History has a habit of shaping, shifting, and or omitting reality. Although some may think that leaving out parts of a narrative is the same as lying, I have often wondered what the purpose was in doing so, and if there is ever a reason good enough. I have come to the conclusion that the answer is no!
Mahatma Ghandi was the leader of India's Independence Movement and a pioneer in non-violent protest. He is famous for civil disobedience, including hunger strikes, and his advocacy for peace and change in the face of violence is legendary. Ghandi was often quoted by Dr. King. But unlike Dr. King Ghandis idea of freedom and equality did not extend to Africans.
All quotes are direct quotations from . They are taken from his writings and statements during the years he spent working as an attorney in South Africa, before he went back to India in 1915 to fight for independence.
“A general belief seems to prevail in the Colony that the Indians are little better, if at all, than savages or the Natives of Africa. Even the children are taught to believe in that manner, with the result that the Indian is being dragged down to the position of a raw Kaffir.”
“There is a bye-law in Durban which requires registration of coloured servants. This rule may be, and perhaps is, necessary for the Kaffirs who would not work, but absolutely useless with regard to the Indians. But the policy is to class the Indian with the Kaffir whenever possible.”
These racist quotes are just a few of many. Apparently Ghandi's humanitarianism did not apply to Black people or at least, they weren't supposed to.
The question is. Do we overlook the fact that he was a blatant racist and allow ourselves to be inspired by his philosophy? Or do we refuse to separate the man from his principles, and see him for what he really is?