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Never give up, never give in

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Never give up, never give in

by Laverne de Vries
21 Nov 2006
Peoples Post
Peoples Post

In case our readers haven't noticed, my weekly column is self-indulgent.


For the past few weeks I have been writing on the premise that, while I write all the hard news and the features for the benefit of the community, my column is written purely for my own entertainment.

The thought process behind this is that most of the news is depressing - writing about people being gunned down like flies; children who are neglected because they had the misfortune of being born with disabilities; senior citizens who are abused because they cannot defend themselves; or crime that breaks down our societies and minimise our humanity.

This takes a toll on the psyche so instead of choosing an Issue to write about, I take a mini-vacation and write about light-hearted things that tend to amuse people.

This week however, is different. While researching one of my stories I met some people who are struggling to reclaim not only their community, but also a sense of normality and humanity.

News reports have been filled with numerous incidents marking the upsurge of violence in Hanover Park, and every week we have been reading about people who have been ruthlessly killed, maimed or injured.

But deadlines and the fact that readers become desensitised by the constant news flashes restrict the reports from doing justice to the absolute horror of the situation. They do not reflect a community shackled in fear. They do not fully convey the tragedy of losing a loved one, nor do they relate the absolute courage of people trying their best to rise above this quagmire.

Bearing this in mind, it was quite disheartening to hear from a respected community leader that he was tired of the fight. The fight for justice, peace and above all freedom - freedom from crime, gangs and drugs - social ills that are not only prevalent in Hanover Park but in all communities, everywhere.

Although it is completely understandable to become tired of a fight that seems never-ending and indomitable, I urge him, and others, to continue. No matter how insurmountable the problems may seem, they are not too big to overcome.

History is a good teacher and if you look back, you will see that great leaders such as Ghandi and Madiba did not throw in the towel. They rested but picked up the fight again because, despite it all, they believed in the cause.

The cause for a brighter tomorrow, a free society and a return of dignity to all people.

They sacrificed and through blood, sweat and tears, prevailed. After all, a wise man once said that evil only prevails if good men sit back and do nothing.

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