These words are uttered far too often in this country. There’s always valid reasons to back them up though – crime is too high, the government is useless, my family has already moved overseas…
Basically; the people uttering these words feel that our country has somehow failed them and they’re no longer proud to stay here.
I get it, I really do but I struggle to understand how we can overlook all the things that should make us really proud to be here. Okay, we all know I’m passionate about music so most of my reasons to be proudly South African lay in music – whether it be the multiple international bands our country has attracted this past year alone, the great album releases locally or even just the fact that music is so embraced here that every weekend we have an option of a show to attend at more than one venue.
If that doesn’t get you excited enough, then how about the fact that not only are international bands wanting to come to us but other countries are wanting our local bands to perform there too? Just look at Mind Assault – they’ve just played Rockstadt Extreme Fest 2016 in Raslov, Romania. Or how about Zombies Ate My Girlfriend? Do I even have to mention the fact that they won Wacken Battle 2016? My Facebook news feed became all about the Zom in the hours following the announcement. Can you honestly tell me no one felt proud of our country in that moment? Of course we did! Metalheads even gathered at the airport to welcome the boys home because we were so proud of them. The words on everyone’s lips for the next couple days were “South Africa won Wacken.” If we truly weren’t proud to be South African then why would we even announce that SA had anything to do with it? We could have just announced that Zombies Ate My Girlfriend won the battle – but no; following that win we were all proud, not only of the band itself, but also of our country and what it had produced.
So yes – I am emigrating. Not physically, no. I’m emigrating my mind set. I’m moving from a place of focusing on the reasons to leave to a place of focusing on why we should stay. Yes, the crime is high, we have issues with our government and overall our country is lacking but there’s so much that South Africa is doing right. I’m proud of what our country has produced, I’m proud of the accomplishments of my fellow South Africans – basically I am proudly South African.
So, who’s interested in emigrating with me?