“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom
There was a time when when your skin color would’ve determined your human identity, there was a time when a darker skin meant a darker life and no matter how much you want to give the world, after the end of the day ‘black’ meant – your rights, wants, needs would never exist. But that ‘never’ was conquered by the struggle of the same person who said– “It always seems impossible until its done.”
Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid revolutionary- who had dared to redefine FREEDOM, dared to end an episode of chains, a chapter of slavery. He was the boy nicknamed ‘trouble maker’, the same boy who grew up to be the only native African student studying law at University of Witwatersrand, no doubt he had to bear the scars of racism, something immensely prominent at that time.
This is a sign board from Capetown at that time of apartheid. When I had the first encounter with this picture on internet, it left me perplexed thinking what kind of ruthless world it was to live in. Glad the world had a Nelson Mandela. He actually showed the world what it is to be a human. Chains and shackles are definately not what the world needs. During the time of apartheid in South Africa laws were made with a racist outlook and thus it gave a legal face to something inhumane and barbaric. How can he avoid being a ‘troublemaker’ ? The path that he had chosen was a path of suffering, imprisonment, torture but all these became inferior to him when the struggle is for FREEDOM, EQUALITY and HUMANITY. He chose the road that was never paved with fortunes and wealth, it was an uncertain one where the victors might have erased him forever. It was that walk where every step is a struggle, it was a Long Walk to Freedom.
But history can never label Nelson Mandela with that sticker of another rebellious leader who had the eye of violence wide open but the other one always shut. How could he have been the Nelson Mandela, if he didn’t have that warm heart?
Like the Greats of history, Nelson Mandela could envision that without the end of the inequalities, Liberty and Freedom would remain merely a luxury item, it would not serve its true purpose and certainly it would not serve humanity. During his early years of struggle the racist authorities enacted Suppression of Communist act, and thus repressed him and other fellow activists, labeling them of waging a communist revolution. (That’s actually what the authorities are best at when they become desperate to retain their legacy of evil !)
Today, it’s the 95 th birthday of Nelson Mandela. From every corner of the world people paid their tributes, tweets , fb posts. And of course flowers .Everybody in their own way of wishing a great man. There is actually something more in it. A Hope.
A man who had put ‘the end’ to long chapter of slavery is the Hope to end modern-day slavery. Happy birthday and salute to Mandela. Get well soon-this is not just a wishing from a random blogger but this is the the desperate cry of millions. This world badly needs you, we need you.