1

"If the ANC does to you what the apartheid government did to you, then you must do to the ANC what you did to the apartheid government." – Nelson Mandela

I wrote this novel in what was at the time my 3rd language. My motivations are too complex to explain here, but I must address one matter.

Revolutions have often ended terrible governments. Unfortunately, they have also brought to power the worst of humanity.

Tsar Nicholas III made way for the Bolshevik terror that nearly consumed the earth. Lon Nol was replaced by Pol Pot. Batista was overthrown by Fidel Castro.

What has happened in South Africa is similarly tragic. The world rightly refused to accept the racist apartheid government. No sane person would support them. I grew up hearing about my own father’s disputes with them, which ended in him taking the Minister of Police to court and winning. However, having the ANC as a replacement has been an unmitigated disaster. To understand why, a frank assessment of the ANC is necessary.

Necklacing, a murder method where ANC supporters put tires around the necks of fellow blacks and burned them alive, was common in the townships. It is one of the most painful ways to die, taking up to twenty minutes.

Winnie Mandela said: "With our matches and necklaces we shall liberate this country." She was also actively involved in the kidnapping and murder of an innocent 14-year-old black child, Stompie Moeketsi.

Winnie is presently a member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee, the highest organ of the ANC. A party truly concerned about black rights would never accept such a monster.

Aside from the understandable confrontation with the apartheid government, the ANC engaged in senseless terrorism. On May 20, 1983, a car bomb was set off during rush hour in Pretoria. 17 people were killed and 217 seriously injured. Oliver Tambo, president of the ANC, authorized the terrorist attack.

In 2006, South Africa’s international airport was renamed after Tambo. This is an affront to everyone affected by terrorism. Renaming an airport after a terrorist is especially disrespectful to the victims of 9/11.

Nelson Mandela deserves praise for avoiding a racial bloodbath during the transfer of power. He showed us all what a difference the right attitude can make. Still, it is important to see the new government formation in context with what was to come.

The ANC installed a corrupt police force, making South Africa one of the most dangerous countries on earth. It has a war zone murder rate. Charles Nqakula, Minister of Safety and Security, told those worried about crime to emigrate.

South Africa has the most people with HIV/AIDS in the entire world. This tragedy has not been helped by the ANC’s abysmal public education, which according to academic Rabelani Dagada is worse than the Bantu education of the apartheid government.

The complete lack of compassion that the ANC government has for its people can be highlighted by the Minister of Health, Manto Msimang, who advocated using beetroot instead of ARV’s to treat HIV. Her policies are estimated to have caused the deaths of over 300,000 South Africans. She served under president Thabo Mbeki, who is an AIDS denialist.

Other ignorant beliefs are common in parts of South Africa. One is the removal of a child’s ring finger to prevent bed-wetting. Another is the trust that sex with virgins cures HIV. It has contributed to South Africa having one of the highest rape rates in the world.

Even president Jacob Zuma was charged with rape. He was acquitted, but admitted to having unprotected sex with a woman he knew had HIV. When asked why he didn’t use protection, he said he took a shower to ward off the disease.

Zuma has many other moral and legal failings. Regarding homosexuality, he said: "When I was growing up, a homosexual would not have stood in front of me. I would knock him out." He stated that Afrikaners were the only real white South Africans. His solution to teenage pregnancy is to confiscate the children and force the mothers to obtain degrees. He was linked to the Arms Scandal with his friend Schabir Shaik. At ANC rallies, he sings songs calling for whites to be slaughtered. He also brags about having practiced witchcraft against whites during apartheid. In 2012, he built a private mansion with taxpayer money of $20 million.

On democracy, Zuma said: "You have more rights because you're a majority; you have less rights because you're a minority. That's how democracy works." This statement is an accurate description of the state of South African politics.

Since 2003, the ANC has implemented institutional racism. They compel companies to hire blacks over whites and give preference to deals with other black businesses. Patrice Motsepe amassed $2.9 billion through his ANC connections. His children must be given employment preference over whites living in squatter camps.

Government tenders are also given to black companies regardless if they can produce. If no black candidate can be found for a government job, it is kept open rather than filled by a qualified white candidate. Innocent white children are subject to racist sport quotas.

Listing all the other evil policies and actions of the ANC would require a book on its own. South Africa is doomed with them at the helm. Unemployment is 25-30%. AIDS, murder, rape, inflation, rolling blackouts, and corruption are a way of life.

