The killing of nine people in a Charleston church last week and the election result in Denmark seemingly have little in common. But at the root of both is fear.
The 21-year-old white male who shot dead nine African-Americans wore two badges on his jacket. They were the Rhodesian flag and the South African flag of the old apartheid regime. TV reporters were quick to say these flags represented racism and that Dylaan Roof identified with these countries because he, too, is racist.
As usual, there was very little depth shown by reporters. It’s just not as simple as they made it out to be.
Rhodesia and South Africa were the last two nations on the African continent to be ruled by whites, people of European descent who had colonized Africa in previous generations. During the late 1950’s and early 1960’s the European powers were rapidly dismantling their colonial empires. The ruling whites of Southern Rhodesia, rather than have black majority rule forced upon them, declared themselves independent of Great Britain, something that had not happened since 1776.
Why did they do this? Out of fear, fear of what would happen if the whites handed over to the majority African population.
This fear was not unfounded. They had seen what happened when countries to the north of them got independence.
Tribalism, violent upheavals and economic collapse were quite normal in the years following independence. In 1961, the whites of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia), at the time in a federation with Southern Rhodesia and Nyasaland, had been instrumental in saving thousands of people from the Congo who had fled the country after Belgium pulled out. Chaos and confusion were commonplace in Africa at the time. The whites at the southern end of the continent did not want the same fate to befall them.
In neighboring South Africa, apartheid also had fear at its root. The white minority imposed segregation to protect themselves from violent crime, murder, and rapes, all of which have increased dramatically since the end of apartheid and the introduction of majority rule. There was a great deal wrong with apartheid, but post-apartheid South Africa also has serious problems with little hope for improvement.
Which brings us to last week’s Danish election.
Scandinavia has been the last bastion of social democracy, with widely admired societies that have inspired leftist parties around the world.
But these days, social democracy in Nordic countries is in crisis. The defeat of Denmark’s ruling social democrat party, led by Helle Thorning-Schmidt, means that for the first time in seventy years, Sweden is the only Scandinavian country with a social democrat government in power. Even there, it’s doubtful it will survive long.
Their decline has been accompanied by a surge in support for anti-immigration, eurosceptic parties. “Should the Danish People’s party — which came second, nearly doubling its support from the previous vote in 2011 — join a centre-right government, three of the four large Nordic countries would have such a group in power (Finland and Norway being the others),” the Financial Times reports on its website. After decades of rule by parties of the left, this is a dramatic change.
“There is a familiar progression in the way that the DPP, True Finns, Sweden Democrats and Norway’s Progress party have hollowed out the establishment parties. As with the DPP, they have started by stealing voters from the centre-left — the working class, the elderly — before taking them from the centre-right.
“It’s a worry and it’s a wake-up call,” says Carl Bildt, former Swedish prime minister.” (ft.com)
What’s behind the swing to the anti-immigrant, eurosceptic parties? Fear. The same fear that motivated the whites of Rhodesia and South Africa. And the same fear that was behind the church shooting in Charleston. This is not to suggest that the Danes, the Rhodesians or the South Africans would have been in agreement with Dylaan Roof’s actions. It is simply that there is a commonality here – and that common denominator is fear.
The Danes are afraid of being overwhelmed by people of different cultures, especially Muslims from North Africa and the Middle East. A significant percentage of people in every European country share the same fear. They do not want to see their way of life threatened. These fears are not taken seriously by mainstream political parties, so voters are looking elsewhere.
The same fear led to Rhodesians breaking away from Britain. Their “rebellion” lasted fourteen years, seven of which were spent at war with homegrown terrorists who wanted to take over the country. When the terrorists took over, white fears were realized when their land, jobs and money were all taken by the post-independence government of Robert Mugabe, who has been in power for over 35 years.
In South Africa, twenty years after apartheid, the country’s biggest problems are corruption, violence and life-threatening crime. The affluent society the whites created is under increasing threat, driven by African demands for more and more at the expense of the white taxpayer.
In America, too, many whites fear for the future as they head rapidly toward minority status. A recent announcement by the Obama Administration that instructs government agencies to enforce greater “diversity” in affluent neighborhoods will only make matters worse.
I’m writing this while we are headed back to our home on a train. We had to change trains in Chicago. While lining up for the second train, a young white lady next to me complained to her friends that “the Mexicans are pushing in ahead of us.” A minor incident like this can trigger off a racial confrontation. This time it was avoided.
The mad, multicultural mayhem created by the ruling intellectual elites is increasingly being found wanting throughout the western world.
We should expect more incidents like the one in Charleston and more election results similar to Denmark. It could be the start of a white backlash against enforced multiculturalism. Politicians should take note on both sides of the Atlantic.
A century ago, the world was dominated by Europeans and people of European descent. Since World War II this has changed dramatically. Today, only a handful of countries are still run by Caucasians; and, based on demographic trends, all of those will have a majority non-white population within the lifetimes of those now living.
When the dominant culture of a country changes, great upheaval can take place. Rhodesia is the best most recent example of this.
Dylaan Roof, at 21, was not even born when Rhodesia became Zimbabwe. He may have worn the Rhodesian flag but was ignorant of Rhodesia’s realities. Race relations were generally quite good in Rhodesia. The “white” army was 82% black. If Dylaan Roof had shot nine black Africans in Rhodesia, he would have been tried, sentenced and hanged within a few months. I remember clearly a young white male who killed a black cab driver and was hanged, if I remember correctly, within 90 days of his sentencing.
The world’s media may have judged Rhodesia a racist society. In the same way, it now judges South Carolina as seriously wanting in this regard. But there has been an outpouring of love and support from different ethnic groups since the mass shooting in church. The Governor of the state, Nikki Haley, has called for the old confederate flag to be taken down from the Capitol building in Columbia, the state capital.
Just as the world’s media stirred up feelings against Rhodesia and South Africa, it will do so against South Carolina.
Watching CNN on Monday morning, I was shocked at how much time was devoted to a one-sided discussion on the future of the “Stars and Bars,” the old Confederate flag.
What Dylaan Roof did was inexcusable and should be roundly condemned. But he was just one man and a young man, at that. His actions will not inspire the majority to replicate his act. But the fears he expressed about the direction America is headed should be openly discussed. The flag is not the issue.