2019 Edition 1

Page 1

20 March 2019| Volume 78 | Edition 1

Staff Learning Centre calls on volunteers

Source: Review Bonus

Staff learners are asking for students to assist them with their study material on weekends By Sophie Fischer


iddle Campus - The Staff Learning Centre in Cambria House is looking for students to help with tutorials on Saturdays. The Centre offers a part-time schooling programme for UCT Staff to get an Amended Senior Certificate (ASC) which is equivalent to the National Senior Certificate (NSC).

“The staff think that they need more time to engage with the material” The Staff Learning Centre programme is a two-year course, with three subjects per year. This year the subjects are Life Sciences, Religious Studies and Mathematical Literacy. The class consists of eighteen learners at the moment (the programme started with 27 the previous year), of which most are Xhosa speaking learners.The

learners told VARSITY that tutorials are needed for each subject, as they require a more in-depth explanation of terms as well as a general review of the material which can’t be covered in the limited time of the course itself. Akhona, one of the learners, tells us that the class sometimes struggle with definitions and terminology due to the language barrier when the material gets too specific. But mostly the staff think that they need more time to engage with the material as they haven’t been to school in years. For some, the last time they attended an educational institution was in the 1980s, and learning styles have changed substantially since. The fact that some will have dropped out at different levels before graduating adds to the unequal level in the class. The programme is free for Staff learners who complete the course, but dropping out will leave the learner potentially liable to pay the cost of the uncompleted course. According to Earle, another interviewed staff-learner.,

most learners come from townships and the Cape Flats, and have long distances to travel, as well as attend to work, private duties and the course. According to Ms. Leibrandt, the course coordinator, the lecturers support their learners as much as they can but are also limited by the time pressure regarding the amount of material they have to teach. Courses are centered around visual learning and staff learners have access to all stationery, wifi and computer labs. At the moment the Staff learners are assisted by an undergraduate first-year student in one subject. The learners tell VARSITY that they fear that when the student has got her own assignments to do, they won’t have any help. This is especially a concern in light of the learners’ upcoming exams in May. The Staff learners are very ambitious and have caught visions for their future throughout the course. Some of the learners even take additional

programmes like computer skills, Ms. Leibrandt, the person who spearheaded the programme, tells us.

“The Staff learners suggested that rotating working circles would benefit staff learners and students” The Staff learners suggested that rotating working circles would benefit staff learners and students. It would ensure regular help for the Staff learners as well as easing the time burden on the undergraduate students. Interested students who want to offer help can come to Cambria house on Middle Campus and meet the learners from Monday to Friday in their break between 5-5.30pm. Regarding the staff learners, tutorials on Saturdays would suit them best.

@VarsityNews 20 March 2019|V78 E1|Page 2

Politics and Pursuit of Education for Zimbabwean Students


An investigation into how the latest crisis in the country affects the lives of students abroad

Gabriel Vieira & Sophie Fischer news@varsitynewspaper.co.za

By Babalwa Nomtshongwana


he political tensions in Zimbabwe over the last few months have been reported in the media worldwide . Tensions accumulated into what was widely reported as a shutdown enforced by the Zimbabwean government, with the aim to curb protest movements and activities against the government. Perhaps naturally, this adverse political climate has heavily affected Zimbabwe students attending UCT.

“According totheSRC(Student’s Representative Council), many of the Zimbabwean students could not register as per usual”

According to the SRC (Student’s Representative Council), many of the Zimbabwean students could not register as per usual, there were issues with student’s initial bank payments and the time it took for payment to reflect . Furthermore, a number of students who’s visa application requests were delayed, resulted in some students having to delay their return dates ,which affected the registration process for students. VARSITY spoke to IAPO (International Academic Programmes Office) about the ways in which they were addressing the concerns by students, and what plans are being implemented. When asked whether IAPO was

aware of the political climate in Zimbabwe and its effects on students, they responded saying that they were working with stakeholders and the Department of Home Affairs, to address the visa challenges that the students were facing. In addition to this, the office is liaising with the Zimbabwean Students Union and the SRC to obtain information on student issues that were reported to these bodies, which was then reported to the IAPO Executive. Students who had made initial payments, were advised by IAPO’s Finance team and the Fees office. Consequently, difficulties arose as the authority to allow students to register ultimately lay with individual faculties. While IAPO

does not have the funding available to assist students with previous debts, students are advised to approach the SRC with their inquiries.

“it remains to be seen if students will be negatively affected in the long run” For many Zimbabwean students this has been a challenging start to the academic year, it remains to be seen if students will be negatively affected in the long run, but it seems that every effort is being made to ensure that students will be able to get on with this year successfully.

Collaboration in Action: UCT’s Food Security Programme By Sara Lagardien Abdullah Dr Chance Chagunda Source: UCT News


he University of Cape Town’s Food Security Programme was initiated last year as a university wide programme motivated by the urgent need to address student hunger across UCT campuses. Edwina Brooks, one of the key organisers of the Food Security Programme states,“There was a Food Security Task Team that was set up by the University Student Affairs Committee.”

“The programme has extended its delivery from the 28th of January until the 12th of April 2019” After the far-ranging engagement during last year’s examination period, the programme has extended its delivery from the 28th of January until the 12th of

April 2019. Edwina stresses the importance of the spirit of volunteerism, a spirit that continues to ensure the success of the programme. The programme has been made possible by the generous and innumerable donations of time, energy, and resources by UCT students, staff and the broader public. N

o n - U C T affiliated personnel have also lent a kind hand in assisting the programme, which is a further display of how the ethos of collaboration holds the capacity to create crucial community, solidarity and ultimately, change. While clear efforts have been made in an attempt to mitigate student hunger across UCT, Edwina emphasises that a lot of work still needs to be done . It is evident that there

UCT extends its Food Security Programme due to high demand

is a far larger demand than can be supplied for thus , The UCT Food Security Programme has begun considering the way forward. The programme is leaning towards a model that is more sustainable and that will ensure the successful expansion of the programme. Multiple proposals have been made to further collaboration, and many opportunities for extension have presented themselves, however, without financial support these proposals can’t be implemented.

