What is really going on in South Africa? I've seen slick documentaries claiming that there's a white genocide in progress, I've heard activists from South Africa talking on cable news, I've heard some horrible, horrible stories. Apparently, these stories have even trickled down to the White House. On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted that he was directing the Secretary of State to look into:
South Africa land and farm seizures and expropriations and the large scale killing of farmers.
Now, there's absolutely no question that white farmers have been victims of some horrifically violent attacks. Please look up some of these stories. They're awful. But are these attacks part of a white genocide, because that's what many alt-right and white supremacist groups have claimed. And the sad reality is that, when they began talking about this, it made most of the mainstream media stay away from it. Traditional media sources stayed quiet. Meanwhile, farmers kept getting killed, and the South African government continued their spiral down the Marxist abyss. Their government is set to modify their constitution, making it legal to seize farms without compensation.
But is this all part of a white genocide? In this day and age it is absolutely crucial for us to look at every story, headline, and narrative with a dose of healthy skepticism. Do your own homework. Check multiple sources. Check and recheck. Don't take anyone's word for it.
And the problem I've had when checking out this story is that most people who fall on the side of "this is white genocide" are only getting their information from one source. They always quote or reference a group called Afriforum. Any time a vast majority are all getting their information from one source, that should set off a few warning signals.
Any time a vast majority are all getting their information from one source, that should set off a few warning signals.
Their information indeed shows a steady increase in farm attacks and murders since 2013. They lean heavily towards the line of "whites are being specifically targeted." Now if you're in the alt-right, alt-light or even a white supremacist - and you read that study - what's the first narrative you see?
What makes the case even stronger is the rise of Marxism and the calls for land redistribution.
Now let's use this story as sort of a model in this era of potential fake news. No matter what story we're looking at in the future, let's approach it in a similar fashion. First and foremost, we need to acknowledge the findings of Afriforum - the source everyone is quoting - and recognize that they have legitimate concerns they're advocating for.
We can't ignore what they're saying. That's what the majority of the mainstream news has done over the past two or so years, and that hasn't helped anything. So we acknowledge the information, but we also check multiple different sources.
If you compare Afriforum stats with the official South African Police numbers, you'll find that they're pretty comparable. If you add in the numbers from the South Africa agriculture union, you'll also find pretty much the same thing. Farm attacks and murders over the past few years are rising. But if you look at the numbers going all the way back to 1996, you'll see that the current swing upwards is pretty typical.
In 1996 there were 433 attacks on South African farms. But by 2001 that number had skyrocketed to 1,069. The numbers were cut in half by 2005, rose back up to near 800 in 2007, and it's back and forth up and down until the current swing up over the past few years. The calls for white genocide began over the past couple years. In 2016/2017 there were 638 farm attacks and 74 murders. But in 2001 there were over 1,000 and 140 murders. It was literally twice as bad as it is today, but no one was saying white genocide back then.
South Africa stopped recording motive for farm attacks after 2001, so we really don't have any concrete current information for why this is happening today. But in 2001, when these attacks were at their worst, the vast majority were determined to be robberies. Only 15 were found to be racially or politically motivated.
Only 15 were found to be racially or politically motivated.
A closer look at South Africa, as a whole, shows it's crime rate is spiraling out of control. They have the worst crime rate in all of Africa. Six of the top ten most dangerous cities in Africa are all in South Africa. Fifty-five people are murdered every day. 18,000 attempted murders were recorded last year alone. 40,000 rapes were reported. On average, there are 430 assault cases every day. This is a country under siege by crime.
Now, do I think that some of the farm attacks over the past few years could have been racially or politically motivated? Of course! We saw that from the numbers back in 2001. But the vast majority simply aren't.
Ignoring this story has enabled two things. First, it's helped a fringe group take a real issue - violent attacks on farmers and the seizing of their land - and turn it into a story that fits their narrative. Second, it's enabled a group of Marxists to successfully use populism to convince their people that seizing property and the redistribution of land will do anything but spell disaster.
This is a country under siege by crime.
The facts don't support the narrative of a white genocide. They just don't. But that doesn't mean that atrocities aren't happening on these farms and that at least some of them are very likely racially motivated. But this trend is the same as it's been for nearly 20 years.
The difference now is that you have to add in the fact that Marxists are overrunning the country. You don't have to be alt-right or alt-light to recognize and be concerned about a Marxist government confiscating people's land and property. Credit President Trump for putting a spotlight on it. There's still time for South Africa to reverse its course. But if it doesn't, that's when things could get really bad.