A high-profile murder involving a class of people whose role in South Africa’s endemic crime is statistically insignificant occurred last week. The two wealthy white South Africans involved, however, will become a perfect foil for the hypocritical tele-twits of the West. The latter have said nothing about the carnage of crime in that country—and they’ll continue to say nothing meaningful at all.
Crime in South Africa should have been making news headlines across the world throughout South Africa’s overnight transition from minority to majority rule. It hasn’t. Blade runner Oscar Pistorius’ run-in with the law has occasioned the first such mention that I can recall by anchor-personality Megyn Kelly of Fox News, and her colleagues in the industry. (The killing fields of South Africa are dissected in “Crime, The Beloved Country,” a chapter in my book).
A statistical outlier, an anomaly—the murder of a (white) South African celebrity (Reeva Steenkamp) by another (Olympian Oscar Pistorius), allegedly—has newsmen in the West mentioning a subject they’ve so far submerged.
Steenkamp was a South African model. Pistorius is also a celebrity whose fame comes from being a tenacious (and talented) track-and-field annoyance. An annoyance, because most hardcore track-and-field fans want able and disabled Olympians segregated. (Yes, this is an intentional play on “loaded” words. Call the PC police!) The separation why? So as to allow fans (me) to enjoy the sport without the accoutrements of technology and the incontinent gushing that accompanies Pistorius whenever he makes a run for it.
In any event, how PC and TV perfect is this crime? (This or any other crime should never be called “a tragic circumstance,” as such vague language implies that bad deeds are invariably caused—never committed. And that they are caused by factors outside the perpetrators. (See “Rah-Rah For Rioters.”)
I wager that next, Anderson Cooper or Piers Morgan will call on the actress Charlize Theron to comment about the relevance of her pet campaign to stop violence against women in our former homeland, and its relevance to this case.
There is no relevance. Violence in the “Rambo Nation” is unidirectional: black on black and black on white. Violence against women—at least the kind that causes more than hurt feelings—follows the same pattern.
Meanwhile, the blade runner is still walking on water. Oscar Pistorius is receiving “overwhelming support” from his fans. Or so his agent informs the fans and the press.
UPDATE: FROM the Facebook thread. It’s just as I said. The Guardian is turning a statistical anomaly in this group (well-to-do whites) into a generic statement about violence against women in South Africa.