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Hofmeyr, Bloody Hofmeyr

Dear Steve

You’ve been at it again. You’re saying that it’s hard not to be a racist because “the blacks” keep jumping over walls and killing whites and their children. You say that whites would never do such a thing. Then you used Bono to get yourself back into the press, even though you didn’t even understand what he said, and if you did, you chose to twist it to fit your increasingly menacing agenda.

Now you’re creating more hate speech on your blog, and whipping up anger with your insistence that Afrikaans people are being massacred. You say Afrikaanse people are being killed like flies, but you have no statistics to show how many other South Africans die unnaturally every year. I cannot for the life of me understand what it was you were doing in that bookstore the day we chatted … you certainly could not have been reading.

I see that you list my comedy as a major source of propaganda against the “boere”, and I also notice that, for all your posturing, you still do nothing. Your rewriting of the U2 song is just another indication that you are incapable of original contributions to society, other than samples of protein that you seem to produce as quickly as you can distribute them. I wonder if all the black people you claim to know so well also hit their women after they’ve leapt over the walls in your head.

Your reaction to the farm deaths show us that you are not reliable under real pressure, that when you reboot, it is to a default right click. If you love your country so much, why don’t you use your influence to sow reconciliation, community action or harmony? Perhaps you know deep down that in a harmonious South Africa, middling ability may fall under a sobering searchlight?

You rail against crime in your blog, you make inflammatory statements on behalf of people who feel threatened and dispossessed, you rub salt in their wounds, you excite them and you use their hysteria to generate press. What you’re doing is wrong, what you say is misguided. By rewriting Sunday Bloody Sunday to repeat the lines you are so dead against shows that you are fully prepared to perpetuate negativity — Bono didn’t get it wrong, you did.

You are punching above your weight, sir. Perhaps you can do that sort of thing around the house, but there are many, many liberal, intelligent and committed South Africans who really can’t put up with your transparent attempts to stay relevant in a world that is largely disinterested in your sound and fury.

Yes, the murders in remote areas are horrific, yes, nothing can ever, ever excuse what is going on. We must as a nation find ways to protect the farmers, along with everyone else in this country, but we cannot get anything done while you sit on the stoep, getting drunk on laager. Let’s make a plan, let’s form cohesive lobby groups, let’s have a plan. Perhaps you could spearhead a proposal outlining the economic impact on a nation if its farmers are lost? Of course, that would imply honest work, not making gratuitous appearances to eulogise hateful figures who perpetuate dissonance.

Goodness knows, we have a brilliant example just to the north? Why go and write yourself off as a nut job? I daresay that’s easier than putting in some elbow-grease.

Have you asked to see the president? Have you called the police commissioner to answer for the murder statistics? What have you done, sir? Apart from stand on your pop music soapbox and squawk?

It is offensive to me that you isolate my comedy as an attack on Afrikaans culture, I could easily view you as a huge symptom of where we have erred in choosing mediocre nationalism over bona fide original art.

I could say that your career is nothing more than proof that a culture will haemorrhage money irrationally in reaction to its perception of impending extinction.

That would be rude, and simplistic, and it would not serve any purpose, other than make you mad, and then I’ll have to have lawyers write you again, to explain the rule of constitutional law to you, just like last time, Steve. You surely must see that by breaking laws in defence of them is absurd.

You’re being dangerously childish with your plays for credibility — isn’t it ironic that you flare up again, just as Die Antwoord play Nashville, with a song that says “F-K Steve Hofmeyr … ” Why can you not help people to understand that they are now living through the horror of consequences? That many, many white people lived it up and ignored or enjoyed apartheid, leaving us … all of us, together to try and wade through this mess and see if we can’t make a better life for the people who will follow?

Why do you perpetuate the myth that only “your people” are suffering? We are all citizens, we are all wronged, but we are also all privileged that we saw the change, and some of us understand that history is asking us to pay a heavy and shared price, whether we like it or not? When you go on and on about the lives lost in the making of South Africa, you never mention the blood from the other side, the men, women and children who suffered when your “people” arrived on boats and took without asking — people who prayed to a supposedly Christian god to assist in slaughtering the locals … honestly? Who do you think is supposed to pay back that which was taken? If not you and I, who?

What do you think will happen? Do you think the masses, the government or the nation at large is going to read an angry white man’s blog, and change the course of history? Perhaps you’ve read it wrong, like you did Bono’s comment?

The way I see it, you can keep representing a group that ultimately, and relatively, is not owed a say in the course of our country, unless, like all of us, it earns that say by action, not by entitlement, a word I believe you are aware of. You are riling people up and giving them no release, no solution.

There are many, many good South Africans, people who don’t take their gospel from angry, disillusioned light entertainers. People who face the grim facts: there is a generation of traumatised people we need to live through, our nation is an angry, abused teenager. We do have WHITE people who rape babies, we do have BLACK people who do great things, how can you possibly make statements that ignore the truth?

I would love to know how you see your current course of action having any form of constructive outcome. You are just throwing petrol onto a fire, and I’m not sure how you are different from someone like that petulant and politically illiterate Julius Malema or the twits who think it is clever to allow anyone to sing “shoot the boer” for that matter, which is not constitutional.

I really wish you had it in you to be a bigger man, you have a good voice, you should use it.


John Vlismas


  • You can follow John on Twitter if you like @fortyshort. John Vlismas is an increasingly reclusive former hell-raising coke fiend and fall-down drunk. Now a scuba teacher and far better father; he is an award-winning anti-socialite, has played The Royal Albert Hall and has been described as "blunt" but also as "sharp". He has little regard for team sports and his name is very often mispronounced. He is also the co-owner of a company called "Whacked", which does good things for local comedy.