3 April 2019 | Volume 78 | Edition 2
“We are also humans...we aren’t as scary as the media portrays.” How students responded to the Christchurch Massacre
By Aman Adams
n Friday, 15 March 2019, 50 Muslims have been shot dead in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand during their weekly prayers. The event has been live-streamed by the attackers and therefore caused international outrage that led to protests, including the University of Cape Town (UCT). As an institution that values inclusivity and the ability to express one’s religious beliefs, it certainly shook the Muslim community at UCT. Following the event, The UCT Muslim Students Association (MSA) staged a silent protest on Wednesday, 20 March 2019, in solidarity with the victims of the shooting. “Key concept towards combating this discrimination is education”
When a number of MSA members were asked about what students can do on campus to prevent discrimination
against Muslims and other religious communities, they were of the opinion that the student body needs to be more inclusive. Aliyah Abrahams, a participant in the event, said, “ Everyone just has to accept everyone else, just like we accept gay people, transgender people, all kinds of people.” “Even if you don’t understand it, it’s all about respect,” says Amaarah Kehayias.“I think it’s very hard to try and find a solution [to discrimination], it’s not going to happen overnight.” Furthermore, students believe that a key concept towards combating this discrimination is education. “It doesn’t even have to be something big, either,” Zahra Motlekar remarks. “It can be small things, just educating the friends that we have, inviting them to things that we attend as Muslims and having discussions. I think that’s a way that we can incite change.” “The obvious answer
Image by Rachel Hartman
would be to learn more about other people’s faith and religion, but to be honest [the responsibility] also lies on the Muslim,” says Ilyaas Toefy, Head of the MSA. “Events aimed at creating awareness of the way media portrays Islam” Other members of the MSA also seem to hold this opinion. Thaakirah
Dollie supports this point, stating, “It’s also our responsibility as Muslims to conduct ourselves in a way that will show everybody that we are also humans, we aren’t as scary as the media portrays.” According to Toefy, “it is an Islamic value- to verify the information that you are learning before spreading [information] or even acting upon it in a hostile way [regardless of one’s faith].”
The MSA has stated that they will be hosting a variety of events in the future to ensure that the image of Islam is not solely shaped by their responses to events such as the Christchurch Massacre. These events will also aim to bring about awareness of the way in which the media often mistakenly portrays Islam.
@VarsityNews |3 April 2019|V78 E2|Page 2
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UCT welcomes new Head of Libraries Ujala Satgoor has recently been appointed Executive Director of Libraries at UCT and aims to implement a few changes that will enhance student learning experiences. By Staff Writer
n an interview, Ms Satgoor shared with VARSITY her roles and responsibilities as well as her intentions for the library under her leadership. Prominent among her stated goals, she emphasised the need to enable every member of the UCT community to have access to the knowledge the library has to offer. Ms Satgoor commented that in order to thrive academically, students are encouraged to make use of the available resources and apply it to their respective studies. “A space for study breaks and refreshments are well in the pipeline”
Furthermore, a space for study breaks and refreshments are well in the pipeline, so as to ensure that the library is not only conducive for students, but also more hospitable. “The library must embrace contemporary, open, flexible and collaborative study areas” “As a more techoriented and collaborative culture emerges, the library must embrace more contemporary, open, flexible and collaborative study areas, computer zones and meeting venues. This will also include social and recreational breakaway spaces including a café style space, a makerspace, a gaming space, etc where students can take recreational breaks from their academic responsibilities,’’ VARSITY learnt.
Image by UCT libraries.co.za
Ms Satgoor acknowledged the technical difficulties when accessing the library website and thus noted that herself and the library staff are currently engaged in discussions aimed at remedying this situation. Additionally, she states that there are plans surrounding the development of new methods that are suitable for all learners.
She concluded by commenting that the UCT community will experience positive changes in due time, especially since it is her responsibility to ensure that they get the best quality services possible so that they can be optimally equipped to be successful in their assignments, tests, and exams.
UCT Senate in favour of Academic boycott of Israel By Mantwa Mehlape The University of Cape Town has chosen not to have any type of formal relationship with Israeli academic institutions.
he motive for the move is opposition to the gross human right violations and oppression of Palestinian academic freedom perpetrated by Israel. Other campaigns such as the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) are also against the Israeli academic community. Certain universities in South Africa such as the University of Johannesburg and Tshwane University of Technology supported the academic boycott of Israel. A lot of other tertiary institutions were also influenced to to do the same thing in efforts to implement international pressure towards the Israel academic institution in Palestine which would then pressure Israel to comply with international laws and eradicate the injustice that Israel imposes upon the Palestinian people. The Student Representative Council (SRC) at UCT fully supports the Israel academic Boycott. They strongly believe in
a free and liberal educational environment that is why they find it necessary to stand against Israel’s wrongdoings.
“it is a moral obligation and responsibility UCT has as an academic institution” Asanda Lobelo, UCT SRC president, mentions that “it is a moral obligation and responsibility UCT has as an academic institution.” Aadam Toefy, Outreach Portfolio Head of the Muslim Student Association says, “the position we come from as citizens of a South African institution is that we stand strongly against oppression. We stand against inequality and discrimination of any kind.” He also adds “the motive for UCT as a recognised institution can be seen as a moral stand against an oppression this country knows all too well.” Emphasis is put on the fact that UCT, as the top university in Africa, has a responsibility with regard to encouraging movements whose aim is to stop injustices
globally. The support of the SRC brings awareness of these issues that are not often within a student’s view. This is vital as it encourages awareness of the issues. Lobelo mentions that it polarises students which results in them looking further into the topic. Bringing awareness is an effective way of obtaining more supporters that would be willing to fight against injustice. The Academic boycott of Israel has received many supporters in South African academia. In 2011 , Vice Chancellors, Deans, Vice Deans, Deputy Chancellors, heads of department and professors accounted for 400 supporters in total. However, there has been a lot of controversy and debate surrounding the topic. The South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) negatively critiqued the BDS campaign for promoting anti-Jewish tropes. SAJBD also mentioned that the BDS campaign undermined the legitimacy of a Jewish nation-state anywhere in the Levant.
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The Pitch: a chance to refine and learn new business skills The Pitch is an event run by the Academic Representative’s Council at UCT that gives you the chance to pitch your business idea. By Sinothando Siyolo
imilar to the Shark Tank reality show, people will showcase their ideas to investors in the hopes of winning a cash prize. The Pitch, aimed at students University of Cape Town (UCT) specifically, challenges students to present their business ideas to the panel from MTN Solution Space at UCT’s Graduate School of Business (GSB). “Everyone is welcome to attend this event...”
The top eight will have a chance to pitch their business ideas to four successful business people on May 9th 2019 and have a chance to win R25 000 and a sixmonth mentorship opportunity. Everyone is welcome to attend this event and details will be advertised closer to the time. The Pitch is being organized in partnership with The MTN Solution Space at the GSB, Careers Service, the Student Representative Council (SRC), the Design School, ResLife, the Department of Student Affairs and Zaio.