“UCT’s Food Security Programme is appealing to volunteers who are able to extend assistance to kindly do so”

UCT’s Food Security Programme is appealing to volunteers who are able to extend assistance to kindly do so. The Programme’s volunteer systems operates from 07:00 until 15:30 from Monday to Friday and volunteers work on an hourly basis. Free packed lunches are available at Room 1.04 on Level 1 of the Robert Leslie Social Science Building on Upper Campus between 11:00 and 14:00 – and are also accessible on other UCT campuses. For more information, or to volunteer contact Edwina Brooks at edwina.brooks@uct.ac.za

@VarsityNews 20 March 2019|V78 E1|Page 3

Student Wellness Service’s New Online Booking System The Student Wellness Service introduced a new online booking system, hoping to make services more accessible to students


vailable services include: consultations with a Professional Nurse and Clinical Health Practitioner for medical bookings, and a psychologist for counselling bookings. Thereafter, if needed, these professionals will make a referral to a doctor or psychiatrist respectively. The Director of the SWS declared, “We are confident that the service will become much more successful. Given the quick convenient access, student choice being exercised, and without a middle person being involved in the booking system takes the service into the digital age, through its online platform.”. Students can access the online booking

on the Department of Student A�airs (DSA) website, as well as on the UCT app. Information regarding costs and duration of the consultation are available to be viewed on the website, including the location.

“The online booking system will increase systematic efficiencies, eliminates waiting lists and provides real time bookings.” The online booking system will increase systematic e�ciencies,

eliminates waiting lists and provides real time bookings. “It has become much easier to book an appointment through the online booking system compared to any other methods used previously,” the director assured. It is encouraged that students seek help for any medical, psychological and other personal problems that they might be experiencing and get help. “Such a service is bound to be successful because it is simple, user friendly, responsive to the student’s needs,” she reiterates, emphasizing that the system is ultimately meant to be beneficial to the student body.

For more information, queries can be made by calling the SWS reception at 021 650 1020/1017.

By Shameeka Voyiya

Source: Pixabay

2019 Advertising Rates Card ads@varsitynewspaper.co.za SIZING AND PRICE GUIDE

Discounts First time clients are eligible for 10% off their first orders (Not applicable to UCT affiliated parties)

UCT affiliated parties (societies, departments, organisations, alumni and students) are eligible for a 20% discount

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 | V78 E1| Page 4


Senior Editorial

Welcome back ...

The Collective EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Soligah Solomons editorial@varsitynewspaper.co.za

DEPUTY EDITOR Akhona Matshoba editorial@varsitynewspaper.co.za

ACTING MANAGING EDITOR Aidan Croy managingeditor@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Akhona Matshoba Deputy Editor in Chief

COPY EDITOR Ntombi Khulu copyed@varsitynewspaper.co.za

ONLINE EDITOR Arin Barry online@varsitynewspaper.co.za

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Tasneem Jacobs creativedirector@varsitynewspaper.co.za PRINT NEWS Gabriel Vieira & Sophie Fischer news@varsitynewspaper.co.za PRINT FEATURES Sebastian Moronell features@varsitynewspaper.co.za COLUMNIST Rachel Reynolds columnist@varsitynewspaper.co.za PRINT OPINIONS Kelsey Maggott & Zahirah Benjamin opinions@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Arin Barry Online Editor

Soligah Solomons


ince the commencement of the academic year, university students have been faced with various challenges, such as academic exclusions. As a first-year or returning student, it is fair to say that these challenges have taken a heavy toll on each of us whether it be mentally, emotionally or physically. Just recently, we’ve witnessed traumatic coverage of protests by fellow students across the country. This then begs the question, why is this still happening and what measures are being taken to address such situations?

“Stage 4 load-shedding got everyone in a precarious situation.” Moreover, the university is set to embark on infrastructural renovations and new building developmentssomething that required urgent attention, especially with regard to the recurring housing crisis.

Whether this will alleviate the need for more space and accommodationtime will tell. Furthermore, the implementation of stage 4 load-shedding got everyone in a precarious situation. In fact, we experienced three sessions of load-shedding on the day of final editing for this edition. Nonetheless, we at VARSITY look forward to producing content that is of a good standard and to provide a platform for critical and meaningful debate. We look forward to the new projects we’ve got lined up for the year, especially the introduction of a completely new section- a column. From my side, I wish everyone a great year and I hope you enjoy this edition that the new Collective worked on tirelessly.

We’re looking for students who are passionate about writing, journalism, and media. We are broadly looking for: • Design Editors • Social media correspondents • Creatives • Staff writers Please email hr@varsitynewspaper.co.za if you are interested in applying or would like more info.

NEWS REPORTERS Mantwa Mehlape & Sinothando Siyolo

IMAGES Tao Varty imageseditor@varsitynewpaper.co.za

ONLINE NEWS Lew Blanks & Jasmine Jacobs onlinenews@varsitynewspaper.co.za

ONLINE LIFESTYLE & FITNESS Tiyani Rikhotso onlinesports@varsitynewspaper.co.za ONLINE FEATURES Refentse Malatji & Anna Cocks onlinefeatures@varsitynewspaper.co.za ONLINE OPINIONS Ruhi Ghaza & Salma Noor Mahomed onlineopinions@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Aidan Croy Acting Managing Editor

STAFF WRITERS Babalwa Nomtshongwana, Anouschka Tollig, Shameeka Voyiya, Sara Lagardien Abdullah and Brad Brinkley CONTRIBUTERS Sasha Broom, Stefanie Simon, Richard Kaplan, Susan Holland-Muter & Murray Hines FINANCE MANAGER Aidan Croy finance@varsitynewspaper.co.za


Stay updated by following us on Twitter @VarsityNews Facebook @VarsityNewspaper, Instagram @VarsityNews. Don’t forget to visit our website varsitynewspaper.co.za.

