Home is where the troublemakers are

Zuma’s dignity? What is that? Cause I’m not sure he has any left to lose.

I’ve been hearing a lot about my president lately. Mostly regarding his penis, which is causing controversy again. Not because he’s using it to impregnate another young girl, or have sex with an HIV positive employee who will later accuse him or rape, nor because it’s very big, nor because it’s very small. Just because someone did a naked picture of him, satarising him. The SA blogesphere has divided like [insert own smutty simile here ] over the issue.

As blogged by http://tia-mysoa.blogspot.com/. Artist Brett Murry’s really done it this time. The picture sold to an overseas buyer but is currently at home in Cape Town, causing huge amounts of kak.

This would never happen in America right now (pity, Obama’s hot), because dignity is something that, as a public figure, you earn, and President Obama is nothing if not dignified in his personal life. Now Clinton? That’s a different story as we all know. You get what you ask for when you whip it out and pop it in someone’s mouth. But that’s just what I think. Not everybody agrees.

Blogger Tia Mysoa lists Zuma’s many sexual disgressions, sarcastically, I think, denying that they’re the inspiration for the artwork. Another blogger, Without The R censors the Zuma art and says it’s a personal attack, and not justified, given that he’s the president and stuff. He even compares it to necklacing… which is weird, because I don’t remember necklacing victims rising from the dead to use government funds to sue artists. I couldn’t agree less, but that’s what the free press is for – airing our differences. Let’s hope our President doesn’t manage to silence any of us. That, I would find impossible to er… swallow.

Meanwhile, my favourite cartoonist in the whole world, Zapiro, makes his own point using his favorite cultural weapon: humor. The shower is reference to Prez Zuma’s statement that he wasn’t worried about catching Aids from the HIV positive woman who accused him of rape a few years back, because he took a shower afterwards. Nice work! Since then, every time Zuma screws up, a shower starts growing out of his head in Zapiro’s cartoons. This time, Zapiro moved it to between his legs. Which totally rocks.

I’m not a fan of subtle political cartoons. I like hard propaganda. I think it’s braver. More like this at Zapiro.com, or just google image search Zuma Zapiro Shower.

In my opinion, nobody has a RIGHT to dignity – specially those who live with absolutely none, and exploit the people who trust them with the ultimate responsibility, and who have been systematically betrayed. There’s nothing dignified about living in a shack while your president adds wife after wife to your tax bill, protects corrupt chronies, takes bribes to buy useless arms we can’t use, and stifles the press.

All this uproar is making me homesick – but not that homesick. Although I’m sometimes accused (usually by Republicans who don’t know Egypt from Nigeria) of being “anti-american” on this blog, what I love about America is that it’s just as crazy as South Africa. Also, I’m beginning, bit by bit, one by one, to find open-minded friends who actually think about the world. Those people are rare anywhere, but they’re also everywhere. Thank God for them, for those people most of the world calls “troublemakers” and that I call “sanity”.

And remember this? @comradesipho reminded me, by RTing this post.

Ayanda Mabulu’s painting, quite a bit of nudity. A deadly satire of the Last Supper, depicting the desecration of Madiba’s legacy. Now I think there are two reasons why its less contraversial. 1. Mabulu is black. 2. It includes apartheid in its targets (the pig with the old flag), and is aimed less at just one target.

UPDATE

The ANC put together a protest march against the gallery today – Tuesday in South Africa, Monday night in America. Here’s what the Goodman Gallery had up in the window as the marchers passed. Via Twitter.

Ya. Respect is where it’s at, as City Press editor Ferial Haffajee proved when she removed the picture of Zuma and peen from her website. I’m not sure she should have. I’m not sure the people she’s respecting respect respect, if you know what I mean…

A Democratic Party rep also tweeted pics of street kids sleeping across the street. Opportunistic stuff when coming from a very capitalist party who would probably just remove them, but nevertheless, pertinent.

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