The passing of Nelson Mandela brought the world to a halt late yesterday, and has continued today as people from all over reflect on his profound grace, courage, and his leadership in bringing healing after turmoil to the people of South Africa.
Around the world, many have publicly commented and paid their respects to South Africa's first black president, who was elected after spending 27 years imprisoned for his efforts to fight the apartheid and their racist white-minority rule that oppressed the country.
“We've lost one of the most influential, courageous and profoundly good human beings that any of us will share time with on this earth,” said current U.S. President Barack Obama, the first black leader of his own country who said his first public activism was an anti-apartheid protest. “He no longer belongs to us. He belongs to the ages.” Senator Wendy Davis said “He was a hero who brought different groups together to improve the lives of all. He fought for the very soul of democracy – that everyone have a voice in their government.”
And even our Senator Ted Cruz shared kind words and condolences to Mandela's family and the people of South Africa. Unfortunately, the response to his statement on his Facebook page did not reflect this sentiment.
And while Ted Cruz's Facebook page has never been ground zero to discover human intellect and compassion, the outpouring of racism, bigotry, and ignorance was absolutely unprecedented to see for a man who had just recently passed and did so much for the country he led. Instead, the majority of comments referred to Mandela as a communist and a terrorist. This tastelessness should be considered not just a low for Republicans, but for Texans and Americans all over. Cruz should be ashamed of his supporters for this level of tastelessness.
Read some of the horrible responses below the jump.While this should definitely not be the primary focus when we should be celebrating the life and work of one of the greatest world figures seen in this century, this is a reminder of how dangerous the hard-right has become. These are not the people we should have electing our officials in Texas, and this is not the rhetoric that we should let be representative of our state. We should do everything possible to uphold the truth against this kind of ignorance.
|Here begins the cries of “communism!!” that echoes throughout the chain.|
|“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela.
Too bad Tea Partiers won't take any direction from Mandela's words.
|Of course, anyone who does not support Ted Cruz is a Communist and a Constitution-hater.|
|“True intentions?” To free oppressed people and achieve equality? Apparently the hard right does not approve improving the lives of those who are systematically oppressed…sound familiar?|
|A small glimmer of sanity. But will Ted Cruz say anything to his supporters about the level of ignorance they've displayed?|
|Apparently Cruz's simple statement was enough to lose large amounts of respect from his supporters. Looks like they are quick to attack any rational thinking.|
|Commenters continue to remain classless.|
|Again, clear-cut racism permeates throughout the thread.|
|In one of the most disturbing comments, Cruz supporters suggest lynching in response to Cruz honoring an anti-racist leader. Necklacing became a common method of lynching among black South Africans during disturbances in South Africa in the 1980s and 1990s.|
|Unfortunately, some commenters cannot understand history correctly, and refuse to remember who suffered under the act of necklacing.|