“In total, R80 000, divided amongst the two categories, will be awarded” The Pitch has two categories – the idea phase and the testing phase. The idea phase is where you have a business idea on paper and not in practice. The testing phase is where you have your business in practice or in a start-up phase. Each of these categories or phases has a grand prize of R25 000. The winner of each category gets the money and the person who takes the second place from each category gets R15 000. In total, R80 000, divided amongst the two categories, will be awarded. The mentorship programme will be awarded by the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation. The identities of the four judges that will assess the finalists on the day have not yet been confirmed. The Pitch started as an entrepreneurial competition run by the Academic Representatives Council just within the residence space, in which students pitched their business ideas to a panel; “It was on a smaller scale”, Mosima Kekana comments. In 2018 there were
about 130 spectators in the finalist event and this year the aim is to accommodate 450 spectators. The Pitch seeks to give a chance to students to refine their business skills and learn new ones. “We believe the entrepreneurial space is particularly important in South Africa as a whole and hence we think it’s vitally important that it is promoted at UCT”, Kekana says.
thinking and how to better formulate and implement one’s ideas. Those who did not make it to the final round were not left empty-handed, they gained knowledge and were equipped with skills and ways to formulate their ideas and put them into practice.
The Pitch reportedly had several successful judges in 2018, the likes of Noluthando Gosa who is the Chairperson of the Johannesburg Stock “Participants gain knowledge Exchange (JSE) and Listed Verimark Pty Ltd, Tony and skills” Ruiters who is a co-founder of Sentio Capital Management Ltd, Greg Fury who is The MTN space Solution (Pty) an executive director and at the Graduate School of shareholder representative Business will be assessing of Targe Capital, and the applicants. They will Malcom Gray who is a choose the top eight finalists co-founder of Libryo were that will be assessed by assessing the finalists. four successful business first place winner in people on the day and stand lastThe year’s was Thando a chance to win the prize. Hlongwane,pitch founder of Kazi The MTN space solution tech solutions, a platform at GSB does a lot of work that connects start-ups and centered around innovation corporates in looking for and entrepreneurship and web and mobile application they are considered to have development with studentthe necessary expertise to led software development select the eight finalists. teams, to gain experience A workshop which was and earn an extra income. facilitated by the Design School at UCT took place on March 23rd 2019, this workshop was open to all applicants. It was three hours long and focused on design
Applications Now Open! We are looking for students who are passionate about writing, journalism, media and management positions, such as:
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wo editions in and I can confidently say on behalf of my team that we are learning! We continue to discover new things about ourselves, our organisation and the role it plays within our community and we are constantly discovering new ideas on how we can be better and do better. The biggest lesson thus far has been that of Accountability in maintaining Credibility. No organisation, especially that that is premised to service the public should operate outside of its public. There needs to be constant interaction between such organisations and their publics in order to maintain a level of credibility. “Not only are we voting leaders into power, but we are actively voting them out”
We see this in the actions recently taken by the UCT Senate deciding to adopt the resolution to impose an academic boycott on Israel. Such a decision is informed by the responsibility that public institutions have in ensuring that suchbodies stay accountable for the role they play in perpetuating injustice. The never-ending inquiries into state institutions is an arguably working example of this. However, if there are no structures in place with which the public can interact with their in-
stitutions to maintain a satisfactory level of accountability, such a cause is then bound for doom. In this election year we are tasked as the public to exercise our agency by voting for a leadership that best serves our needs. Not only are we voting leaders into power, but we are actively voting them out. We have the responsibility to interact with our democracy in a way that tests its functionality and intrinsic purpose. “we encourage engagement with our content from all interested parties” At VARSITY we recognise the value of remaining accountable for the content we put out. Furthermore, we understand that for us to maintain a certain level of credibility we need to be able to acknowledge fault openly. And thus, we encourage engagement with our content from all interested parties.
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And in future we hope that our State institutions could take a page out of our notebook and produce tangible results on the Eskom issue more especially. As some may suggest, the only reason most South Africans were saved the agony of rolling blackouts was due to a certain Tasneem Jacobs international star landCreative Director ing on African soil.
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@VarsityNews |3 April 2019| V78 E2 | Page 5 1.
This Week in Images
1. Michael Hammon 2. Michael Hammond 3. Khotso Notoane 4. Strauss & Co 5. The Open Streets Cape Town
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Clickbaiting and how we learn to desire
By Staff Writer
lickbaits not only amuse us, but also teach us how to dream and desire. “Earn $2 300 an Hour”, “Win a Galaxy S10”, “Hot Asian Women Want Latin Men” all pop up on my browser and all are equally desirable. So I click, and I click and I click. And after all the clicking I am none the richer and no more in love; in fact I am all the more desperately in need of both.
“They serve as a juncture between our self-deception and the promise that our deceptions are true” We often laugh off clickbaits – both at the sheer ridiculousness of their promises and at the people we imagine they are baiting. Do people even click on them, I often ask myself. There is, however, a logic to their functioning. Clickbaits have to be believable enough to click, but unbelievable enough to inspire the hope and imagination we desperately crave. Thus, they serve as a juncture between our self-deception and the promise that our deceptions are true. Their power lies in the exploitation of our hope.
“Clickbaits form the intersection between technology and desire” However, they also operate at another juncture. Clickbaits form the intersection between technology and desire. Our human desires become regulated according to a technological desire – the desire to be clicked. In fact, I would go so far as to term Clickbaits as an ‘algorithmic desire,’ which is linked to an algorithmic notion of the individual (who has all their needs provided for instantaneously), and then works to suppress and change our notions of desires. Click Baits not only question where our desires and technology begins and ends, but also where the very notion of desire is to be sought. Desire is to be sought in technology – its power lies in its ability to appear harmless and novel and yet shape our very notions of what constitutes desire. But who doesn’t want to be told how to desire? As my favourite Clickbait says, “Any Man Can Last 2.5 Hours In Bed By Doing This (Try It…)”. Try it I will old friend, try it I will.
By Sebastian Moronell
was meant to write an article about the effects of load shedding on campus – about people stuck in lifts and about microwaves not working; about near-gulag rates of unsolicited darkness, and the tumultuous decline of our corrupt, yet nonetheless beloved, nation. My target audience was to be the modern news reader – the affected individual. Perfectly poised in their retinue of newsworthy memorabilia found on Instagram, their job is to be affected. Always affected, blackouts don’t really occupy a special role for the modern reader. Instead they seem to function as any inconvenience would – as a link in a series of failures. To fail is to be. A fitting proposition for an unemploy-
able workforce, one which resorts to satire in lieu of a job. That being said, there is a method to the writing about a blackout. Firstly, acknowledge that it is indeed a blackout and not loadshedding. To describe the loss of electricity as load-shedding takes away from the very blackness of the event. Blackouts not only take away physical light, but metaphorical light too. It infringes on the moral code of infrastructure we live by because it deals an unacceptable disruption to the normality of infrastructure. Thus, it must be termed black, evil.
By Sebastian Moronell
This is the first in a series of articles that will explore spaces around UCT.
n the 8th December 2018 the UCT Council made the decision to rename Jameson Hall to Sarah Baartman Hall. The council made the decision in light of its obligation to “reinforce a new, inclusive identity for the university.” The renaming of the hall to ‘Sarah Baartman’ was full of metaphors, both historic and political. Sarah Baartman was a Khoi womxn who was taken from the Cape to Britain when she was 20 -years-old, where she was displayed in a cage as a freak-show attraction. She was then sold to an animal trainer in France, where she was again placed on display. She died a year after arriving in France and her body was dissected and her brain and genitalia placed in jars for preservation.
