Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.
Robert Kennedy, Cape Town, 1966
This is Andries Tatane, a 33-year-old maths teacher, a resident of Meqheleng, a poverty-stricken township just outside of Ficksburg in South Africa.
Andries is lying dead in a friend's arms, having just collapsed after a brutal beating by eight riot policemen that ended in one of them shooting him.
You can watch his beating and death on YouTube if you want to.
Why was he killed?
He had intervened in the over-zealous policing of a group of protestors. He stepped in front of an old man being sprayed with a water-cannon, took off his own shirt and told the police to spray him instead of the old man. In response, the police beat the life out of him.
This happened on April 13 2011.
Not during apartheid.
Why were the people protesting?
After 17 years, the people of Meqheleng are still waiting for the State to provide them with basic amenities. 'Service delivery'. That's the buzz-word in these post-Apartheid Rainbow-Nation days.
So, Andries Tatane is brutally beaten and killed by the government's police force.
Police Commissioner Bheki Cele's new policing policy is 'shoot to kill'. Zero tolerance of crime. And zero tolerance of people too, obviously.
Andries Tatane, a brave husband, father and South African, who lost his life at the hands of the State by standing up for another.
Please tell me you know this famous photograph and what it represents.
Please read the Deputy Chief Executive of the South African Institute Of Race Relations Frans Cronje's open letter to the Minister of Police, Nathi Mthethwa.
So far, the police have failed to suspend the policemen involved, and neither Bheki Cele nor Nathi Mthethwa have offered to resign.
What are we to make of all this, people?
One thing is for sure, you can't ignore it.
But somehow, most of us will. 'It's just the government', we say. 'It's just politics'.
'It's nothing to do with us'.
Tell that to Andries Tatane's family.
A luta continua.
Viva Andries Tatane Viva!