Applications for VARSITY General Collective are open:

PRINT LIFESTYLE & FITNESS Nengishon Melaisho sport@varsitynewspaper.co.za

OPERATIONS MANAGER Joseph Moloto operations@varsitynewspaper.co.za

WEB EDITOR Mukhethwa Ravele web@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Ntombi Khulu Copy Editor

SOCIAL MEDIA CORRESPONDENT Malusi Ngidi HR MANAGER Joseph Moloto hr@varsitynewspaper.co.za MARKETING & BRANDING Tshepiso Mokabu marketing@varsitynewspaper.co.za ADS MANAGER Teboho George ads@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Tasneem Jacobs Creative Director

HEAD OF VIDEOGRAPHY Siyabonga Jubeju videographers@varsitynewspaper.co.za

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 | V78 E1| Page 5




This Week in Images 1. Tao Varty 2. Tao Varty 3. ABSA Cape Epic 4. Vincent Thian 5. Fiona Goodall



@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019| V78 E1|Page 6



Sebastian Moronell features@varsitynewspaper.co.za

How to have sex now and in the future. By Richard Kaplan and Susan Holland-Muter


ery, very carefully! In the 80s, HIV changed everything. Sex became deadly – literally! Being queer no longer only carried a risk of bullying, verbal abuse, or having to tell mom, dad and gran that you were not going to, um, well live quite like them – being queer also became very dangerous. Even more dangerous than before. And now, decades have passed and things have changed. HIV isn’t a queer disease and it is manageable. It is also preventable. But it’s still not curable and probably won’t be for some time.

Tyranny of the idea - the New Zealand Mosque deaths

Do we live in a world obsessed with ideas and what they represent?

So how do you have sex now? Sex with somebody new has always been awkward, exciting and strange. But no other generation in recent history has had to consider that they could contract an incurable, yet manageable, disease. It also requires potentially very uncomfortable discussions about HIV testing and prevention some stage between foreplay and orgasm. And it’s not cool at all, it really isn’t.

“More than half of the men and transgender women living with HIV were unaware of their status. So get pricking!”

By Sebastian Moronell


s I am sure we are all aware by now, there was an attack on two mosques during Friday prayers in Christ church on Friday the 15th of March 2019. The world spurred into action. Media houses immediately sent journalists to New Zealand to cover the event. There were condemnations from state leaders around the world. The killer, Brenton Tarrant, is a self-identified white-supremacist and praised Trump in his 74-page manifesto. Al-Jazeera reported that Trump condemned the attack in a tweet but didn’t mention the word Muslim. Condemnations of Trump’s so-called dangerous rhetoric then followed.

“Few reports have focused on those who died in the attack, and when they have, they are peripheral to the arguments being made.” Other leaders, such as President Erdogan of Turkey, have called this an attack ‘targeting all Muslims’ and has linked it to the growing Islamophobia worldwide. Jacinda Arden, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, has promised to change the country’s lax gun-control laws. Tabloids in the United Kingdom and Australia have been called out for ‘humanising’ the killer with headlines such as ‘Angelic Boy who grew into an Evil Far-Right Mass Killer.’ Few reports have focused on those who died in the attack, and when they have, they

Not surprising then that big questions around safe sex have become part of this generation’s everyday life – just like the selfie, Facebook and Instagram. But just like taking a good selfie is about knowing your best angle, safe sex is about knowing your options. So, how to stay negative if you are negative? The options are: firstly, don’t have sex, ever! The safest option, but probably the least fun. Secondly, remain a virgin until you marry a virgin. And don’t have sex outside of your marriage ever - also pretty low on the fun scale. Thirdly, you and your partner get tested, before that first orgasm! Old news? ‘Fraid not. A recent Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DTHF) study showed that more than half of the men and transgender women living with HIV were unaware of their status. So get pricking! And of course, ye old faithful, use condoms. And if you are living with HIV, undetectable is untransmissable! Get on ARVs - stay on ARVs. Keep your viral load undetectable, and you will not pass on the virus. Good for you and good for everybody else too! You could also try Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) which reduces HIV transmission by over 90%. PrEP is a tablet containing two antiretroviral drugs

are peripheral to the arguments being made. Instead, most media organizations see these lives lost as collateral damage to the idea that is at stake

“Maimed by a whitesupremacist, they now die the death of not being heard.” The idea at stake is the growing rightwing nationalism and Fascism spreading across the Western world. The idea at stake is growing Islamophobia and, further, that a living, breathing combination of both of these ideas are found in Trump’s ideologies. Western leaders condemn these actions but are complacent in the rhetoric that breeds such actions, i.e. lax gun-control laws that create the scale of such disasters. We see this in the mainstream media

taken daily. If taken correctly, PrEP is one of the safest ways of preventing HIV. A heads up - condoms are the only way to prevent other STIs. So best to use both condoms and PrEP.

“If taken correctly, PrEP is one of the safest ways of preventing HIV.” And sex in the future? If/ until we have a vaccine, PrEP with condoms is your best and safest option. But PrEP in the future will probably be quite different. The DTHF is part of an international clinical trial comparing a long working injectable PrEP, administered every two months, with daily pills. This could be a game changer. To find out more, check out our website at http://desmondtutuhivfoundation.org.za/ giveprepashot/ or contact us on Facebook at https:// www.facebook.com/KeyPopulationsDivision/.

Image Source: The Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation

bias – that Western tabloids are irresponsible and unethical in their coverage of such events. The idea gives reason to an action – it explains why an event happened to satisfy our curiosity and fear. It also creates a ‘double death’ for those killed. Maimed by a white-supremacist, they now die the death of not being heard. The event of their death is superseded by the idea. Their lives are subjected to the tyranny of the idea. Can we think of those who died as something which exists outside of these ideas? Can we humanise the discourse as Khalid Beydoun tries to do in an op-ed for Aljazeera, by giving biographies of the dead. Or are these in vain – that we live in a world obsessed with ideas and what they represent?

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 | V78 E1 | Page 7

How do minorities feel when issues at UCT resolve to the dichotomy of ‘Black’ and ‘White’?