“To know how the hall portrays Baartman is in fact to know what the hall does”
How to write about a Blackout Talking about power-cuts often takes an approach based on problematic practices and subjects.
Sarah Baartman Hall
It is easy to become upset at this story; in fact, it is probably politically necessary to do so. However, to become upset at the story hides its function. What is really operating – and no doubt overtly so – is an attempt to recreate the future on the terms of a new past. In the metaphor of Baartman we see a history of oppression and dispossession, but most importantly shame. More
“Without saying as much, describe how the poor go primal; then do not mention how they are forced to live on the margins every single day regardless of whether they have electricity or not.” Secondly, speak about the common people and the hardships that they go through. Thus, insert a heading such as ‘Ordinary People affected by Blackouts.’ Get a couple of quotes from those most affected – the poor – and then celebrate the paper’s pro-poor credentials. Mention how the poor are astute and adapt to circumstances. Without saying as much, describe how the poor go primal;
specifically, sexual shame operates throughout the story - Baartman was displayed for her large buttocks with her genitalia later being preserved for display.
“The hall is a monument, and as all monuments do, they operate in ways that are meant to politicise certain lived experiences” The question of shame, however, is not dealt with in the naming of Sarah Baartman Hall. The frank question to ask is – what does a hall have to do with Baartman? To know how the hall portrays Baartman is in fact to know what the hall does. The hall manufactures a Baartman that can speak for the oppressed and imagine an inclusive future. However, the hall cannot speak to the politics of shame that Baartman represents. Shame cannot be addressed because it is suppressed in favour of an ‘inclusive identity’. Shame operates to politicise the guilt generated by colonialism and apartheid – a point which no one is willing to acknowledge, let alone explore. Guilt is seen as a secondary experience to the political quest for transformation and inclusion. The hall is a monument, and as all monuments do, they operate in ways that are meant to politicise certain lived experiences.
then do not mention how they are forced to live on the margins every single day regardless of whether they have electricity or not. Lastly, do not forget to shun the government. If there is a way to sell a story, it is to prove beyond a doubt that the government’s ineptitude caused the problem. If you are lost for sources contact the DA or the EFF. One can only pitch the people against the state; there is no alternative. The state is an (inept) all-consuming entity, which like a greedy child must be saved from itself. A slap on the wrist might not be enough. Why stop at the wrist? I, of course, write this article by candlelight. Is irony all that is left for this generation?
UCT’s first all-black Student Abortion Law Under Representative Council Apartheid
Mikhil Valjee Source: RT.com
partheid-era abortion legislation gives us an idea of how womens’ bodies have historically been a site of control through its practice.
During O-Week, there was a small gazebo towards the south of Jammie Plaza operated by UCT students’ society - Students for Life. The society is pro-life and its members handed out information about abortion legislation in South Africa and its practice. South Africa’s current abortion legislation is one of the most progressive in the world. During apartheid however, the law was very conservative. In the past 50-years, there has been a global trend towards liberalising abortion laws, based on the growing recognition that restrictive abortion laws do not stop abortion from happening but instead drives women to undergo illegal and unsafe abortions.
“abortion was criminalised under an archaic Commonwealth law that was vague and, while making abortion illegal, meant that cases were prosecuted erratically” In 1970s South Africa, the rate of illegal abortions had reached epidemic proportions and complications resulting from informal methods of termination. In a review commissioned by Groote Schuur hospital in 1973, it was found that 13 681 womxn had been admitted for septic abortions between 1965 and 1972, the vast majority of which were womxn of colour. Similarly, between 1959 and 1964, one study estimated that there was an average of one death a week from illegal abortions in Johannesburg.
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The Abortion and Sterilisation Act (ACA) was passed in 1975 and reflected the patriarchal ideology of Christian Nationalism inherent to the apartheid regime. By Ronel Koekemoer The Act was vastly more restrictive than pro-choice lobbyists had hoped for and also protected the lives of white womxn, with almost no consideration for womxn of colour living in rural areas. Under the Act, womxn were granted access to abortions in the first trimester only if the pregnancy was harmful to the mental or physical health of the mother, if the foetus was deformed, or in cases of rape or incest. In short, the ACA sought to make abortion legal only under certain circumstances and many bureaucratic barriers were put into place because the Afrikaner Nationalist regime held that “if one allows abortion on In the early 1970s, demand, one is murdering medical and womxn’s one’s nation”. organisations in South Africa were pushing for abortion law reform. Up until then, “The ASA was a far-cry abortion was criminalised from the law reform under an archaic Commonpro-choice activists wealth law that was vague had hoped for” and, while making abortion illegal, meant that cases were prosecuted erratically. For example, womxn Under this pressure, the apartheid regime began who applied for abortions drafting a statutory law, in on mental health grounds part motivated by calls to had to be evaluated by two protect womxn from dangers state-appointed doctors, related to illegal abortions. one of whom had to be But in typical National a psychiatrist. This was Party fashion, the law was nearly impossible for black a cosmetic reform, which womxn who did not have served more to restrict abor- access to psychiatrists tion access than to protect or specialists. Similarly, the health or rights of if womxn applied for womxn seeking to terminate abortions on the basis of rape, the rape had to have unwanted pregnancies. been reported in the first 48 hours and in many cases the rape had to first be proven in court.
one would not appoint a bunch of murderers to go into the matter”. On the surface, the ACA did allow for abortion where the previous law did not. It was passed largely under the guise of being a way to curb the dangers of illegal abortion. However, because the law was a largely cosmetic reform, the Act did more to restrict access than to protect womxn. After the Act was passed, the illegal abortion industry continued to thrive in South Africa. Under ASA, the illegal abortion industry thrived with one estimate saying that there were approximately 120 000 to 250 000 clandestine abortions being provided per year. This had drastic implications for womxn’s health and more womxn were being admitted to hospital and dying from complications as a result of unsafe abortions than before ASA. In the case of white womxn, who had better access to abortion under this law, so many of these womxn were opting to fly overseas to procure a legal abortion that a for-profit service was set up to facilitate this process. “the Act did much to restrict access and acted as an extension of the Apartheid regime’s need to control the bodies and sexualities of its subjects.”
