Helen Zille is a prominent South African politician, journalist, and former leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), one of the major political parties in South Africa.
Helen was born in 1951 in Johannesburg. During the apartheid era (a system of racial segregation and discrimination enforced by the National Party government), she became politically active in the liberal opposition to apartheid and joined the Progressive Party, which later became the Democratic Party and eventually evolved into the Democratic Alliance.
She began her career as a political correspondent for the Rand Daily Mail, a South African newspaper known for its anti-apartheid stance. Her work as a journalist during this time exposed injustices and led to her being banned by the apartheid government in 1977. She went into exile in Southwest Africa (now Namibia) and later worked as a reporter for the Cape Times and The Argus.
After her return to South Africa in the early 1990s, Helen became actively involved in politics and joined the Democratic Party and was elected to the Western Cape Provincial Legislature in 1999. In 2006, she was elected as the mayor of Cape Town, becoming the first woman to hold that position.
Her leadership was unmatched.
Helen is very critical of woke culture and published a book, Stay Woke, Go Broke, in which she expresses her concerns and why it’s destroying South Africa.
Wokeness tends to identify people based on their race or gender (or another general attribute), reducing complex individuals to mere representatives of the said attribute. Such an approach undermines the principle of individuality and perpetuates a divisive and reductive view of society.
It also promotes a binary and adversarial perspective on relations, framing the world solely through the lens of oppressor and oppressed. Such an approach breeds animosity and division, hindering constructive dialogue and collaboration.
Wokeness celebrates victimhood culture.
Helen chatted to me about her book.