By Zaynab Asmal

“Cosplay is the art of bringing characters from literature or visual arts to life by creating their costumes, emulating their mannerisms and having fun in the execution of both.”


osplay is a portmanteau of the words ‘costume’ and ‘play’, which perfectly summarises the nature of this hobby. Most people associate cosplay with Japan, or Comic Cons in America, but Cosplay Cape Town has been active since 2011. It started with Sashi Cosplay alongside a group of friends who created a cosplay Facebook group and began hosting 2-4 picnics a year at Kirstenbosch Gardens for fellow enthusiasts. With the help of Reader’s Den - the local comic book store that now runs FanCon (the biggest convention in Cape Town) - Cosplay Cape Town hosted several events that grabbed the attention of hundreds and expanded the scene until the first major convention took place in the Mother City.

In 2019, the Cape Town cosplay scene has an unprecedented amount of opportunities for involvement, from local conventions to international opportunities afforded by Comic Con Africa and ICON. This is the first year that a fully-prepared team from South Africa will compete in the biggest cosplay competition in the world: The World Cosplay Summit. The preliminaries will be held in April at ICON in Johannesburg, but there are plenty of local events and contests before then to see cosplayers in action.

“Cosplay is really about being creative and building skills and confidence.” Book launches, library events, charity events and movie premiers often include cosplay elements. Genshiken UCT has casual cosplay days and CLAWS UCT hosts Live Action Roleplays (LARPs) which involves dress up. There are also momentary

Source: Solis Photography crossovers with events such as the Pride Parade, Emo Night, Zombie Walk or the Cape Carnival. Some of the skills learned by cosplayers come from drag or theatre, and places such as City Varsity encourages cosplay among special effects,make-up and visual artists, due to the opportunities that cosplay presents as exposure and capital. Even Animation South Africa sees cosplay as a worthy phenomenon that not only explores the relationship between creation and audience, but as an aspect to consider in character creation. Several students in Cape Town have even written projects and dissertations on cosplay. Although the various contests seem to dominate the scene, cosplay is really about being creative and building skills and confidence. In cosplay, you learn about DIY, recycling, budgeting and time management, to name but a few skills.

Plucky “Progress” Posters Progress SA is a movement that claims to address societal and political issues within South Africa, and specifically within the context of UCT. Chances are that you have glanced at their posters up among second hand textbooks for sale and have had a double take. These bold posters display images of students and their apparent opinions on certain topical issues at UCT. They work in conjunction with Students For Liberty, an international organisation that states its mission is to,” educate, develop and empower the next generation of leaders of liberty.” They are a rightwing, libertarian, not-for-profit organisation based in the United States, dependent on donations for funding.

“attempt at rectifying inequalities created by Apartheid should not exclude people of rights or opportunities because of their race.”

“Regardless of your race, gender or size, you can dress as any character you like” While it is generally cheaper to make your own cosplay, you can also buy or commission an outfit to be made for you. Regardless of your race, gender or size, you can dress as any character you like so long as you do not blackface or harass anyone! You can also try crossplaying, a creative expression that allows people to experiment with gender and performativity. There are guidelines of how to behave while in cosplay as well as how to treat cosplayers, which can be found under the banner of ‘Cosplay’ is not ‘Consent’. Some cosplayers work on commissions and run photography businesses as they turn their hobby into a career. However, a large portion of local cosplayers just do it for fun, and, as everyone is quick to tell you, cosplay is for everyone.

If you are interested in getting into cosplay, please keep in mind three things: the scene is about having fun; judging others is not okay; and cosplay can get pricey. But plenty of budget-friendly ways to do cosplay exist, and the Cosplay Cape Town or Cosplay South Africa Facebook groups are great places to learn from. You can also hunt down the pages of local cosplayers to ask for assistance or check out the Cosplay Cape Town website for their articles and event listings. So if you want to test your creativity, briefly experiencing the life of a cherished character or just want to see other people enjoying themselves in costume, give cosplay a shot. It never disappoints! Upcoming cosplay events: on gaming, e-sport and comics. 27-28 April: FanCon. Best international and local line-up of cosplay acts, including cosplayers who have worked for Marvel, Cosplay Melee etc.

Progress SA’s bold posters stir-up some debate on campus By Brad Brinkley

There are five core principles of which Progress SA believes to be pertinent to their cause: Liberty, Opportunity, Non-Racialism and Non-Sexualism, Market Economy and the Rule Of Law. They all fit into a liberal narrative of what a post-Apartheid South Africa should look like, stating on their website that any “attempt at rectifying inequalities created by Apartheid should not exclude people of rights or opportunities because of their race.” These terms and the debates around them are common to those who have been at UCT for the past few years. Their campaign, “#IsUCTFree?” is aimed at transforming the space at UCT into a more transparent and safer environment to voice opinions that do not agree with what they claim is a ‘hegemonic’ discourse. This includes challenging the humanities curricula, because they believe that it pushes a one-sided agenda.

“A colour bar’ for lecturers? “ Progress SA was also involved in the process of challenging UCT management over the curriculum change. They sent an open letter to vice-chancellor Mamokgethi Phakeng to clarify certain aspects of the curriculum change framework. This included questioning the techniques used to decolonise the syllabus while voicing concerns over what they perceived as the introduction of ‘a colour bar’ for lecturers- a claim which Phakeng flatly refused and which she termed as “unconstitutional”. As such, Progress SA at UCT resembles one side of an ideological battle that takes place every day in our lecture theatres, tutorials and demonstrations. Whether or not we agree with what they say, there is no way of hiding from the terms and content of the debates.

“As a final year Business Science Finance and Accounting student, I hope to create a financial framework which can be used in future years and improve financial efficiency.”

Aidan Croy

Acting Managing Editor

“I can’t wait to oversee the wrap editions this year and get to produce work that I’m proud of. I aim to make Varsity more interactive and collaborative amounts fellow student organisations on campus.”

Tasneem Jacobs

Creative Director

“This year I am looking forward to challenging our norms by ensuring that Varsity produces content that will stimulate meaningful debates around issues that matter to our readership and greater UCT community.”

Akhona Matshoba

Deputy Editor

Introducing the 2019 Senior Editorial Team Soligah Solomons

Editor In Chief “As the editor, I know that this year will bring about great opportunities as well as challenges, My aim is to see every development as a learning curve. I am a firm believer in the saying ‘Everything happens for a reason.’”