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The ASA was a far-cry from the law reform pro-choice activists had hoped for. The Act was also drafted and passed by an exclusively white male committee. When Helen Suzman complained about the lack of womxn on the committee, one Member of Parliament responded that “if one wanted to abolish capital punishment today, surely
While the Abortion and Sterilisation Act was lobbied for in an attempt to address the dangers associated with illegal abortions, the Act did much to restrict access and acted as an extension of the apartheid regime’s need to control the bodies and sexualities of its subjects. The history of abortion legislation during Aparthied is intertwined with issues of controlling bodies and sexualities, of questions of racial and national purity and of the importance of policy in determining the outcome of lives. These terms must be thought of when engaging in a debate about abortion.
iIn Print Edition 1, published on 20 March 2019: Headline on page 7
“How do minorities feel when issues at UCT resolve to the dichotomy of ‘Black’ & ‘White’ ? should be “Cosplaying in Cape Town”
On page 14
VARSITY retracts the “UCT Women’s Rugby, For Real?” article and has published the corrected version “The Swifts are bound to soar to greater heights” on page 12
Ed Sheeran and Passenger Their visit upon SA shores 1. Pinterest 2. Jarred Seng 3. Zakary Walters 4. Kevin Myers 5. Kevin Myers 6. Tasneem Jacobs 7. Tao Varty 8. Tao Varty 9. Tao Varty
@VarsityNews |3 April 2019 | V78 E2 | Page 10
What the pigeon heard
Sufficiently equipped to seduce
Everything about me invites you in. My voice, my face, even my smell”. This is a line from one of the most iconic teen vampire sensations, Edward Cullen, when he describes why humans are attracted to him. You would think that, from these three criteria, people would pick up on the fact that physical presence is a key element, arguably THE key element, of human attraction and the development of any relationship. You would think this, but you would be wrong. They’ll watch Twilight again and again (or did when they were younger), but they won’t integrate this knowledge into their daily life. How to meet someone? Instead of freshening up and heading out to meet the object of their a�ection face to face, they shy away. Rather, they reach for their phones. This whole concept scares the living feathers out of me: accepting or rejecting a partner based solely on photographs of the colour of their feathers or the size of their feet, rather than on the sound of their song or ability to catch worms. The fundamental ﬂaw with selecting a partner on an app, is that it tests for features of the human not applicable to mating compatibility. For example, dating apps’ pictures test one’s ability to be photographed, and isn’t necessarily reﬂective of one’s real life appearance. I say this with full conﬁdence as I have been a bystander to many ﬁrst-date ﬂops on campus when one individual experiences disappointment at the similarity (or lack thereof) between the display picture of their match and the person in the ﬂesh.
“the only thing dating apps convey is the ability of an individual to be photographed and marketed well”
If your one or two pictures don’t quite make the cut for an online match, a quick and catchy bio might—but only if you are good with alliteration or humour. This is testament that the only thing dating apps convey is the ability of an individual to be photographed and marketed well. The app would be more successful in matching models to agencies, or to source copywriters to come up with the next catchy slogan for a UCT startup.
time. In a study done by the State University of New York in Albany, it was found that both females and males found a female voice to be far more attractive around the time of ovulation in her cycle, than when she was ‘o� heat’ (a crude term in pigeon speak). This is hard evidence that humans are naturally equipped with the ability to attract a mate. However, none of this equipment lies in technology.
If we mention features of a human that are relevant to compatibility, ability to be photographed well isn’t usually high up on the list. Rather, a person’s mannerisms and energy, eye contact, voice pitch, ability to engage in meaningful conversation and speed of response to their environment are more salient. Humans like to assess their future partner by observing how they respond to certain situations and interacting with them in di�erent settings. Regrettably, dating apps only provide interaction in one environment, and a pretty static one at that: the screen.
“humans are naturally equipped with the ability to attract a mate” Humans aren’t static and, just like pigeons, they too have mating rituals. In fact, many mammals are capable of producing airborne molecules called pheromones when searching for a mate. Upon entering the nostrils of their desired partner, these pheromones alter the behaviour of that partner and makes them more susceptible to being seduced. Whilst it is not a conﬁrmed fact that humans possess these pheromones, it is deﬁnitely known that our vocals and body language change depending on who we are conversing with and what we desire from that person at the
Interacting with a potential partner primarily on a technological device is akin to walking up Table Mountain instead of taking the cable car, and then ﬁnding out that the path you’ve chosen doesn’t even take you to the top. Something has gone horribly wrong with humans and the way they search for love, and I have a feeling it started way before the invention of mobile apps.
Fancy a giggle? Nik Rabinowitz’s new show “WORK IN PROGRESS” is a great way to prepare for the upcoming vac period. Running for over a week, you April can catch this show at the Baxter Theatre in the Golden Sam Smith fan? Arrow Studio, 8pm sharp! The award-winning British April Tickets available at: http:// singer will be performing for Into travelling and business www.baxter.co.za/shows/ the ﬁrst-time in South Africa at the same time? nik-rabinowitz-work-progand it’s literally happening We got you! Journey on ress/ right under our nose. Catch with World Travel Market the singer perform live Africa and explore the world at GrandWest, the Grand and business ventures. Arena. For more information Happening at the Cape Town visit: https://www.whatInternational Convention sonincapetown.com/post/ Centre Convention Square, sam-smith-thrill-tour-capebe sure to reserve your seat. town-show/ For more information visit: https://africa.wtm.com/
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Two Weeks Tonight
By The Anonymous Pigeon
First Thursdays The Gin Bar is the ideal place to warm up for a night out with friends. Enjoy a selection of gin cocktails coupled with great local music. Situated in a beautiful courtyard, you can ﬁnd the bar at 64A Wale street or visit: https://ﬁrst-thursdays.co.za/ participants/the-gin-bar/
Keen for a serene walk? Kirstenbosch Bird Walks will deﬁnitely set your mind at ease and help you de-stress. Led by Linda Hibbin, this walk will not only get the creative juices ﬂowing, but it’s free of charge. For more information visit: https://www.sanbi.org/event/ kirstenbosch-bird-walks/
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Kelsey Maggott & Zahirah Benjamin opinions@varsitynewspaper. co.za
Source: Thapelo Masebe
The Facade of EFF’s Feminism
By Julia Rowley
he party’s attack of journalist Karima Brown shows a disregard for gender violence and freedom of speech. In early March, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema released prominent journalist Karima Brown’s cellphone number. Brown accidentally sent a message onto an EFF ‘Breakfast for the Elderly’ Whatsapp group, and in the process, revealed Malema’s indifference towards violence against womxn and freedom of the press. Brown’s message, which she then deleted later, seemed to be an editorial brief asking her fellow journalists to criticise and examine the true intentions behind the breakfast function. The journalist is known for her support of the ANC and has been critical of the EFF in the past. Malema accused her of being a “state agent” and a “mole” and released a screenshot of her message onto Twitter, which included Karima Brown’s number. Karima then received death and rape threats, such as “step aside or we will crush your prolapsed vagina” and was called an “Indian whore and bitch.” The EFF have unsurprisingly refused to apologise and instead justify their actions by saying she is “not a real journalist.” This incident proves the EFF’s intolerance towards media
freedom - particularly if the criticism is directed towards themselves. The party’s attack on female journalists in particular has been vast - vast enough that the South African National Editors Forum has placed complaints before the Equality Court. According to a report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Security on Europe, female journalists are increasingly censoring themselves and even leaving the profession as a result of harassment. Not only is this type of abuse created by the EFF a feminist issue, as the abuse is disproportionately affecting women and their ability to work, but it is also a freedom of speech problem.
“Backlash like this is unethical and worrying” This type of treatment of journalists should be condemned, no matter your political stance. Backlash like this as a result of criticising a political party is unethical and worrying. The South African media operates as a political watchdog and so this type of harassment against journalists intimidates them and prevents them from doing their important duty in our democracy.
