Spread a bit of happiness this Christmas

“Who do you think was the most dangerous person in the history of the world?” someone asked me. It’s a difficult question. Our history has seen a few terrible people in positions where they could destroy millions of lives.

In South Africa we had Hendrik Verwoerd and other architects of apartheid. Shaka Zulu killed thousands of enemies and possibly just as many of his own men. Hitler, history tells us, killed six million Jewish people. Many died under Joseph Stalin.

And if you go further back in history, there were several Roman emperors who killed many, as well as medieval kings, such a Vlad the Impaler, who killed for their own entertainment.

“No.” She shook her head. “It wasn’t one of those people. It was Walt Disney.”

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The remark shocked me. I have always been a bit of a Disney fan.

“Why?” I asked.

“Disney gave us a warped idea of life. He taught us to expect a life of abundance, a world without hunger, without pain, even without load shedding. And even worse: he told generations of people that they can expect happy marriages. Marriages where people always agree, show affection, care for each other…

“Real life doesn’t work like that. Life can be extremely cruel. And to make people believe such an utopia is the standard, is just as cruel,” she said.

Of course she is right.

My ideas may be tainted by Disney, but I dream of a world where I can enjoy the caring support of those I love. I crave for a life of affection.

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A situation where a couple is a unit where two individuals can be best friends, lovers and a united front against all the hate, brutality and wolves at the door. Unfortunately, that seems to be exactly what it remains to be – dreams.

But I refuse to accept it – not at Christmas time.

Until next week, I will live each and every one of my dreams. I will live the love for my fellow humans, particularly the ones who share my home and the grumpy one who shares my bed.

I will remove any modern version of Hitler or Vlad from my life – this is the few days every year where I give what I can; where I spread all the love I have and where I care until it hurts.

Merry Christmas, dear readers. I love you all.

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