Copy Editor Ntombi Khulu

“As the new Copy Editor for 2019 I’m really excited to bring forward some fresh content and incorporate new innovative articles and ideas from the collective and from the larger UCT community. Get ready for a vibrant and 21st century VARSITY Newspaper!”

Arin Barry

Online Editor “I want to push the website to reach new levels by incorporating all forms of media alongside the text. By adding video, audio and animation elements the website will become an interactive experience to readers.”

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019| V78 E4 | Page 10


By Babalwa Nomtshongwana

Weed is big business on campus For many students the time we spend in university is the most exciting and experimental of our young adult lives. It is an opportunity to be free of the parental control throughout childhood,which in itself causes excitement.The space is more freeing, and more relaxed with regards to the personal choices you make.

“Weed is as common to students as seeing a lecturer” It is here where we encounter the casual attitudes towards things we were always warned against, and implicitly denied. An example would be the use of cannabis, more commonly referred to as weed. Weed is as common to students as seeing a lecturer . Ask any student on campus, and they will know at least one person who sells or uses the drug. The use of weed can arguably be regarded as a complimentary part of the university experience, and most students have tried weed at least once. There are a variety of reasons for the use of weed some find the drug to be relaxing, others claim that it helps them focus on their schoolwork and clears their head. For many students, the experience is liberating and freeing. For others, it can be scary, filled with constant paranoia and irrational fear. It differs from person to person. There are also various types of users, ranging from social smokers, to those who smoke every day, sometimes more than

once a day. However, the one thing that all users have in common would be that they have a dealer, the person from whom they obtain the drug.

“Students are willing to spend their money, in other words, I have the supply, there is a demand, and I am satisfying that demand“ The dealer is someone you can trust and whose product is reliable for “getting the job done.” Dealers are found by way of word of mouth, and every friend circle should be able to direct you to one. Every dealer approaches the transaction differently. Most times the client and dealer meet up in a place that is convenient for both. If you have spoken to the dealer before meeting up, you may already know what kind of strain of cannabis you want to buy. The strains are divided into two categories, Indoor or Outdoor. They are further categorised by potency, with particularly potent strains being more expensive than regular strains. Furthermore, the price is dependent on the amount of weed bought, usually measured in grams. Some students prefer large quantities and make “bulk buys” as a way to save money, usually the regular smokers. For those who are limited to social smoking, they often purchase smaller quantities that come in “baggies,” or tiny plastic bags. The form in which it comes is also a factor to consider, so for example, you could buy a joint, or weed can also be bought in a ready-tosmoke form at a fraction of the price, however it

works out to be more expensive as the client ends up paying for the cost of labour for rolling the ‘joint’. Some dealers also sell food products that have marijuana added to them. These are commonly referred to as edibles. The prices for these generally also depend on the dealer. The cost of weed will mostly depend on: the availability of that strain, your relationship with your dealer, as well as the potency of the strain. Generally, potency refers to how quickly the effect of the marijuana is felt, distorting your perception of reality. In other words, how “high” you become.

“ The market for weed is undoubtedly a large one” I spoke to a dealer who goes by the name, “Jones” and whose clientele includes many students. He believes that the popularity of weed on campuses is not about to dwindle. “Students are willing to spend their money, in other words, I have the supply, there is a demand, and I am satisfying that demand“, he notes. The market for weed is undoubtedly a large one, and it doesn’t look to be declining. With attitudes towards marijuana becoming more relaxed in society, it is safe to say that the substance will continue to be a big part of the university experience for a long time to come.

Two Weeks Tonight



The Mother City Comedy festival

Comedy-lovers, the first annual Mother city comedy Festival takes place this March at Baxter theatre. Local, international, film and TV stars will be in the presence. Amongst many comedians that will be there is Lazola Gola and Donovan Goliath. Tickets available at: https://www.webtickets.co.za/event.aspx?itemid=1487733355




ComicEx Cape Town festival

ComicEX festival is an allround entertainment brand that will be taking place at the Sun International, Grand West. If you love live performances, gaming, comics and movies, the comicEx festival is the right place for you. Tickets available at: https://online. computicket.com/web/event/ comicex_cape_town_2019/1271824 655/0/92079606


March Local is Lekker! Get exposed to the local culture and community of Cape Town. One of the most visited local spots, Rands, is hosting the City of Cape Town’s Jazz Festival After Party. The lineup includes well known South African celebrities such as Shekhinah and Sho Madjozi.

Kirstenbosch summer sunset concerts Keen to dance? The Kirstenbosch summer sunset concert will be hosting two of the acts, Shortstraw and Bam Bam Brown, are known for giving the crowd an electric live performance. Tickets available at: https://www.webtickets. co.za/events/best-sellers/ kirstenbosch-summer-sunset-concerts-2018-2019/1483875142 Where: Pepper Club and Hotel Spa on Loop Street



A Night at the Theatre Be razzled and dazzled by the international award-winning musical, Chicago the Musical performance showcasing at the Artscape Theatre, Cape Town. Its murder, greed, corruption, exploitation, adultery and treachery in one play. Tickets available at: https://online.computicket.com/web/event/ chicago_the_musical/1232477187/

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What the pigeon heard

Egg/Sperm anonymity should be an anomaly


nfortunately, I found myself stuck in the girls bathroom next to the library just two days ago, and while most humans came and went without bothering me, one human girl screamed when she saw me and screamed louder when I flapped my wings to try and get away. Whilst this was somewhat traumatic, I have experienced worse in my years as a UCT pigeon, and what I found in the stall was somewhat worth the dodgy detour. There was a poster on the back of the door advertising a promise of R7000 to the female human who donates her eggs to a clinic. I haven’t been into the male bathrooms yet but some friends of mine who live in a nest above the men’s ablutions at Leslie have told me similar financial promises are advertised to males too, in return for their sperm.