Furthermore, the EFF’s inaction against this harassment is shocking coming from a political party that has always been staunchly against gender violence. In 2017, the party called on their supporters to participate in ‘16 Days of Activism’ in which they raised awareness for gender violence and called on South Africans to “stop being incubators of violence against womxn.” Malema’s release of Brown’s cellphone number and his refusal to apologise and condemn the threats shows his true indifference towards the abuse of womxn. If he truly cared about the plight of abused South African womxn, he would have condemned the racist and abusive harassment that Brown has been receiving from his supporters. In a country with one of the highest femicide rates in the world, and where over 40% of womxn will be raped at least once in their lifetime, Malema’s choice to support these threats shows his true position on gender violence.
“Perhaps Malema’s claims of wanting to reduce gender violence is a way to gather support for his party” In closing, as a womxn, reading threats such as these is particularly shocking. In a society where we have been taught to guard ourselves against rampant sexual assault, seeing blatant threats like these makes us feel even more unsafe. The fact that these perpetrators are supported by a major political party sends a message that the uncriticised sovereignty of the EFF is more important than the safety of South African womxn. Perhaps Malema’s claims of wanting to reduce gender violence is a way to gather support for his party and are not his true intentions. At least, that’s what his, and his party’s undemocratic actions, seem to suggest.
Break the cycle of our clothes being Made in Poverty
By Chandré Cupido
he fashion industry has been a growing one with sky high prices of clothing items that not many can afford, but the wages that factory workers earn is alarming. According to the Oxfam Made in Poverty report, factory workers of well-known brands, such as Cotton On and Forever New, in Australia earn 51c per hour. The report examined the lives of workers of these popular brands and revealed that womxn in Bangladesh and Vietnam could not make ends meet because they are living off R5 an hour. This raises many red flags because these womxn work in factories that make millions and charge consumers a hefty amount of money for clothing
items, whereas behind the scenes, families are struggling to make a living from their low wages. The failure of these big brands to pay their wokers a sufficient wage so that workers can live a sustainable life where they can afford the basic needs is what Oxfam and consumers should shed light on.
“Oxfam aims to improve the lives of workers” Oxfam tries to improve the lives of the workers who are the ones making the amazing garments we wear every day, which is in constrast to the lives we as consumers live. Along with these big brands, we too have a responsibility in helping the lives of these workers. My awareness of the exploitation of
workers in Bangledash and Vietnam will change my shopping habits in the future and should change yours This section of the VARSITY too. It should also encourage us to is a vehicle for expression, on either withdraw our support for these brands or petition that brands any topic by members of the UCT community. The opinions within should increase the wages of factory this section are not necessarily workers and improve policy frameworks. We can do so by contacting those of the VARSITY collective or its advertisers. fashion retailers via social media to demand living wages for factory workers and instead choose alterna- Letters to the Editor should be kept at a maximum of 300 words and tive means of shopping such as thrift can be sent to: shopping. This does not include buying from commercial and retail email@example.com brands, making it affordable. As consumers, instead of distancing ourselves from the lives of factory workers in Australia and the rest of the world, we should try contributing towards them.
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“It’s exquisite!” How the #WooliesWaterChallenge is making waves in South African cultural norms By Aman Adams
he divisiveness of apartheid is still present in South African society today, especially with regard to language. Thus, one group of South African students decided to change that.
On Monday, 11 March 2019, Twitter user @Bab_Sinkila posted a video. Sinkila and friends visited their local Woolworths and purchased bottles of Woolworths-branded water. They spoke in an informal isiZulu register, inferring that “this water has special powers”. However, the bottlenecks were not the only twist in this video. Upon taking a sip of the water, they suddenly take on speaking in formal English, claiming that the water is “exquisite” and that we need to “amalgamate” and acknowledge that “diction and articulation” are the “key forms of proper communication.” It has since gained traction online, having received over 17 000 likes and 6000 retweets on Twitter and counting. One begins to question why they would do this, and whether it is acceptable. The elephant in the room seems to be cultural appropriation, with those who are white choosing to imitate black accents - simply doing it to poke fun, without realising the
political history behind it. Cultural appropriation is a complex topic. Many do not have a full understanding of it, which leads to ignorance. Cultural appropriation refers to aspects of a culture being borrowed or “stolen” by a person outside of that culture for aesthetic purposes or in order to seem “cool.” Many people have considered those who imitate black accents for the purpose of this challenge to be participating in cultural appropriation. The counter argument to this is the fact that this is ‘all in jest’; that it ﬁts into the non-racial “rainbow nation” ideology that has been promoted post-1994.
“However, this also seems to highlight the differences between races as a result of apartheid.” This challenge is seen as harmless; an attempt to try and break the ice between people of di�erent cultures. However, it also highlights the di�erences between races as a result of apartheid. It is especially apparent that in order to ﬁt in in certain situations, code switching occurs. This refers to the way in which accents change in order to portray a certain image or to be
socially accepted in certain spaces. However, an interesting observation would be the way in which black people, and people who are able to speak African languages, are able to navigate these social spaces far easier than monolingual, or white people, are able to. In fact, very few white people are able to participate in this challenge, due to their inability to speak an African language, while black people are able to do this easily. Thus, it goes against the “rainbow nation” message of inclusivity that has been promoted in the past. This kind of double consciousness assumes that black people are almost expected to conform to a formal “white” way of speaking. Furthermore, the assumption that this “white” way of speaking is a form of linguistic integrity, or the
“right” way in which to speak, is still present in society today. We come from a country that has learned to make laughter our medicine, especially in light of our di�cult political past. However, we also come from a country that has a melting pot of cultures, ethnicities and backgrounds. So, where do we draw the line with what is appropriate to make fun of? It is our responsibility to be aware of this happening and when it is appropriate or appropriation. We need to be able to laugh at ourselves, but also be aware of our past, so we can work towards a better South Africa for everyone.
The Swifts are bound to soar to greater heights By Tiyani Rikhotso
full-time students is no longer an issue.
The growth of womxn’s rugby at UCT begs the question of whether there will ever be a Varsity Cup for womxn’s rugby teams? Furthermore, it also makes one wonder whether it would attract the same support that our men’s teams bring in so easily.
lmost a year old, the UCT female rugby team, the Swifts, is making headway as their name gains recognition around campus and within Western Province rugby. However, it was a tough journey leading up to the team’s establishment. Captain Sikhumbuzo Muchenje shared how shocked she was to ﬁnd that the culture of women’s rugby in UCT (and South Africa as a whole) was not as prominent as she was used to back home in Zimbabwe. As a passionate rugby player, it was important for her to see the creation of a womxn’s rugby team at UCT.
“This year’s plaza week sign-up attracted many young women” Within the space of a year, the Swifts have managed to ﬁnd their feet and have seen signiﬁcant growth. This has been enabled by support from the UCT Rugby club and the enthusiasm and dedication of new players. Previously, they had relied on semester-abroad students with prior exposure to womxn’s rugby. This was not, however, sustainable in the long run. With the success of this year’s plaza week that saw many young womxn sign up, it is clear that attracting
“The possibility of a womxn’s Varsity Cup could very well be on the horizon” Womxn’s rugby is gaining traction in the country and the possibility of a womxn’s Varsity Cup could very well be on the horizon. Muchenje shared how she believes that the journey towards this goal will take time. “People will have to pick up on the foundation we lay,” she expressed. She makes it clear that it is important for future players to dedicate themselves to the sport and champion the voices and needs of womxn within rugby. Then, we may very well see the establishment of a womxn’s Varsity Cup. Not only is there growth that could eventually lead to the establishment of a womxn’s Varsity Cup, but also growing support for the ladies. Rugby lovers and the UCT community have already received the team with a warm welcome – from showing up and watching matches to giving words of encouragement.
