TOM EATON: Taking the fun out of an African celebration
DA shadow minister of higher education Belinda Bozzoli expresses irritation at the singing and dancing inside the National Assembly as parliament rises
Belinda Bozzoli is the DA’s shadow minister of higher education and training, a professor of sociology, and, it turns out, a time-bending superhero in the mould of Doctor Strange. Because on Wednesday, she wrapped us all up in her magic cloak made of interwoven stupid tweets and transported us back to a braai in Boksburg in 1993.
The DA has been tweeting itself in the foot for some time now, and it must be increasingly difficult to find new ways to alienate black voters. Which is why Bozzoli did the obvious thing: instead of trying something new, she went straight for the tried and tested, early 1990s stalwart, Obviously I Respect Their Right To Be In Public Places But Why Must They Be So Loud?
“ANC trying to ‘claim’ Parliament as their own by using a recess to dominate the Chamber through sound,” she tweeted from inside the National Assembly. “Their persistent and relentlessly deafening singing of struggle songs is really irritating.” Soon afterwards she provided an update: “Now they are exchanging gestures during song with the EFF. You can see how irresistible the call of nationalism is. Its symbolic and non literate forms (songs, dance, gestures) seem to matter more than clever words and well crafted arguments.” My f*k, Belinda. It wasn’t the historical crassness or tone-deafness of the tweet that amazed me, or her attempt to cover up a purely emotional outburst by invoking “clever words and well-crafted arguments”. It wasn’t even the excruciatingly revealing description of an African celebration as a “non-literate form”. Many South Africans have similar thoughts every day. No, what boggled my mind was the staggering, pick-your-nose-and-eat-it-on-camera, light-it-and-se...