Racism no play matter

News of racism at a Soweto police station as reported in Sowetan last Friday is cause for concern. South Africa's memory of the evil of racism is too fresh for anyone to think that we will be amused.

News of racism at a Soweto police station as reported in Sowetan last Friday is cause for concern. South Africa's memory of the evil of racism is too fresh for anyone to think that we will be amused.

Let us recap. Last Thursday members of the police service based at the Protea Glen station woke up to find some of the offices and toilets at the station marked with racial segregation posters.

We need to be cautious. That we reported the case should suggest that the writers of the racist posters have had their way. They sought attention and they got it.

They also sought to provoke a racial row. Again they have succeeded. This is one of the easiest buttons to press in South Africa if you want to cause some temperatures to rise.

We, however, have one power over the poster writers. We can decide not to react predictably to their obvious provocation.

We cannot even make the assumption that it was indeed the work of white racists. In many cases the posters were misspelt: Geen Swaartes instead of Geen Swartes.

We have no way of telling whether this was bad grammar or an attempt to throw the trail off.

Whatever the motivation for all this, we hope that those in charge get to the bottom of this sordid affair and throw the book at the culprits.

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