I love the expressions “so and so needs to sit back down” or the now more popular “you need to fall back”. Both expressions encapsulate, “shut the fuck up” and “mind your own damn business” in catchy, non-swearing form.
Black South Africans (both poor and middle-class) have found the perfect scapegoat to excuse any socially reprehensible behaviour they indulge in; apartheid and white people. It’s disgusting. You may now call me a coconut.
After watching The Boondocks I came to a conclusion that even though black people try to deny it, nigga mentality exists. In South Africa it manifests itself in perpetual blaming of apartheid and white people for the most absurd of things.
Men peeing in public spaces like taxi ranks – For the longest time black people weren’t allowed in toilets because of apartheid so they had to pee anywhere! I suppose white people taught you that peeing where you will also have to walk or stand around all day is the thing to do huh? We must be thankful white people in South Africa didn’t take up cannibalism.
Bad grammar and misspelling – Bantu Education is to blame. Interestingly, even those who went to the so-called Model C schools are wont to blame Bantu Education when actually they could be victims of a typo or genuinely don’t understand where they are going wrong. Apartheid isn’t to blame for that, you are just dumb.
These are two are really just my pet peeves, but provide a perfect example of nigga mentality. My big problem, however, comes from black on black social etiquette and black on black discrimination.
If you are on Twitter or Facebook then you will be familiar with the account @EngrishSpotter. The sole purpose of this account is to point out lapses in black people’s command of the English language in tweets. If you so much as tweet “give me a honest answer” EngrishSpotter will pounce on you with an RT and his/her followers will all have a good laugh at your expense. (It’s entirely possible that some people didn’t even notice the grammatical error in the sentence I just used).
When Mandoza first shot to fame his English was very poor, and this became a standing joke among black people all over the country, even those who were struggling to make ends meet and had no jobs. When Irvin Khoza said “may their souls rest in pieces” after the terrible tragedy at Ellis Park, many people found this more interesting than the horrible deaths of so many people. The quote became a household joke among black people.
And yet, when one of these people who makes a sport of laughing at people who do not know how to speak English, makes a mistake and is laughed at for it, he/she will cry; “Bantu Education” or the more common “It’s not my mother tongue.” Why can’t black people always remember that no black person is born English-speaking in this country? Why don’t the same people laugh at the foreign soccer coaches who battle to compose simple sentence on our TV screens every weekend? Why is it only funny when you are black? And why is it only black people who are allowed to laugh? Remember the flack Gareth Cliff got over that whole “I’m not a Venda/or” comment while black people rolled on the floor laughing?
Then comes the inexplicable bashing of things, especially technological gadgets, which are popular among black people. When a handful of black people own certain a car, cellphone make or wear a certain designer label they are considered cool. But once more black people discover the same label or car or phone then black people start “hating” on those things.
A few come to mind.
The Mercedes ML – this is an amazing vehicle, but ever since more black people could afford to get it, it has a bad reputation. People called the car the “tender” because it was apparently the first thing people who had won government tenders bought.
Snaptu – a great social networking application for mostly Symbian phones, although it is available for smart phones as well. Niggas love to hate Snaptu, apparently they can judge a person’s income bracket by the social networking application he or she uses and Snaptu places you slam dunk into the loser bracket. As a huge Snaptu fan I can tell it’s better than UberSoc because Snaptu also has news feeds, which is kind of important if you are a smart person. But nigga mentality says that if you use Snaptu then you aren’t worth knowing.
BlackBerry Curve 8520 – this has to be the most vilified phone since the Nokia 3310. Niggas say you might as well not own a BlackBerry phone if you are going to buy a Curve 8520. Do niggas think Research In Motion gives a damn about nigga opinion? What is the value in owning the most expensive phone money can buy if that is not what you are about? Why should a person not buy a Curve if that is what they can afford? Why should they be made to feel worthless for that? Many of these naysayers are living in debt and live beyond their means, renting a dingy apartment while driving an expensive car. Who are they to dictate what a person should or shouldn’t buy?
What saddens me about those black people who engage in “bring him/her” down behaviour on Twitter or Facebook is that they are the popular black opinion shapers and celebrities. And in my white-people-intensive timeline I have yet to come across any who engage in this type of behaviour or look down on others because they cannot afford the same standard the individuals have set for themselves.
As long as black people in South Africa behave like niggas, they will always continue to find blame for the plethora of misfortunes that befall them outside of themselves. A white person doesn’t have to point out our flaws or laugh at our poverty; we’re already laughing enough for all of us.
Niggas need to fall back and sit down; and introspect.