The African National Congress is starting its “dispute resolution process” in a bid to address the a.
Two of my best friends love fashion. They also hate fakes with a passion. To them people who sell and buy fakes are in the same category as drug dealers and abusers. They pervert the good morals of people.
I am sure that if they had the power they would have the selling and buying the many goods Made in China but conceived in Italy, or thereabout, declared a treacherous act and have people guilty of these crimes jailed for a long time.
Though my friends always say it is mostly about the quality of the makoya goods, I know that they also know that deep down it is about the feeling of exclusivity that comes with wearing the genuine article.
I am with them when it comes to the annoyance - okay jealousy, if you insist - that comes with some teenage brat wearing a pair of jeans you know would cost you three months of school fees if you wanted them.
I am saying all this after a very nice man decided that to excite me into buying a Breitling watch, which would normally go for tens of thousands of rands, for just more than a thousand bucks.
Even at Christmas his generosity was far too excessive. I could not imagine myself wearing a watch worth about half of what my car cost. Surely the people I would want to impress by my new, shiny watch would see through me and my fake timepiece.
I started to ask myself why was it that people who live just above the breadline go out of their way to wear clothes that create the false impression of prosperity? What is this obsession with self-deception?
Why is it that someone will ask for a skyf while wearing Prada shoes and G-Star jeans and driving a 1980 Mazda 323?
But when you look at it, we live fake lives. We have fake accents, fake walks and even fake morals. If you don't like the boobs your creator gave, you just pop into your nearest plastic shop and buy yourself brand new fakes of your desire.
We are a knock-off of other people. As Irish dramatist Oscar Wilde observed just more than 100 years ago: "Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation."
We have fake religious movements making the "lame" stand up and walk, much to the appreciation of the thousands of impressionable people, who in turn fill the coffers of this fak' imali uzobona "pastors".
We have deferred to the false gods of crass materialism. The malls are our temples and the door-to-door merchants of these fakes the missionaries.
Even "reality TV" has proven itself genuine. Millions of people watch so-called reality shows in which people are rewarded with $100000 for living fake lives.
Fake is the fastest growing industry. Why then stop those who can get their fakes from China if there is a market eager to embrace them?
We are a society that dispenses respect on the basis of what label one wears.
The fake goods industry is no less than what we deserve. It is a mirror of what we have become.