I caught Sikhumbuzo for a word after practise and one womxn shouted from the bleachers how she enjoys watching the team practise and is excited for what they have in store. These sentiments are echoed by the community at large and make it clear that womxn’s rugby is something that many are excited about and willing to step forward and support. One thing is for sure, if a womxn’s Varsity Cup were to be established in the near future, the Swifts would be ready to step up and give the other teams a run for their money.
“The Swifts are drawing on a strong foundation on their journey...” Although still new, the team is hard-working and dedicated. Showing up amidst busy schedules, on public holidays and through Cape Town’s harsh and cold winds. This effort during practice echoes onto the ﬁeld as the team has performed well in games played thus far. The presence of drive, skill, experienced coaches, and support from their male counterparts will collectively aid the Swifts along their inevitable journey to success.
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Escape from Pretoria: Stealing Narrative
Should the ‘Man in the Mirror’ beat it? Source: Rolling Stone
lobally renowned as the King of Pop and regarded as one of the greatest, most proliﬁc, talented and successful singers, performers and entertainers of all time, Michael Jackson has undoubtedly had a monumental impact on music and popular culture, inspiring many people across the world. But Leaving Neverland, a two-part documentary released this year, shakes these positive perceptions by telling the stories of Wade Robson and James Safechuck, two men claiming to have been sexually abused by Jackson when they were children. How do we approach the King of Pop’s music in light of these claims? Can we separate the ‘Man in the Mirror’ from his music? As shocking and graphic as the revelations in Leaving Neverland are, they are not new. Michael Jackson had previously been accused of child molestation and sexual abuse in 1993 and 2003, the latter leading to a rigorous criminal trial. Due to lack of substantial evidence, Jackson was found not guilty. The public believed that the accusers fabricated their claims to extort money from Jackson, who was incredibly wealthy. Some believe that Robson and Safechuck have similarly fabricated their stories to opportunistically extort money from Jackson’s estate, using a one-sided, emotionally-charged documentary to obscure the facts and sensationalise their claims. Some call Leaving Neverland a ‘trial by documentary’ and assert that Jackson’s legally established innocence should triumph over a subjective cinematic account. Whether or not you believe the documentary, the issue of Jackson’s music still remains. Radio stations in Canada and New Zealand have banned his music, and celebrities have denounced it; yet others ﬁrmly believe his music and legacy should still be celebrated.
“Does a single documentary have the authority to discredit freedom of creative expression?” Some may argue that it is impossible to remove the man from his music, and that they should be judged together. Michael Jackson’s music is undeniably a product of his own creativity, but it also exists far beyond that. A painting, ﬁlm, novel or song becomes assimilated into the broad fabric of popular culture at the time of its creation to be used and accessed by many other people, and it creates new meanings for di�erent people over time. The art is often a collaborative product as other people are involved in the creative process besides the artist. Art evolves and grows beyond its creator and is mediated through subjective interpretations. As
By Yuri Behari-Leak
such, the art is never equal to the artist and the two should be treated di�erently.
“Michael Jackson’s music should not be banned” Banning Michael Jackson’s music discredits its empowerment of black singers, performers and artists; its large contribution to developing American music, its hopeful and uplifting messages about love, race, conserving the environment and striving for world peace, the other writers, singers and producers involved in co-creating it, such as Quincy Jones, and the incalculable amount of inspiration people have derived from it for decades. Does a single documentary have the authority to discredit freedom of creative expression? We haven’t banned ﬁlms produced by Harvey Weinstein or starring Kevin Spacey after their sexual abuse allegations (unlike Jackson, there was copious substantial evidence against them) – so why should we ban Jackson’s music? R. Kelly’s music is also facing a massive call to be banned after the sexual abuse allegations against him. Kelly’s case can be distinguished from Jackson’s for two reasons: ﬁrstly, there is overwhelming substantial evidence against Kelly, unlike Jackson as discussed earlier; and secondly, Kelly is currently an active performer and banning his music today could be seen as refusing to support him ﬁnancially in his legal battles. In contrast, Jackson has been dead for ten years, and banning his music now will have no e�ect on his ﬁnancial status nor will it help his accusers’ claims. Michael Jackson is obviously a fundamental component of creating his music, but it exists and stretches far beyond him through impacting a globally immense network of people over time. His music can be separated from him as a person, and moral judgements about either should exist separately. So, should the ‘Man in the Mirror’ beat it? Whether or not the claims in Leaving Neverland are true, Michael Jackson’s music should not be banned. Your feelings towards it may change after the documentary, and you may decide to remove it from your iTunes library – and that’s okay. This is your own personal judgement. No one can force you to listen to his music, but you cannot force others to ban it. The jury’s still out on the truthfulness of Leaving Neverland, but Michael Jackson’s music should still exist as a related, but separate, creative product to be freely enjoyed and celebrated by anyone who so chooses.
Source: Simply Danielle Radcliffe (fan site)
By Sara Lagardien Abdullah
scape From Pretoria is a ﬁlm based on Tim Jenkin’s memoir Inside Out: Escape from Pretoria Prison. The setting is Pretoria, South Africa, during 1970s apartheid. While its storyline is concentrated on South Africa, everything else governing the ﬁlm’s production – including choice of cast members and ﬁlming location – steers far from the uniquely South African narrative. This British ﬁlm is not isolated in its approach of utilising, or appropriating, African narratives. Escape from Pretoria is ﬁlmed in Adelaide, Australia with British and Australian actors ﬁlling lead roles despite its storyline being far from that. The appropriation of particularly African narratives, or those from the Global South by the Global North, raises concerns around how particular stories are told and by who. It involves addressing questions surrounding how these narratives are often altered in the process of retelling. Often, countries with more capital proﬁt o� this process of retelling without acknowledging the importance of creating a space where South Africans, too, can succeed. The lack of South African representation in ﬁlms that are premised on a South African narrative results in the continued reinforcement of tropes of the South African and broader African context. These reinforced tropes skew peoples’ perceptions of South Africa and creates a dominant, inaccurate and myopic representation of the country, the cultures associated with this country, its people and its history. Furthermore, the appropriation of a disadvan-
taged minority group’s culture by a dominant group is indubitably an unbalanced exchange – or, quite obviously, not an exchange at all. Escape from Pretoria is one of the many examples of the appropriation and consequent skewing of narrative perpetuated by the Global North without the inclusion of South African actors in lead roles. Other examples include ﬁlms such as Invictus, 10,000 BC and District 9.
“Appropriation is a blatant form of neo-colonialism as it exploits minority groups as opposed to developing them” Appropriation involves the corruption and robbing of identities, cultures and narratives – something that is important to the vast majority of people - by hegemonic groups. Appropriation is a blatant form of neo-colonialism as it exploits minority groups as opposed to developing them. Moreover, appropriation increases the wealth gap between the rich and the poor and leaves minority groups disenfranchised and disempowered – despite employing their human capital. A solution to this reckless and widespread act of appropriation should involve the inclusion of minority groups in these ﬁlms and approaching the process with empathy and sensitivity. Not only involving minority groups in lead roles, but also involving them in the screenwriting process, production and directing of these respective ﬁlms.