“You may be standing in an Absa queue one day, and behind you is your son! And you wouldn’t even know it!” Given students are always out and about trying to earn a quick buck to pay for their dodgy habits (like eating poultry), they seem all too keen to get involved in donating sperm or eggs. One couple got into a bit of a tiff about it one day, I remember. The male was saying how he needed the money to pay for her movies at Cavendish, and she was saying that there were moral implications to donating sperm/eggs. “You may be standing in an Absa queue one day, and behind you is your son! And you wouldn’t even know it!”. She shuddered at the thought of it, but he seemed unperturbed. “I didn’t raise it. All it is, is some biological makeup that is not in my control and doesn’t reflect who I am as a human being at all.” His views seem to be in line with those of Nurture SA— the company advertised on the poster in the bathroom. In response to the FAQ What will it be like having my children running around out there? Their website responds: Eggs alone do not a child make! Fair enough Nurture SAkespeare, but they do contribute to a significant amount of that child


This section of the VARSITY is a vehicle for expression on any topic by the columnist. The opinions within this section are not necessarily those of the VARSITY collective or its advertisers. Letters to the Editor can be sent to:editorial@varsitynewspaper. co.za

(approximately 50%, if human genetics work the same as pigeons’). As it stands, if you are an expectant parent you can log onto the website and peruse the donors whose sperm/eggs you wish to choose. I was shocked and horrified at viewing some of these profiles as, due to anonymity, no adult pictures of the donors are used. The parents rely only on baby pictures to decide who is visually superior - you can all attest to the truth that baby pigeons are wonderfully adorable and fully grown pigeons are somewhat… further from this description. The same, and more, can be said for humans. Additionally, each donor profile has a character description next to their (often blurry) baby photo. These range from ‘fun, loving and kind” to “bore easily, go getter”. Excuse me? Go getter? Go getter of what, exactly? Of drugs? Of alcohol? Of dairy-free ice cream because you’re lactose intolerant?

By The Anonymous Pigeon columnist@varsitynewspaper.co.za

Image from engadement.com

“as a potential parent you are taking a risk with some of these ambiguous character profiles who may have undisclosed genetic flaws.” As you can probably tell, I myself am not a fan of the egg and sperm donating process. Not only will you never see your baby hatch if you are the donor, but as a potential parent you are taking a risk with some of these ambiguous character profiles who may have undisclosed genetic flaws. Donating to help parents have children who can’t themselves is an amazing gift, I am just not sure about the whole anonymity business. Luckily, our pigeon fertility clinic proposal died along with Justin Bieber’s popularity back in 2013, so it is not a pressing issue for me at present.

Source: Nuture SA

Meghan Markle: Changing the Rules of Royalty By Shameeka Voyiya


uchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, is changing the conventions of royalty. From her dress sense to her vocal perspectives on world issues, she has become a controversial and inspirational figure for many people. Sometimes sporting pants instead of skirts and dresses in public, wearing her hair in a messy bun and hugging fans instead of waving at them, these are just some of the ways in which the Duchess defies royal regulations. But Meghan’s conduct goes beyond this rebel-

lion of superficial royal protocol. As a feminist, she tackles issues that women deal with daily and is never afraid to speak out about them. Meghan is an avid supporter and spokesperson for feminism and equality in all aspects. This is a refreshing take on what it means to be of royalty. Meghan shows us that she is passionate about things that matter, despite her social status. Despite the recent trolling that she has received on social media because of her mixed-race ethnicity, she embraces who she is. Regardless of how

unconventional and different she looks and acts from who she is expected to portray in the public eye, she is a royal feminist icon who represents everything that is a powerful woman in this era.

it is every woman’s duty to speak up and take action against inequality and discrimination - regardless of their position in society or background.

She continues to be an inspiration, spreading the message that it is every woman’s duty to speak up and take action against inequality and discrimination - regardless of their position in society or background.

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 | V78 E1 |Page 12

Pride: How Many Colours in the Rainbow?


Kelsey Maggott & Zahirah Benjamin opinions@varsitynewspaper.co.za

By Murray Hines

Cape Town Pride fails to represent the diversity of the queer community. Source: Gillette official YouTube account

The best men can be?

By Sumona Bose

Misguided concerns over new Gillette ad campaign.


iers Morgan had expressed concern over the diminishing prospects of ‘overachieving men’ when the shaving company, Gillette, had released an advert enacting gender inequality and how men are complicit in reinforcing patriarchy. Of course, out of the many concerns revolving around how womxn are reduced to subdue under male dominance, the one which stood out was how this advert was ‘insulting’ to male offenders. As Piers was hurt by this ad, so were the countless womxn who are tormented every day. The question now is whether we ignore the reality or continue to inflate our ‘Not All Men’ counterparts in their pursuit to campaign their superficial righteousness.

“People who expressed dislike over this advert completely missed the message: masculinity starts from your home in whatever way you decide to groom it.” Sexual violence, harassment, physical violence, abuse and discrimination are lived realities around the world, which only increase every day. Therefore, let this sink in before we set out to prove the alternative versions of what we perceive as violence against womxn. What is more heartbreaking about this advert was that masculinity was shown in its most vulnerable stages, and yet it was overlooked to breed this unnecessary aggression that is always associated with ‘manhood’. This advert touched on sexuality, assault, bullying and violence, beginning from where ‘boys become men’. People who expressed dislike over this advert completely missed the message: masculinity starts from your home in whatever way you

decide to groom it. By harnessing an image of hyper-masculinity to be the most appropriate prototype of manhood, you perpetuate the oppressive thought of demeaning others who are not part of the cohort.


ride feels like it forms the foundation of a lot of queer identity. Certainly, it has been advertised as a cornerstone of queer culture. From Eric’s iconic transformation as he celebrates his birthday in Sex Education to the unforgettable pride parade sequence in Sense8, this seems like something a lot of queer people are doing. Except that in Cape Town, the relationship that queer people have with pride is a lot more tumultuous.

“And the unfortunate definition of ‘manhood’ has been paroled to be toxic and aggravated.” Some of the obscene arguments in favour of toxic masculinity supporters is how this advert humiliates their chance to reach their full potential; which sums up abuse and gross violence. And no, Piers, men can also be discriminated against if they do not fit your definition of ‘a man’. And the unfortunate definition of ‘manhood’ has been paroled to be toxic and aggravated. It is not less manly to prevent someone from catcalling; it is not ‘uncool’ to refrain from body or slut-shaming someone. It is not acceptable to be homophobic, neither is it wrong to teach your male children to avoid violence and make peace.

