OPINION: OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS ARE THE REAL HEROES

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You are all the reason that most of us have been able feel so much safer, and the reason why our town still standing.

The past week has not just been emotionally draining but absolutely shocking.

I’m sorry but I refuse to call what we have witnessed over the last few days ‘protesting,’ those were bottom line riots.

I’ve heard the stories of 1949 and a few others, but never would I have ever imagined that I would catch a glimpse of it in this day and age.

The fact that something that was apparently sparked politically could reach the point that it did is downright terrifying.

I’ve watched people’s livelihoods literally go up in flames in a matter of minutes. Businesses that took years to build up, years of nothing but pure hard work, determination and sacrifice, all gone.

Some of these businesses were carried through in families for generations, does that mean nothing anymore?

Most of the stores and businesses that were looted are the very same ones that communities depended on.

When you were really down and out and needed bread or a bit of sugar, it was the same store that gave it to you for free.

When you couldn’t afford groceries mid-month, it was the same store that allowed you to take what you needed and trusted that you would pay your dues at the end of the month.

And as a big thank you, you burn it all to the ground. If that is not literally biting the hand that feeds you then I don’t know what is.

My heart genuinely aches for all those who have lost something during this time, and I sincerely hope that we find a way to rebuild most, if not all of it.

I’ve watched the fear on my own mom’s face, something I’ve never seen before.

The reality of it all hit me very hard over the last week, and it has been absolutely exhausting.

I can’t imagine how everyone is feeling, but I really do hope that it gets better.

To everyone who has manned the roadblocks and kept out our ‘unwanted visitors’, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

You are all the reason that most of us have been able feel so much safer, and the reason why our town still standing.

I’ve seen community members out in their numbers all through Marburg, Albersville, Oslo Beach, Shelly Beach, Tweni, Margate and so many other areas.

I know you haven’t slept in days, you’ve braved the cold, you’ve given up time with your family and you’ve shown true fearlessness.

I’ve seen you show no hesitation to go and inspect areas where people felt threatened, regardless of how late at night or early in the morning it was.

No amount of gratitude will ever be enough, you are the real heroes in all this.

To all the wonderful people who have also given up time to contribute warm meals and other essentials to those in need, thank you as well.

 

Article written by: Danielle Naidoo

Photo credit: South Coast Herald

Link: https://southcoastherald.co.za/441176/opinion-our-community-members-are-the-real-heroes/

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