Living in South Africa produces tremendous problems and pressures for a Christian. I speak out of my own experience.

First of all, I am a man. Because I am a man, I am related to all men by common creation. I am committed not only to myself but to humanity as a whole, and, by extension, to the inalienable rights of man to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Second, I am a white man. By virtue of physical birth, I am racially related to a particular racial group. This commits me to the European or Anglo-Saxon ethnic group, and I have loyalties to it.

Third, I am an African white man. I didn’t settle in South Africa. I was born here. My wife’s ancestors here go back two hundred years. In fact, the first white sailors and navigators were rounding the South African coast in 1487, before America was even discovered. South Africa was settled by white people at approximately the same time as the first settlers landed in what became the United States of America. This puts white South Africans into historical perspective. They are not, strictly speaking, part of a colonial situation. White South Africa has deep historical roots. So then, the fact that my parents and I were born in Africa commits me not only to the continent of Africa as a whole, and particularly to its black majority, but to the permanency of white people on the African continent.

Fourth, I am a South African African white man. In other words, I was born and brought up in a particular country of this continent, and I love that country. I am loyal to it. I am committed to it. I am not ashamed of it. I may be sad about a particular policy, but I am not ashamed of the country as a whole, because there are hundreds and thousands of very wonderful people here of ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.

Our digital archives are a work in progress. Let us know if corrections need to be made.

Tags:
Issue: