Yes indeed Kerouac. Once again started by "Bergies" - an Afrikaans term for people living rough. I believe it was touch and go with the UCT library. The last headlines I saw were that the arsonists have been arrested.
The fire may have been beaten at last and the damage can be mended somewhat. But there are twits out there who want the blaze to be even more devastating with hate speech and incitement.
I wont give names because they will mean nothing to anyporters but this is an example on FB;
"Rhodes Memorial must burn to the ground. This is not just a fire but a cleansing process. Colonial rot has no place in society. Let it burn. Students must assist with petrol and paraffin to make sure the step that nature has taken is quickened"
I have news for a person that thinks past history can be changed or obliterated through violent deeds today. History my friend is written in stone. What has happened has happened. Too many people want a free ride on the backs of others. They are the ones that make no positive or memorable good deeds for those who follow.
I am definitely against "cancel culture," which has become so popular recently -- changing innocent product names, changing book titles and content, removng colonial references... On the other hand, I totally understand the desire to remove certain statues and change names glorifying certain military or political figures who also had a very dark side.
I am no expert of Cecil Rhodes, but he definitely seems to have been an absolute white supremacist. But he also did some good things and there is no reason to destroy them. Change their names, explain them, but there is too much destruction in the world to just try to erase them.
Well said Kerouac as you also realize there is so much destruction in the world today. One must also bear in mind that these great men were of an era we can hardly recognise. The way they were brought up- flipping tough - and their vision of helping nations are not appreciated today simply because they are from another nation far far from Africa. I'm thinking Livingston and Stanley. These men bore no hatred for the poor uneducated Africans they engaged with during their expeditions. Those were rough times. Those were times when men showed their metal. In other words you cannot compare today with the foundations they laid for the nation. I think of it in terms of the Pharaohs that built the pyramids. Its was great leaders did. The huge problem comes with even the most educated of men - like Mugabe. They are power hungry and destroy all before them.
People can be so selective when looking at the past. Who was good? Who was bad? I have not noticed any major figures demanding that slave holders like George Washington or Thomas Jefferson be removed from American history (or banknotes!), not to mention changing the name of the American capital.
I know that you have seen the street in front of my covered market at La Chapelle -- rue de l'Olive. The name was changed in 2011 by the city of Paris because it used to be called "rue l'Olive" in honour of Charles Liénard de L'Olive who colonised Guadeloupe. He attacked the local tribes (which he called "savages") and took their women and their land. I have not seen anything positive about him unless one wants to think that making Guadeloupe French was a good thing, but I like the fact that the change of name was perhaps the most gentle in Paris, and who doesn't like olives?
This fire has been an absolute tragedy in many ways. With the bricklayers and workforce we have today the quality will be sorely lacking for a re-construction.. It is a case of South African heritage reduced to ashes by one looney tune. When security is supposed to be updated I think you will find it has actually been downgraded. Yes, there are the crowd that set fire to the Cecile John Rhodes library and monument who no doubt are jumping for joy. Selfish and frightened they go about their evil deeds. They don't want any history and I'm sad to say they wont have any tourists either. Dumb bastards.
You really can't judge a person by today's norms when relating their histories. Their awareness of what things are normal in society comes with education, growing up in different places, and just observing others awareness and opinion.
Travel! Set out and head for pastures new[br] Life tastes the richer when you’ve road worn feet.[br]Ibn Battuta[br]