P**sgate: Malema and EFF are being hypocrites about Barry Bateman
While there’s much competition for the title of SA’s biggest hypocrite, the party and their leader have proved themselves to be contenders.
If there’s one thing I don’t take EFF leader Julius Malema for, it’s oversensitive. Perhaps I am wrong, based on his party’s attempts to have EWN reporter Barry Bateman fired after he was accidentally caught on camera calling Malema a p**s (in the unlikely event that there are any non-South Africans reading this, that’s an Afrikaans word that is seen as particularly offensive in SA).
This is the same Malema who has argued that he should be allowed to say that he is “not calling for the slaughter of whites, at least for now”, command Pauli van Wyk to “Go to hell, Satan“, or offer Jacques Pauw an opportunity to go “**** himself”, all in the name of freedom of speech.
Even Bateman’s insult itself did not come out of nowhere but as a response to Malema aggressively saying: “Uniform or no uniform. Afrikaner or no Afrikaner. White or pink! I deal with you! Decisively.” He also called Bateman a “Boet”.
When Malema gets insulted, however, his party releases a statement with them coming across as wounded victims, making it clear that they have no intention of taking what they regularly dish out.
The statement holds journalists responsible for the “toxic environment that the EFF has to operate in”, calls an insult quite clearly captured on camera by mistake “naked provocation”, and claimed a white journalist who said the same about a white politician would have been placed under suspension with immediate effect.
In this current climate, where both left and right see the media as their enemy and most people don’t even read stories, choosing instead to get outraged at an eight-word headline, EFF supporters will almost certainly see this column as an attempt by a white journalist to protect one of my supposed comrades.
While I can’t assume to know Bateman’s personal politics, his Twitter activity shows what I assume is an affinity with right-wing libertarians and classic liberals against whose ideas I am vehemently opposed, such as the Renegade Report, the Capitalist Party of South Africa’s Kanthan Pillay and AfriForum’s Ernst Roets.
A retweet is not necessarily an endorsement, as Malema himself argued when journalists including Bateman recently hauled him to the Equality Court in an attempt to sanction him for allegedly inciting threats against journalists. But the consistent sharing of specific ideas can, I believe, be taken as a relatively reliable sample of their politics.
As Bateman is not a natural ally for me, this column is not an attempt to defend him. What it really is, is a call for consistency.
FTFY.These are the kind of stories media loves. I like Barry Bateman but this was unprofessional by him. He should never have let emotions get the better of him. It doesn't matter if Malema is a buffoon, racist or a po3s.
I accepted it. It wasn't meant to be seen or heard. As a journalist, I bet he's been on the receiving end of similar rabid behavior by a politician in the past. Remember the Eben Jansen saga?FTFY.
The only question is did he mean for that to go on air?
If no, accept it and move on.
If yes: Nominate Barry for the shortest, most concise, accurate and honest summary of an interview ever. If such an award does not exist, create it.
I wouldn't call Chrissy Teigen a journalist...We need a Chrissy teigen in SA. Must be a woman and can't be from wmc or indian cabal - for obvious reasons. Any takers?