I strongly suggest that reporters who write articles about criminals should rethink their empathetic tone. I am not suggesting an inhuman approach. However, very often when we read of active criminal that are injured or killed by other criminals, the media insists on interviewing his relatives who then explain what a kind and wonderful person the criminal was. The media report often gives one the impression that some journalists do not fully realise the negative role that criminals have in the overall destruction of the South African society.

For example we all know that there are millions of South Africans directly affected by the plague of drugs. Drug addicts destroy the social, economic and mental fabric of our society. Sympathy held for those afflicted by addiction should be earmarked for the families and victims of crime such as rape and murder. Sympathizing with an injured or murdered drug dealer, drug mule or a drug addict is counterproductive as it makes the efforts of those working against drug addiction look senseless.

Journalist should recognise the important role they play in providing leadership to our broader society. Drug addicts do it for the high while drug dealers and mules, do it for the easy money. They are not heroes but people who want to destroy our communities. Perhaps reporters who write about drug related issues should spend more time with elderly parents who are robbed by their drug addicted children instead of trying to generate empathy for drug addicts, dealers and mules.

Let our society not lose sight of who our adversaries are and the real threat they represent to our collective well-being.

Cllr Yagyah Adams

Cape Muslim Congress

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