Johannesburg - For the price of a loaf of bread, a Joburg metro police officer allows a motorist to escape sanction for breaking the law.
But when she accepted that R10 note, she didn’t know that 100m away from her – hiding behind a wall – was a team from The Star on a mission to document police corruption.
She wasn’t the only law enforcement officer caught red-handed. Over a period of several weeks, the team didn’t observe only her, but saw SAPS members solicit and receive bribes as they manned roadblocks on Durban Deep Road, between Bramfischerville and Matholesville, in the greater Roodepoort area.
The officers manning these roadblocks, according to Major-General Oswald Reddy, had been drawn from across the Honeydew policing cluster to conduct operations in the area. And the officers appear to have got away with their crimes. - iOL
What has our society come to when the very people who have chosen to be the protectors of society are corrupt? Who is responsible for this reality? Do we blame the government for not paying police officers enough to survive? Do we blame the training academies for not screening the integrity of applicants rigorously enough? Do we blame society for producing people who seem to be completely lacking in respect, honour and integrity? Do we blame society for valuing our police officers lowly, in effect diminishing the value of their monetary earnings? Do we blame the parents of the corrupt and incompetent police officers for not instilling respect, honour and integrity in their children? Do we blame the education system for not properly preparing students for creating a career and life for themselves?
Sure, every one of these things is relevant - but what is the one common denominator? The human factor.
We have allowed our society to devolve into a mess of inefficiencies, in-competencies and corruption. Even if we did not actively participate in the devolution of human society, our acceptance thereof is equal to the creation and perpetuation of it. It is not necessary for you to participate in bribery or some other corruption - all that is required is the acceptance of these actions as an acceptable "part of life" - this acceptance validates the existence of said corruption - the same goes with any other thing. The moment we give in to the thought of some terrible thing being just another part of life that cannot be changed - that is the moment that we diminish ourselves, the moment that we allow ourselves to become equal to the evil that we have deemed to be a part of life.
Part of the problem is that most people are blaming some other people for practically everything. They paint a target over a selected category of people and fling all sorts of poo at said target population. This gives you the feeling of being on the moral (and everything else) high ground - that you are always right (and the bestest) and everyone else, especially those f*****s in target population A, is wrong (and completely retarded). In South Africa, it seems to still be common for this blaming to manifest in mostly race-oriented ways, like a white person blaming all the black people for the country being the way it is and a black person blaming all the whites for stealing their homeland and culture. Obviously none of it is productive - it is in fact counter-productive - only creating more conflict and separation, while allowing all the various people to maintain their own positive self image (by degrading the images of other people and population groups).
All of this gets us nowhere fast. Except maybe a Global Syria type situation. Sounds fun, nay?
Doing what you've always done will only ever get you to where you've always gotten. We need to change something in the equation to alter our destination.