Despite the hatred in this land, and there is a lot of it, I believe in it. I believe that South Africa possesses the ability to become the greatest nation on earth. I believe that most of her people are good people, and I believe that those who commit crimes are the lesser of the majority.
I cherish my countrys progressive constitution, and I adore her land. She is a beautiful country, and one filled with many hopes and a promise for something greater. I cannot, however, abide by her national anthem.
A countries anthem should be something that raises the hairs on your forearms as thousands of people lift their voices in unison. It should be something unique and something that applies to all her people. Each member should be included. Each person should feel their breast swell with pride when the vibrant words etch steel and stone and bleed patriotism from even the most hardened detractor.
So why can I not accept the anthem of my country?
Because it is not unique, and it is further, biased against me. I do not believe in God. My constitution says that I do not have to submit to those who say that God exists. But my anthem asks for His blessings. My Anthem, if you take the full verses of the Hymn that it is pulled from, further goes on to say that it is the Christian God.
So I have a question: How can a people, who believe in the Ancestors, adhere to this Hymn? How can a people who belive in Allah, sing this song with pride? How can a people who cherish the Hindi gods, sing this song with meaning? How can a country, that prides itself in its diversity and intolerance of prejudice, have a song that cries out the name of the Christian God seeking blessing, but ignores all others?
How can this song be our anthem?