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Is the Violence in Schools a Reflection of SA as a Violent Country?
Ignorance or White Supremacy?
By Stephanie Wild
By Shameeka Voyiya
iolence in South African schools has become a nationwide problem. There have been numerous instances of news coverage showing physical violence between learners and their teachers. We have seen a teacher stabbed to death, as well as many teachers being wildly beaten, and some learners have threatened their teachers with a gun. This raises a pressing question that we need to consider: does this violence in schools reflect the violent culture of South Africa as a nation?
“Learners do not just decide to attack a teacher or a classmate: there are ... underlying factors that have contributed to them acting in this way” Most of the cases of violence occur in communities of a poorer background, i.e. township schools. Due to this, some have attributed the correlation between this violence and the areas from which it originates to the high levels of crime in these places. Learners have more access to dangerous weapons such as knives, and there exists a lot of anger within such communities, which manifests into what we see as school violence. “Learners do not just decide to attack a teacher or a classmate, there are ... underlying factors that have contributed to them acting in this way” – whether it be abuse in the home or an absence of good role models in the community. This then builds up into the violence that we see at schools today.
“The rising prevalence of violence is more of a ‘wake-up call’ for parents, institutions and the government to do something impactful to help learners who need support” This phenomenon is leading to a desensitisation of the present violence in schools – to a degree, these weekly reports of another teacher or student attacked at school has caused South Africans to regard these occurrences as less surprising. However, the shocking reality of what is happening has led to numerous government and provincial initiatives to combat the violence, protecting learners and teachers. This shows that “the rising prevalence of violence is more of a ‘wake-up call’ for parents, institutions and the government to do something impactful to help learners who need support”, and to prevent more cases like these from happening. Because South Africa has a past of violence, and its present state is not much different, this should be a call for people to do everything that they can to overcome hostility between each other in a more peaceful manner. This should not be a normality. Regular violence is something that everyone should be trying to prevent because of its harmful consequences. Understanding that this violence stems from the influence of the community, would it be enough to advocate for peaceful approaches when resolving issues with learners at home and shouldn’t our whole society support this approach?
slamophobia has once again found centre stage in the form of the Christchurch massacre. The two mosques concerned were the site of the deaths of 50 New Zealanders on the 15th of March. The gunman claimed to be responding to a Muslim-led “white genocide”. The irony of accusing victims of a massacre of committing genocide is not only absurd, but it is also an indication of extreme ignorance. In the case of New Zealand, this ignorance is exposed even at an executive level. Australian senator Fraser Anning even places the root cause of this violence as being the immigration programme allowing Muslim migration to New Zealand. Not only are lives lost to the massacre but they must also face blame for the very act to which they fall victim to. Anning goes as far as calling the Muslim faith a “savage belief”. Here, he is clearly adopting neo-colonial discourse in reducing this Abrahamic religion to one of paganism. This reduction to an inferior status is used to justify any further discrimination. Such discrimination is further justified through the apparent need to protect white identity. As already mentioned, Anning’s use of the term “white genocide” preys on any pre-existing fears concerning assimilation and the loss of cultural identity that may come with immigration. He is able to fuel this fire so that those fearful of the Muslim faith as a result of ignorance, also begin to fear for their lives. Unfortunately, such ignorance towards Islam extends to South
African culture. A simple and less violent example can be found in relation to Halaal products. Many Christian consumers have sent complaints to the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities (CRL) out of fear that Halaal products are dedicated to gods. This belief was disputed by the National Independent Halaal Trust (NIHT). Complaints, or rather accusations, however, go as far as accusing the NIHT proceeds as being used to fund terrorism. Again, there is an element of absurdity.
“He is able to fuel this fire so that those fearful of the Muslim faith as a result of ignorance, also begin to fear for their lives” An example closer to home can be found in the recent petition around campus. Muslim students were forced to resort to boycotts and petitions in order to ensure that their religious holidays are respected. UCT’s institutional structure is so centred around a Christian secularism that test and exam calendars are set with a complete disregard for Muslim holidays. Here, these students were forced to fight for their right to the freedom of religion. This absurdity may, however, not purely stem from a place of ignorance. White culture and identity has only recently been threatened as the dominant paradigm. Perhaps this fear does not stem from ignorance, but rather from a reluctance to step down from this pedestal.
Climate Strike: Students make government sweat over global warming By Brad Brinkley
he recent climate strike calls on government to instutute environmental reform. “Global Warming, Climate Change, Greenhouse Gasses,”these once triggering terms have become habituated in our normal conversation. They have been downgraded from evoking fear and motivating change, to being mildly annoying. Fortunately, not everyone feels this way. Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old from Sweden, is responsible for the global Youth Strike for Climate movement that took place on Friday, March 15. This growing movement, aimed at students, began in 2018 after Greta protest-
ed outside of Swedish parliament.
“South Africa is not trying hard enough to prevent climate change. We are still the 14th biggest emitters of greenhouse gasses in the world” South Africa is not trying hard enough to prevent climate change. We are still the 14th biggest emitters of greenhouse gasses in the world, partly due to our ubiquitous use of coal power stations. This strike put forward a document to government which stated that: climate change prevention should be prioritised in the 2019 election, a moratorium
should be put on licenses for coal, gas and oil mining, the electricity sector must be sourced by 100% renewable energy by 2030, a Green New deal for South Africa must be committed to, and climate adaption education should be properly educated in schools. Now that we have established the role of government in preventing climate change, what can you do? Here’s a list of things you can apply in your daily lives: • Live conservatively: lift clubs, energy saving bulbs, recycling and simply not using more energy than you need. • Eat green: try cutting down
on your meat consumption and be careful not to waste food. Educate: educate yourself and others about the impending climate change. Support the aesthetic: eco-friendly living can only be cool if you promote it as such, show some enthusiasm!
If you are interested in saving the polar bears (and your grandkids), the time for action is now. We, as the youth of today, have been dealt a hard hand by our preceding generations, and folding is not an option.
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LIFESTYLE & FITNESS
Nengishon Melaisho firstname.lastname@example.org
Adaptive Surfing: Making waves accessible to all By Camila Menell
his year marks the first year that the UCT Surf Club has partnered with Surf Emporium’s Adaptive Surf School in order to volunteer and take part in their adaptive surfing events throughout the year. The club did so not only to give back to the community and bring about transformation, but also to emphasise that surfing is a possible activity for those with disabilities to partake in. An adaptive surfer is an individual with a disability including, but not limited to, cerebral palsy, blindness, autism, amputations, and paralysis. Adaptive Surf School enables these individuals to experience the freedom of the ocean with an extra boost of surfing activity. Surf Emporium has qualified adaptive surf coaches who, assisted by a team of volunteers, come together to make dreams come true. The 16th of March was the first Adaptive Surf event with Surf Emporium in Muizenberg, and their third event of the new year. There were 17 adaptive surfers and 54 volunteers in total on the day. It was one of the most incredible experiences to witness first hand and even more so, to be able to be a part of the excitement in the water.
