EDITORIAL: Hofmeyr? Seriously?

What was Afrikaans Sunday paper Rapport thinking? Getting the notorious racist and bad singer Steve Hofmeyr to write an analysis piece about South Africa’s new president and the putting out to pasture of the old one was not a terribly good idea.

Hofmeyr is no analyst. He isn’t capable of singing a new song; he just recycles his old hits, which are just some old folk songs from a rather nasty tradition. Perhaps Rapport is desperate for readers and publishing a Hofmeyr rant served as click-bait. It may “encourage debate” but we have had this debate so many times, over so many years, that it’s a bore. We no longer need to debate whether the Earth is round, do we? We don’t have to run the ramblings of flat-earthers every few years to “encourage debate”, do we?

Of course, it is Rapport’s right to publish anything it likes, but to pretend that it’s all in a progressive cause is foolish. Placing pieces by real writers such as Antjie Krog and Jacques Pauw beside Hofmeyr’s piece, as opposing views, served only to dignify Hofmeyr’s blather — it made it look like a legitimate piece of political comment, if only for a moment.

Both Krog and Pauw, on the M&G Online, have voiced their objections to this kind of treatment. We would like to quote Hofmeyr (as quoted by Max du Preez) back at himself; he is guilty of what he accuses ANC leaders of: “The full reality of South Africa is beyond their comprehension because they could never escape the homeland mentality.”

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.


The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

Advertising

Subscribers only

Q&A Sessions: George Euvrard, the brains behind our cryptic crossword

George Euvrard spoke to Athandiwe Saba about his passion for education, clues on how to solve his crosswords and the importance of celebrating South Africa.

Poachers in prisons tell their stories

Interviews with offenders provide insight into the structure of illegal wildlife trade networks

More top stories

No one should be as rich as Elon Musk

The reactions to Elon Musk’s billionaire status are evidence that far too many South Africans have not fully grasped the destructive consequences of inequality. Entrepreneur...

Department of basic education edges closer to releasing matric results

The basic education department has said that it is almost done with the marking process and that the capturing of marks is in progress.

The rare fairytale of Percy Tau

Through much hard work and a bit of good fortune, the South African attacker has converted a potential horror story into magic

Somali troops may have been drawn into Ethiopia’s civil war

The Mail & Guardian spoke to Somalis about their relatives who disappeared after signing up for military training and fear they may have been killed
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…