so I've been forced to listen to 702..a chat radio station during the week, but which has fantastic music over the weekends.

By the end of yesterday, I wanted to slit my blumming wrists!!!!!!  I listened to producer after producer discussing topics pertinent to our current news:  i.e. A step-father/child-rapist who's life sentence for raping his 12 year old step daughter, was commuted, because she "did not scream" while being raped, she "consented" for rewards, and there is no "evidence" of physical or psychological harm.  I won't elaborate at this point, as to how I felt about this judgement, or how I reacted to it, except perhaps to say.... "give that peadophilic b@#$%rd to me (and lots of ladies I know),.... they want screams,..... I'll give them screams"!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I thought the life sentence for child-rape in this country was mandatory ...!! Obviously not.

Then, there was a story of our police force...that most of them are overweight and failed their fitness tests...UNABLE to run 2 km in 20 minutes!!! With that in mind, the next story was of a truck-driver who died of his head injuries, and another who was burned alive in his truck yesterday, during the trucking strike (which happily ended today).  Where were our police???  (other than sitting in their cars with a cell phone to one ear and a "double Mac" being shoveled into their mouths) Their response was that the perpetrators "disappeared into thin air".  Case closed.

The mining strike is continuing and so far has cost this country over R3B....and our state president is, all the while, building a mansion in Inkantla, Natal, for his gazillion wives and children, of which R2M will be payed by the tax-payer.

On a positive note however, the controversial "Spear" painting was declassified yesterday...which has now allowed me to put it onto my blog.

For those who are not familiar with this story, In May this year, SA artist, Brett Murry, exhibited his painting called The Spear" at the popular Goodman Gallery.  Its a painting of Jacob Zuma with his rather nasty-looking third leg exposed.
The reaction was very mixed.  The ANC condemned it as disrespectful and a law-suit was opened against the gallery, followers of Jacob Zuma were vociferous in their anger at Bret Murry, calling hm a racist amongst other things and then proceeded to deface it.

The painting was still bought and is now safely (defacement and all) in Germany.

 Then, a few months letter, a black artist called Ayanda Mabulu painted our president with those same nasty bits exposed ( obviously, after being slammed in a door), which he exhibited in Cape Town.
He called his painting "Umshini Wam", which roughly translated into English means "My Weapon".

Interestingly, there has been a play on words by both artists, comparing his genitalia to a weapon....could this be due to the rape case that once stood over his head....or his claiming that a good shower could prevent AIDS?

The reaction to this particular painting, however more detailed and graphic it is, was subdued.  The ANC just politely asked all artists to "respect" our president.

 Is it because the art work was done by a black person instead of a white?...the "racist" card obviously could not be used.

Throughout history and the history of art, the earliest contemporary pieces always gave voice to the voiceless, exposing troubling social issues which were largely left unchallenged because of fear and politics...or both.

If this man commanded a deep respect from his people, through his leadership, through his governance, through his intelligence, words and actions, I wonder if these paintings would have been done.

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