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Hunger for a more just society

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Hunger for a more just society

by Sibusiso Tshabalala

‘I am hungry and my instincts are hungry for justice, for social equality, but instead the scale keeps tipping in the hoarders way’ – Starving Child Collection

In The Adventures of Pinocchio, (Carlo Collodi’s tale of a boy who was cre­ated as a pup­pet but dreamt of becom­ing a “real boy”), there’s an observable phenomenon that can be likened to South African society.

Collodi writes: ‘A boy’s appetite grows very fast, and in a few moments the queer, empty feeling had become hunger, and the hunger grew bigger and bigger, until soon he was as ravenous as a bear

South African society is like Pinocchio, a hungry boy. With more than half of our young people unemployed, 85% of the country’s wealth controlled by 10% of the population and a sub-standard education system- it is no surprise that we are one of the world’s most unequal societies.

There’s a growing trend in South African society to dismiss inequality.  This trend presupposes that in the ‘new South Africa’ inequality is a thing of the past. Conversely so, there’s also an inclination by the disenfranchised to remind folks living in the middle and upper class bubbles that inequality is still rife in our society.

These two narratives represent the estranged relationship between the privileged few and the disenfranchised masses. They are separated by high suburban walls, township shacks, private beach holiday homes, crowded public schools- the grand design of social inequality. This estranged relationship is the root of social uprising, division and discontent.

Yet, this estranged relationship often finds itself at odds. The hunger that South African society faces is not only material (employment, sustenance, jobs etc) but there is also a subliminal form of hunger.

This is the hunger that is exists, but often goes unacknowledged or even underrepresented. This hunger is for a more just society.

It is the hunger for a society in which economic growth is a precursor to upward social mobility; it is the hunger for an economy that benefits all its participants and is not controlled by a select few- it is the hunger for advancement in a society were systemic inequality is permutated by the actions of our body politic and big business.

This hunger knows of no origin. It does not classify itself as ‘black’ or ‘white’, ‘rich’ or ‘poor’, ‘gay’ or ‘straight’ because it knows that ultimately our destiny is interlinked as a people. This hunger knows that the middle class bubble of apathy towards the poor is paradoxical.

This hunger knows state welfare is unsustainable in the long run, that a proper education system and solid leadership for our country is the beginning of true progress.

This hunger is a hunger for societal consciousness. A hunger for a society where the social injustice  is fought in dusty township streets, middle class suburbs, upper class mansions and outer space manors (for the extremely rich of course).

Until ALL South Africans (politicians included) understand that the quest for social justice and social cohesion isn’t an ideal to be admired but an obligation to be fulfilled; we remain a hungered people.

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Sibusiso Tshabalala is a 19 year old; 2nd year B.Com Law student at the University of the Free State.

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  • Moilwa Khobi

    Hunger is recognized when people see it, Hunger is a relative concept.There is an enormous overview of the phenomenon of hunger.

    There is an attempt to eradicate hunger, our government has achieved little success.Hunger and non-hunger in South Africa has remained the same, in South Africa the ecological sense of hunger ends in debate that identifies overconsumers, marginals in South Africa’s utilisation of scarce minerals. Skills are rare in South Africa,education system is not providing the necessary skills for learners to prepare for university level, also ignorance of learners by not exploring different career paths. There is denial in our legacy of discriminatory education has undermined the knowledge of black people to move past the mediocrity to meritocracy. It is clear that black institutions are poorly led, staff, executives are poorly equipped,so forth. We are a unequal society due a developing country like South Africa the rich is increasing their salaries, poor society is hungering,in a hungering society in terms of economics.The hungering society has to accept their hunger as normal.

    The hunger is indeed bigger than we thought. The wealthy tycoons live in million rand houses and hungering people live in poorly build houses,hunger is daunting in those at Bergman, Moshongoville, mkhukhu townships.

    In the sense of urbanisation or narratives is a. Process were demographics,economics,opportunities are limited in spatial areas due to urbanisation. Deprivation and hunger “fleets” individuals to cities.

    Let’s eradicate inequality, hunger by actively engaging in powering the unbalanced, unaccountable, systems of economic relationships.

    South Africa let join hands, provide solutions.

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  • Moilwa Khobi

    Hunger is recognized when people see it, Hunger is a relative concept.There is an enormous overview of the phenomenon of hunger.

    There is an attempt to eradicate hunger, our government has achieved little success.Hunger and non-hunger in South Africa has remained the same, in South Africa the ecological sense of hunger ends in debate that identifies overconsumers, marginals in South Africa’s utilisation of scarce minerals. Skills are rare in South Africa,education system is not providing the necessary skills for learners to prepare for university level, also ignorance of learners by not exploring different career paths. There is denial in our legacy of discriminatory education has undermined the knowledge of black people to move past the mediocrity to meritocracy. It is clear that black institutions are poorly led, staff, executives are poorly equipped,so forth. We are a unequal society due a developing country like South Africa the rich is increasing their salaries, poor society is hungering,in a hungering society in terms of economics.The hungering society has to accept their hunger as normal.

    The hunger is indeed bigger than we thought. The wealthy tycoons live in million rand houses and hungering people live in poorly build houses,hunger is daunting in those at Bergman, Moshongoville, mkhukhu townships.

    In the sense of urbanisation or narratives is a. Process were demographics,economics,opportunities are limited in spatial areas due to urbanisation. Deprivation and hunger “fleets” individuals to cities.

    Let’s eradicate inequality, hunger by actively engaging in powering the unbalanced, unaccountable, systems of economic relationships.

    South Africa let join hands, provide solutions.

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