Nelson Mandela


Nelson Mandela is a man who has proved to the world that one man can make a huge difference to the world. He stood up for what he believed in and because of him, our country is a much better place where equality lives on and people live in peace with each other. He has become an icon of change and love for all people. He once said that you are not born hating people but you learn how to hate. This is very true! We only hate people because we listen to what other people say about them and we never make decisions for ourselves. If your best friend says he is a bad kisser, then he must be or that guy is just horrible because of a rumor you once heard. People can change and they can change for the better. South Africa changed for the better and we are now a rainbow nation whereby people have come to love each other and their differences. If we all the same, life would be boring and we would not have the chance to learn about new cultures and see how other people live…

I had the honor to meet Nelson Mandela about 5 years ago. I worked for CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation and one day I was selling Easter eggs at a shopping centre and all of a sudden I saw about a dozen body guards and then my body went cold. The man who changed our lives was standing right before me! He went to go buy a book from the book shop and the whole centre froze and was on lock down. I was in too much shock to take a picture of one of the most astonishing men alive. My mom,sister, brother and I walked up to him and said, ‘Mr.Mandela, can we please have a picture or a hand shake or a something?’ and he replied, ‘Ask my boss.’ he was pointing at his body guard and the guard said no but Mandela spoke to me! Was a moment that I will never ever forget! I owe my youth to him because I am part of the first group of people to matriculate in our new democratic country. It was because of this man that any religion, gender and race could matriculate last year as a unity and we owe that honor to this man.

It is now a time of darkness in our country because Nelson is not a well man and he is lying in a hospital bed in Pretoria and as all the drama is going on, we need to remember what Nelson stood for and how much he fought for our country and we cannot ruin that or tear it down!!! We need to continue his legacy and make our country become the country he dreamed of. So my thoughts and prayers go out to Mr.Mandela and his whole family and I really do wish him well and hope he has a speedy recovery.

Thank you Nelson Mandela for giving me the opportunity to learn new cultures and religions and allowing me to live at peace with my fellow South Africans. Thank you for not giving up on us.

Ashlee Zlotnick



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