Source: Camila Menell
“There are also several influencers who volunteer on these event days in order to bring about change and inspire adaptive surfers to realize that achieving their dreams is practically possible”
“This is the only officially SSA accredited Adaptive Surf School in South Africa, and so the adaptive surfers who attend the events are from all sorts of different backgrounds” It was such a heart-warming event and
there was not a single frown on anyone’s face that day. The amount of joy, laughter, cheering and even tears (only the good kind) witnessed just shows how important the Adaptive Surf School is for our society. This is the only official SSA accredited Adaptive Surf School in South Africa, and so the adaptive surfers who attend the events are from different backgrounds.
There are also several influencers who volunteer on these event days in order to bring about change and inspire adaptive surfers to realize that achieving their dreams is practically possible. One that was present on this day was world champion adaptive surfer Ant Smyth. There are several ways in which students can get involved. Firstly, you can register as an adaptive surfer (if you are physically handicapped), or secondly, become a volunteer! More information
n the 10th of March, the 41st annual Cape Town Cycle Tour (CTCT) was held. This is the largest mass participation cycle race in the world with over 35 000 timed participants as well as a very prestige race on the University of Cape Town’s Cycling Club racing calendar with both a men and women’s elite start. The UCT Cycling Club had a team of five men lined up in the elite peloton on Sunday morning, namely: Luke Evans, Michael Lambrecht, Nicholas Lambrecht, Alexander Rohrer and Richard Simpson. Whilst they did not achieve the result they desired, rubbing shoulders with some of the greatest South African cyclists, including Dimension Data’s Stefan de Bod and Nicholas Dlamini, was nonetheless a great experience.
Saskia van der Merwe (left) and Hayley Preen (right) after the finish. Source: Saskia van der Merwe.
“This separate race allows for the ladies to race competitively and strategically”
can be given to you by contacting the UCT Surf Club or checking out Surf Emporium’s website: https://surfemporium.co.za. Spread the word! We support the need for transformation and the importance of making sports accessible to all.
UCT Cycling Club Takes on Windy Cape Town Cycle Tour
For the second year running, the ladies had their own race at CTCT starting in Fish Hoek. Although this route is shorter than the men’s race, it is still a tough 78km comprising of three tough climbs, titled Smitswinkel, Chapman’s Peak and Suikerbossie. This separate race allows for the ladies to race competitively and strategically and for their race to not be interrupted by men on the course, as has been the case in previous years when the elite ladies rode the whole route. Courteney Webb unfortunately did not start the race for health reasons, meaning that the UCT Cycling Team consisted of only Saskia Van Der Merwe and Hayley Preen in the starting bunch of 70 ladies. Preen faired impressively well in this very strong peloton and finished 9th overall and is the 2nd U23 to the current U23 South African road champion, Tiffany Keep.
By Megan Anley
“Apart from being the biggest race of the year for the racing team, it is also the most important event for most of the club’s social members” Apart from being the biggest race of the year for the racing team, it is also the most important event for most of the club’s social members, with well over half of our members participating. Despite strong winds, many members performed incredibly well. Tristan Hamilton and Grant Hiscock had notably great races. The UCT Surgical Society also got involved in the CTCT with 12 members of their club riding to support Operation Smile – an international medical charity that aims to provide free surgical procedures for children born with cleft palate and other facial deformities– and managed to raise over R44 000 for this cause.
THE BACK PAGE
@VarsityNews | 3 April 2019 | V78 E2 | Page 16
UCT Basketball set on reaching semi-ﬁnals despite absence of key players
In this Issue
By Leonard Mbulle-Nziege
The Pitch: a chance to reﬁne and learn new business skills
in favour of academic boycott of Israel
7 Abortion law
Ed Sheeran in Cape Town
Sufficiently equipped to seduce
Should the ‘Man in the Mirror’ beat it?
he 2018 basketball season provided us with amazing team and individual performances from the UCT basketball teams. The men’s squad won the University Sports South Africa (USSA) Western Cape tournament for the second consecutive season (and for the third time in four tries), and the Intervarsity Basketball Cup. They also ﬁnished runner up at the inaugural Varsity Cup basketball competition as well as in the Cape Town Basketball Association (CTBA) Cup ﬁnals. The ladies team was no pushover either, winning the USSA Western Cape tournament, the CTBA League as well as ﬁnishing runner up in the Intervarsity and CTBA Cup. In addition to this, UCT had four players selected for the SA University team, namely: Kuhle Bophela, Siphumle Qanya, Kyle Maclean and Jess Gleeson. Brian Aliam was also selected as a ﬁnalist for Varsity Cup’s most valuable player.
“All three have signiﬁcant experience not only as players and coaches but also in developing young players.” This year, the teams aim to build on the foundation of success which has been laid down before them. This may be an interesting challenge as new sta� members and players have entered the space. Both squads are led by new coaches:
Denwin Jones (men) and Thesline Davids (ladies) and returning assistant coach Mke Makanda. All three have signiﬁcant experience not only as players and coaches but also in developing young players. Recently, the UCT teams have lost key players due to graduation, and so the guidance of the coaches will be of utmost importance throughout the course of the season.
“Both UCT squads aim to retain the various titles they obtained last season” Both UCT squads aim to retain the various titles they obtained last season and have also set the goal of reaching the semiﬁnals of the USSA National Basketball Championships in July, which UCT is hosting. This will be an arduous task, considering most of UCT’s provincial and national rivals have signiﬁcantly improved rosters. Nonetheless, the leadership of players such as ladies and men’s captains Masedi Madisha and Jamal Fernandes, respectively, throughout the season will be crucial in realizing the above stated objectives. Although the men’s team has started the USSA Western Cape tournament with two defeats and the ladies stand 1-1, there are still many games to be played and a lot of enthusiasm and excitement surrounding the teams’ prospects for the 2019 season.
Source: Jimmy Chin/ National Geographic
14 Ignorance or white supremacy?
By Benjamin Stiller
n June of 2017, Alex Honnold performed the ﬁrst ever free solo climb of Yosemite’s El Capitan in California - that’s to say that Alex Honnold climbed the 900m vertical rock face with no rope - entirely unassisted and unaided. “This could be one of the greatest, if not the greatest, sporting achievement in human history”
This could be one of the greatest, if not the greatest, sporting achievement in human history: not only was this a feat of incredible strength and
Free Solo: A Compelling Story of the Human Potential
athleticism, it required relentless endurance, resolve and perfect mental control. One wrong move, one slight mishap, and this would’ve meant certain death for Honnold. However, this was not merely an adrenalineseeking act of recklessness, as Alex himself says: “There is no adrenaline rush. If I get an adrenaline rush, it means that something has gone horribly wrong.” “This incredible achievement was captured in a phenomenal feature documentary by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin.”
This incredible achievement was captured in a phenomenal feature documentary by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, whose e�orts were duly rewarded at the 91st Academy Awards, where it received an Oscar for Best Documentary Feature. The stunning documentary, Free Solo, truly does Alex Honnold’s incredible achievement justice, and is a highly recommended watch. The Mountain and Ski Club will, in the upcoming weeks, be hosting a screening of Free Solo, open to all on campus. Keep an eye out and make use of the opportunity to witness this incredible human achievement!
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