The lack of representation and attention to issues across the class, race and gender spectrum make it really difficult to buy into Pride’s philosophy that all voices and identities matter.

the country’s first Pride parade in 1990, Cape Town Pride has been criticised in the past for being elitist and discriminatory. Most of the events are held in Greenpoint, which is inaccessible for the vast majority of queer people who occupy the city of Cape Town. This formed the basis of my decision not to attend Pride this year. Rainbow UCT also made the decision not to be officially involved in the festival because of its lack of diversity. The lack of representation and attention to issues across the class, race and gender spectrum make it really difficult to buy into Pride’s philosophy that all voices and identities matter. Dominated by white, cis, gay men, there is very little representation of trans people, people of colour and certainly no representation of queer people who cannot afford the transport and entrance fees to the events.

And while Pride is making an effort to be more inclusive, it is concerning that there are still people who feel that a space meant to be for everyone, was not designed for them. Friends who attended the festival in previous years said that while it was a fun space, it was “disconcerting” to be in a space that felt so white-dominated. And while Pride is making an effort to be more inclusive, it is concerning that there are still people who feel that a space meant to be for everyone, was not designed for them. Until we, as white queer people, start to engage in actively listening to the needs of other demographics in the queer community, Pride will continue to exclude the very people who desperately need it.

Every year Cape Town Pride takes over the city – or at least a tiny, rich, white minority of the city. Taking place at the end of February in commemoration of

So, if you thought the Gillette ad was problematic, re-think what the actual problem is. Maybe it is because some men are not the best that they can be…yet.


t the 2019 Oscars, while many people of colour were celebrated for their achievements, not all were treated with respect. On the red carpet, Ashley Graham asked Jason Momoa to perform a ‘haka move’ before mimicking one herself. Let’s explore why this is so problematic and culturally insensitive, and why white people seem to enjoy having people of colour perform their culture.

Graham reduced the haka to a flashy ‘cute’ dance move to be performed on demand, entirely disregarding and disrespecting its actual significance. Momoa’s Hawaiian cultural traditions include performing a Hawaiian

Source: Neil Coulson

Our culture is not your Oscars entertainment By Yuri Behari-Leak version of the haka, originally developed by the indigenous Māori population. The haka is a profoundly sacred and powerful tradition used to honour important guests, challenge opponents or celebrate special occasions - like the premiere of Momoa’s new film Aquaman at which he performed it. However, Graham reduced the haka to a flashy ‘cute’ dance move to be performed on demand, entirely disregarding and disrespecting its actual significance. This request by a white person is just one of many and implies that indigenous cultural practices should satisfy white curiosity and entertainment. But why does this commodification of culture happen? Whiteness represents power and privilege as part of the dominant cultural norm, making all other cultures ‘different’ or ‘exotic’. These practices are therefore viewed by white

people as ‘attractive’ or ‘interesting’, and they feel privy to these practices encountering them. Exoticism, such as blackface, has historically been used to racially discriminate against people of colour for entertainment.

Kudos to Lisa Bonet, Momoa’s wife, for trying to end the interview when Graham slipped up. We all need to address culturally insensitive and problematic expressions to protect the significance of indigenous cultures. In a South African context, there are many examples of where indigenous cultures are commoditised and exoticised for white satisfaction - the ‘township tours’ come to mind. Whether on a local or international stage, we can stop this commodification of culture by treating each other respectfully, with cultural understanding and appreciation, not appropriation. Our culture is not your Oscars entertainment.

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 | V78 E1 | Page 13

The Youth’s Voting Crisis: A Silent Protest, An Issue Of Political Identities, Or A Simple Lack Of Education? By Anna van Renen Questions regarding why the number of youth voters has decreased.


fter the recent voting registration for the general election, only 23% of all potential eligible voters in the age group 18-19 were registered to vote, and 55% registered in the age group 20-29. In all other age bands, this percentage was at 79 or above.

“making an active decision not to vote is a form of protest against the corrupt governance that South Africa has faced in the past few years.” A large part of the lack of youth voting can be traced back to education, or rather lack thereof. Youth are not taught how the election process works, nor are they taught the importance of their vote. Furthermore, the lack of political knowledge held by young people greatly inhibits their ability to make an informed decision about who they would like to elect, thus they prefer not to vote at all. Politically-driven education is shied away from, as institutions aim to stay neutral to the point where it damages the education system; the youth are not

taught, so as not to risk a biased political education. Speaking to UCT students, it also became clear that people often choose not to vote simply because they cannot relate to any of the political parties. One student commented on the fact that they have no faith in any political parties in South Africa because of the corruption that has plagued this country’s parliamentary system. From this comment, it could be assumed that making an active decision not to vote is a form of protest against the corrupt governance that South Africa has faced in the past few years. South Africa’s past and high disparity rates also means that youth have a variety of political identities, made up of elements such as race, class, and quality of education. Political identities certainly affect voter patterns. For example, let us look at middle to upper-class, predominantly white, youth because of the aforementioned lack of political education. They will receive little more education than what is passed down to them from their parents. White privilege also plays a role here; there is certainly a sense of entitlement built into rich, white people, where they believe that they are entitled to their party winning. Because they do not believe that their party will win, they would rather not vote at all than vote for a losing party, or lose their position of power in society through the electoral process. In a similar fashion, after talking to people of colour, it can be viewed that often voters will elect the ANC because 25 years ago they were the party of freedom,

not because of their current policies or mandates. Of course, it is important to note here that not all people from particular races will act in this way.

“youth voter registration numbers are so low, and without a change they will continue to be this way.” Time and time again, it is emphasised that we, the youth, are the leaders of tomorrow. However, if we are not educated on how our governance system works and on how our country is run, how can we be expected to care for it in the future? How can we be trusted to lead the country if the only examples provided to us are ones of greed and corruption? If there is no platform provided to show us different perspectives, how can we be expected to make our own informed, unbiased decisions? We need a platform of education, discussion and integration of ideas, which is not currently supplied to us. What we also need are examples from our current leaders of just and fair leadership. It is not surprising, considering all these factors, that the youth voter registration numbers are so low, and without a change they will continue to be this way.

