I will admit that even though I’m a fairly well educated individual, I am ignorant on many issues because they might not affect me and/or I may be blind to them. However, when the opportunity presents itself, I do attend forums or events and try to engage in pressing matters and issues with regard to student life and the state of our country. The recent transformation event hosted by ABASA and the SRC was one I was glad I did not miss out on. I thoroughly enjoyed how the panel brought up the issue of transformation with regard to their own individual societies or political parties. It was very informative for me, as when you talk about transformation, you tend to narrow it down to race, class, the past, apartheid, etc. People tend to forget about certain specific genders and communities affected (women, the LGBT community, and people living with disabilities).
Suggestions were made, some sensible and some outlandish, but as great as the forums was, individuals within the house at large probed the leaders present to stop talking about it and finally get the ball rolling. I’m not a politically inclined person, but it is interesting seeing many of the parties present on campus working against each other and not together to achieve a number of the same goals they fight for and represent. As much as I may or may not agree with some of their points of view, listening to their requests does spark something in you to do something and be a part of the activity which this university will soon see. I, however, was disappointed with Afriforum. As a political party, you fight for what you believe in (even if the majority that attended the event don’t agree with you). You don’t just walk out on when the going gets tough, especially at informative events like this. Is this an indication of how your party handles its challenging situations? As soon as it gets a little tough, you give up? Instead of leaving, you could have used the time to take down notes and maybe learn something that might challenge the way you think. The issues raised by your speaker, the rest of the panel and the house at large did exactly that for me: shift me from a narrow minded point of view and challenge me.
I really hope such events get hosted more and that information is sent out to the masses about them. Students like myself are always eager to learn and have our ideologies challenged for the better. The leaders that guide and lead us on campus have a responsibility to inform us and try get us involved. Most people are more than willing, we are just kept in the dark on certain issues. Hopefully true change can come about on our campus and more of these events are hosted.