South Africa: #Imstaying, a Witnessing of Another's Humanity


Initiated on the basis of 'good thoughts, good words, good deeds', the Facebook group #ImStaying offers some relief from tension as I carve out purpose and meaning in a difficult situation. The group, to put it simply, lightens my mood.

Clearly, with the number of articles appearing about the Facebook group #ImStaying, it's causing a stir. In the latest, "Dear South Africa, you don't need to be misaligned with everything", by Nomatter Ndebele, published recently in Daily Maverick, Ndebele commends the Facebook page as "a tiny little space of unity". However, with a current following of over 760,000 and with over 18 million messages posted, it's become more than a blip on the screen.

Jarette Petzer founded the group barely a month ago, aiming to foster a "positive vibe" among South Africans, and hoping to have a small impact as he called on people to stay in the country. He must surely be surprised at how it's taken off. This last weekend alone, postings had to be temporarily interrupted in order for the 60 moderators to process 40,000 pending posts.

South Africans of all walks of life are now members of the rapidly growing community that has progressed far beyond...

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