A White South African Who Left in Protest Remembers Mandela

My friend Lindsey Leveen, who blogs about environmental issues (and green scams) at Green Explored, posted a very moving and interesting tribute to Nelson Mandela today, recalling how hopeless South Africa once was:

I left South Africa after joining a chemical company as a young manager having gained my MBA.  I made the “mistake” of promoting a black worker into a “white man’s” job. Interestingly that job was as a crane operator to remove sulfur laden solid waste in the desulfurization of synthesis gas at an ammonia plant. Very similar to the hazardous sulfur laden solid waste I have often discussed about Al Gore’s Gangrene Bloom Boxes.

I caused a strike by the unionized white workers when I refused to demote the Black worker out of the job they claimed was reserved for whites. The management of the factory (British and Harry Oppenheimer owned) would not support me or the black worker. I resigned my job and went directly to the US Embassy in Pretoria to get my papers to come to the US.  My Dad was a US citizen so that was pretty quick and easy. I had given up on South Africa and simply feared an impending blood bath.

Nelson avoided that blood bath I and so many others feared….

Nelson, you proved that it is content of one’s character not the color of one’s skin that matters in doing the job well.  Nelson you are my beacon to give me the resolve to continue to tackle the well-connected gangrene crowd that are ripping us off blind in the green energy space….Nelson your example of courage is awesome.  Nelson you stand taller than Lord Nelson in Trafalgar Square near South Africa House, you stand as Our Nelson way up there in heaven.  God Bless You.