He always has the upper hand By Vhonani Sadiki

Women are still unable to speak out about abuse.


ongekile Simelane, known by her stage name Babes Wodumo, went on Instagram Live in the early hours of Monday morning with her partner Mandla Maphumulo, known as Mampintsha. Things spiraled out of control and it became apparent that things weren’t going right when Babes kept on asking “Ung’shayelani?” over and over - which means: “Why are you hitting me?”. The video went on for a few minutes and viewers witnessed Babes being physically and verbally abused by Mampintsha.

“People start hashtags, promise to boycott or ‘cancel’ an artist, but that outrage and passion only lasts for a week before something new comes along.”

Instead, the government officials, like everyone else, take it to Twitter and give people false hope or display their outrage and do nothing else about it. Or, to put on a façade to get votes and support for their political party, the best they do is host campaigns (that only women, the victims, attend), such as the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children - which is pointless because every day should be a day of non-violence. But at least they are trying, right? Yes, their campaigns and events do shed light on the issue, but they don’t address the issue. And the issue here in South Africa is misogynistic men. Men always have connections in high places and people of a higher status don’t face the consequences of their actions - which stems from the corruption in South Africa. The only way the government can solve issues such as abuse, is firstly by dealing with their internal issues like corruption. But what about all those women without smartphones, access to the internet or even a large number of followers to get their cry for help taken seriously? They end up being part of the high statistic of women being killed at the hands of their abusive partners.

The video caused outrage and started trending on social media, but that’s all that happens in South Africa. Issues that need to be addressed by the government and society are never taken further than on social media. People start hashtags, promise to boycott or ‘cancel’ an artist, but that outrage and passion only lasts for a week before something new comes along. That leaves the victim/s they were rallying around in the same situation they faced before social media got involved. Society in South Africa never takes issues such as abuse, specifically against black women, seriously. There is a stereotype that black women can handle the abuse and that traditionally, or ‘back in the day’, being beaten here and there was needed in a relationship. This very same stereotype has also been applied by South African police officers, they - and particularly black police officers - don’t take domestic violence seriously. When a woman reports domestic abuse they demand proof. Why the act of going to a police station and reporting this issue isn’t proof enough, baffles me. Women suffer in silence, in fear of being killed by their partner, and only speak up when they reach their limit. Babes’ video was a cry for help and the ‘proof’ that SAPS needed. Now, we mustn’t forget that the onus also falls onto the South African government to protect all victims and deal with perpetrators accordingly. Source: Twitter @BabesWodumo_

DISCLAIMER The VARSITY Opinions section is a vehicle for expression on any topic by members of the university community or other interested parties. The opinions within this section are not necessarily those of the VARSITY Collective or its advertisers Letters to the editor need to be kept to a maximum of 300 words and can be sent to opinions@ varsitynewspaper. co.za

@VarsityNews | 20 March 2019 |V78 E1 | Page 14

UCT Women’s Rugby, For Real? “According to Independent Media, the SA Rugby Association did not even finance the women’s final in 2017.”

By Sta� Writer

UCT women prove that there is no such thing as male-only sports.


know what you thinking, yes it’s true UCT women’s rugby exists. However that’s not what you should be thinking about. What should be entering your mind is why on earth does the university NOT promote the team just as much as they do the men’s team.

“These barriers of entry have not stopped the likes of Serena Williams, Caster Semenya and Simone Biles from breaking gender binaries” For decades, women have struggled to be taken seriously, whether it’s in the workplace or on the sports field. The deeply embedded patriarchal and

misogynistic ideologies have created inequalities and led to the exclusion of women, especially when it comes to sport. These barriers of entry have not stopped the likes of Serena Williams, Caster Semenya and Simone Biles from breaking gender binaries from within sports which are predominantly male dominated and show the world what women are capable of, even if we are “too emotional”. So if these kickass women are able to break barriers in their respectable fields why CAN’T the rugby sector also be open to women playing this so-called “tough” sport? Well I know what you thinking, “Well that’s obvious, rugby is made for men who are big built, strong, and can take a knock from time to time.” A sport that is a bastion of hyper masculinity and proves male dominance within sport. These are just a few stereotypical images that society assumes a rugby player should look like.

However, this is 2019 and more importantly this is UCT, where students are advised to express and stay true to their authentic self. But how can the women’s rugby team do any of these things if the university won’t give them as much recognition, support or sponsorship as their male’s team, for playing a sport they love? Unfortunately, this seems to be the challenge that other women’s rugby teams face in South Africa. According to Independent Media, the SA Rugby Association did not even finance the women’s final in 2017. Therefore, it’s not surprising that female players pose questions such as, “What if me and my team are not supported enough due it being a predominantly male sport?” It's most likely that other universities will follow suit, not only because UCT will be breaking gender binaries and challenging gender norms, but using their platform to support women empowerment and equality speaks volumes to their ethos and mission as a university. In saying this, all universities have a mission to create an inclusive, fair and equal space and therefore will do their utmost to meet their respective promises. It's what urges many students to apply. So I think that universities will support this and encourage their own female

students to participate, because why would you want to conform to these old fashion ideologies? It's the 21st century; many people are becoming more accepting of change, especially the youth, so by not implementing women's rugby it would most likely a�ect the university and it's ethos in a negative way, and we don't want that right? I mean why wouldn’t you want to implement change that could perhaps boost your placement in the rankings and, who knows, women’s rugby might just be the one thing you need to place you on that number one spot in the ranking! And then who wouldn’t want to follow suit that's driven by the fact that women are kicking ass not only in the male dominated respective degrees, such as Engineering and Mathematics, but also on the rugby field. Women might just teach them a thing or two! In conclusion, I think females should play rugby if they wish to and should have the same support and encouragement as men do because I mean why not? What is wrong with females wanting to play rugby or any other sport and why would they not receive the same support?

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