Winnie Mandela was a hero. If she’d been white, there would be no debate

Afua Hirsch

Afua Hirsch is a former legal affairs correspondent and west Africa correspondent. She writes a fortnightly column for the Guardian

Guardian Opinion – Afua Hirsch

Peaceful protest did not end apartheid: it took revolutionaries. And it shouldn’t be difficult to choose between a system of racial supremacy and a person who helped overthrow it.

Video – Winnie Mandela Obituary in The Guardian

We see ourselves as a moral, decent and rights-respecting nation. But when we are tested for our true moral grit, we keep failing. The death of Madikizela-Mandela is another opportunity to choose between a narrative of white supremacy and the one that overthrew it. If the media coverage of her death is anything to go by, this is, apparently, a deeply controversial choice.

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