Apartheid is dead. That’s vital, but means nothing with the ANC in power. It is time that the world sees these red chameleon comrades for what they are and for what they have done. There are brilliant South Africans, of all races, who would thrive under proper leadership. This beautiful country deserves better.

closed as off-topic by hildred, CLockeWork, Lauren Ipsum, Monica Cellio Apr 15 '15 at 15:27

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "While questions that use your writing to illustrate a point in the question are fine, requests for writing critiques are off-topic here. For more information, see Does Writers.SE accept critique requests?" – hildred, CLockeWork, Lauren Ipsum, Monica Cellio
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 2
    Hi SeattleSurfer, this question is currently off topic as we don't do critiques. Please take our tour to find out more. also, it would help to know what kind of writing this would be for, where you intend to get it published and so on. And finally, honest TL:DR, instead maybe just give us a brief of what you aim to convey. – CLockeWork Apr 10 '15 at 15:18
  • Hi CLockeWork, thanks for the comment. It was not meant to be a critique solicitation, more a question on how political a author's note can be. The novel itself is crime fiction. The purpose of the note is to well give insight into the author's motivation and to draw attention to a rogue regime. – SeattleSurfer Apr 10 '15 at 15:53
  • 2
    It's not clear what your question is. An author's note attached to what? A political essay? A novel set in South Africa and about politics? A novel set in South Africa and having nothing to do with politics? A novel having nothing to do with South Africa? A recipe for lasagna on a cooking website? Etc. Whether a political comment is appropriate depends, I would think, very much on the context. – Jay Apr 10 '15 at 15:56
  • 1
    Attached to a crime novel set in the United States, written by an ex-South African. The crimes in the novel have a political connotation and one involves the removal of a ring finger. – SeattleSurfer Apr 10 '15 at 16:00
  • 1
    This is really a question for your publisher. I've heard that many publishers don't really like Author's Notes at all, so a highly political one might be an even harder sell. In addition, is this really the best venue for your opinions? A essay published in a magazine, or online, or even a letter to the editor of a major newspaper might reach a larger audience in a more timely manner and appropriate setting. – Chris Sunami Apr 15 '15 at 15:50
2

Politics will limit your audience.

If your novel is highly political, your author's note will fit right in. The author's note may even be a draw for people who agree with the politics.

A political author's note up front will annoy many readers. Annoyed readers may close the book and not open it again. They may be annoyed with themselves for having spent money on your book. They will likely not buy your next book.

If your novel is not itself political, a political afterword will annoy many readers who enjoyed the novel. Their final experience of your book will be annoyance. They will not buy your next book.

  • It's at the back, and the novel does contain a political identity. But I don't wish to alienate anyone (on either wing). I merely want to point out the failings of a racist rogue regime. Did you find it alienable? – SeattleSurfer Apr 10 '15 at 18:58
  • 1
    Yes, but only as an author's note in a novel. If it appeared instead in a context in which readers are looking for political opinions, it would fit right in. An impassioned political essay. – Dale Hartley Emery Apr 11 '15 at 10:54
  • I believe you're right. I do think it add context to the story. Do you think it is respectful written though, for a contextual addition? – SeattleSurfer Apr 11 '15 at 11:08
1

What Dale said. And:

I think that your novel should contain a short, biographical author's note including the URL of your webpage. On your webpage you can have either a page dedicated to your political views, or a blog where, besides other writerly blog posts, you voice your political opinion.

I would keep the book as the book and not water it down with anything. Add no more than acknowlegements (sources, helpful people) in the back, if necessary, and a one sentence dedication ("To ...") at the beginning. Add a preface only to explain the circumstances of the books inception and writing.

Keep yourself out of your book.

  • Thanks. I do think it adds context to the story though. And it is not really about myself, more sad facts about a rogue regime. Did you think it was badly written? – SeattleSurfer Apr 11 '15 at 11:10
1

Echoing what Dale said, politics will alienate your readers. However, if your political statement (that you wish to address in the author's note) is central to the book, then the book description should do enough to deter readers who would be put off by the note. You mentioned that it will be at the back of the book (which is where I've seen most author's notes); do be sure it is at the back. A lot of front matter will also deter readers. If it's in fact at the end of the book, you may not alienate readers from that book, but you could potentially lose future readers. It's up to you how in-depth you want to be about politics.

A note about author's notes: all of the ones I've seen have been primarily fact-based, not opinion-based. They serve the purpose of providing explanations and insights into research, so that's another option you have: write it so that it's research, not your opinion.

That being said, if you are looking to publish with an established publishing firm, you may want to consult with them on what their requirements are. If you're self-publishing, you can do what you want (with consideration to your readers).

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.